Koehler Paper switches to 100% green energy for production line 8 in Kehl

The company aims to reduce energy consumed in paper production operations

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Koehler Paper products on production line 8 have been made using 100% green energy, including the flexible packaging paper and the environmentally‐friendly thermal paper Blue4est
Koehler Paper products on production line 8 have been made using 100% green energy, including the flexible packaging paper and the environmentally‐friendly thermal paper Blue4est

The Koehler Group has been developing the first steps in its climate strategy for some years now, including its ‘2030 promise.’ The company declared its mission was to produce more energy from renewable sources than required for its own needs by 2030. For many years now, the company has continuously completed highly successful projects to reduce the energy consumed in its paper production operations. 

Another milestone in its climate strategy has now been reached. Since the start of the year, the new production line 8 in Kehl has been using 100% green energy. In addition, steam from the biomass combined heat and power plant at the Kehl site has been used to dry the paper web with virtually zero CO2 emissions since the plant started in 2019.

Production plant uses green energy from a regional source

As a result, production line 8 at the Kehl site has been climate‐neutral since the start of 2021. The 75,000 MWh of electricity consumed by the factory per year comes entirely from green energy generated by a single regional source – the Schluchsee hydroelectric power plant in the Black Forest. “We estimate this step will save around 45,000 tonnes of CO2 per year,” explains Stefan Karrer, chief operating officer at the Koehler Group, enthusiastically.

The move shows the company’s focus on sustainability does not begin and end with sustainable products. “The flexible packaging paper and Blue4est environmentally‐friendly thermal paper that we make on production line 8 in Kehl have been produced using renewable energy since the start of the year,” continues Karrer. The Group’s sustainability drive is visible throughout the paper value chain as a result.

Koehler other projects in the pipeline to implement the climate strategy

Climate‐friendly manufacturing on production line 8 is just one of many projects being pursued by the Koehler Group to achieve the climate strategy goals it has set for itself and to play its part in implementing the Paris Agreement. The company is working towards using alternative, more sustainable energy sources for its entire paper production energy supply. 

As previously reported, a major step in implementing Koehler’s climate strategy was converting its combined heat and power plant at the company headquarters in Oberkirch from bituminous coal to biomass. This is saving an additional 150,000 tonnes of CO2 per year.

Koehler renewable energy, part of the Koehler Group, is also helping to implement the climate strategy. It has already implemented numerous projects in the fields of biomass combined heat and power plants, wind power, photovoltaics, and hydropower. The experts are proficient in all value chain stages, from acquisition to planning and development, to seamless, long‐term operation.

With a range of partners, Koehler renewable energy already generates over 320,000 megawatts an hour of electricity, more than 545,000 megawatts an hour of heat, and over 780,000 tonnes of steam annually at its various locations in Europe, all using renewable energy sources.

 

The Covid-19 pandemic led to the country-wide lockdown on 25 March 2020. It will be two years tomorrow as I write this. What have we learned in this time? Maybe the meaning of resilience since small companies like us have had to rely on our resources and the forbearance of our employees as we have struggled to produce our trade platforms.

The print and packaging industries have been fortunate, although the commercial printing industry is still to recover. We have learned more about the digital transformation that affects commercial printing and packaging. Ultimately digital will help print grow in a country where we are still far behind in our paper and print consumption and where digital is a leapfrog technology that will only increase the demand for print in the foreseeable future.

Web analytics show that we now have readership in North America and Europe amongst the 90 countries where our five platforms reach. Our traffic which more than doubled in 2020, has at times gone up by another 50% in 2021. And advertising which had fallen to pieces in 2020 and 2021, has started its return since January 2022.

As the economy approaches real growth with unevenness and shortages a given, we are looking forward to the PrintPack India exhibition in Greater Noida. We are again appointed to produce the Show Daily on all five days of the show from 26 to 30 May 2022.

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