Kemira has won the European chemical industry’s prestigious Responsible Care® award for environmental responsibility. It was awarded by CEFIC (The European Chemical Industry Council) to Kemira's ferric sulphate plant in Pori (Finland), that utilizes recycled industrial by-product in its drinking water and wastewater treatment products. Through this project, Kemira’s expertise in chemistry is helping to create the foundations for a circular economy.
Before 2017, Kemira's plant in Pori received ferrous sulphate as the main raw material from a titanium dioxide plant in the same industrial area, where ferric sulphate is formed as a by-product. In January 2017, ferro sulphate supply from the plant was interrupted and to ensure the continuous availability of raw material, Kemira investigated the ferric sulphate landfill nearby that had accumulated from excess unused side-streams from titanium dioxide production.
Already in 2017, Kemira was able to utilize 27,000 tons of ferric sulphate while the estimate for the production volume in 2019 is as high as 170,000 tons. Following a successful testing period, Kemira is now utilizing a landfill that contains several million tons of ferric sulfate raw material, putting some 30 years of accumulated industrial by-product back into use, and securing supplies for many years to come.
“While the water treatment industry is adept at using industrial side-streams as raw materials for sourcing metal compounds, this project shows that there is much more potential available. As the best by-product streams have been harnessed – for example, scrap iron and spent pickle liquor – many other valuable streams are literally going to waste,” says Rasmus Valanko, Director of Corporate Responsibility.
Already today, 70-80% of all raw materials used in Kemira’s coagulant products, used for water treatment, are recycled by-products from other industries. The amount of water treated with Kemira’s products is equivalent to 320 million people’s annual water consumption.