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PIA Press Release
Saturday, January 14, 2012


Energy sector targets additional 277 MW biomass capacity by 2015

by Alpha Selene Balasta

MANILA, Jan. 14 (PIA) -- The energy sector is eyeing to increase the country's biomass capacity by an additional 277 megawatts biomass by the year 2015.

To achieve this target, 25 biomass projects will be implemented nationwide, said Marriz Agbon, President of the Philippine Agricultural Development and Commercial Corporation (PADCC).

During the 1st Philippine International BioEnergy Conference held Jan. 12-13 at the Manila Hotel, Agbon cited a study conducted by the United States- National Renewable Energy Laboratory (US NREL) which shows that the Philippines has a potential output of 235.7 megawatts for biomass (bagasse only).

To maximize these potentials, the Biofuels Act of 2006 and the Renewable Energy Act of 2008 were enacted.

The Biofuels Act mandates a ten percent ethanol blend for gasoline and two percent biodiesel blend for diesel. On the other hand, the Renewable Energy Act was enacted "to accelerate the exploration and development of renewable energy resources," Agbon said.

In accordance with these laws, 18 ethanol distilleries with an annual capacity of 30 million liters were established to meet the 10 percent bioethanol blend mandate, he said.

He added that development of new areas is also pursued for the production of feedstock mix of sugarcane, sweet sorghum and lignocellulosic feedstock such as rice hull, corn stover, rice straw, corn cob, coconut shell and coconut husk. "We've already mapped out over 450,000 hectares as potential areas for ethanol feedstock," he said.

Agbon said the development of the bioenergy sector will also generate around 89,000 more jobs--78,000 jobs for the construction of power plants, 4,000 for plant operation, and 7,000 for the feedstock supply chain. Around 577,000 farmer families will also benefit from this endeavor.

The 1st PIBEC was a convention of local and international bioenergy industry players who engage in bioenergy feedstock production, processing, logistical support requirements. (ASB/PIA-GHQ)

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