SMC to replace coal with rice husks to run its power plants?
San Miguel Corporation (SMC) is eyeing the possibility of replacing coal with rice husks as fuel for its power plants.
The plan aims to fulfill the firm’s move towards renewable energy. In the process, the company will also be able to help boost the income of rice farmers.
“Instead of burning or dumping rice husks, we want to fully utilize this agricultural waste product both as energy source for our power plants and income source for our rice farmers,” SMC president and COO Ramon S. Ang said in a news report.
“This way, we reduce our emission further, encourage more farmers to increase rice production, make their lives better and help address a perennial food security challenge,” he added.
Through its power arm SMC Global Power, the listed diversified firm operates two new clean coal power facilities in Limay, Bataan and Malita, Davao.
As part of the plan, SMC will convert its existing power plants using circulating fluidized bed (CFB) clean coal technology to biomass power facilities. Emissions from rice-husk based fuel are lower than coal-based fuel.
“If we encourage more farmers to plant rice by providing them additional sources of income, our rice sufficiency and food security improves. At the same time, we use palay husks to generate more environment-friendly energy,” Ang further said.