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Article Released Thu-10th-January-2008 12:43 GMT
Contact: Nor Azman Hussein Institution: Forest Research Institute Malaysia (FRIM)
 Biomass energy technology in Malaysia – Issues and challenges

There are currently many incentives given to the promotion on the use of renewable energy from biomass in Malaysia. This paper reviewed the current status of the technologies used in Malaysia, with special emphasis given to environmentally clean and economically viable systems.


BIOMASS ENERGY TECHNOLOGY IN MALAYSIA – ISSUES AND CHALLENGES

Hoi W.K. and Koh M.P.
Forest Research Institute Malaysia, Kepong, 52109 Kuala Lumpur
Email: hoiwk@frim.gov.my

Biomass energy is highly emphasized in the 9th Malaysian Plan. There are currently many incentives given to the promotion on the use of renewable energy from biomass in Malaysia. The biomass technologies ranged from the conversion of biomass into solid fuel such as briquettes and charcoal production to the direct combustion of biomass for use in the palm oil, rubber and brick making industries and the commercial use of biomass energy through the Small Renewable Energy Program.

Certain amount of biomass is converted into liquid fuel by pyrolytic process to manufacture bio oil. Part of this paper is allocated to the development of bio diesel in Malaysia. For gaseous fuel, some biomass is converted into biogas through fermentation and also through gasification.

This paper reviewed the current status of the technologies used in Malaysia, with special emphasis given to environmentally clean and economically viable systems. A number of environmental issues related to volatile emissions were highlighted together with numerous industrial applications of biomass energy.

A detail techno-economic analysis of the technology were highlighted. Issues related to labor cost and availability of raw material were also given prominence. Cogeneration technologies from biomass energy were given special focus in the paper especially towards an environment friendly system that will produce high quality fuel from a number of different types of biomass (with special emphasis to the use of waste from the oil palm industries) as well as producing high grade fuel from low quality waste such as feedstock.

A lot of emphasis were given a cost efficient preventive pre-treatment of these low-grade solid multi fuels by low temperature pyrolysis in downsized reductive environment for removal of hazardous air pollutants prior burning to improvement of burning efficiency of the revitalized solid fuel power plant-CHP up to 300 MW capacities.

This technology has been developed to meet the open – liberalized energy and cogeneration market demands. The paper concluded with the need for a good commercialization plan that will decrease the risk and maximize the chances for success for biomass energy in Malaysia. A model framework to develop suitable commercialization programs will also be highlighted.

For more information on this paper, please contact the author at the contact details above.

For more information on FRIM and the CFFPR Meeting, please contact Dr Mohd. Nor Mohd. Yusoff, Senior Director, Forest Products Division, Forest Research Institute Malaysia (FRIM). Email: mdnor@frim.gov.my

Meeting information

Conference on Forestry and Forest Products Research December 2007

Keywords associated to this article: 9th Malaysian Plan, Biomass technology, Environment issues, Techno-Economic Analysis, Commercialisation
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