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Commodity Profile

Biomass refers to any organic matter, particularly cellulosic or ligno-


cellulosic matter, which is available on a renewable or recurring basis,
including trees, crops and associated residues, plant fiber, poultry litter and
other animal wastes, industrial wastes, and the biodegradable component of
solid waste (Elauria et al., 2003).
Forest-based biomass includes stem, tops and branches of harvested trees,
and understory vegetation. Agriculture-based biomass includes crops grown
specifically for bioenergy production, or dedicated bioenergy crops, and
plant residues collected after harvest of crops grown for food or feedstock.
Dedicated bioenergy crops include annual crops grown for their sugars or
starches, such as sugarcane and grains, as well as perennial herbaceous
and woody crops grown for their cellulose. Cellulosic bioenergy crops
include grasses and woody plants. Waste-based biomass includes organic
materials leftover from industrial processes such as mill and pulp
production, municipal solid wastes, construction wastes, and landfill gas.
Biomass from algaculture involves production of microalgae - organisms less
than 0.4 mm in diameter and capable of photosynthesis.
WGBN described biomass energy or bioenergy as the one derived from
recently living organisms including plants, animals and their byproducts. It
is renewable because the energy contained in biomass comes from the sun
captured through natural processes of photosynthesis. Bioenergy is
replenishable as long as the quantity of biomass used is equal to or less
than the amount that can be regrown.
Biopower is electricity generated from the combustion of biomass. Heat and
steam, or a combination of both, may also be produced through combustion
of biomass, and may be produced in co-generation with electricity.
Cogeneration is the use of technology so that the various ‘by-products’ of
energy production are captured and utilized, rather than being wasted. In
the case of mill operations, biomass (waste products from timber processing)
are often used as to heat boilers, to produce steam for the mill.
Co-firing refers to burning biomass such as woody, agricultural, or domestic
waste with coal to produce electricity using existing coal-fired boilers. The
process could significantly reduce the use of fossil fuels used in power
generation.
The 2003 Philippine Forestry Master Plan projected 30.3 M m3 supply of
fuelwood by 2020 and 33.3 M m3 by 2030. The plan also identified
agricultural areas as the leading source of fuelwood, specifically from
coconut plantations and border tree plantings along cultivated lands. The
source accounts for 55.25% of the total supply of fuelwood. However, a
significant portion of fuelwood is still obtained from natural forests
amounting to about 38.75% of the total fuelwood supply. This amounts to
9.81 M m3 of all types of fuelwood used for cooking in most households. The
plan clarified that the supply consists mainly of branches, tops and other
dried wood parts sourced from brushland, and partly from secondary
forests.
Relevant Policies
Aside from the policies cited in Round Wood, Fuelwood as a Biomass Source for Energy is
included in the RA 9513 and DAO 2009-05-0008, particularly in Section 13, Section 16 and
Section 17, wherein incentives for the developers and famers who engaged in the plantation
and development of biomass resources and processing is clearly stipulated.

Recommended Varieties/Species
A research paper by Tolentino (2017) cited the study of Sarmiento and
Varela (2015) which came up with biomass estimates of various species
and age in different tree farms in Caraga, Mindanao, Philippines (Table
5). They used existing allometric equations of various species measuring
height and diameter. The study however did not mention spacing or
density and site characteristics or whether the measurements included
big branches and other tree components that can qualify as fuelwood.
Table __. Biomass estimated of various species and age in Mindanao (Sarmiento
& Varela 2015)
Biomass (Mg ha -1)
Tree Species
1 year 2 years 3 years 4 years 5 years
Acacia mangium 14.38 29.23 48.66 70.61 110.64
Paraserianthes falcataria 0.09 18.16 25.36 31.93 125.25
Leucaena leucocephala 8.21 38.13 56.61 70.41 77.36
Eucalyptus deglupta 0.14 5.76 23.96 40.00 58.20

Soil and Climatic Requirements


Supply Chain
The supply chain of biofuels (fuelwood and charcoal and other related
products) is shown in Figure 13. The flow from the sources and end-users of
biofuels is very much driven by the market. The different sources indicate
that fuelwood and charcoal come from agricultural, forest lands, protected
areas, and mangroves; and from naturally-growing trees and crops in
backyard, farms, and plantations.

