The first biogas project to use sugarcane-waste created from the production of ethanol has begun operations.

The grid-connected development is powered by eight Jenbacher biogas engines from GE Energy.

The sugarcane biogas plant in Jhang, Pakistan provides an on-site source of power to help the Shakarganj Mills’ mill and other industrial operations meet production requirements.

The biogas used to fuel the plant is extracted from spent wash, a by product of the ethanol production operation that uses sugarcane molasses as a raw material.

The plant is expected to produce approximately 20,000 tons of certified emissions reductions (CERs) annually under the Kyoto Protocol.

‘The project is Pakistan’s first sugarcane biogas power plant,’ said Mohammad Asghar Qureshi, managing director of Shakarganj Mills, who added: ‘With 225 million liters of ethyl alcohol produced annually in Pakistan, we expect many other distillery companies to install similar plants to support the energy needs of the national grid.’

GE supplied Shakarganj Mills Ltd. with eight JGS 320 GS. B/L Jenbacher units for the cogeneration plant, which is supplying electricity to the national grid through a 22-year power purchase agreement together with an estimated 8 MWth used to support the company’s distillery process.

In addition to the gas engines, GE also provided the gas train, biogas compressor and biogas cooler for the gas dehumidification process.

GE’s Jenbacher gas engine local distributor M/s. Orient Energy Systems provided the remaining auxiliary equipment including the cooling tower, pumps, ventilation systems (including fans), and hot water-fired chiller for cooling the biogas. The company also provided heat recovery from jacket water system, exhaust, local installation, commissioning and overall project consulting services. Orient Energy Systems also is providing operation and maintenance support for the plant.