by Lenie Lectura, 14 June 2015
RENEWABLE-energy firm Mackay Green Energy Inc. is putting up three biomass power facilities in Mindanao that will generate a total capacity of 32 megawatts (MW) using bana grass as feedstock.
Close to P1 billion will be spent for the three power projects. Mackay Green Energy is going to be the project proponent, while the project companies are Kalilangan Biomass Energy Corp., 10 MW; Don Carlos Biomass Energy Corp., 10 MW; and Misamis Oriental Biomass Energy Corp., 12 MW. “It costs $3 million per MW, all in, including the turbines,” said James Mackay, chairman and CEO of Mackay Green Energy.
All power projects will utilize bana grass, an energy crop that can produce green coal as by-product.
“The gas from the bana grass is 60-percent methane. The methane will run the power plant and the byproduct is green coal,” Mackay added.
Mackay Green Energy will provide financing for all power projects, including the production of biomass crop.
“It’s a crop unique and sister to napier grass but you only plant it one time. The yield is up to 600 wet tons per hectare per year. This crop is a dedicated biomass; therefore, it doesn’t interfere with the food crop,” said Mackay, adding that bana grass will be imported from Africa.
Construction of the 10-MW power plants is expected to be finished in nine months. Commercial operations will follow thereafter.
“We are breaking ground by middle of next month. We will be onsite next week for the final preparations,” Mackay said.
Mackay Energy could sell the green coal here and abroad.
“We have contracts here, for Korea, Japan and Spain and the Thais. They are using it for existing coal power plants. We are also in talks to local incorporations in Mindanao, and also in Negros and Luzon,” he said.