Total Fiber Recovery of Chesapeake (TFRC) has started construction of its $80 million recycled pulp production facility in Chesapeake, Va. The Virginia Small Business Financing Authority authorized the issuance of $65 million of Green Bonds for the facility that were sold to Alliance Bernstein earlier this month.

TFRC is a joint venture between Salem, Ore.-based Total Fiber Recovery and Gothenburg, Sweden-based supply chain services company CellMark Inc. CellMark’s Recycled Fiber Division will supply the project. CellMark’s Pulp Division will market all pulp produced. Eugene, Ore.-based Bulk Handling Systems, an affiliate of Total Fiber Recovery, is furnishing the equipment for the facility.

“The paper industry demands recycled pulp to make new products, and North America is home to some of the world’s most advanced [materials recovery facilities] that produce high-quality recycled fiber,” says Steve Miller, Total Fiber Recovery CEO. “From consumers recycling at their homes, to legislators and regulators developing creative waste management plans, to the dedicated MRF operators sorting out materials, Americans have shown that we care about recycling. All that is missing here is the capacity to achieve our goals, and that is what TFR provides.”

TFRC will begin operations in the fourth quarter of 2023 and annually process up to 300,000 tons of mixed paper and old corrugated containers from the region’s MRFs. The company will increase the region’s capacity to process recycled fiber and produce a clean recycled pulp for consumption in paper mills around the world.

Doug Smith, president of CellMark’s Pulp Division, says the company is “delighted” with the new opportunity. “The market is welcoming new entrants, and the Chesapeake project has all the critical elements for success: experienced partners, a plentiful recycled feedstock, a sophisticated cleaning process, and excellent logistics,” he says.

The Virginia Economic Development Partnership worked with the City of Chesapeake’s Economic Development Department and the Port of Virginia to secure the project.

“Total Fiber Recovery’s innovative operation will produce in-demand recycled fiber that reduces our environmental footprint and positions Chesapeake as a major participant in this important sector,” says Virginia Gov. Glen Youngkin. “This project helps demonstrate that clean air, clean water, and a strong economy do not have to be mutually exclusive.”

Photo courtesy of Bulk Handling Systems. Caption: OCC and mixed paper bales, similar to the feedstock that will be used in the new pulp facility.