ICCI stresses use of Biomass for sustainable energy production

  • October 22, 2010
The SME sector is a major consumer of energy in the country and most of SMEs currently depend on fossil fuel based heat and power generation which is expensive, thus government must encourage use of biomass to meet its renewable energy goal, making SMEs more cost effective, said Mr.Mahooz Elahi, President Islamabad Chamber of Commerce & Industry in a meeting at ICCI.

He said that according to the forecast of the National Planning Commission, the reliance on imported primary energy will further increase over the next two decades, from 30% of the total demand in 2005 to 62% of the demand in 2025. Many SMEs are considering use of biomass at their facilities but government support is required to lunch projects.

Mr.Mahfooz Elahi said that through adoption of modern biomass energy conversion technologies for process heat and power generation in SMEs and rural communities in Pakistan, the energy gap can be filled. He said that lunching of such projects will not only meet the rising demands of energy but would also contribute for employment generation. President stressed that Alternate Energy Board should take proactive measures for the generation of energy through biomass and also develop long term strategies to plug in the energy requirements using alternate resources.

He said that as per information, gas is available to only 26 percent of the population in the country, whereas electricity is supplied to 65 percent of the population. Biomass was almost the only source in use two centuries ago and in 19th century world shifted to coal, however its share was replaced with oil and natural gas in 20th century.

Rice waste can be one of the major sources for this purpose and project should be undertaken for the gasification of biomass residues for small and medium scale enterprises. He said that most potential users of low calorific fuel-gas can be metallurgy, ceramic, cement and lime etc.

Mr.Mahfooz Elahi said that some other Asian countries including India and China are emphasizing upon biomass gasification. He emphasized that local capacity for manufacturing the gasifier system must exist and manufacturers should be encouraged to provide an adequate after sales, guarantees and trainings to operators.

Government must device favourable policies because currently price of oil is rising and our country has to pay heavy foreign exchange on the import bill of oil. Emphasis must also be given on energy security and provision of modern energy services in remote areas, he added.