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Södra holds digital inauguration of world's first fossil-free biomethanol plant

With the assistance of Sweden’s Minister for Enterprise Ibrahim Baylan, the Swedish forest owners association Södra has officially inaugurated its biomethanol extraction unit at its Mönsterås pulp mill.
“Södra’s investment is entirely in line with the European Green Deal as set out by the European Commission, which has the aim of dramatically reducing our carbon footprint and reducing emissions., said Lena Ek, Chairman of Södra during the ceremony.

With the assistance of Sweden’s Minister for Enterprise Ibrahim Baylan (right), the Swedish forest owners association Södra held a digital inauguration of its biomethanol extraction unit at its Mönsterås pulp mill on October 7, 2020. Onsite in Mönsterås from Södra in front of the unit are Carsten Wieger, Mill Manager; Lena Ek, Chairman, and Catrin Gustavsson, SVP of Innovation and New Business (photo courtesy Södra).

Held as a digital event, Members of the European Parliament Fredrik Federley, Jytte Guteland, and Jessica Polfjärd also officiated as well as Professor Johan Kuylenstierna of the Swedish Climate Policy Council.

Södra’s investment is entirely in line with the European Green Deal as set out by the European Commission, which has the aim of dramatically reducing our carbon footprint and reducing emissions. By manufacturing the world’s first fossil-free biomethanol, we are demonstrating how engineering prowess and innovation can contribute to the transition of society. We are pleased that the importance of this kind of investment is understood by politicians, said Lena Ek, Chairman of Södra.

The transition to a bioeconomy means that all raw materials must be used efficiently. The biomethanol will be made from the crude methanol derived from the manufacturing process at Södra’s pulp mill, where the premise is that all of the parts of the renewable wood raw material are used as efficiently as possible.

Södra’s strength lies in its extensive value chain, from sustainable forestry and renewable raw materials to modern industries and a healthy tradition of research and development. This means that we have the expertise required to develop these types of complex and innovative products, said Catrin Gustavsson, SVP of Innovation and New Business at Södra.

Södra is investing extensively in liquid biofuel and has robust sustainability targets of its own for entirely fossil-free transportation by 2030.

With this dynamic move and climate-friendly investment, we are looking outward and showing the way to reduced fossil dependency across several markets. At the same time, this is just the beginning of a journey in which we have the opportunity to develop products together with our customers. We can already see substantial interest from different segments and stakeholders from across the globe, said Magnus Björkman, Business Area President Södra Cell.

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