New energy solution at Nokia mills of Raisio Group advance towards self-sufficiency and sustainability
New Adven-built heating plant turns a side stream from the Nokia mill into energy, allowing Raisio Group to take a major step towards completely carbon neutral production.
Raisio Group’s mill at Nokia manufactures flakes of the Elovena®, Nalle® and Elovena® Nordic brands as well as rye flour for the bakery industry. Mill at Nokia has also an important role for Raisio Group’s new factory which was established this year: the mill supplies the new factory with gluten-free oat raw material for oat-based products.
Since June 2021 a new bioenergy-based heating plant, designed, built and operated by Adven, the long-term energy partner of Nokia mill was taken in use. The new plant uses oat hulls as fuel, utilizing the by-product from the mill’s oat milling process.
“We process a lot of oats that need to be dehulled. Now, this side stream can be used in energy production, making us self-sufficient both in producing steam for the production as well as heating the mill,” says Vesa Arjanmaa, Plant Manager at Raisio Group.
Reducing costs and carbon footprint
Using the side stream helps reduce energy costs and make the mill immune to changes in fuel prices.
Even so, economic considerations were only one reason for building the new plant. Raisio Group has set ambitious goals for its responsibility work. One of these is achieving carbon neutrality in its production by the end of 2023.
With the new heating plant, carbon dioxide emissions of the Nokia mill energy production will fall from some 1,000 tonnes per year to virtually zero.
In addition, there being no need to transport fuel over long distances serves both to decrease costs and reduce the carbon footprint of energy production.
“If other type of use for oat hulls is discovered in the future, the new plant can then burn other solid fuels, such as wood pellets.”
Smooth construction and operation
The Nokia mill has had Adven as its energy partner for decades now. This collaboration now continues thanks to the fact that Adven designed a new solution that met Raisio’s needs in sustainability in a cost-efficiency.
Construction of the plant started towards the end of 2020, and it was finished in June 2021, a month early.
After three months of use, the plant has worked as specified, and the mill’s carbon footprint has shrunk to practically zero which was the primary target. Cost savings will become apparent only after one winter has gone by, as the heating costs during the cold season are realized.
” The construction and commissioning went smoothly, we met the deadline, even in advance, and we noticed practically no impact in our own operations at the mill from these work phases. So, I would say that the project went well, and it has been very pleasant to work with Adven,” Arjanmaa says.