FINLAND (News release) -- Reducing carbon dioxide emissions, water protection, and using energy more efficiently are key targets of Kotkamills' strategy. In 2020, significant investments were made to improve the mill's energy efficiency. The aim is to complete the big project to reduce the wastewater treatment plant's load and the mill's carbon dioxide emissions by August 2021. Investment projects stretching also into 2022 have been launched.
The most significant investments and measures in 2020-2021 have targeted the maintenance and efficiency-Improvements of the Kotkamills paper machine that was commissioned back in the 1950s, as well as the pulp mill modernization projects.
In 2020 the old drum washing line of the pulp production was decommissioned and the remaining washers were modernized. This improved the washing line's efficiency, increased the usability, and improved the quality of the pulp produced as well as the energy efficiency. As a result of the modification, the pulp mill's overall electricity consumption dropped by about 10 percent. The project will continue with a significant replacement investment aiming to increase the paper machine's capacity by upgrading the cooking lines end equipment and thus enabling the needed pulp production.
The evaporator and odorous gas boiler investment began in 2020 and is currently in the testing and commissioning phase. Production use will begin in August. The investment project will improve the pulp mill's chemical circulation and will significantly reduce the wastewater treatment plant's load, as methanol and strong odorous gases will be eliminated from the treatment plant and recovered for use elsewhere. The goal is also to reduce any adverse odors created by the mill. The mill's carbon dioxide emissions will decrease, thanks to the significant increase in energy efficiency and the decreased need for process steam. The new plant's chimney stack was erected in December 2020.
To ensure the availability of the CTMP chips for the board machine commissioned in 2016, a chip plant was built for the mill. The additional Chipping, in addition to the recycled chips from the plant's own sawmill, will secure chip availability and production of the board machine line. The project was launched in 2018, and the Chipping began in summer 2020.
We have started construction of a new packaging facility to accommodate production growth. The goal is to commission the more spacious and modern packaging facility in spring 2022.
In addition to the mill's own personnel, there are a lot of external workers involved in the investment projects. To ensure safety, we follow the normal safety guidelines for external workers as well as the recommendations of the health authorities.
Kotkamills Oy is committed to responsible business operations and its development in line with social, economic and environmental Sustainability principles. The mill's operations are improved through continuous maintenance, servicing and development projects that also take into keen consideration the impacts to the neighborhood that has developed around the mill over 149 years.