Global Business Power gearing up 40-MW biomass project with Roxas Holdings

By Juzel L. Danganan

MANILA, Sept 27 (PNA) – Global Business Power Corp. (GBPC) and Roxas Holdings Inc. are gearing up for the construction of its 40-megawatt (MW) biomass project located in La Carlota, Negros Occidental.

Jaime Azurin, GBPC executive vice president (EVP), said the company will make its entry into renewable power generation this year with the 40-MW project.

” It’s a 40 MW in Negros, together with Roxas Holdings of La Carlota,” he told reporters in an interview.

Azurin noted the company sees there will be constraints with the project such as logistics and the old sugar mills important for the produce of bagasse.

The EVP said the joint venture has already hired a consultant to finalize the design to be bid out by December for interested international engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contractors, adding the company has shortlisted Japanese and European technology for the bagasse.

”It’s not easy, because it’s not homogenous like coal. It depends on the type of bagasse that you use or the sugar cane that you plant so we have to study it carefully,” he said.

The project will have an estimated project cost of US$ 100 million or US$ 2.5 million per MW.

Azurin further said the project will be operational by Sept 2017 and will be lined up for the Feed-in-Tariff (FIT).

”We’re sure that we will be one of the first to be able to touch the biomass 250 MW FIT allocation by September of 2017,” he said.

Through the partnership, Roxas Holdings will supply the bagasse and GBPC will build the power plant. The stake, however, will still be decided by the two firms after the final engineering design.

Despite the seasonality of the biomass power plant, the EVP said it is still better than the intermittent nature of solar and wind farms. (PNA)