Lignite power plant converted to fine wood fraction

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Decarbonization is part of the Koehler Group’s climate strategy. Thereby savings of more than 24,000 metric tons of CO₂ per year at the Greiz site. Wolfgang Tiefensee, Thuringia’s Minister for the Economy, Science, and Digital Society, visited the site for the celebration to mark the start of the test run.

The conversion of the power plant at the Greiz site is part of the Koehler Group’s climate strategy and an investment in the future. Koehler has set itself the goal of producing more energy with its own renewa-ble energy facilities from renewable sources than is required for its paper production operations by 2030. To achieve this aim, the company continues to invest in biomass combined heat and power plants, wind farms, hydroelectric power and solar energy. Dr. Stefan Karrer, COO of the Koehler Group, states: “Replacing fossil fuels brings Koehler even closer to our objective of Group-wide decarbonization. The plan is to reduce the Koehler Group’s scope 1 direct greenhouse gas emissions by 80 percent by 2030 in comparison to the levels from 2022. The Koehler Paper site in Greiz has already made a start towards this with its pilot system.“

The conversion process for the Koehler power plant in Greiz has been given extensive support from the experts at Koehler Renewable Energy. The structural implementation was carried out by a project team from Koehler Innovation & Technology in cooperation with local experts on site at the Koehler Paper site in Greiz. Udo Hollbach, managing director of the Koehler Paper site in Greiz, is delighted about the con-version: “Switching from lignite to fine wood fraction will allow us to save more than 24,000 metric tons of CO2 emissions per year at the Greiz plant.” The Koehler Group has invested around EUR 8 million for the entire plant conversion project.

Celebration to mark the inaugural test run of the converted power plant

Numerous guests from the worlds of politics and business attended the celebration to mark the inaugu-ral test run of the power plant in Greiz. Wolfgang Tiefensee, Thuringia's Minister for Economics, Science and Digital Society, met Dirk Bergner (Member of the Land Thuringia, FDP), Mario Suckert (President of Thuringia's State Office for the Environment, Mining and Nature Conservation), Alexander Schulze (Mayor of the City of Greiz), and Grit Booth (head of the office for the Thuringia Sustainability Agree-ment), at Koehler Paper's Greiz site, personally on-site to see the status of decarbonization. The prepara-tory work for the conversion was started back in fall 2021. In his speech at the inauguration ceremony of the trial operation, Wolfgang Tiefensee praised the Koehler Group's willingness to invest: "With the con-version of the power plant here in Greiz, Koehler has clearly demonstrated that the company is helping us here in Thuringia as a sustainable business location to strengthen. Koehler is a role model with its measures to achieve climate neutrality.”