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May 9, 2018

Fiberight waste-to-biofuel facility updates its opening dates

The recycling portion of the Fiberight waste-to-biofuel facility in Hampden could be running by September.

At a community meeting in Bangor on Tuesday, Fiberight CEO Craig Stuart-Paul and colleagues said that, although the company missed its opening day of April 1, they expect to be open by December, with the recycling portion ready by September, the Bangor Daily News reported.

According to a Fiberight news release in January, the company completed $70 million in project financing for the Hampden facility, with $45 million coming from a tax-exempt bond issuance from the Finance Authority of Maine, underwritten by Jefferies LLC, and the remaining $25 million from private equity.

At that time, Stuart-Paul said in a statement that the first phase of construction on the facility was "largely complete." Fiberight's facility will have a 180,000 ton-per-year capacity. The facility will service municipalities and public entities represented by the Municipal Review Committee in eastern and northern Maine under a 15-year contract. The company intends to contract with other municipalities and businesses under separate agreements.

In April, Maine Public reported that the delay was forcing more than 100 communities in central and eastern Maine to temporarily send their waste to two landfills.

Ted O'Meara, a spokesperson for Penobscot Energy Recovery Company in Orrington, told Maine Public that Maine law places a priority on sending municipal solid waste to incinerators rather than landfills.

"And I'm not sure that people who live in places like Bangor, Brewer and Bar Harbor realize that the trash they put out by the side of the curb is no longer being turned into energy and reduced significantly in volume by being used to create energy, and instead is just being dumped on the ground at two landfills," he said.

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