The Smurfit Kappa paper mill in Nettingsdorf, Austria, has launched a sustainable district heating project that will benefit 20,000 homes across three communities when completed. The project will capture excess heat generated from the Nettingsdorf paper mill to provide heating for local homes, businesses and schools.
Civil works have commenced on the project with the first trenches excavated and pipes laid in June. The central heat distribution building and equipment will be erected in the coming months and it is planned that a local elementary school and the kindergarten in Nettingsdorf will be the first premises to benefit from the scheme early next year.
This follows a recent €134 million program at investment at the Nettingsdorf mill, which included the installation of a new recovery boiler that allows the recovery of biomass generated in paper pulp production. This not only boosted energy optimization but cut CO2 emissions by 40,000 tons annually.
Once fully operational, the new central heating network will provide heating to households in the neighboring villages of Kremsdorf, Haid and Ansfelden and replace the fossil fuels previously used. The production process will generate up to 25 MW of heat that will help save approximately 21,000 tons of CO2.
Smurfit Kappa has reportedly had success with a similar project operated from its Pitea paper mill in Sweden which has been converting excess heat into central heating for domestic and business premises in the local community for over 40 years.