Systems analysis of integrating biomass gasification with pulp and paper production - Effects on economic performance, CO2 emissions and energy use
Journal article, 2011
This paper evaluates system aspects of biorefineries based on biomass gasification integrated with pulp and paper production. As a case the Billerud Karlsborg mill is used. Two biomass gasification concepts are considered: BIGDME (biomass integrated gasification dimethyl ether production) and BIGCC (biomass integrated gasification combined cycle). The systems analysis is made with respect to economic performance, global CO2 emissions and primary energy use. As reference cases, BIGDME and BIGCC integrated with district heating are considered. Biomass gasification is shown to be potentially profitable for the mill. The results are highly dependent on assumed energy market parameters, particularly policy support. With strong policies promoting biofuels or renewable electricity, the calculated opportunity to invest in a gasification-based biorefinery exceeds investment cost estimates from the literature. When integrated with district heating the BIGDME case performs better than the BIGCC case, which shows high sensitivity to heat price and annual operating time. The BIGCC cases show potential to contribute to decreased global CO2 emissions and energy use, which the BIGDME cases do not, mainly due to high biomass demand. As biomass is a limited resource, increased biomass use due to investments in gasification plants will lead to increased use of fossil fuels elsewhere in the system.
Energy systems analysis
Pulp and paper production