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Comment Sustainability

Kemira starts up first production line for bio-based polyacrylamide

By Mary Page Bailey |

Kemira Oyj (Helsinki, Finland) announced that is has started the first worldwide full-scale production of its newly developed polymer based on biobased feedstock. The first commercial volumes are shipped to one of the wastewater treatment plants of the Helsinki Region Environmental Services (HSY) for trials.

“Sustainability is at the heart of our business strategy and making our product portfolio greener is one core element of it”, says Sampo Lahtinen, Vice President, R&D and Technology, EMEA. “The development of completely new and sustainable polymer chemistry doesn’t happen overnight and is costly and time consuming. Especially for our technically demanding customer applications, so far, it was challenging to find comparable bio-based alternatives.”

With this very first biomass-balanced polyacrylamide, a water-soluble polymer, Kemira has succeeded in offering technically equivalent alternative for this special polymer type.

“As a result, we’re not only improving the carbon footprint in our own production but also help our customers to make their processes more sustainable, without any compromise in performance”, Lahtinen continues.

These polymers can be used in various industries, such as the water and  energy  industry, and potentially also in particularly demanding papermaking applications.

“Advanced municipal wastewater treatment has still a remarkable climate impact and our goal at HSY is to improve the environmental and overall performance of our treatment plants wherever possible. Replacing fossil based chemicals by more sustainable alternatives is one element of our strategy. Therefore, we are interested in testing this new polymer full-scale at our plant”, explains Mari Heinonen, Director of Water Services at HSY.

The novel polymers are manufactured according to the principles of biomass-balance, in which the majority of fossil based raw materials are replaced by ISCC Plus certified biobased and renewable mass-balanced feedstocks. They are produced in Kemira’s ISCC certified manufacturing facilities in San Giorgio di Nogaro, Italy and Bradford, UK, and supplied globally to customers in water-intensive industries.

The ISCC – International Sustainability and Carbon Certification (ISCC) is one of the world’s leading certification schemes, providing solutions for the implementation and certification of sustainable and traceable supply chains. It covers all sustainable feedstocks, including agricultural and forestry biomass, circular and bio-based materials and renewables.

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