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Industry/Commodity Profile

In response to the twin challenges of unstable supply and rising demand for energy, the
government has initiated programs to enhance its
energy security, adopt climate-resilient economic
development and help mitigate climate change. In
particular, it has realized the need to promote
renewable energy as an integral part of its long-
term energy plan. For instance, the Department
of Energy has set an ambitious target in 2011
projecting a 15.3 gigawatts of renewable power
capacity by 2030 (IRENA, 2017).

In 2016, the share of renewable energy was 24.2% of the country’s total power generation of
90,797 GWh with a measly 0.8% coming from biomass. It is worth noting that biomass fuel
consists mainly of agricultural and domestic wastes with negligible quantity coming from
forestry. Hence, there exists a great opportunity for the sector to assert its important role in
the country’s economic development, in general, and to its energy security, in particular
(Posadas, 2017).

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.

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.

Relevant Policies
Aside from the policies cited in Round Wood, Wood Biomass as Source for Energy is included
in the RA 9513 or the Renewable Energy Act of 2008 and DAO 2009-05-0008 or the
Implementing Rules and Regulations of RA 9513, particularly in Section 13, Section 16 and
Section 17, wherein incentives can be avail by developers and famers who engaged in the
plantation and development of biomass resources and processing.

Fiscal and non-fiscal incentives include Income Tax Holiday (ITH), Exemption from Duties on
RE Machinery, Equipment and Materials, Tax Exemption of Carbon Credits, Financial
Assistance Program, etc. While Incentives for Farmers Engaged in the Plantation of Biomass
Resources shall be entitled to duty-free importation and exemption from payment of value
added tax (VAT) on all types of agricultural inputs, equipment, and machinery within ten (10)
years from the effectivity of the Act, subject to verification by Department of Energy (DOE).

Soil and Site Requirements

The suitability of species to a given objective of management is usually gauged on an existing
selection criterion. The criteria are simply an enumeration of desirable traits that the species
should possess to qualify for the said objective of management. The matrix is a listing
intended for fuelwood plantation.
Table 1. Characteristics of Fuelwood Species according to Parameters (Carandang, 2004)
For species that can be regenerated naturally
Prolific seeder
Ability to coppice
Fast growing
Seeds early before rotation age

For species that can be regenerated artificially

Good availability of seeds
Ease of production of seedlings
Simple plantation establishment with low technical requirements
High survival rate

For either method of regeneration

High calorific content
Competes with host regenerations
Needs minimal cultural requirements
Resistant against pests and diseases
Fire resistant
Drought resistant
Easy to transport
Doesn’t emit obnoxious or toxic smoke/odor

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 2). 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 may qualify as fuelwood.

Table 2. 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 56.31 70.41 77.36
Eucalyptus deglupta 0.14 5.76 23.96 40.00 58.20

Comparative/Competitive Advantage
Based on the conducted FMB-DENR Regional Workshop in 2013, comparative advantage of
regions in providing forest ecosystems goods and services were captured. Focusing on
fuelwood: as to suitable agro-climate and markets of fuelwood, Regions1,2,3,4A,4B,5,6,7,12
ARMM were noted. While as to available extensive area of shrublands and grass land for
roundwood and fuelwood production, Regions 4A, 4B, 10,9, ARMM outstand others.
National Production

Roundwood and fuelwood production (1995-2015)

LOG Fuelwood/ Firewood
Year Grand Total Sawlog
Total PulpWood Poles & Piles Upland Charcoal
Veneer Log
2015 1,317 842 443 395 4 49 426
2014 1,551 1,103 631 465 6 42 407
2013 1,616 1,166 641 518 3 40 410
2012 1,354 862 742 116 4 59 433
2011 1,485 871 780 87 4 97 17
2010 982 557 580 35 4 66 359
2009 1,401 801 689 109 3 136 464
2008 1,510 815 474 338 3 85 610
2007 1,569 881 648 227 6 80 608
2006 1,562 1,035 538 472 25 77 415
2005 1,110 841 345 489 7 54 215
2004 934 768 410 355 3 38 128
2003 689 506 349 151 6 39 144
2002 541 403 288 106 9 28 110
2001 613 571 319 241 11 58 84
2000 912 800 384 400 16 33 79
1999 860 730 568 160 2 49 81
1998 690 634 546 82 6 34 22
1997 593 556 241 312 3 25 12
1996 804 771 400 365 6 33
1995 868 758 589 187 2 105 5

Source: 2016 Philippine Forestry Statistic, FMB.

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.

A study conducted by Elauria et al. in 2003 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. Hence, a total annual biomass production potential for energy
in the Philippines is in the range of 3.7 to 20.37 Mt. Assuming the energy content of wood
is 15 GJ t-1, 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, the annual electricity
generation potential also ranges from 3.7 to 30.37 TWh.

Processing and Utilization

The technology to generate energy from wood has entered a new millennium, with virtually
limitless possibilities. 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 following are common processes of using wood biomass into fuel or feedstock in a
biomass power plant:

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 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
Value/Supply Chain

Figure 2. Biomass utilization process in the Philippines (Dalusong, 2012)

Biomass resources have been in use for a variety of purposes since ages. The multiple uses
of biomass includes usage as a livestock or for meeting domestic and industrial thermal
requirements or for the generation of power to fulfill any electrical or mechanical needs. One
of the major issues, however, associated with the use of any biomass resources is its supply
chain management. The resource being bulky, voluminous and only seasonally available
creates serious hurdles in the reliable supply of the feedstock, regardless of its application.
Figure 2 reflected the biomass utilization processes in the country such as
biological/chemical conversion, gasification, and combustion/direct firing or co-firing.

Financial Analysis
C/o ate ley

Racelis Diomedes et al. Forest in Power Generation

FMB-DENR. Philippine Master Plan For Climate Resilient Forestry Development. 2013

Carandang Wilfredo et al. Artificial Forest Regeneration. 2004

Techline. Wood Biomass for Energy