Lars Stigsson, founder and co-owner of SunPine AB, a forest-based renewable fuel producer located in Piteå, Sweden is this year's recipient of the Jan Häckner Bioenergy Award presented at the Swedish Bioenergy Association (Svebio) Annual General Meeting and conference in Stockholm on April 10.
Karin Medin, Chairman of the Swedish Bioenergy Association (Svebio) accompanied by Cecilia Häckner, daughter of the late Jan Häckner, presented the Jan Häckner’s Bioenergy Award to this year’s recipient Lars Stigsson, innovator, founder and co-owner of SunPine AB in Piteå, Sweden. The award ceremony took place during the Svebio Annual General Meeting on April 10.
In the form of a SEK 10 000 (≈ EUR 995) scholarship, the award is given in recognition of an individual that through his or her efforts in research, innovation or business development, has promoted the increased use of bioenergy in a sustainable way.
Lars Stigsson has realised his innovation. He has developed a technology that is an important step in the chain to convert crude tall oil (CTO), a residual product from the pulp industry, to renewable diesel and gasoline. He has contributed to the fact that the technology has been commercialized and today contributes to replacing fossil diesel, thereby reducing emissions of fossil carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions by 250 000 tonnes per annum.
Lars Stigsson founded the company SunPine just over ten years ago. The company uses crude tall oil from the forest industry to produce bio-oil, turpentine, resin and crude tall diesel. SunPine today produces approximately 100 000 cubic meters of crude tall diesel per year. Preem uses the crude tall diesel as a feedstock in its refinery to produce renewable diesel and gasoline.
Today, Lars Stigsson owns a share in SunPine through his company Kiram. The main owners are Preem, Sveaskog, Södra and Lawter and recently, the company announced that it will invest SEK 250 million (≈ EUR 24.2 million) to increase the production of crude tall diesel in Piteå by 50 percent by 2020.
I am touched and proud of having received Jan Häckner’s bioenergy prize. It has been an exciting trip with SunPine. Ten years ago, we had a turnover of SEK 100 000 (≈ EUR 9 745) and today we have a turnover of SEK 1.5 billion (≈ EUR 146.2 million) and have a good profitability, said Lars Stigsson.
The jury motivation for this year’s Jan Häckner Bioenergy Award recipient is as follows:
For the utilization of research results in chemical and forest industry technology in the full-scale production of tall oil diesel from Swedish forest products, which has led to investments and jobs at SunPine in Piteå. Lars has in a unique way through a combination of solid technical knowledge, entrepreneurship and long-standing persistence demonstrated that domestic production of renewable fuels and chemicals from the forest industry’s efficient value chains is both technically feasible and economically viable. Lars’s innovative capacity and drive is a major part of the increase of biofuels from the Swedish forest, for which he deserves a special recognition.