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Veolia, Braskem to develop eucalyptus biomass project in Brazil

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Veolia and Braskem, a US-based thermoplastic resins and polypropylene producer, have signed a R$400 million (€68.5 million) investment agreement to produce renewable energy from biomass in Brazil.

The project will use steam from eucalyptus biomass in the state of Alagoas to generate renewable energy. The project will generate 900,000 tons of steam per year for 20 years, with an emissions reduction of approximately 150,000 tons of CO2 annually.

Scheduled to start operations in 2023, the plant in Marechal Deodoro will create more than 400 direct jobs during the construction phase and approximately 100 jobs in the operation.

“As the world reference for ecological transformation, Veolia is committed to increasing the implementation of existing sustainable solutions and creating the solutions of the future with our customers,” said Pedro Prádanos, CEO of Veolia Brazil.

Veolia will be responsible for managing most of the project, including the agroforestry management process of more than 5,500 hectares of eucalyptus, the design of the engineering project and the construction of the biomass and steam production, in addition to the operation and maintenance of the entire installation during the 20 years of the contract. Braskem will make internal investments to adapt the Marechal Deodoro complex to the new thermoelectric arrangement.

To meet Veolia and Braskem’s high efficiency and quality standards, the project also covers processes aligned with digital transformation and industry 4.0. With the implementation of Hubgrade, Veolia’s solution that integrates digital tools and human expertise to monitor and analyse the operation in real time, the project guarantees performance optimisation and continuous improvement in the performance of facilities and energy consumption.

Prádanos added: “By meeting the steam demand necessary for the uninterrupted operation of its production processes, this project will meet Braskem’s operational needs and, at the same time, the sustainability challenges in energy management.”