Company NewsNewsPaper

UPM Reveals Alkaline Leak in Uruguay Pulp Mill

Leak notified in August 2023. Company takes applicable corrective measures immediately.

Finnish paper giant UPM has revealed an alkaline leak at its new Paso de los Toros pulp mill in Uruguay this August.

The Helsinki-headquartered company said in a recently released statement that an alkaline leak in the storage area at the mill was notified on 16 August, 2023, which had led to abnormal water colour and fish mortalities in a creek that runs through the mill site and the bordering field.

UPM said that the leak was caused by defects in the stormwater control basin of the chemical storage and unloading area of the mill, and led to the presence of sodium hydroxide which resulted in high pH values in the water of the creek. The quality of water was also affected in the zone in which the creek runs into the Rio Negro river, but to a lesser extent.

UPM immediately took the applicable corrective measures to address the situation and prevent any further leakage. The incident was informed by the company to the environmental authorities and neighbouring mills, and published an announcement on the UPM Uruguay website.

The pH value of the affected watercourses returned to normal levels within a few days. UPM and the Uruguayan environmental authority DINACEA investigated the causes and consequences of the incident, with UPM agreeing to implement all the necessary measures, including monitoring, as instructed by the authorities to avoid such future mishaps. UPM expects to receive monetary sanctions imposed by the authorities in line with Uruguayan legislation.

The company said that it strongly regretted the incident, taking it very seriously. “Our environmental management processes, controls, and monitoring worldwide are rigorous, and this type of incidents are very rare in our operations,” adds UPM.

The 2.1 million tonne greenfield eucalyptus pulp mill in central Uruguay is part of a $3.47 billion investment that also includes a pulp terminal in the port of Montevideo as well as investments in local facilities in Paso de los Toros.

Show More

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Back to top button

Adblock Detected

Please consider supporting us by disabling your ad blocker