Press ReleasesWeed Suppression Agent Developed from Burnt Ash---Using waste effectively for environmentally friendly recycling---

Nippon Paper Industries Co., Ltd.

Nippon Paper Industries Co., Ltd. (President: Yoshio Haga) has taken steps to reduce the amount of waste it generates in order to help build a recycling-oriented society. The Company has confirmed that the granulated ash from burnt paper sludge (see Note 1) and coal has weed suppression effects, and plans to develop the business by expanding its range of applications to uses such as at civil engineering work sites.

The Nippon Paper Group has made significant efforts to recycle resources, with a target of recycling 25% or more of the waste generated on the premises into in-house products, thereby reducing the volume of waste ultimately discarded based on the environmental action plan Green Action Plan 2010.
The waste generated by Nippon Paper Industries is primarily burnt ash from the boilers, which has been used as a raw material for cement and as a material for base course (see Note 2), among other applications. In recent years, however, the quantity of ash generated has risen because of the increased number of boilers in operation and the growing use of recycled paper. Consequently, to introduce a new recycling technique, in December last year the Company asked Professor Masaru Ogasawara of the Weed Science Center at Utsunomiya University to evaluate the weed suppression effects of the granulated burnt ash from our paper sludge and boilers. The study results confirmed that it has acceptable weed suppression effects.

Granulated paper sludge ash has high strength of water absorption, and it suppresses weed growth by absorbing water that is usually supplied to the seeds and roots. Also of note is the fact that technologies developed by Nippon Paper Industries for suppressing the elution of harmful substances are being utilized. The resulting product is an environmentally friendly material that satisfies soil environmental standards.

Nippon Paper Industries is seeking to use the product in roads and railways, and at other civil engineering work sites, while at the same time aiming to develop other applications.

  1. Note1:Paper sludge is a generic term referring to the fiber scum generated in the papermaking process. When it is burnt in a boiler, heat can be recovered as biomass energy.
  2. Note2:Utilizing the granulation and fixing technologies it has developed to date, Nippon Paper Industries has developed products named Eco Dry Ball and Eco Gravel, which have been sold to a limited number of users.