Media Statement in response to the settlement of a lawsuit challenge from clean air groups that forces Enviva’s Richmond County, NC wood pellet factory to install pollution controls:
Today, in a victory for clean air and public health, Clean Air Carolina represented by the Southern Environmental Law Center and Environmental Integrity Project signed an agreement with Enviva and North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality. Enviva, the world’s largest wood pellet manufacturer will now have to install the controls at their Hamlet facility that organizations and community members have been demanding, reducing dangerous smog-forming pollution by 95%. No community should have to breathe harmful air pollutants that damage their health and quality of life, and now the people of Dobbins Heights, Hamlet, Richmond County and the surrounding areas will get the proper air pollution controls they deserve.
Time and again, Enviva has deceived the public, policymakers, and its investors over the years — whether about the company’s impacts to air quality, our climate, or its destructive sourcing practices. The Maryland-based company has demonstrated it must be caught in the act and even dragged to court just to do the right thing. In the absence of real accountability, Enviva has made it clear it will always do what’s best for their bottom line and not what makes a good neighbor, despite its claims to the contrary.
As the wood pellet industry expands in North Carolina and throughout the South, Enviva continues to threaten our forests and wetlands, climate, and resiliency. When this industry is allowed to devastate our best defenses against climate change and extreme weather — our natural forests and wetlands — all of us are at risk. The wood pellet industry, led by Enviva, has been allowed to grow unchecked — and this company has certainly taken advantage of its free pass. Now, it’s time for the Cooper Administration to hold Enviva accountable for its impact on our forests, climate, and communities, and halt the expansion of the industry.
Read the full press release on today’s announcement from the Southern Environmental Law Center here.
Read more about Enviva and the wood pellet industry’s air quality violations throughout the South: Dirty Deception
Read more about Enviva’s history of deception here.