AUGUSTA — The owners of four biomass power plants in Maine, including those in Stratton and Livermore Falls, were at the State House on Thursday to announce their company’s recent certification for the Sustainable Forestry Initiative standard.

ReEnergy, the company that owns the plants and three others in New York, Connecticut and North Carolina, is the first in the world to obtain the standard for biomass electricity operations, according to company officials.

The company’s plants generate 325 megawatts of power and employ 290 workers, including 100 in Maine, Chief Executive Officer Larry Richardson told a gathering of dignitaries and lawmakers during a presentation in the State House Hall of Flags.

“ReEnergy believes that sustainable, home-grown, clean energy production is essential to reducing the United States’ dependence on fossil fuels and is committed to creating renewable sources of electricity while respecting the environment,” Richardson said.

SFI Inc. is an internationally recognized, independent, nonprofit organization. The certification standards are based on sustainable forestry practices, including the protection of water sources and reforestation practices. ReEnergy and all of its suppliers were reviewed in the certification process, Richardson said.

“It is truly exciting for these Maine biopower facilities to be recognized as first in the world to achieve such important certification,” state Sen. Thomas Saviello, R-Wilton, said. “This reflects ReEnergy’s respect for the environment and its commitment to land stewardship and reforestation.”


Patrick Sirois, director of the Maine Sustainable Forestry Initiative, said ReEnergy’s procurement network was unique in the industry and “will provide yet another avenue to broaden the practices of sustainability on the ground in Maine.”

Biomass plants use residuals from timber harvesting for other purposes. For instance, branches not suitable for making other products are chipped and burned to power steam turbines for electricity.

Maine Gov. Paul LePage also congratulated the company on its achievement in a prepared statement.

“ReEnergy exemplifies the qualities of a company that is working to achieve that balance of promoting land stewardship and forestry practices,” LePage said.

The company also owns Maine biomass facilities in Fort Fairfield and Ashland.

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