Paper products giant Kimberly-Clark has announced plans to build a $75 million combined heat-power plant at its Mobile mill, which they say will increase the plant's efficiency while decreasing long-term costs and emissions.
The plant will generate electricity with a natural gas turbine and the exhaust gas will be rerouted to make steam for the plant's operations. It's a technique, sometimes called cogeneration, that's been used by many paper mills throughout the country in recent years to run more efficiently.
Todd Visscher, manager for Kimberly-Clark's Mobile mill, said the improvements will strengthen the Mobile Mill's position with Kimberly-Clark as a strategic manufacturing location.
"The investment in highly efficient energy technologies will improve our outlook for long-term operations at the site," he said.
<p.kimberly-clark and="" bath="" brand="" cottonelle="" employs="" its="" k-c="" mill="" mobile="" more="" names.="" paper="" people="" produces="" professional="" said="" scott="" than="" the="" tissue="" towels="" under="">Mobile business and political leaders praised the company's decision as a sign of commitment to the Mobile area.
"Kimberly-Clark has long been an integral part of Mobile's manufacturing base," said Troy Wayman, the Mobile Area Chamber's vice president of economic development. "Their continued growth and investment in Mobile is evidence of their commitment to the region and to Mobile's business climate."
"Kimberly-Clark has been an outstanding partner to our community for many years," said Mobile Mayor Sandy Stimpson. "We are pleased to support them in making this major investment in the City of Mobile, which will enhance the competitiveness of some of the most skilled workers in America."
The construction is expected to take about two years, with the new plant expected to go online in the first quarter of 2019, and is part of the company's overall goal to increase efficiency and sustainability, said Lisa Morden, Kimberly-Clark's director of global sustainability.
"Energy projects like the one in Mobile contribute to our vision for sustainability while creating value for our business," Morden said in a news release. "Our overarching goal is to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions by 20 percent over 2005 levels by Kimberly-Clark's 150th anniversary in 2022."