Smurfit Kappa announces multimillion fuel conversion in Germany to substantially reduce CO2 emissions

Smurfit Kappa has announced a significant investment of €11.5 million in its Zülpich paper mill in Germany, which will fund a fuel conversion project aimed at significantly reducing the plant’s CO2 emissions. The plant currently produces approximately 500,000 tonnes of paper annually.

The investment will allow a major redesign of the plant’s multi-fuel boiler, providing a more sustainable fuel source for the generation of steam and electricity at the mill. An integrated steam re-use system, which optimises energy usage, will replace coal as an energy source, and coal will be phased out. Following the current plans, it is expected that the redesigned boiler will be operational by the middle of 2022. 

Not only will the new investment secure the mill’s energy supply for the future, it will also have significant impact on the plant’s carbon footprint. The new investment will reduce CO2 emissions at the Zülpich paper mill by 21%, and saving 55,000 tonnes of CO2 annually, which is the equivalent to 37,446 cars1. Additionally, the new investment will contribute to an impressive 2% reduction of CO2 emissions for Smurfit Kappa Group globally.

Commenting on the investment, Pim Wareman, CEO of Smurfit Kappa Recycled Paper Cluster, said: “This significant investment illustrates the decisive steps that Smurfit Kappa is taking across the business to proactively reduce our CO2 footprint, whilst continually improving the overall efficiency of our equipment. With this investment, and by turning side streams from the paper manufacturing process such as rejects and biogas into steam and electricity, we are well on track to meet the EU target of -55% CO2 emissions by 2030.”

Adopting this more circular and sustainable approach, the plant in Zülpich aims to significantly reduce its environmental impact as part of Smurfit Kappa’s Better Planet 2050 targets.

Smurfit Kappa Zulpich 

 1 Calculation made based on the average engine for passenger cars in the EU.