Study on biomass power plants
National power utility, NamPower said it has contracted a global consultancy firm headquatered in the UK to do a pre-feasibility study to analyse the potential of biomass power plants in the country.
WSP Environmental Pty Ltd, a London-based consultancy firm beat five other companies that were shortlisted for the next stage of the pre-qualification process after 36 companies had initially submitted their bids at the close of the tender in June last year.
According to a tender notice issued by NamPower in May 2011, the pre-feasibility study will provide potential investors and developers a clear roadmap in developing the power projects fuelled by biomass from encroacher bush.
Biomass power plants are generally considered a lot cleaner than coal fired power plants as they produce fewer green house gases compared to coal fired power plants like Van Eck outside Windhoek.
Using the invader bush in biomass power plants to generate power is also viewed as a potential solution to the problem of desertification caused by bush encroachment. It is estimated that 26 million hectares of agricultural land have already been affected by bush encroachment which poses a major threat to agricultural productivity as large areas of grazing are rendered unusable.
WSP Environmental, a global consultancy firm that provide advice on all aspects of environmental, energy, sustainability, climate change, and business risk issues, according to information on the company’s website, has already started work on the study. It is expected to be completed by the end of August at a cost of Euro292,000.
The study is funded though a grant from the Development Bank of Germany, KfW.