Bagasse-fired power generation
The cane sugar industry of Vietnam has big potential on energy production which estimated about 2,346,017 MWh technical potential on electricity power generation, in which grid connected electricity about 1,650,901 MWh. Many cane sugar factories have installed and operated combined heat and power (CHP) to produce steam and electricity used for themselves and sell the redundant amount to the national grid at the price of 5.8 US cents per kWh. For examples, by the end of 2016, there was 361 MW generated by 11 cane sugar factories.
The cane sugar industry is still in the developing stage. The production capacity is forecasted to increase from 19.88 million tons of cane in 2016 to 21 million tons and 24 million tons in 2020 and 2030, respectively.
One of by-product generated from cane sugar industry is bagasse. The cane sugar industry has advantages in producing power compared to other industries as the input for power generation is bagasse which is free. There is less risk in ensuring enough supply of bagasse as the owners of cane sugar factories are usually the owners power plants. The cost for transport of bagasse to power plants is low as the power plants are usually located within or very near the cane sugar factories.
Opportunities for boosting bagasse-fired power generation are abundant, as the combined sugarcane planting area of sugar mills nationwide amounts to 330,000ha, yielding at least 30 million tonnes of sugar cane a year. It is estimated that as each tonne of sugar cane could generate 100 kWh of electricity, then thousands of MW would be generated from the yield of sugar cane.
Lam Son Sugar Joint Stock Corporation (Lasuco) is the leading sugar producer in Vietnam and is also one of the leaders in that country’s slow shift toward a market-driven economy. Lasuco operates two sugar refineries, with a total capacity of nearly 10,500 tons cane per day, fed by farmers throughout the mountainous Lam Son region in northern Vietnam.
Image: https://lasuco.vn/wp-content/uploads/vuon-mia-lasuco-banner-2.jpg (trong ảnh có đánh đấu rõ ràng “được cho phép bởi Lasuco”)
Lasuco has installed a bagasse-fired power generation system with a capacity of 33.5 megawatts (MW) in its sugar production line which can generate more than 20 MW of electricity at the peak of the sugarcane crushing season. Half the generated electricity is used for the sugar mill’s operation and the rest is sold to the national grid through the Vietnam Electricity Group (EVN). Lasuco, with its environmentally friendly power generation, gained a carbon credit deal in 2012 at a price of 7.8 Euro ($9) per tonne of CO2 under the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM). The deal, which lasts for 20 years, enables Lasuco to earn an additional income of some 10 billion VND ($430,000) every year. The benefits of bagasse-fired power generation to companies like Lasuco is clear as it provides electricity for sugar production and enables the firm to sell the redundant power output to the national grid.