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Oulun Energia to invest EUR 19 million in Laanila

Oulun Energia to invest EUR 19 million in Laanila
Oulun Energia has its sights set on new renewable energy investments at its Laanila energy site (photo courtesy Oulun Energia).

In Finland, municipal energy utility company Oulun Energia Oy has announced that it is investing EUR 19 million in its Laanila renewable energy cluster that will enable the development and implementation of future energy solutions. The existing biomass-fired combined heat and power (CHP) plant and waste-fired ecopower plant will be supported by investment in an electric boiler, a turbine generator, and a chipper.

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Oulun Energia has invested in the development and future of the Laanila power plant region in the long term.

Along with the new biomass-CHP plant, which was commissioned almost three years ago, the investments represent the tangible actions that the company is taking on its path to carbon-neutral energy production by 2030.

These new investments will further consolidate the status of the Laanila region and allow new industrial operations to be carried out in the region.

Oulun Energia also announced a cooperation agreement with the Junnikkala sawmill, in which the intention is to distribute heating energy from the biopower plant to the drying plants in the sawmill while utilizing the remaining bioenergy sources from the sawmill in Oulun Energia’s production of electricity and heat.

The Junnikkala sawmill will start its operation at the end of 2023.

Electric heat boiler

The production of heat is becoming more electric and will become emission-free in the future. As part of this development, Oulun Energia has decided to build its first electric boiler for district heating production on the Laanila power plant site.

The electric boiler can produce heat for customers at very competitive prices during times of affordable electricity.

The investment in the electric boiler is also an important point in Oulun Energia’s path to carbon neutrality because it enables Oulun Energia to reduce the use of fossil oil.

The electric boiler has a power output of 40 MW and is due to be completed by the end of 2023.

New 6 MWe turbine

The availability of electricity is of great importance in the energy system of the future to ensure the moderate price of electricity.

Oulun Energia is investing in the production of additional electricity by building a new turbine connected to the ecopower plant. The turbine can also be used to produce electricity from waste fuels.

The ecopower plant is an ideal site for the turbine as the plant operates year-round at maximum production, except for maintenance breaks. The turbine has a power output of 6 MW and will be operational in late 2023.

On-site electric chipper

The chipper will increase the security of supply and reduce the environmental impact of chipping operations.

The use of peat is being discontinued, making wood the main fuel for power plants.

The chipper to be built at the Laanila biopower plant will be used to make energy wood into fuel chips for the biopower plant.

The onsite electric-powered chipper will be used to improve the security of the supply of woodchip and reduce the environmental impact of the chipping operations as it is carried out without fossil fuels.

The chipper will be operational in early 2024 if all goes as planned.

The development of the Laanila region is important for Oulun Energia and for Oulu as a whole. We are showing in concrete terms that Oulu wants to invest in the energy transition—in clean and efficient energy production. The investments will create new jobs, cash flows, and provide excellent support for the development of the region into an emission-free energy source, and also enable other new industrial operations in Laanila, said Pertti Vanhala, Director of Energy Production at Oulun Energia.

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