Veolia Launches World’s Largest Biorefinery to Produce CO2-Neutral Bio-Methanol From Wood Pulp

Veolia has launched the world’s largest biorefinery project which will be producing CO2-neutral bio-methanol from a pulp mill located in Finland. Although almost completely unexplored to date, the project will allow for the unlocking of the potential of this alternative source of feedstock for biofuel.

The project’s goal is to contribute to European energy security while supporting the European Green Deal’s decarbonization ambitions for transportation, as the industrial-grade quality CO2-neutral bio-methanol represents a new source of sustainable low carbon fuel replacing fossil-based fuels. With an annual production capacity of 12.000 tons, the plant, due to come on stream by 2024, will avoid up to 30.000 tons of CO2 emissions per year.

The project was developed in close cooperation with Metsä Fibre, the world’s largest producer of softwood market pulp and a globally significant manufacturer of sawn timber. The refinery will be based on Veolia’s industrial scale concept of commercial bioproduct-derived bio-methanol production, which safely integrates the refining of crude sulphate methanol into the pulp production process. The refinery will be owned and operated by Veolia and will be adjacent and partly built into Metsä Fibre’s Äänekoski plant in Finland.

Estelle Brachlianoff, COO of Veolia said, “The advantage of our industrial concept is that it is replicable at around 80% of the pulp mills worldwide. It has a potential to unlock an additional, locally generated feedstock of CO2-neutral bio-methanol for biofuel that could be estimated at 2 million tons.”

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