Our first plant in the Southeast, the Fernandina Beach facility, was constructed in 1937 in Fernandina Beach, Florida. The plant produces 155,000 metric tons of softwood cellulose specialties per year and employs more than 300 people. It contributes $35 million annually to Florida’s wages and salaries and over $2 million to Florida’s property and sales taxes.
The plant’s property is home to the new Eight Flags LLC combined heat and power (CHP) plant, a partnership between RYAM, Chesapeake Utilities and Florida Public Utilities. Fueled by natural gas, the CHP plant – which began operation in mid-2016 – generates 20 MW of power for FPU’s Amelia Island customers. In addition to leasing land to Eight Flags LLC for the project, RYAM entered into a 20-year agreement to purchase low-cost steam from the facility for use in our Fernandina plant.
In addition, on 26 June 2018, LignoTech a joint venture lignin plant was built in a partnership with Borregaard (55%) at the Fernandina Beach location. The plant is producing high-performance lignin products based on renewable raw materials. This facility has significant environmental benefits by the products it produces. This site employs over 50 additional local residents and has positive impacts of both high energy efficiency and reduction in Greenhouse Gas emissions – a welcomed addition to Florida.