EnviTec breaks ground on Philippines biogas plant

A ground-breaking ceremony has been carried out for EnviTec’s first biogas project in the Philippines.

The German biogas specialist, headquartered in Lower Saxony, will construct a 1.2 MW biogas plant in Candelaria, Quezon province.

“In addition to this project under construction we are planning to develop and replicate more projects to help the local farmers address the chicken manure disposal problem as well as the environmental issue associated with the burning of rice and corn straw”, said Andy Alquiros, president of First Quezon Biogas Corporation (FQBC), the association of local poultry farmers which developed the project in partnership with Singaporean co-investor Yamato Technologies Pte.

Poultry manure has become an increasing problem in Quezon, tonnes of it accumulating each year. First Quezon Biogas and Yamato approached EnviTec to address the issue, leading to the ambitious waste-energy project.

“The current project benefits from the subsidies of the Renewable Energy Act passed by the government in 2008,” Marcello Barbato, EnviTec Sales Manager Southeast Asia, said.

Regularly suffering from energy shortages, the Philippines have long had a need for an affordable, reliable energy supply. Energy prices in the archipelago state average $0.23/kWh, the most expensive in Southeast Asia and in fact comparable to ‘highly-developed’ countries such as Japan, according to market analysis carried out by the German-Philippines Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GPCCI).

The Philippines therefore offer significant potential for the use of biomass and biogas. Alongside animal waste, sugar cane and rice production in the region offer potential feedstocks for energy production. The GPCCI study suggests that the waste from sugar mills, rice and coconut farms presents potential production capabilities of 90, 40 and 20 MW.

Meanwhile, climate legislation in the Philippines states that by 2030 total capacities for renewable energies are to be increased to 15,304 gigawatts, thereby contributing to the country’s energy security. This corresponds to a three-fold increase on 2010 capacity.

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