Holmen uses large amounts of energy. The manufacturing of thermo-mechanical pulp is particularly heavy on electricity. The proportion of electricity produced from hydro power is substantial and the production of electricity from biomass fuels and wind power is increasing in the Group.


Energy costs and the relationship between energy use and climate change have resulted in a focus on energy issues in the Group. It is crucial to Holmen's long-term profitability to keep energy consumption and costs as low as possible.

Company-generated electricity corresponds to 50 per cent of requirements

Holmen wholly or partly owns 21 hydro power stations located on the Umeälven, Faxälven, Gideälven, Iggesundsån, Ljusnan and Motala Ström rivers. Production at the hydro power plants in 2016 totalled 958 GWh. Combined with wind power electricity production and the company's own electricity production (known as back-pressure power), this means that the production 2016 corresponded to almost 50 per cent of the electricity demand.

The wind farm in Varsvik, in the Municipality of Norrtälje, is the first on the Group's own land and also the largest wind farm in the county of Stockholm. Holmen's share of the electrical energy produced in 2016 was 74 GWh.

Holmen is a partner in the BasEl wind power company VindIn. Holmen's share of the electrical energy produced in 2016 by VindIn from its wind turbines was 47 GWh.

Most of the electricity needed at Holmen's mills is purchased externally. The Group is consequently one of the largest purchasers of electrical energy in Sweden. To deal with the risks this poses, hedged long-term contracts are signed with the electricity suppliers. Purchases are hedged to just over 65 per cent for 2016-2018 and 40 per cent for 2019-2020. Hedging means that Holmen will not be fully affected immediately by changes in electricity prices.

Bioenergy meets 70 per cent of the need for thermal energy

Biofuels, mainly in the form of bark and wood-containing liquors, meet 70 per cent of Holmen's thermal energy requirements. Recovered thermal energy accounts for just under 20 per cent of the thermal energy needed. Remaining quantities of heat are produced primarily at and close to the mills using natural gas, oil and LPG.

Surplus energy

Iggesund Mill and Hallsta Paper Mill are located close to built-up areas. Surplus heat is delivered to the municipal district-heating networks. Surplus electricity from the mill in Workington is sold to the national grid.

Energy-saving measures

Efforts to improve energy efficiency and reduce the use of fossil fuels are increasing for reasons related to climate change and resources. Holmen is therefore making active efforts to identify and implement energy-saving measures and to increase the level of self-sufficiency in energy. This mainly involves improving efficiency in the use of energy and increasing the proportion of electricity produced by the company, as well as making greater use of waste heat and increasing the proportion of bioenergy.

Energy management systems

All Holmen production units have certified energy management systems.

Wind power

Holmen is a major land owner and has the potential to develop its land holdings by establishing wind farms on its own sites with good wind conditions. Hydro and wind power have low operating costs, since they do not require the purchase of fuel, and production is entirely free of carbon dioxide. The erection of wind turbines has stalled in Sweden due to poor profitability. If/when conditions improve, Holmen will be among those ready with projects that are sufficiently viable.

More biofuel

Holmen extracts biofuel from its own forests and has become more active as a buyer and seller on the biofuel market. Holmen's long-term forest stewardship efforts are increasing the total stock of wood. By taking further measures to stimulate growth, it will therefore eventually be possible to increase the volumes of wood and biofuel extracted.

By-products/waste

Work is in progress in the Group to improve the prospects for extracting energy from by-products/waste. Various measures are being taken to raise the calorific value of the materials.

The staff unit Holmen Development initiates research into innovation and product development. Its work includes investigating how waste and by-products from the mills can be further processed into base chemicals for customers in the chemicals industry, for example.

Peat extraction

Holmen sees peat as an interesting complement to biofuel. Peat is considered a slowly renewable resource, which makes it possible to add value to certain land assets within Holmen that are not productive forest land. Peat can be used in energy production, but also as a soil improver, animal bedding and a building material. A redundant peat field can be restored as a wetland or planted with forest. Holmen currently has a peat field outside Örnsköldsvik that was taken into use in 2009 and is harvested annually for energy purposes. In 2016, the harvest equated to 70 (63) GWh electrical energy.

 

  2016  2015 2014  2013   2012
Electric energy          
Share of Holmen's total production/consumption, %     
Company hydro power  27  36  27 24 30
Electricity production at the mills  20 20  18 17 12
Purchased electricity 53  44  55 59 58
           
Thermal energy          
Share of Holmen's total production/consumption, %     
Biofuel  72  68  73 64 49
Recovered thermal energy  18  17  17 17 20
Natural gas  6  12  8 12 18
Oil, LPG   3  2  2 6 9
Purchased thermal energy    <1   <1  <1 <1 4

Holmen AB, P.O. Box 5407, SE-114 84 Stockholm, Sweden.

Tel: +46 8 666 21 00  E-mail: info@holmen.com

  

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