UPM aims to become a major player in Europe in the production of renewable, advanced biofuels.
Next summer, UPM will begin the construction a biorefinery producing biofuels from crude tall oil in Lappeenranta, southeastern Finland. The industrial scale investment is the first of its kind globally. The biorefinery will produce annually approximately 100,000 tonnes of advanced second generation biodiesel for transport. Construction of the biorefinery at UPM’s Kaukas mill site will be completed in 2014. The total investment will amount to approximately EUR 150 million.
UPM’s advanced biodiesel, UPM BioVerno, is an innovation which will decrease greenhouse gas emissions of transport up to 80% in comparison to fossil fuels. The product’s characteristics correspond to those of the traditional oil-based fuels and highly complement today’s vehicles and fuel distribution systems.
By further processing crude tall oil UPM is able to utilise the wood it uses for its pulp production in a more efficient way without increasing wood harvesting. UPM’s wood sourcing is based on the principles of sustainable forest management, chain of custody and forest certification. UPM does not use raw materials suitable for food.
In recent years UPM has developed different technologies and business models for the production of advanced biodiesel and bio oil.
UPM is currently planning the production of advanced biofuels - mainly biodiesel - from energy wood: logging residues, wood chips, stumps and bark in a BTL (Biomass-tio-liquid) refinery to be constructed either in Rauma, Finland, or in Strasbourg, France.
UPM will assess the BTL biorefinery plans after the EU has decided on its investment grants. The EU is expected to decide on the NER300 grants in the second half of 2012. In addition to an investment grant, the investment decision will be significantly impacted by the long-term outlook for wood price and availability in the market.
In advanced biodiesel UPM has been developing, together with Andritz/Carbona, the gasification technology needed to produce biofuel from forest energy wood. The initial testing programme was completed in the USA as planned. Finalization of the technical concept will continue.
In addition, UPM, Metso and Fortum together with VTT have developed a new concept for the production of energy wood based bio oil to replace fossil fuels in heating and power generation. In this concept, production of bio oil would be integrated into UPM’s own biomass-based power plants. The technology used in combined bio oil and renewable energy production is patented.