21 July 2010

The massive pellet plant of 1 000 000 t/y close to city of Vyborg in the very west of Russia (Sovetsky in Leningrad Region) is on track to start production late August 2010. The plant is a part of the pulp and paper mill Vyborgskaya Cellulose. Industrial pellets will be the main product and 49 years leases for round food of 1 million cubic meters a year will secure the supply of rawmaterial.

All the Andritz equipment for the pellet plant with an annual capacity of up to 1 million tons per year has been delivered. This information was confirmed by Mr Arnold Dale of Ekman & Co, Gothenburg Sweden at the World Bioenergy conference in Jönköping, Sweden. Ekman & Co have an exclusive sales agency for the wood pellets from the Vyborgskaya cellulose pellet plant.

All equipment is being supplied turn key by Andritz of Graz Austria, a global leader in wood processing equipment. This includes two debarking lines, 4 belt dryers, 16 hammer mills and 36 presses.

Mr Dale explained that all equipment will start operation this year, but it will take a full twelve month period until the plant can operate at full capacity. During the first 12 months it is expected that about 650 000 tons will be contracted. From 2012 the contracted volume will increase to 900 000 tons.

The round wood for production will be delivered from Leningrad, Pskov and other Russian regions where company is rented several forest plantation for 49 years (according to the Russian Forest Code).

The produced pellets will be exported to the power plants and CHP in Europe. The distance to the port of Vyborg is 25 km and they are alos planning to develop their own port on iste to even further minimize the ecological footprint, says Arnold Dale

The pay-back of the project is expected to be less than 7 years. Financer is the French bank  with 30 million Euro and the Russian bank VTB”.

Vyborgskaya cellulose is in the process of obtaining 49 year forest leases for more than 1.2 million m3 of round wood per year. This is in order to meet the sustainability criteria of the large utilities, and will lead to full certification of all wood used.

“We have had a very positive reception from all the major utilities in Scandinavia and Europe, who see the Vyborg plant as an opportunity to streamline their biomass procurement operations”. In the past the large utilities have had to source their required volume from very many different pellet producers in many different countries. “They can now obtain good volumes from a producer who is literally right on their doorstep” says Arnold Dale.

– We focus on the industrial market but have also the possibility to target the consumers market says Arnold Dale.

2010 is turning into a very eventful year for Vyborgskaya cellulose, not only are they building the worlds largest pellet plant. A recycled paper line is now being installed and this will increase the pulp and paper output by 50% in the summer of 2010. They will also continue to convert 500 000 m3 of pulp wood into pulp and paper.


Read more in the Bioenergy International

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