Why is the new mill called a “next-generation bioproduct mill”?
The new Äänekoski mill is called a bioproduct mill since it is increasing the product portfolio with new bioproducts, generating excess bioenergy, and using no fossil fuels. The mill is utilising 100 per cent of its wood raw material
as well as production side streams.
What other bioproducts bioproduct mill is producing alongisde pulp?
The mill is producing traditional biochemicals, such as tall oil and turpentine, and bioenergy. So far, the production of product gas, biogas and sulphuric acid have been started in the mill´s ecosystem.
We are studying several processes and product paths and will implement them gradually. Upgrading of lignin and manufacture of textile fibres from pulp are progressing at the research stage.
The companies in the ecosystem created by the bioproduct mill will convert pulp production side streams into bioproducts that offer higher added value than before.
What types of partners are you hoping will join the ecosystem?
The operating model for the bioproduct mill is based on a partnership network where new products are created in cooperation between various expert operators in the value chain. We are expecting businesses of various sizes and in various stages of development that specialise in biomaterials and bioenergy, for example, to join the ecosystem. Opportunities to manufacture innovative, high-added-value bioproducts will open up for small and medium-sized enterprises in particular.
How is the bioproduct mill affecting the employment?
The number of employees at the bioproduct is 150. The bioproduct units to be built in conjunction with the pulp mill will create completely new industrial jobs.
The employment effect of the bioproduct mill throughout its value chain in Finland is 2,500 jobs, including around 1,500 new jobs. The employment effect will be most significant in wood harvesting and transportation.
How the construction project of bioproduct mill progressed?
The bioproduct mill project progressed according the plan, schedule and budget. Bioproduct mill in Äänekoski came into operation as planned on Tuesday, 15 August 2017 at 6:00 in the morning. Pulp deliveries from the new mill to customers will begin in early September 2017.
What level of emissions will the new mill generate compared to the previous Äänekoski pulp mill?
Despite a significant increase in production, the mill will remain compliant with the environmental permit granted to the previous pulp mill in 2006. The goal of bioprpduct mill is that all production side streams and waste will be reused. The equipment solutions are based on energy efficiency and clean technology.
- Emissions into water: no effect on the usability classification of the natural waterway
- Emissions into the air: the quality of air in the town is improved in terms of odorous compounds
- Noise: the noise generated by the mill and the mill area is not exceeding the guideline values
- Solid waste: the amount of solid waste is minimised, and recycling is continuously developed.
What types of wood is the mill using and in what proportion?
The mill is using 4.5 million cubic metres of softwood and 2 million cubic metres of birch per year. It is increasing the annual use of softwood by 3.9 million cubic metres and the use of birch by 0.4 million cubic metres.
Will the wood raw material be sufficient for such large-scale production? How will you ensure availability?
The use of pulpwood is increasing by around 4 million cubic metres per year. The annual felling of softwood pulpwood can be increased sustainably by 7 million cubic metres in Finland. The effect is spreading across Finland through changes in the sourcing areas of Metsä Fibre´s pulp mills.
Our wood supply is supported by the central location of Äänekoski, the broad member base of Metsäliitto Cooperative, and Metsä Group’s strong wood products industry, which uses logs as a raw material. The need for imported wood is remaining at its present level.