SunGas Renewables to bring nearly $2 billion facility, hundreds of jobs to Pineville

The new facility to bring jobs and economic investment to central Louisiana through energy innovation delivering lower-carbon marine fuels
A $2 billion industry in renewables will repurpose the old international paper site off of Highway 107 in Pineville.
Published: Jul. 26, 2023 at 11:40 AM CDT|Updated: Jul. 26, 2023 at 6:09 PM CDT
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PINEVILLE, La. (KALB) - A $2 billion facility is set to be constructed in Pineville at the former International Paper Mill site, and is set to bring hundreds of jobs to the area.

The facility will come from SunGas Renewables Inc., which has formed Beaver Lake Renewable Energy. The goal is to construct a new green methanol production facility in Pineville, which will generate nearly 400,000 metric tons of green methanol per year for marine fuel.

The methanol produced is expected to be used to fuel a fleet of methanol-powered container vessels and will utilize wood fiber from local forests. SunGas Renewables shared that it chose central Louisiana for this project due to its long history of sustainably managed forests, available infrastructure to support the facility and strong local and state support.

“SunGas considering our region for an investment of such magnitude is a huge success for all of us,” Joe Bishop, President of the Rapides Parish Police Jury said. “We are excited for the prospect of this industry locating and thriving in Rapides Parish.”

“As the only state in the Gulf South with a climate action plan, Louisiana is a global leader in the energy transition and companies like SunGas Renewables have taken notice,” Gov. John Bel Edwards said. “I applaud SunGas Renewables for pursuing this massive investment that would create quality, high-paying jobs in central Louisiana for our talented workers. If it moves forward, this project will be another milestone in our efforts to grow and diversify our economy. The state will continue to support the company’s efforts to bring it to completion.”

The construction of the facility is set to create more than 1,150 jobs, and more than 100 local jobs during operation.

Register to be notified about job opportunities, hiring events and news updates with SunGas Renewables here.

“This is a great day for Pineville and central Louisiana,” Pineville Mayor Rich Dupree said. “It has been a long time since an announcement of this magnitude has happened anywhere in our region, so we welcome news of this potential game-changing development for Pineville and all of central Louisiana.”

“We truly hope Beaver Lake Renewable Energy makes the Alexandria region home,” Alexandria Mayor Jacques Roy said. “Our community welcomes all regional growth leading to better jobs and opportunity for citizens, especially when a site like the one proposed is brought back into commerce. We have many resources to offer businesses and a wonderful quality of life we know any industry choosing our region would enjoy.”

The BLRE facility is expected to begin construction late next year with commercial operations starting in 2027.

“The Beaver Lake Renewable Energy project would be another large-scale investment in central Louisiana’s green energy profile,” Louisiana Central president and CEO Jim Clinton said. “This region is emerging as an important player in the nation’s energy transition with new jobs and investments now occurring throughout our region. We thank SunGas Renewables for choosing this area as the proposed site of its first green methanol production facility.”

“Using biomass from sustainably managed forestry along with carbon capture allows our project to generate green marine shipping fuel while simultaneously removing carbon from the atmosphere,” SunGas Renewables CEO Robert Rigdon said. “As we continue our mission to make a meaningful impact in the energy transition, we look forward to collaborating with all our project partners and the state of Louisiana to construct and operate this important project. This incredible effort happening right here in Pineville will be an innovative and industry-leading low-carbon energy solution that will help fuel a better world.”

Learn more about Beaver Lake Renewable Energy here.

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