SCA has decided to invest SEK 70 million in a new sawmill intake and pellet plant at the Rundvik sawmill in Nordmaling municipality. The investment will improve SCA’s sustainability profile with pellets replacing fossil fuel oil at the Obbola paper mill and pellets supplied to the local market.

The Rundvik sawmill currently produces around 80,000 cubic meters of planed wood, along with 8,000 cubic metres of wood shavings. With the SEK 70 million investment in a new sawmill intake and pellet plant, SCA is creating the opportunity to compress wood shavings into pellets – an entirely fossil-free energy source. 

The new plant will have an annual production capacity of between 25,000 and 30,000 tonnes of transport-efficient pellets that replace fossil fuels. 

The pellets to be manufactured in Rundvik will be used by the local market and SCA’s production packaging paper plant in Obbola, which has already launched a major expansion with a completely new biofuel-fired lime kiln and the world’s largest packaging paper machine. 

This means that virtually all the Obbola mill’s energy needs will be met by biofuel and that the plant's transition from oil to pellets can save up to 10,000 cubic meters of oil each year. 

“Forestry plays a key role in creating bio-based raw materials that replace fossil fuels, and this investment is a great example of that. There’s considerable pressure on the bioenergy market right now, and it’s very positive that we’re able to increase the volume available to the market at the same time as strengthening SCA’s sustainable value chain,” says Mikael Källgren, President Renewable Energy at SCA. 

“The investment in Rundvik is indirectly also an investment in SCA in Obbola, which could become a kraftliner supplier able to proudly claim that it has a completely fossil-free production process,” Källgren adds. 

A consequence of the investment will be that pellets that are currently manufactured and shipped from Luleå and Härnösand will be released for sale to the local external market.  

For SCA, this shortens its transport chain to Obbola by at least 11,360km a year, which corresponds to just over 115 tonnes of carbon dioxide. 

“We see this investment creating benefits on a number of levels. It provides the sawmill with a greater capacity, benefits the local forestry industry, supplies renewable fuel to Obbola, and results in shorter transport distances in our own operations,” says Jerry Larsson, President SCA Wood. 

The project is scheduled to start in the spring of 2022 and be completed in the winter of 2022/23. 

Johan Tännfäldt, sawmill manager at the Rundvik plant, believes that the pellet plant broadens and strengthens all the sawmill’s operations. 

“Increasing our capacity in terms of pellets offers more business opportunities in the planing product range, where we also get full exchange for increased wood shavings,” says Tännfäldt. 

“The Rundvik plant will also be able to receive shavings from external sources. Compacting shavings into pellets makes transport around four times more efficient which in turn increases the potential of shavings sales in the region,” Tännfäldt adds. 

Published 5/6/2022