New Swedish Biomass-Fired CHP Plant

The Swedish biofuel-fired combined heat and power plant was inaugurated in early May 2016, and it is an important step in developing a sustainable energy supply for Stockholm. The plan is for district heating in Stockholm to be entirely produced from renewable and recovered energy by 2030.

Fuelling with forest residuals is expected to decrease carbon dioxide emissions by 126,000 tonnes a year, the equivalent of six weeks’ worth of emissions from all the road traffic in Stockholm, according to June 14. Some 40 per cent of the bark and wood chips arrive by train at Värtahamnen, with the remainder arriving by ship from the Baltic countries.

Daily consumption of wood chips will be about 12,000 cubic metres.

The plant uses an old rock cavern—previously used for oil storage—that was converted into a massive underground wood chip storage facility. It is able to store about 60,000 cubic metres, or five days of fuel demand.

Karin Wanngård, finance commissioner of the city of Stockholm, said that with the new plant, “90 per cent of Fortum Värme’s energy production is based on renewable and recovered energy sources. That is quite unique. Our goal is naturally 100 per cent renewable production.”

Construction of the new plant started in 2013 as one of the main components of the strategy to have a system based only on renewable and recycled energy before 2030 in Stockholm. The fuel, forest residues, and wood waste, are transported by both sea and railway.

The plant is estimated to produce 750 gigawatt-hours (GWh) electricity and 1,700 GWh heat annually. It uses12,000 cubic meters of wood chips per day, which means 3-4 shipments and 5 trains per week. The pow- er plant’s underground storage facility has a capacity of 50,000 cubic meters.

When fully operational, the new biomass power plant will reduce emissions by 126,000 tonnes annually. The emis- sions reduction corresponds close to 12 per cent of the annual emissions from the area’s transport sector, said Globe Newswire in February.

The plant will to provide district heating for 190,000 households and electricity equivalent to 20,000 rooftops covered with solar panels. The new unit is one of the world’s largest biomass-fuelled CHP facilities and will reduce CO2 emissions in Stockholm.

Fortum’s president Pekka Lundmark said that “high emissions and low efficiency of heating, cooling and electricity production are typical problems in growing urban areas.”

“Together with the City of Stockholm, we are taking steps towards a circular economy by utilising biomass, waste and recovered heat from data centres in energy production. Biomass is a renewable, largely local and carbon-neutral energy source. Its use increases the share of domestic energy resources particularly in Northern Europe, and it is an important building block of a sustainable energy system and bio economy.”