The Finnish forest industry company Metsä Group has opened a new bioenergy heating plant next to its Kerto mill in Lohja, southern Finland. The plant will have a major impact for the energy supply in the area, producing a combined annual total of about 160,000 MWh of heat to the Lohja district heating network, as well as process steam to the Kerto mill.
The bioenergy heating plant is a joint venture worth about EUR 17 million. The plant constructor was Lohjan Biolämpö Oy, whose shareholders are Lohjan Energiahuolto Oy Loher (49%), Metsäliitto Cooperative (46%) and Ääneseudun Energia (5%). The project built a new boiler plant based on BFB technology and the related wood fuel reception and processing systems.
Energy-efficient and environmentally friendly
Metsä Group is an important producer and consumer of bioenergy. According to Kari Jordan, President and CEO of Metsä Group, the Lohja bioenergy heating plant will contribute significantly to the company’s goal of making its production units more energy-efficient and environmentally friendly. “At the moment, already more than 80% of the fuel consumed by the entire Group is wood-based. Through the bioenergy heating plant, the annual carbon dioxide emissions of Metsä Wood's Kerto mill and the Lohja area will decrease by about 40,000 tonnes,” says Jordan.
According to Metsä Group, the bioenergy heating plant is also pivotal in improving the competitiveness of the Kerto mill because most of the previous coal-based heat production will be replaced by bioenergy heat. For fuel, the bioenergy plant uses the Kerto mill’s by-products and supplementary forest chips and other wood-based fuels. The carbon dioxide emissions caused by traffic in the Lohja region will also decrease.
Metsä Group’s core businesses are tissue and cooking papers, board, pulp, wood products as well as wood supply. Metsä Group’s sales totalled EUR 5.3 billion in 2011, and it employs approximately 12,500 people. The Group operates in some 30 countries.
Source: Metsä Group