The next economic development of Malaysia will be biobased. Brooke Renewables and Hock Lee Group – which has experience in manufacturing of industrial glue and plywood and has investment in oil palm plantation – have presented a Letter of Intent (LOI) to the state government, marking their intention to invest in the 2G (second generation) bioethanol and biochemical plant as the first phase of the Sarawak Biomass Hub project.
Brooke Renewables and its consortium of partners will be investing US$1 billion over the next five years to develop the Sarawak Biomass Hub project, which will help position the state in the regional forefront of the new biomass-based industry.
Hock Lee Group signed also a Memorandum of Understanding with Biochemtex Agro, company of the Italian Group Mossi Ghisolfi, to establish a dedicated biomass plantation that is sustainable, self-sufficient and in compliance with globally accepted standards. This biomass resource is renewable and provides the bioethanol and biochemical plant secured feedstock to ensure long-term operations of the plant.
Biochemtex Agro has considerable experience in managing the supply chain for the world’s first 2G bioethanol plant (Crescentino, Italy), launched in October last year. It is the sister company of Beta Renewables and handles all biomass supply chain relating to bioethanol and biochemical productions, using proprietary technology. And the new 2G bioethanol and biochemical plant will use Beta Renewables’ Biomass Conversion Technology and Novozymes’ Exclusive Enzymes Solutions.
In order to support the project Asia BioCoal and Brooke Malaysia will work together to ensure proper waste management solutions for the biomass cluster and the possibility of creating the largest carbonised pellet plant as part of a holistic approach in maximising the use of renewable resources for power and steam generation. These activities will create more jobs and further increase the positive environmental impact for the project.
The development of the Sarawak Biomass Hub is in line with the government’s vision underlined in the National Biomass Strategy 2020, which emphasises on the capitalisation of biomass by channelling it into higher value downstream uses. This strategy provides the roadmap for utilising some of the 100 million tonnes of by-products produced annually by palm oil plantations alone, to create high value new industries, by 2020.