Work continues at Koppers Australia on a heat-recovery project, a major capital expenditure, that promises to use discharged heat from a production facility and convert it into electricity, simultaneously reducing emissions and increasing energy self-reliance.
Also, Volvo low-emissions loaders have begun service in Australia. These vehicles, which reduce the use of diesel fuel and associated emissions by more than 30%, transport wood in and around Koppers facilities. These low-emissions loaders will be rolled out across all Koppers plants in Australia over the next two years.
At the Koppers CMC Mayfield plant in Australia, total greenhouse gas emissions have declined by more than 15 percent over the past nine years, due to:
- Executing a comprehensive Energy Management Plan.
- Operating as close to 100 percent capacity as possible, while doing so safely.
- Taking steps to save energy, such as: installing variable speed drives on fans and pumps, replacing inefficient air compressors, improving combustion control and recovering heat from boilers and heaters, upgrading insulation, fixing and replacing steam leaks and traps, and upgrading lighting.
Residue can accumulate inside rail cars that ship chemical products, so Koppers regularly engages contracted services to clean and certify its railcars for reuse. We recycle 100% of those residues.
Water can be a scarce resource in Australia. Koppers took steps in 2016 to contain soil erosion from stormwater by constructing dams and barriers around its facilities. Water conservation efforts also were deployed, including:
- At the Takura plant in Queensland, the amount of water purchased from the municipal water supply has steadily been decreased, from 3,104 kiloliters (kl) in 2013 to 470 kl in 2016, thanks to a recently installed pump-and-filter station and reuse of stormwater.
- At the Bunbury facility in Western Australia, Koppers has continued to increase the amount of reused rain and storm water by using a filtration system, a set of storage tanks, sumps and a concrete dam.
- At the Longford treatment plant in Tasmania, a new solar-powered pump, installed in 2013, allows the facility to meet 100 percent of its water needs through water collected on-site. The facility uses municipal supplies only when there has not been a sufficient amount of rain.
- Koppers Grafton facility in New South Wales utilizes a rooftop rainwater collection system to reduce its dependency on the municipal water supply.
Water captured and re-used at Australian facilities in 2016 is as follows:
- Takura: 1,424 kl
- Bunbury: 7,147 kl
- Longford: 1,100 kl
- Grafton: 365 kl
Koppers operations in Europe achieved some important milestones in 2016, including:
- Making investments in environmental cleaning techniques (air and surface water) as part of seeking a new environmental permit.
- Earning ISO50001 – Energy Management System certification.
- Achieving reductions in NOX and SOX air emissions.
- Performing biological treatment of wastewater.
- Receiving the Danish “Miljøforum Fyns” award for overall environmental performance.