The Rio Pardo Termoelétrica bagasse-fuelled cogeneration unit - the first power plant acquired by Albioma in Brazil - represents a strategic investment for the Group in a country that remains the world's leading sugar producer.
The Rio Pardo Termoelétrica plant, which has been operating in the State of Sao Paulo since 2009, has an installed capacity of 60 MW. In 2014, it was acquired by Albioma, which also agreed a bagasse procurement deal with its sugar-refining partner Usina Rio Pardo.
of bagasse used in 2017
of electricity generated in 2017
of electricity exported to the network in 2017
Biomass and energy production
In 2017, 315,000 tonnes of bagasse were used, along with other locally-sourced biomass such as sugar cane straw and wood chips, to produce 151 GWh of electricity (of which 107 GWh was exported) as well as low-pressure steam. In keeping with the principle of the circular economy, part of the energy produced covered the needs of the sugar refinery, with the rest being injected directly into the electricity network.
The acquisition of the Rio Pardo Termoelétrica cogeneration plant also reflects Albioma’s ambition to expand internationally by exporting its thermal biomass model. With more than 400 sugar refineries and steadily increasing energy needs, Brazil is a promising market for biomass-fuelled power generation, hence the investment strategy aimed at enhancing the Group’s production capacity in the country over the long term.
What is cogeneration?
In a thermal power plant, cogeneration refers to the ability to simultaneously produce electricity and heat from the same primary energy source. Rather than being lost to the environment, heat generated by the combustion process is recovered, improving the plant's overall energy efficiency.