Systematic reduction of water use

​Metsä Fibre’s objective is to reduce the use of process water at its pulp mills by 22 per cent from the 2018 level by 2030.   

2/2021

​To achieve this, a concrete target has been set for each pulp mill, taking into account the mill's age and other characteristics, and the necessary development measures have been listed and prioritised. 

The steady operation and good availability of production units as well as scheduled preventive maintenance and maintenance shutdowns play a key role in increasing the efficiency of water use. The reduction of water use requires training the personnel and establishing the correct operating methods for the mills, as well as making changes to the mills' processes. At the same time, it must be ensured that no unwanted substances that could impair the quality of the end product, i.e. pulp, are accumulated in the mills' water flows with reduced water use. 

Typically, the mills' water use can be reduced when water fractions that are unnecessarily wasted in the process are identified, an understanding of potential savings is reached and possibilities for using recycled water instead of raw water are found at the same time.

Towards a pulp mill free of effluent discharges 

For 2021, Metsä Fibre has set an objective of developing a concept for a pulp mill free of effluent discharges. When creating the concept, quality requirements for the water needed in different parts of the process are reviewed, new ways of using wastewater are sought, and the overall idea of a mill producing minimal effluents is formulated. Lessons learned from this project will be applied at all Metsä Fibre's pulp mills.  

Metsä Fibre's pulp mills are the largest water consumers within Metsä Group, so their work towards reduced water use is very significant. The goal of Metsä Group as a whole is to reduce the use of process water by 25 per cent per product tonne from the 2018 level by 2030. 

Only nominal amounts of wastewater are produced in the sawmills' production process. The wastewater from sawmills is treated at municipal wastewater treatment plants. An exception to the wastewater treatment of the company's sawmills is the Svir sawmill in Russia, which has its own wastewater treatment plant.


Related articles