How Novacarb reduced its emissions and boosted the circular economy

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Novacarb (owned by Humens) is one of Europe’s largest producers of sodium carbonate and bicarbonate. 

As part of its plans to phase out coal, the company built a biomass-fired cogeneration plant at its Laneuveville-devant-Nancy site in France.

This project, Novawood, represents an energy transition that aims to improve Novacarb’s environmental and economic performance through an efficient cogeneration plant.

The Novawood project features a 14.6 MWe biomass-fired combined heat and power plant and includes an AET Biomass Boiler (65 MWth, 70 bara, 522 °C), will become operational in early 2023.

The project will use sustainable and reclaimed wood as fuel: 60% of it collected locally and 40% coming from replaced railway sleepers from the French national rail network.

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At full operation, the plant will produce 115 GWh of green electricity annually, equivalent to the consumption of 65,000 homes, and will lower CO2 emissions by 150,000 tonnes per year. The project will create more than 100 jobs in plant operation and fuel preparation.

The Novawood project is co-owned by ENGIE Solutions, Humens and SNCF. The excellent cooperation between Novawood and AET is a good example of AET’s commitment to supporting the chemical industry in decarbonising its energy production.

“As every industrial customer, Novacarb requires a reliable steam supply and a high boiler availability,” Alain Guillerme, Project Realisation Director at Novawood, said. “ENGIE has several AET Biomass Boilers in its portfolio that have been operated for years. The experience from these sites is very good with low maintenance issues. In addition, the AET design offers high efficiencies, which are critical for a chemical plant operating all year long. Lastly, the good experience we had with the AET project management convinced ENGIE Solutions to sign with them for the Novawood project.”

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The Novawood project is just one of many decarbonisation success stories. To read other case studies, download our free e-book.