Global packaging company Smurfit Kappa has started operating its new recovery boiler at Nettingsdorf paper mill in Austria.

The boiler is part of Smurfit Kappa’s €134m investment plan in Future Energy Plant project, which in turn is part of a broader investment programme to improve sustainability.

It will boost energy optimisation at the kraftliner mill and increase sustainability. The company broke ground for the boiler in October 2018.

Under this project, the company developed an advanced new steam turbine and several other projects including an upgraded water treatment plant and installation of additional drying cylinders to the paper machine.

Smurfit Kappa Europe paper & board COO Laurent Sellier said: “The Future Energy Plant project was part of an ongoing investment programme by the Smurfit Kappa Group to implement a series of transformative sustainable innovations. Efficient energy plants play a major role in the production of paper.

“This investment in Nettingsdorf will enable us to ensure a long-term supply of high-quality and sustainable containerboard – something our customers have come to expect from us.”

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The new boiler will recover energy from the biomass contained in black liquor, which is a byproduct of the kraft pulp production. This will help in lowering CO2 emissions by 40,000 tonnes.

With more than 360 employees, Smurfit Kappa’s Nettingsdorf mill produces approximately 450,000 tonnes of paper a year.

Smurfit Kappa Nettingsdorf CEO Günter Hochrathner said: “By starting to operate this new recovery boiler, we have taken a very important step forward in sustainability and are practising true circularity.”

In March this year, Smurfit Kappa launched a new QuickConnect Vitop tap for use on soft drink and wine dispensers.