Columbia‘s largest sugar producer has announced that its board of directors approved a proposal that would allow the company to build a 35 MW biomass cogeneration plant at a cost of around $48m.

Riopaila Castilla’s facility, to be powered by a fibrous sugar cane processing byproduct called bagasse, will be built in Zarzal, a town of about 50,000 in the western part of the country known for its sugar operations and access to expansive cane fields.

News of the project comes at a time when Columbia is pushing to develop renewables like biomass and biofuels.

The plant is expected to be operational sometime in 2014.
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