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Tracey Osborne
Ph.D. student

Energy and Resources Group
University of California, Berkeley

Biomass Project in Santa Clara, Cuba

Along with the Center for Renewable Energy and Environmental Technologies at the Central University of Las Villas in Santa Clara, Cuba, I am conducting research on the economics and carbon emission savings of a biomass energy project in Cuba. The source of the biomass is bagasse or sugarcane waste, some of which is inefficiently burned to power sugar production and some is simply incinerated. The project aims to convert a biomass-driven thermal electric power plant, to a more energy efficient system that combines cogeneration and gasification technologies. This will allow more energy to be imported to the national grid, supply more electricity for residential and commercial use, and offset greenhouse gas emissions associated with climate change. We also have plans to work on a Global Environment Facility (GEF) proposal to fund this biomass project. The GEF provides grant funding for projects in the developing world that contribute to biodiversity conservation and climate change mitigation. Lessons learned in this project can be useful to Cuba as well as other primarily agricultural developing countries, by shedding light on how biomass resources can contribute to cost-effective and sustainable energy use, as well as improve the living conditions of some of the world’s poorest people. Professor Dan Kammen, RAEL Director, will be overseeing this project.

Pictures of Biomass Energy Use in Cuba:

Biomass plant in Santa Clara

Pig farm in the background generates
biomass waste for use in biogas digester

Biogas digester using waste from nearby pig farm

Last updated 4/3/2003

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