The facility, previously fired primarily by coal, was idled in early 2010 by its former owner. ReEnergy acquired the facility in December 2011 and invested more than $34 million to convert it to biomass. The converted facility began operations in May 2013. ReEnergy Black River submitted a proposal to the Defense Logistics Agency as part of a competitive procurement process in spring 2013. The U.S. Army issued ReEnergy a notice of intent to award the purchase agreement in February.
The facility was expected to begin supplying 100 percent of Fort Drum’s electrical load as of Nov. 1. Fort Drum’s electricity needs currently peak at about 28 MW. A transmission line will be built to directly connect the plant to Fort Drum’s substations. Until that project is complete in mid-2015, ReEnergy will arrange for bilateral deliveries through an energy service company.