Schuyler, New York [RenewableEnergyAccess.com] New England Wood Pellet LLC has begun construction of its Schuyler, New York, wood pellet manufacturing plant. At 100,000 tons per year of wood pellet production, the plant will be the largest wood pellet manufacturing facility in the U.S., and produce enough renewable energy annually to heat 40,000 homes.The $12 million plant will be located in the Schuyler Business and Industrial Park on Route 5 just east of Utica, within sight of the New York Thruway. Schuyler Wood Pellet will have about 20 employees when production begins in May 2007, with an estimated 75 additional jobs created trucking and retailing. The plant is expected to infuse more than $10 million in expenditures annually to the local economy The plant will produce premium grade wood pellet fuel from clean wood waste including sawdust, wood chips, shavings and grindings from wood product manufacturing plants throughout central New York State. These residues are dried and ground to a fine sawdust, and compressed into 1/4-inch diameter pellets — a clean, energy-dense and convenient fuel that can be burned in pellet stoves, furnaces and boilers. “As a strong supporter of advancing alternative energy and job creation,” said New York Congressman Sherwood Boehlert (R-Utica), long a champion of environmental and renewable energy issues in Congress, who attended the groundbreaking. “I welcome New England Wood Pellet to the beautiful Mohawk Valley. Not only will this new facility produce enough energy to heat 40,000 local homes — it will also create close to 20 full time jobs and strengthen the local tax base,” Congressman Boehlert added. “Today’s announcement is yet another example of how working in partnership at all levels of government delivers results and improves the quality of life in our region.” Congressman Boehlert is retiring this year after 24 years in Congress.