It is all systems go for the proposed new Australian Paper Energy from Waste (EfW) plant, with the paper manufacturer partnering with waste management business SUEZ to develop the $600 million Maryvale Mill project, following the successful completion of its $7.5 million feasibility study.
Australian Paper and SUEZ will seek to finalise waste supply arrangements for the project next year. Construction of the EfW facility is planned to begin soon after, with completion expected in 2024.
SUEZ will provide the waste that will power the innovative new project. SUEZ currently operates 55 EfW facilities globally.
“We are proud to be partnering with Australian Paper on this innovative project, which will be a landmark for Victoria’s emerging EfW sector,” said Mark Venhoek, SUEZ Australia and New Zealand CEO.
The proposed facility would divert around 650,000 tonnes of residual waste annually from Gippsland and Melbourne landfill, and use it to create energy for the Maryvale mill, using best available techniques in emissions control to comply with stringent European IED limits.
The EfW will reduce Australian Paper’s reliance on fossil fuels to stabilise its energy future and support ongoing capital investment at the site. The Maryvale mill is the only fine paper mill in Australia.
“Australian Paper is committed to our mission of Sustainable Growth for the Next Generation,” said Peter Williams, Australian Paper’s CEO.
“As the largest industrial user of natural gas in Victoria and a significant energy consumer, we must develop alternative baseload energy sources to maintain our future competitiveness.
“Creating EfW is a perfect fit with our operations because in addition to electricity we require significant quantities of thermal energy to generate steam.
“An EfW facility at Maryvale would secure ongoing investment at the site, support employment growth in the Latrobe Valley and also provide the missing link in Victoria’s waste management infrastructure.”
Australian Paper’s study examined the technical, social, environmental and commercial feasibility of establishing an EfW facility at Maryvale. The 18-month study found the facility would operate at a high efficiency of 58 per cent due to the Mill’s need for baseload steam and electricity all year round.
The new site will save 543,000 tonnes of carbon emissions per annum and would allow the return of up to four petajoules of natural gas per annum and 30MWh per hour of electricity to Victoria’s retail energy market.
A recent economic impact study from Western Research Institute has confirmed that the EfW facility would support an average of 1,046 Victorian jobs per year during the three-year construction period and 900 when operational.