15 November 2016

Manufacture of Altree wood-plastic composite brings hundreds of jobs to California

First Altree production facility to be built by American Indian tribes

PJ Woodlands LLC, the owner of Altree, a wood-plastic composite, has partnered with an American Indian tribe to build the first Altree production facility. The partnership will create jobs for many of the tribe’s 32,000 members.

The Altree product is a patent-protected, green, recyclable, reusable, wood-plastic composite made from wood chips and recycled milk jugs. Developed in conjunction with the U.S. Forest Service (USFS) Altree, according to the USFS, “is one of the only sustainable solutions to thinning our forests and making a commercial product on a scale significant enough to make a measurable impact.”

The USFS says Altree is the only sustainable way to utilize non-commercial timber, and substantially reduces the number of catastrophic forest fires landfill-bound plastic.
PJ Woodlands will repurpose an existing 65,000 square foot modular facility located on the Hoopa Valley Tribe reservation to manufacture Altree sheeting products. The partnership will provide PJ Woodlands with an ideal manufacturing plant, access to the Hoopa Valley Tribal labor force, and woody biomass in sufficient quantity to scale the manufacturing operations over time. The partnership also includes a multi-million-dollar investment from the Hoopa Valley Tribe, for which the tribe will receive a significant minority equity stake in PJ Woodlands.

Spanning 144 miles, the Hoopa Valley reservation in Northwestern California contains 90,000 acres of heavily forested land. The partnership will bring many well-paying jobs to the tribe’s 32,000 members.

“Many of the needs of the tribe will be addressed by our strategic partnership with PJ Woodlands,” says Tribe Chairman Ryan Jackson. “By working together, we will bring many well-paying jobs to the Tribe while fulfilling our mission of protecting our natural resources. From time immemorial the Hupa People have relied on the forest for sustenance and have sustainably managed those resources to ensure their continued existence for the benefit of future generations.

Altree is manufactured in 4’ x 8’ sheets (of various thicknesses) and is used as both a building product and as a substrate replacement to aluminum roadway signs. As a road sign, the Altree product is significantly cheaper and safer than aluminum, and has been designated as a bio-preferred  by the U.S. Federal Government.

Source: Woodworkingnetwork, 2016-11-08.
Author: Robert Dalheim


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