A North Carolina-based wood products manufacturer has revised an Environmental Assessment Worksheet (EAW) for its planned $440 million oriented strand board manufacturing plant in Cohasset.

Huber Engineered Wood Products has submitted the revised EAW to the City of Cohasset, according to company officials.

“We appreciate the feedback we received from community members and stakeholders, and we revised the EAW accordingly to take into account the feedback we received,” said Brian Carlson, Huber Engineered Woods president in a press release. “We intend to continue working with interested parties to move the project toward construction.”

The City of Cohasset is the Responsible Governmental Unit on the project.

In June, Huber Engineered Woods announced plans to build the mill adjacent to Minnesota Power's Boswell Energy Center in Cohasset. The Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe, the Minnesota Center for Environmental Advocacy, Bemidji of Chamber of Commerce, and West Fraser, another wood products producer, called for a Environmental Impact Statement to be completed on the project. Huber Engineered Woods has updated the EAW after a review of comments and consultation with local citizens, state agencies, and other interested parties, according to the company.

The revised EAW provides more detail on the project's carbon footprint, especially regarding the effects of generating much of the facility's energy needs through wood fuels, and the carbon sequestration effects of the facility's finished wood products, stated Huber Engineered Woods.

The 750,000-square-foot mill would create 150 direct jobs and would require 300 to 400 construction jobs to build the plant, according to the company. The mill would manufacture wall and roof sheathing, integrated structural panels, and high-performance subflooring.

A $15 million loan from the Minnesota Department of Iron Range Resources was in June approved for the project. The Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development, Minnesota Pollution Control Agency, Itasca County, Itasca County Economic Development Corp., and City of Cohasset, partnered to support the project. 

On Feb. 8, the Cohasset City Council will discuss the EAW and open a public comment period that would end Feb. 24, said Cohasset Mayor Greg Hagy. A decision on the EAW would come from the council March 8, Hagy said. With permit approvals, construction on the mill would begin later this year, according to Huber Engineered Woods.

Huber Engineered Woods is headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., and has wood products facilities in Georgia, Tennessee, Oklahoma, and Virginia.