IRVINE, Calif., Aug. 4 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- VIASPACE, Inc. (OTC Bulletin Board: VSPC), a clean energy company providing products and technology for renewable and alternative energy, is in discussions with potential customers in Asia and other regions seeking renewable and reliable sources of biomass for electric power generation.
Chief Executive Dr. Carl Kukkonen commented: "We have generated strong interest in Asia for Giant King Grass as a dedicated renewable energy crop for energy producers, including power companies that burn 100% biomass instead of coal or natural gas to generate electricity.
Biomass-fueled power plants are typically 10 megawatt (MW) to 30MW in power generating capacity. A 30MW power plant - that can provide electricity for more than 200,000 Chinese rural households - uses approximately 460 metric tons of biomass daily. At current prices of about $40-50 per ton for agricultural feedstock, a 30MW power plant uses about $20,000 worth of fuel each day, or more than $7.3 million a year. According to Kukkonen, biomass power plant operators typically look for 20-year fuel supply agreements with extension options.
Biomass power plants currently use agricultural waste and municipal solid waste for fuel. However, supplies of agricultural waste - including corn straw, wheat straw, rice straw and residuals from growing cotton - are seasonal, since harvests of those crops occur at different times, and the fuel quality of the waste varies with each crop. To reduce these operating and business risks associated with agricultural waste, operators of biomass power plants are seeking a dedicated energy crop, such as Giant King Grass, for at least 50% of their fuel needs.
The Chinese government is strongly encouraging growth of biomass power plants by offering substantial subsidies for using green energy sources and guaranteeing that all electricity generated from green sources will be purchased by the national power grid.
Kukkonen added: "We are excited about these recent business developments and the growing trend worldwide toward renewable energy. The potential for Giant King Grass as biomass for power plants is substantial in Asia as well as other regions of the world. Furthermore, Giant King Grass can also be used to make liquid biofuels, such as cellulosic ethanol, and green gasoline, which are collectively known as grassoline."
About VIASPACE Inc.
VIASPACE is a clean energy company providing products and technology for renewable and alternative energy that reduce or eliminate dependence on fossil and other high-pollutant energy sources. The Company provides raw material for cellulosic biofuels and develops and markets fuel cell cartridges, products and technology. VIASPACE subsidiary Direct Methanol Fuel Cell Corporation owns a portfolio of fuel cell patents licensed from Pasadena-based California Institute of Technology (Caltech), which manages NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, where the direct methanol fuel cell was invented. VIASPACE subsidiary Ionfinity has operations in security-related systems and technology for military, defense and commercial applications. VIASPACE also sells high-performance lithium-ion batteries and the BA-1000 battery health analyzer instrument. For more information, please see http://www.viaspace.com/ or contact Dr. Jan Vandersande, Director of Communications, at 800-517-8050 or IR@VIASPACE.com.
Safe Harbor Statement
Information in this press release and interview includes forward-looking statements which relate to future events or future performance and involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause our actual results, levels of activity, performance or achievements to be materially different from those expressed or implied by these forward-looking statements. Such factors include, without limitation, risks outlined in our periodic filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, including the Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2008, as well as general economic and business conditions; changes in demand for the Company's products; competition from larger companies; technological change; and other factors over which VIASPACE has little or no control.
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