VARIOUS FOREST
COVER Retailers

Mangrove Rural Transport Household


Trader
Trees/Shrub Fallows
Wholesalers
Woodlots
Commercial/
Tree Plantation Wood fuel Industrial
Producers Establishment
Agro-Forestry Gatherers

Scattered Trees Direct to


Urban
Fruit Trees Consumers
and Traders
Coconut Lands

Shrubland

Brushland

Figure ___. General Flow of Wood Fuel Production, Marketing and


Consumption in the Philippines (Remedio, 2006)
Comparative/Competitive Advantage
Table ___. Comparative advantage of regions in providing forest ecosystems
goods and services (FMB/DENR Regional Workshops, 2013)

FUELWOOD
COMPARATIVE ADVANTAGES

Suitable agro-climate and markets for 1, 2, 3, 4a, 4b, 5, 6, 7,


fuelwood 12, ARMM

Available extensive area of shrublands and 4a, 4b, 10, 9, ARMM


grasslands for roundwood and fuelwood
production

National Production
Processing and Utilization
Financial Analysis

FMB reported that 1,317,000 m3 of roundwood were produced in 2015 with


475,000 m3 of fuelwood consisting of 49,000 m3 of firewood and 426,000
m3 of charcoal.
Biomass refers to any organic matter, particularly cellulosic or ligno-
cellulosic matter, which is available on a renewable or recurring basis,
including trees, crops and associated residues, plant fiber, poultry litter and
other animal wastes, industrial wastes, and the biodegradable component of
solid waste (Elauria et al., 2003).
Forest-based biomass includes stem, tops and branches of harvested trees,
and understory vegetation. Agriculture-based biomass includes crops grown
specifically for bioenergy production, or dedicated bioenergy crops, and
plant residues collected after harvest of crops grown for food or feedstock.
Dedicated bioenergy crops include annual crops grown for their sugars or
starches, such as sugarcane and grains, as well as perennial herbaceous
and woody crops grown for their cellulose. Cellulosic bioenergy crops
include grasses and woody plants. Waste-based biomass includes organic
materials leftover from industrial processes such as mill and pulp
production, municipal solid wastes, construction wastes, and landfill gas.
Biomass from algaculture involves production of microalgae - organisms less
than 0.4 mm in diameter and capable of photosynthesis.
WGBN described biomass energy or bioenergy as the one derived from
recently living organisms including plants, animals and their byproducts. It
is renewable because the energy contained in biomass comes from the sun
captured through natural processes of photosynthesis. Bioenergy is
replenishable as long as the quantity of biomass used is equal to or less
than the amount that can be regrown.
Biopower is electricity generated from the combustion of biomass. Heat and
steam, or a combination of both, may also be produced through combustion
of biomass, and may be produced in co-generation with electricity.
Cogeneration is the use of technology so that the various ‘by-products’ of
energy production are captured and utilized, rather than being wasted. In
the case of mill operations, biomass (waste products from timber processing)
are often used as to heat boilers, to produce steam for the mill. Co-firing
refers to burning biomass such as woody, agricultural, or domestic waste
with coal to produce electricity using existing coal-fired boilers. The process
could significantly reduce the use of fossil fuels used in power generation.
The 2003 Philippine Forestry Master Plan projected 30.3 M m3 supply of
fuelwood by 2020 and 33.3 M m3 by 2030. The plan also identified
agricultural areas as the leading source of fuelwood, specifically from
coconut plantations and border tree plantings along cultivated lands. The
source accounts for 55.25% of the total supply of fuelwood. However, a
significant portion of fuelwood is still obtained from natural forests
amounting to about 38.75% of the total fuelwood supply. This amounts to
9.81 M m3 of all types of fuelwood used for cooking in most households. The
plan clarified that the supply consists mainly of branches, tops and other
dried wood parts sourced from brushland, and partly from secondary
forests.

