Lifting off to a carbon neutral future...
We Energies is a Milwaukee-based electricity, natural gas and steam service provider to residents in Wisconsin and Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. To take advantage of federal tax credits, scheduled to expire Dec. 31, 2013, We Energies planned to install a 50-MW biomass cogeneration plant. The utility needed an experienced partner to navigate through the complex process of studying, engineering and building the facility. They turned to Pöyry.
Engineering began in 2009 with the development of a cost estimate and preliminary general arrangement drawings. In February 2010, We Energies submitted approvals to build the plant. Completing the preliminary engineering during the permitting process allowed We Energies to begin excavation for the power block, including a boiler and steam turbine, as soon as approvals were received. Construction on the site began in earnest in July 2011.
According to Al Mihm, Director of Cogeneration for We Energies:
“Pöyry stood out amongst its competitors because they had world-class experience in delivering biomass plants. That knowhow was backed by a local team we worked with side-by-side throughout the duration of the project."
The project finished on time and within budget range with the plant going into commercial operation November 2013 – well before the federal tax credit deadline. Thanks to the biomass plant’s world-class air quality technology and the retirement of Domtar’s existing boilers, new operations are expected to reduce overall emissions from the mill site by approximately 30 percent.