Fiber fuel burns cheaper and cleaner than coal
Cemtech L.P. is manufacturing a fuel from waste paper, paper sludges and other selected fibers that is both cleaner and cheaper than coal. The fuel, in use in Virginia and Wisconsin, is trademarked as FiberTherm and has approximately 7,500 Btus per pound.
In Cemtech?s Manasha, Wis., plant, FiberTherm is formed into pellets then blended with coal. This product is fired in stoker-type boilers at two universities, a hospital and a state prison. In Virginia, the fuel is sold in cubes, at a discount price relative to coal on a Btu-per-ton basis.
For Wisconsin customers, the product has an unanticipated benefit of cleaning the feeding mechanisms by picking up coal fines. It also reduces excess moisture in the coal, improving its combustion. The fuel pellets provide approximately 20 percent of the energy needs of most Wisconsin customers with reduced NOx and SO2 emissions.
The Cemtech plant in Richmond, Va., produces a cubed fuel that is marketed to customers in the forest products industry. Feedstock for the plant includes shredded currency from the Federal Reserve Bank and paper from the cigarette manufacturing industry.