HARTSVILLE, S.C., March 29, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Sonoco (NYSE: SON) has upgraded its Hartsville wastewater treatment site to significantly reduce carbon emissions. The company began treating wastewater from its paper operations in the 1950’s and in 1987, an anaerobic lagoon was added to improve the system’s efficiency. Anaerobic wastewater treatment is a highly efficient treatment process that uses less energy and produces less sludge than conventional aerobic treatment. The organic matter in the wastewater is converted to carbon dioxide and methane. In addition to the anaerobic treatment, a cover on the lagoon had been capturing the gases and routing them to a flare for destruction.
In partnership with renewable natural gas developer GreenGasUSA, new biogas equipment now converts any gaseous methane to pipeline quality renewable natural gas for use in homes and businesses using the existing interstate pipeline system. It’s expected to reduce Sonoco’s greenhouse gas emissions by 8,000 metric tons per year and provide renewable energy to South Carolina.
“We’re proud of our sustainability record in Hartsville and our history of doing the right thing for the environment,” said Sonoco Vice President of Environmental, Sustainability, & Technical Services Elizabeth Rhue.
“This GreenGasUSA partnership allows us to take our efforts one step further by turning a waste gas into a valuable resource for the community while reducing our carbon footprint,” said Rhue. “We see this investment as a win for Sonoco, a win for GreenGas, and, most importantly, a win for the environment.”
A leading provider of renewable energy solutions, GreenGas helps farmers, food producers and manufacturers capture greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from their operations and convert the waste streams into RNG for use as a zero- and negative-carbon fuel source to offset and reduce fossil fuel consumption.
“We are excited about Sonoco’s latest efforts to further reduce methane emissions, one of the most potent greenhouse gases, and condition it to a valuable, renewable fuel for end-users. Sonoco’s Sustainability Team is setting the standard for environmental stewardship, sustainability and closing emission loops to create a circular economy,” said CEO and Founder of GreenGasUSA Marc Fetten.
South Carolina Commissioner of Agriculture Hugh Weathers, a champion of GreenGasUSA’s work to capture emissions from agribusiness, also applauded the project and partnership.
“GreenGas and Sonoco are leading the way in reducing our state’s carbon footprint. Innovative projects like this strengthen South Carolina’s agribusiness industry and lead us to a more sustainable future,” said South Carolina Agriculture Commissioner Hugh Weathers.
Sonoco has had a long-standing commitment to environmental stewardship. The company has set ambitious goals aligned with the Paris Climate Agreement. They involve reducing absolute scope 1 and 2 greenhouse gas emissions by 25% by 2030 from a 2020 base year and absolute scope 3 emissions by 13.5% from a 2019 base year.
More information about Sonoco’s sustainability efforts is available at sonoco.com/sustainability/learn/reports/.
Founded in 1899, Sonoco (NYSE: SON) is a global provider of packaging products. With net sales of approximately $7.3 billion in 2022, the Company has approximately 22,000 employees working in more than 300 operations around the world, serving the world’s best-known brands. With our corporate purpose of Better Packaging. Better Life., Sonoco is committed to creating sustainable products, and a better world, for our customers, employees and communities. The Company ranked first in the Packaging sector on Fortune’s World’s Most Admired Companies for 2022 as well as being included in Barron’s 100 Most Sustainable Companies for the fourth consecutive year. For more information on the Company, visit our website at www.sonoco.com.
We provide high quality renewable energy solutions centered around renewable natural gas (RNG) to carbon and renewable energy buyers. GreenGas’ wastewater and engineering experts design and permit comprehensive biogas solutions including, biogas capture, anaerobic digestion, gas flaring, compression, transportation, and pipeline injection. The core of our solutions is built around safety and environmental improvements. GreenGas has operational RNG facilities at agricultural and food processing sources across the country, with proven success in installing, commissioning, and operating gas upgrading equipment; RNG product compression and transportation; and existing pipeline injection infrastructure. For more information, visit www.greengasusa.com.
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