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VIASPACE, Inc. (VSPC) Points the Way to Energy Dedicated Crops

May 02, 2011 2:46 PM ETVSPC
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For years, the use of renewable biomass fuels for energy generation focused on the idea of using agricultural waste as the primary feedstock. On the surface it all seemed to make sense. Every year, huge amounts of bio-waste are generated in the growing of various crops, essentially there for the taking. Soon projects generating electricity from corn stover, wheat straw, rice husks, sawdust, and woodbark were being touted as the future of green energy.

It wasn’t long, however, before the seriousness of various problems associated with the use of agricultural waste for energy generation became clear.

• Agricultural waste prices can vary wildly in the marketplace, affected by unpredictable market forces, precluding the possibility for dependable long-term economic cost calculations, making it difficult to get financing.
• The availability of agricultural waste is irregular, peaking when a crop is harvested, and then unavailable until the next harvest. Even sawdust availability varies with construction cycles. In addition, supply sources from farmers are dependent upon what the farmer decides to grow in a given year, and cannot always be relied upon.
• Different crops have different fuel values, resulting in inconsistent feedstock energy potential.
• Agricultural waste must be transported from scattered locations, with all of the associated logistic issues.

The answer is the development and use of dedicated energy crops, designed and grown to best suit the generation of energy. Giant King Grass, a proprietary hybrid grass developed by ViaSpace, Inc., is so efficient at capturing the sun’s energy, growing up to 13 feet in a few months, that is can reduce biofuel feedstock costs by up to 40%. It can be harvested and ready to grow again immediately, without replanting, offering multiple crops per year, further increasing efficiency. With such a cost-effective and dependable resource, dedicated and controlled for energy production, economic projections and financing are no longer a problem. And, of course, there is no interference with food crop production. Eventually, energy crop plantations can even be set up side by side with specially built power plants, eliminating the need for crop transportation.

For additional information, visit the company’s website at ViaSpace.com, or the company’s Giant King Grass products site at ViaSpaceGreenEnergy.com.

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