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St1 combines bioethanol and biogas production

 

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2011-11-17
St1 combines bioethanol and biogas production

Bioethanol pioneer St1 is to extend its recently completed Bionolix™ bioethanol plant in Hämeenlinna in southern Finland with facilities for producing biogas. The integrated concept will enable St1 to make maximum use of its biowaste input and expand its renewable energy portfolio.

Biogas production at the new facility – to be supplied by Finland’s leading supplier of biogas plants, MK Protech – is scheduled to start in September 2012 and will total approx. 2.2 million m3 a year, with an energy content of around 14,000 MWh. The biogas produced at the site will be used to generate heat and power for local municipal needs, replacing energy generated using fossil fuels.

The new concept offers a new and highly competitive solution for helping Finland meet its national waste management goal of recycling at least 50% of the country’s municipal waste by 2016 and around 30% in the form of energy. It will also enable St1’s Hämeenlinna site to increase its waste recycling percentage to nearly 100%.

 

Commissioned in 2010, St1’s Bionolix™ plant in Hämeenlinna will acquire a biogas production capability next year. Photo courtesy of St1.

Clear added value

Combining bioethanol and biogas production in this way under one roof can provide clear added value to the biogas production chain, says the company, and open up the way for more energy-efficient plant solutions in the future. The integrated biorefinery concept should also prove competitive internationally, in countries such as Germany and Sweden.

ST1’s Bionolix™ plant in Hämeenlinna is the first second-generation waste-to-ethanol plant based on the company’s proprietary technology. Commissioned in 2010, the plant uses municipal and commercial biowaste as its feedstock to produce approx. 1 million litres a year of bioethanol for traffic fuel use from 19,000 tonnes of waste.

As part of its on-going R&D on potential new raw material inputs, St1 will commission a pilot plant next year to study the use of recycled fibre, wood waste, straw, and similar materials in producing bioethanol.

St1’s energy services and products cover everything from wind power to RE85 produced from biowaste. The company currently has seven bioethanol plants in Finland, a refinery in Gothenburg, and operates around 1,200 St1 and Shell service stations in Finland, Sweden, Norway, and Poland. For more about the company, see our article or the company’s Web site.