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Felda's biomass plant to fuel more jobs

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JERANTUT: Felda's RM125 million biomass power plant in Felda Jengka 9 here is expected to provide energy, business opportunities and jobs for local settlers when completed in December.

The joint venture project is between Felda Global Ventures Holdings Bhd (FGV) subsidiary, Felda Palm Industries (FPI) and Tenaga Nasional Berhad's FTJ Bio Power Sdn Bhd.

The sustainable power plant built on 4.2ha of land, will be able to produce 12.5 megawatts (MW) of electricity.

FGV president Datuk Sabri Ahmad said upon completion, the biomass plant would be connected to the national grid and 10MW of the power would be sold to TNB at 30 sen per kilowatt while the excess power would be used by nearby industries and domestic consumers.

This will be a Felda group initiative in supporting the government's Small and Renewable Energy Programme under the Energy, Green Technology and Water Ministry.

Sabri said the plant would use oil palm empty fruit bunches (EFBs), trunks, stems and fronds. Some 320,000 tonnes of the matter were available annually from the seven Felda-owned palm oil mills in the vicinity, including in Lepar Utara and Kota Gelanggi.

Waste by-products, such as raw palm oil deposits and potassium-laden ash, can also be used.

"Overall it comes down to 50,000 tonnes of carbon emission reduction annually."

He said transporting the EFBs from the mills to the biomass plant would provide business opportunies for the settlers.

"We expect to hire between 50 and 70 people, and will conduct training for those who are interested," Sabri said yesterday.


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