SSCC invests $14 million to fight pollution
Smurfit-Stone Container Corporation (SSCC) completed a $14 million air emission improvement project at the Brewton mill during an outage at the mill in November.
The Number 3 Recovery Boiler (RB) at the plant is equipped with an electrostatic precipitator (ESP) that uses electricity to remove fine particulate matter from the air before it is released through the stack. This particulate consists mostly of sodium sulfate - typically referred to as salt cake.
Salt cake is a simple non-hazardous salt of sodium with similar characteristics to magnesium sulfate, commonly referred to as Epsom salts. The existing ESP on the recovery boiler was replaced with a totally new unit, built from the ground up to a final elevation of 150 feet or 11 stories.
Construction began late in 2001, after months of planning and air emission permitting required by the state. Eight different contractors and hundreds of employees worked together to build the ESP. The new stack is 150 feet tall and 10 feet in diameter. The two week mill outage was necessary to construct the final tie-ins to existing equipment.
The Number 3 ESP is state-of-the-art technology that is designed to decrease particulate emissions from the boiler, far better than standards set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the state. This ESP even exceeds new emission standards which come into effect in 2004.
Smurfit officials said that environmental compliance remains a top priority for the Brewton facility and is an integral part of the Smurfit-Stone culture.
The Brewton mill produces paperboard for packaging and has nearly 600 employees.
Smurfit-Stone is the industry's leading manufacturer of paper and paperboard-based packaging, including containerboard, corrugated containers, industrial bags and clay-coated recycled boxboard and is the world's largest paper recycler. In addition, the company is a leading producer of folding cartons and labels. The company operates about 300 facilities worldwide and employs more than 38,500.