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Pepsi-Cola to put up biomass power plant in La Union

January 14, 2011 12:03am

Tags: La Union
Pepsi-Cola Products Philippines Inc. — manufacturer of well-known brands like Pepsi-Cola, 7Up, Mountain Dew, and Mirinda — is setting up a 1.2-megawatt (MW) biomass-fired power plant in its North Luzon Operations Facility in Rosario, La Union.

The power plant, estimated to cost around $2.7 million, will replace the existing diesel-fed generator set and fuel oil-fired boiler of the Pepsi-Cola plant, with rice hull, wood chips, and other biomass materials as fuel inputs.

Pepsi-Cola commercial director Gabby Gabinete said in a statement that the company wants to become a major player in addressing several challenges brought about by climate change and resource shortage.

Gabinete pointed out that Pepsi-Cola is planning to tie up with renewable energy developers for the 11-15-MW power requirement of its 11 manufacturing plants.

The renewable energy plants will be located in La Union, Pampanga, Muntinlupa, Naga, Cebu, Bacolod, Leyte, Iloilo, Zamboanga, Davao, and Cagayan de Oro.

Pepsi-Cola expects to save an average of 20 percent of its current cost for such renewable energy projects, Gabinete said.

The company also expects that some renewable energy firms would start setting up biomass-fired power plants in Pepsi-Cola's facilities in the next two-three years.

Additional revenues

Pepsi-Cola said its power plant project in La Union has been commended by US Ambassador Harry Thomas.

"Pepsi-Cola's power plant facility in La Union would create an additional revenues stream to the agricultural sector," Thomas said in the same statement.

During his recent visit to La Union, Thomas took note of the more than 700 farmers that will benefit from the project by providing feedstock that the biomass plant requires.

"This means that the farmers will have additional income from selling rice husks that otherwise would have been burned or just thrown away," he said.

The power plant project in La Union is undertaken by Pepsi-Cola and Solutions for Renewable Energy Inc. (SURE) under a build-operate-and-transfer agreement.

SURE will operate the facility to generate electricity and steam while Pepsi-Cola will pay the renewable energy firm for the power consumed during the 10-year supply period.

To ensure the steady supply of biomass materials, SURE will be contracting with rice millers and farmers in the nearby towns and provinces of Pangasinan and La Union for the long-term supply of rice hull. — JE/OMG, GMANews.TV
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Tags: La Union

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