This will reduce the sites overall environmental footprint, coupled with cash cost savings to reach USD$ 11-13 per tonne in the second half of 2014.

The three oil-fired boilers are now on standby while the two modern steam generators designed to produce a total of 300 tonnes per hour of reliable, high-pressure superheated steam have been commissioned. The shift from oil-fired boilers to gas-powered steam generators will result in the complete removal of all emissions associated with Heavy Fuel Oil.

Rusal has invested approximately €15 million in the project. Steam generators and auxiliary equipment have been designed and supplied by Foster Wheeler AG, a global engineering and construction company and power equipment supplier.

“The shift to gas-powered steam production is a part of a large-scale modernisation programme being carried out at the Aughinish refinery that continually increases its economic and environmental performance. The move to gas allows us to improve the strategic position of the plant as it eliminates dependence on heavy fuel oil,” said Valeriy Matvienko, director for UC Rusal’s Alumina Division.