Australian Paper has partnered with SUEZ to develop the $600 million Maryvale Mill Energy-from-Waste (EfW) project following the successful completion of its feasibility study.
The $7.5 million study was co-funded with the Australian and Victorian governments.
“Australian Paper is committed to our mission of sustainable growth for the next generation. As the largest industrial user of natural gas in Victoria and a significant energy consumer, we must develop alternative baseload energy sources to maintain our future competitiveness,” said Peter Williams, Australian Paper’s Chief Operating Officer.
“Creating energy from waste is a perfect fit with our operations because in addition to electricity, we require significant quantities of thermal energy to generate steam. An EfW facility at Maryvale would secure ongoing investment at the site, support employment growth in the Latrobe Valley and also provide the missing link in Victoria’s waste management infrastructure,” said Mr Williams.
Australian Paper will now partner with SUEZ, a global leader in waste management, to secure the long-term access to waste required to power the facility.
SUEZ currently operates more than 55EfW facilities globally and is a world leader in the field.
Australian Paper’s study examined the technical, social, environmental, and commercial feasibility of establishing an EfW facility at Maryvale.
The 18-month study found the facility would operate at a high efficiency of 58 per cent due to the mill’s need for baseload steam and electricity all year round. It would also divert approximately 650,000 tonnes of residual waste from Melbourne and Gippsland landfill, saving 543,000 tonnes of carbon emissions per annum. Importantly, the new facility would allow the return of up to 4PJ of natural gas per annum and 30MWh per hour of electricity to Victoria’s retail energy market.
A recent economic impact study from Western Research Institute has confirmed that the EfW facility would support an average of 1,046 Victorian jobs pa during the three year construction period and more than 900 when operational.
Australian Paper and SUEZ will seek to finalise waste supply arrangements for the project by 2020. Construction of the EfW facility is planned to begin soon after with completion expected in 2024.