On 20 December 2022, Yvan Schaepman, Boortmalt CEO, symbolically laid the first pipeline of the Antwerp North Heat Network with the project partners. This large-scale heat network processed by Indaverwill allow Boortmalt from 2024 onwards, to produce malt with residual heat instead of fossil fuel. This is a big step forward in the Horizon Net-Zero Carbon strategy of Boortmalt.
Antwerp North Heat Network utilises residual heat from Indaver's rotary kilns where industrial waste is thermally processed. Boortmalt, which took a long-term commitment to the project, will use this heat in its industrial process. In a second phase, the company Fluvius will link a district heating network to this, allowing schools, public buildings and 3,200 households from two districts in the north of Antwerp to source their heat supply more sustainably. In total, the network will have a capacity of about 150 GWh/year. Therefore this network is a key element for Antwerp's urban climate policy, which aims to make the city climate-neutral. This grid will be the first 'open access' heat grid in Belgium.
By eliminating the need for Boortmalt and the residential users to use fossil fuels, a significant saving is made on natural gas. The transition from fossil fuel to waste heat also means a reduction in CO2 emissions of 80,000 tonnes per year (when the full capacity of the heat network will be utilised). This corresponds to the annual emissions of 25 000 Antwerp households.
This project falls perfectly within Boortmalt's objectives, as explained Yvan Schaepman: "Sustainability is at the heart of our business strategy. We are determined to help make a difference. We are working on a series of concrete targets in line with our SBTi 1.5°C commitment to halve our carbon footprint by 2030. But, we are taking it one step further and are already looking at how we can bring our emissions to ''0'' well before 2050. We also believe in the power of cooperation to achieve these ambitions. This project fits right into this approach and we are particularly proud of it, as Antwerp is our largest site and our headquarters are located here."