Table ___ Wood supply projections (‘000 m3).


WOOD/PROD. TYPE 1990 2000 2010 2020 2030

Total Roundwood 2,884.2 1,383.5 2,150.4 2,864.8 3,294.7

Roundwood Import 381.2 584.8 773.4 1,022.8 1,352.7

Fuelwood (M m3) 23.0 25.2 27.6 30.3 33.3


Subsidiary accounts

Lumber (‘000 m3) 844.7 508.5 655.6 846.7 1,095.0

Veneer 49.1 297.3 373.2 469.3 591.4


Plywood (‘000 m3) 400.1 287.0 347.4 420.5 509.0

Wood-Based Panels

Particle Board 17.0 40.0 48.4 58.6 70.9

Fiberboard

Rattan (M lm) 19.3 32.3 39.1 47.3 57.2

Large diameter 7.7 12.9 15.6 18.9 22.9

Small diameter 11.6 19.4 23.5 28.4 34.4

Bamboo (M culms) 32.4 35.9 39.6 43.6 48.1

The major sources of woodfuel and woody biomass for bioenergy in the
country can be classified into forestry and non-forestry sources. Forestry
sources include sustainable biomass harvests from natural forest,
logging and wood processing residues, and dedicated forest plantations.
Non-forestry sources include woody agricultural crop residues and
backyard trees (Elauria et al, 2003).
A research paper by Tolentino (2017) cited the study of Sarmiento and
Varela (2015) which came up with biomass estimates of various species
and age in different tree farms in Caraga, Mindanao, Philippines (Table
5). They used existing allometric equations of various species measuring
height and diameter. The study however did not mention spacing or
density and site characteristics or whether the measurements included
big branches and other tree components that can qualify as fuelwood.

Table __. Biomass estimated of various species and age in Mindanao (Sarmiento
& Varela 2015)

Biomass (Mg ha -1)


Tree Species
1 year 2 years 3 years 4 years 5 years
Acacia mangium 14.38 29.23 48.66 70.61 110.64
Paraserianthes falcataria 0.09 18.16 25.36 31.93 125.25
Leucaena leucocephala 8.21 38.13 56.61 70.41 77.36
Eucalyptus deglupta 0.14 5.76 23.96 40.00 58.20
An earlier study conducted by Elauria et al. in 2003 estimated the energy
production potential of forest biomass in the Philippines based on land
availability for biomass production. The study found out that based on
existing land use pattern in the country, only two land categories were
found suitable for plantation forestry: brushland and grassland. With 1997
as the base year for estimation, the total land area available from these
categories is 3.915 M ha.
Therefore, the total annual biomass production potential for energy in the
Philippines is in the range of 3.7 to 20.37 M t under the different scenarios.
Assuming the energy content of wood is 15 GJ t-1 , thus energy potential of
the produced biomass is 55.5 to 305. g GJ. Likewise, if 1 M t of woody
biomass can generate 1 TWh of electric power, then the annual electricity
generation potential also ranges from 3.7 to 30.37 TWh. Thus, given the
estimated demand for electricity in 2010 at 93.9 TWh, electricity generated
through bioenergy plantation could be in the range of 3% to 22% of the
country’s estimated demand for electricity.
DOE (2016) projects that the demand for biomass energy will continue to
increase in the next couple of decades along with other sources of energy.
The 2013 Philippine Master Plan for Climate Resilient Forestry
Development considered the demand and supply of fuelwood and charcoal
from various estimates between 1992 to 2001, the average per capita
consumption of fuelwood and charcoal ranges from 373 to 1,300 kg per
capita per year in rural areas, and about 140 to almost 700 kg per capita
per year in urban areas (Remedio, 2005). In the updating of the 2003
RMPFD, at least 400 kg per capita per year appears to be conservative
estimate. This is roughly equivalent to about 0.5 cubic meter per capita per
year of fuelwood. The estimates for charcoal per capita are highly variable
from the compilation of estimates. This means that with the population in
2010 of more than 92 million (NCSO, 2012), the estimated consumption of
fuelwood was about 46 million cubic meters. Bensel and Remedio (2002)
provided a higher estimate of wood fuel consumption with a total of more
than 57 million metric tons per year as shown in Table 9. This is equivalent
to at least 70 million cubic meters of wood per year. While FAO (1988), as
cited in the plan, estimated that the per capita consumption of fuelwood in
the country is around 0.566 m3 per year.

