Kymijärvi II Power Plant
The completion of Lahti Energy’s Kymijärvi II power plant shook up the conventional paradigms of what can be done with waste.
Kymijärvi II is the world’s first gasification plant that utilizes solid recovered fuel (SRF). At the 160 MW plant, waste-derived fuel is gasified, the gas is cooled down and cleaned, and the clean gas is then burned in the boiler.
The environmental impact of Kymijärvi II has been positive. With a little over than a year of operations, Lahti Energy has significantly reduced the need of coal in its production. The CO₂ emissions under the EU emissions trading system (EU ETS) have reduced by 26% from 2011 to 2012. The specific emission CO₂ reduced by 32% compared to the figures of 2011.
In March 2012, the Forum for Sustainable Development selected Kymijärvi II as the Climate Deed of the Year in Finland. In June, Kymijärvi II received a special commendation in the Nordic Energy Municipality competition, and in September The Lahti Region Environmental Services gave Kymijärvi II a special mention in the competition for the Environmental Deed of the Year.
Based on Lahti Energy’s experience, there is now a clear demand for accurate sorting of waste also among the greater public. People are concerned about the climate and environmental issues and want to contribute to the activities.
Why the plant was built in Lahti
Since 1998, Lahti Energy has gained plenty of experience in the gasification technology and its use in energy production. We can say that we currently have the best expertise in gasification in the world. This, and the technical advances in the gasification technology, is one of the reasons why Lahti was chosen as the location for Kymijärvi II.
Another factor affecting the decision was the geographical location of Lahti. The city is located along good transport routes, and there is plenty of recycled waste used for the production of solid recovered fuel in the South of Finland.
Päijät-Hämeen Jätehuolto has collected energy waste from the Päijät-Häme region for years. Separate collection of energy waste is worthwhile and it can be developed and expanded elsewhere, too.
The construction project
The construction project was launched on 26 November 2009 and it was handed over in full to Lahti Energy on 27 June 2012. The commercial use of Kymijärvi II started on 21 May 2012. The project involved 1,041,000 working hours. A total of 2,259 people completed safety training, of which 294 were foreign citizens from 16 different nationalities. A total of 41 near-miss reports were lodged, and there were 12 accidents resulting in sickness absence days. There were no serious accidents. The accident frequency was 11.83.
The original budget of the project was EUR 157 million, rising to EUR 160.5 million during the project as a result of additional purchases decided by the Board of Directors. The most significant additional purchases were the visitor centre and the roundabout built for the ease of fuel transport.