Rhodia Energy Services launches biogas projects in China, Vietnam

09 December 2010 11:49  [Source: ICIS news]

LONDON (ICIS)--Rhodia Energy Services has launched two biogas projects in China and Vietnam following its entry into the market in 2009 with the acquisition of the Econcern Group’s participation in a number of pilot plants in the two countries, the French specialty chemicals company said on Thursday.

In southern China, Rhodia said it had partnered with the Siyuan ethanol factory to build a covered lagoon reactor, specialising in the treatment of waste water.

This facility, which began operations in March 2010, would produce 150,000 m3 of biogas per day by January 2011 and reduce CO2 emissions by 100,000 tonnes CO2-equivalent per year.

The second project is based at the Nuoc Trong cassava starch factory in Vietnam, and has recently started operations, said Rhodia.

It added that the plant would in the coming months produce 15,000 m3 of biogas daily from the treatment of cassava starch effluents. The unit would also reduce CO2 emissions by 12,000 tonnes/year at full capacity.

Rhodia said its Energy Services division would manage the design and the construction of both facilities, as well as the operations and the sales of the biogas produced.

It did not disclose the investment costs of the project, but a spokeswoman said they were part of an overall strategy by the company to invest €200m ($267m) by 2015 in these types of projects.

“Building on our unique expertise in energy optimisation and CO2 emission reduction, we have rapidly and successfully acquired new technological expertise in the field of biogas,” said Philippe Rosier, president of Rhodia Energy Services.

“The [lessons learned] from these pilot projects have given us confidence in our ability to replicate the business model to additional projects,” he added.

Biogas is a mix of methane and CO2 obtained from the fermentation of bio-wastes. It is a renewable energy that can be used to produce electricity or heat.

($1 = €0.75)

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By: Hilde Ovrebekk
+44 20 8652 3214

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