Woodfuel and other woody biomass have always been important traditional
sources of energy in the Philippines. Woodfuel accounts for the largest
share of biomass energy supply in the Philippines. Samson et al. (2001) as
cited by Tolentino (2017) reported that 56.1% represents the share of
woodfuel in the country’s biomass resources. According to the FAO 2010
report, the overall estimated woodfuel consumption in the Philippines is 25
million MT/annum, charcoal consumption at 2.7 million MT/annum (wood
equivalent of 16.2 million MT), and biomass residue consumption at 17
million MT/annum. This translates into 41.2 million MT/annum of
woodfuel (after converting charcoal to wood equivalent), and 57.2 million
MT of overall woodfuel and biomass fuel consumption.
Woodfuel demand includes the requirement of both households and
industries. Of the total demand 82% constitutes the household
consumption and the remaining 18% are from utilized for commercial and
industrial purposes. Domestic household demand for energy are mostly
intended for cooking needs, especially those in rural areas. Rural people
usually cut trees and gather fuelwood from the nearest area within close
access to their homes. Rural users generally collect rather than purchase
fuelwood (76 percent in the Philippines) thus large part of the consumption
are not monetized. However, there are also those that gather fuelwood and
sold as firewood or charcoal. Urban areas purchase wood-based fuel.
Charcoal are preferred than firewood in the urban areas.
Industrial fuel demand on the other hand, is partly used for steam power
generation and/or electricity for use in the factory or in nearby settlements.
Other industrial demand in rural-based enterprises includes those for
curing barns of tobacco: brick, ceramics and pot making; bakery; lime
production; tobacco processing, bakeries and, small scale food processing.

Table 9. Best estimates of biomass and woodfuel consumption in the Philippines.

Source: Bensel and Remedio, 2002


Technology and Processes
The technology to generate energy from wood has entered a new millennium, with virtually
limitless possibilities. As public and private sector support increases, the availability of small
modular biomass systems ranging from 3 kWe for homes to 5 MWe for large sawmills will
flourish.
Wood fuel has several environmental advantages over fossil fuel. The main advantage is that
wood is a renewable resource, offering a sustainable, dependable supply. Other advantages
include the fact that the amount of carbon dioxide (CO2) emitted during the burning process is
typically 90% less than when burning fossil fuel. Wood fuel contains minimal amounts of sulfur
and heavy metals. It is not a threat to acid rain pollution, and particulate emissions are
controllable.
The principle economic advantage of wood biomass energy is that wood is usually significantly
less expensive than competing fossil fuels.
Wood Combustion
Wood in a variety of forms, particularly green chips (45-50% MC on a wet basis), is shipped and
maintained at a holding site by the energy plant. Augers or belt conveyors transport the wood
chips to the combustor, where they are burned, and the heat of combustion is transferred to a
steam or hot water boiler. Steam is converted to electrical power by steam turbines. Excess steam
can be used in other plant processes for example in a kiln drier. Hot water boilers can provide
heat to a building through a piping distribution network.
Cogeneration
Cogeneration is the simultaneous production of heat and electricity, commonly called combined
heat and power (CHP), from a single fuel. Traditionally, a steam turbine is used to produce
electricity, although a wood gasification/internal combustion unit can also be cogeneration unit.
Several factors affect the economic feasibility of a CHP unit including wood waste disposal
problems, high electricity costs, and year-round steam use.
More electricity and heat are generated for a lesser amount of fuel by a CHP unit than by a
separate heat and power (SHP) unit. Common challenges for all wood-fired systems are ensuring
adequate fuel procurement and solving the complex fuel handling and storage issues.