Watch local forest landowners, Enviva forest supply team members, and Chairman and CEO John Keppler discuss Enviva’s fiber resources and its role in the southeast forestry supply chain.
Enviva sources its raw materials through suppliers who deliver fiber from privately-owned forests and directly from sawmills and other wood industry manufacturers.
Enviva does not source from primary forests, protected forests or forests that are being harvested for land use conversion. The ratios of hardwood to softwood, species mix, and fiber forms (tops/limbs vs. chips vs. sawdust, etc.) vary depending on the plant and the region.
Wood fiber procured by Enviva falls into the categories below:
Low grade wood fiber
• Rotten/hollow core
• Bad grain/excessive knotting
• Crooked stem and form
• Diseased or damaged
• Fire/lightning damage
• Small size
Tops and limbs
Parts of the tree that cannot be refined into lumber. Some “tops” of trees can be significant in size and are often mistaken as a “whole tree.” These tops and limbs are the unusable by-products of a sawtimber harvest.
Without demand, this fiber would most likely be left on the forest floor, releasing carbon through decomposition and impeding reforestation.
Chips made by suppliers in the forest out of low grade wood and waste materials that are left over after a primary harvest. These consist of small tops and limbs, vines and other woody debris. This debris would otherwise be left on the forest floor, releasing carbon through decomposition and impeding reforestation.
A first thinning generally occurs between 10 and 20 years of age. Generally weaker or deformed trees are removed to reduce competition for water, nutrients and sunlight. A second thinning may occur 7-15 years later, to remove any additional trees that have developed defects or additional understory and to concentrate growth on highest quality trees.
Mill waste and residues
Enviva Port of Chesapeake, VA
Enviva’s Port of Chesapeake ensures the safety, reliability, and quality of our product.
In January 2011, Enviva acquired a deep water terminal at the Port of Chesapeake, just outside of Norfolk, VA. The facility can host a wide variety of vessels, up to a 40 foot draft. The Port can receive, store, and load wood pellets for export and serves as the shipment point for woody biomass fuels manufactured at Enviva’s mid-Atlantic facilities, including the Ahoskie and Northampton, NC and Southampton, VA sites.
The Port’s strategic location decreases transportation time and costs through the entire supply chain which greatly benefits customers. It enables Enviva to precisely control its product from forest to ship. The terminal completed construction and began operating in December 2011, less than a year after it was acquired.
State of the Art Storage Silos
Enviva Port of Chesapeake has two wood pellet storage domes with capacities of 45,000 metric tons each. These domes have systems for continuously monitoring and controlling temperature as well as fire detection and suppression. They can also withstand hurricanes and winds of up to 300+ MPH and an 8+ Richter scale earthquake.
Port of Mobile, Mobile, AL
Through a strategic partnership with Cooper T. Smith, Enviva leases space at the Port of Mobile in Mobile, AL. Enviva’s pellet manufacturing facilities in nearby Amory and Wiggins, MS, are situated along major inland waterways and highways that make transportation to the Port easy and efficient, reducing emissions and costs. Pellets from the Amory facility are transported along the Tombigbee River and stored in barges until they can be loaded onto an ocean-going vessel. Pellets manufactured at the nearby Wiggins facility are transported by truck. Enviva sends out shipments of pellets every four to six weeks from the Port of Mobile.
At Enviva, safety is paramount. Safe practices and strict protocol are instilled in our culture at every level of the company and is of the utmost priority. The company invests heavily in safety, training, and professional manufacturing practices.
Superior safety performance is an objective of all of Enviva’s operating facilities. We recognize that our greatest resource is the people who work to contribute to the success of our company. If Enviva is to obtain optimum protection of its people and property, then an exemplary approach to safety is necessary. Enviva has a strong, unwavering commitment to provide a safe workplace and to establish and enforce policies promoting high standards of employee and contractor health and safety, while delivering to the customer the highest quality product. All employees on an Enviva worksite will conduct themselves and their work in a safe manner consistent with existing policies and practices. Adhering to Enviva safety-related policies and procedures is a condition of employment.
Responsibility for following our policies and achieving our safety goals is that of everyone, including site superintendents, supervisors, employees, and the safety manager with the support of company management. Our approach to safety is to develop, cultivate and maintain safety as a personal value for each person associated with Enviva. We believe that a strong safety culture as a value will never be compromised by taking operational shortcuts that may expose members to unacceptable risks within the workplace.
With these objectives in mind, our “employee participation” approach to safety is our roadmap to achieve the goals we have set for a safe work environment.
A level of zero incidents, accidents and injuries is the only acceptable goal for our work places. We believe that it is an attainable goal that can be accomplished when everyone conducts themselves safely through teamwork and communication. Achievement of our objectives will allow us to provide a quality product and a safe and healthful work environment for all of our Enviva team members.
We instill a culture that values safety through the actions of management and implementation of:
- Annual OSHA Safety Training for the workforce
- Weekly safety topics
- Established housekeeping standards
- Safety handbook
- Personal protective equipment
- Visitors safety training
We use NFPA guidelines in the design and operations of our facilities to mitigate the risk of fire or dust explosions.
Enviva has operations throughout the mid-Atlantic and southeast U.S. regions and endeavors to support initiatives that will have a meaningful impact on the local communities where our facilities are located. Our outreach and philanthropic efforts primarily focus on three axes: sustainable forest management and restoration, promoting sustainability through education and local initiatives that support environmental initiatives.
Below are some stories of outreach in our local communities.
Each holiday season, Enviva participates in a local “Adopt-a-Family” program, providing gifts and necessities to families in need in the Washington, DC area.
Enviva has worked with the National Forest Foundation (“NFF”) in helping to fund reforestation in West Virginia and Mississippi.
In March 2012, Enviva participated in the groundbreaking of the Elizabeth River Project’s historic wetland restoration at Paradise Creek Park, next door to Enviva’s export terminal in Portsmouth, Va. Enviva continues to support ERP through various initiatives throughout the year.
What are wood pellets and why are they important? Enviva staff visit schools in communities where Enviva has operations to answer questions like these. For younger students, we developed Woody the Wood Pellet, an illustrated story explaining how the products Enviva manufactures are helping our customers meet their environmental goals. Most recently, Enviva staff visited KIPP Gaston College Preparatory School in Gaston, NC which is right down the road from our Northampton facility.
Local residents were invited to visit Enviva’s Port of Chesapeake for a tour and a chance to learn more about Enviva’s operations.
Enviva Port of Chesapeake is honored as a Model Level River Star by the Elizabeth River Project, a local non-profit group in the Chesapeake, Va., working with residents and businesses to restore the Elizabeth River.