Environmental activities 2012
During the year, the main focus has been on the construction and early commissioning activities of the new biomass fuelled CHP plant. At the year end all the main process equipment was in place. The project scope covers the reception, preparation and storage of biomass fuel, main boiler, steam turbine, cooling towers and water treatment plant and auxiliary back-up boilers. Full commissioning will be completed during quarter 1 2013. During 2012, early commissioning activities have been completed including the water plant, full boiler pressure testing, initial firing of the boilers.
The project will completely change the energy situation in the mill. From this date, on balance, 100 per cent of the energy used in the mill will be from a renewable source (biomass). Incada will effectively be carbon neutral.
Associated with the energy development, much of the environmental support work has been in achieving the associated permits and authorisations. These include the main operational permit, new greenhouse gas trading permits (preparation for phase 3 EUETS), full registration with the government for the green energy certificates.
The new operational permit was achieved during August 2012. This permit combined both the normal timed review as well as incorporation of the new biomass CHP plant. Associated with this are new air and water discharge limits. In addition, the permit contains both pre-operational and improvement activities. The pre-operational conditions are associated with the biomass CHP plant and concern fuel acceptance procedures, ash characterisation and commissioning plans. The improvement activities include procedure reviews, emissions assessments, ash recovery, noise assessment and a full BAT review of the effluent treatment plant. In total there are 15 reports to complete, with identified deadlines. The most significant project is the full BAT review for effluent treatment. This work requires a report by February 2014 covering a full cost /benefit assessment for available treatment options including impact assessment and environmental modelling. This work and outcome is set in the context of the new sector BREF document.
Applications have been made during 2012 for new greenhouse gas trading permits which will be in place for the beginning of 2013 in line with phase 3 of the EUETS.
Applications have been made to register the biomass CHP plant with the government authorities to enable the mill to claim green certificates (ROCs) associated with the production of renewable electricity. This, in turn, is supported by the UK good quality CHP scheme.
Also, during the year, the existing gas CHP plant came under ownership and operational control of the mill. All associated permits were transferred.
Workington has been certified to ISO 14001 since 2003. Since 2005 the mill has been certified according to the in FSC® standard. During 2012 all of the national certifications have been achieved associated with the production of renewable energy from the new biomass CHP plant.
Work on developing a system for energy management has continued. External certification will be considered once the bioenergy boiler is in operation.
Investments / Environmental measures
Investment activities were focussed on the energy generation upgrade to a renewable source (biomass CHP plant) and associated work.
Production disturbances and complaints
There were four events during the year when a partial volume of mill effluent by-passed the main treatment process. One of these events was planned and three were unplanned. Two of the unplanned events were the result of total power loss in the mill. The duration of the discharges were limited by prompt action to re-instate power to the critical equipment. All incidents were reviewed with the authorities.
During 2012, 16 complaints were registered from the local community. These were mainly concerned with noise. Each incident is reviewed at the community liaison committee which has representatives from the local community and authorities. During the year the site noise model has been reviewed in line with the current site development plans. This will be followed up with further measurements in 2013.
Follow-up of environmental/energy targets 2012
All permits and licenses have been achieved for biomass CHP plant.
The pulp and board making operational permit has successfully been reviewed and achieved.
Environmental and energy related measures planned for 2013
Successful commissioning of the biomass CHP.
Environment/energy targets for 2013
- Full commissioning of new biomass CHP plant
- Production of a carbon neutral Incada product
- Review of the effluent treatment against BAT
- Follow-up all permit actions (ash recovery, noise assessment, emissions reporting, dust control)
- Full EMS integration of the biomass plant organisation and procedures.