Viaspace releases update of 7 MW AD project in St. Croix
Viaspace Inc. has provided an update on the Tibbar Energy 7 MW anaerobic digestion power plant project on St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands. As reported by the St. Croix Source on April 19, 2013, Hugo Hodge, executive director of the Virgin Islands Water and Power Authority, stated that the authority was nearing a purchase agreement with Tibbar Energy, a proposed biomass electricity company on St. Croix. Hodge said that, in a few years, St. Croix will have 10 MW of electricity coming from industrial solar, 5 MW from net metering and 7 MW from Tibbar, for a total of 22 MW being produced by alternative sources. He estimated that at peak consumption, the St. Croix grid only needed 45 MW. That means the WAPA power plant would only need to supply an additional 23 MW.
Tibbar is continuing to plant its Giant King Grass nurseries, and plans to create a 1,000-plus acre plantation to fuel the 7 MW anaerobic digestion power plant. It is testing irrigation options and large scale planting procedures. "We have started to develop an impressive farming operation in preparation of our finalized power purchase agreement (PPA)" said Tibbar CEO Tania Tomyn. "We have purchased tractors and additional equipment. We are proud of our new farm staff and they are integral to the progress so far."
"As WAPA stated in the St. Croix Source article, there is a lot of work that goes into balancing Tibbar's base load power with WAPA's,” Tomyn continued. “Tibbar will be unlike intermittent wind and solar as we will produce continuous dispatchable power 24/7. Our computer system will be tied to WAPA's and will use the latest technology to efficiently work together."
Tibbar is also continuing its public education and awareness program on a variety of levels. For example, on April 17-18 , Tibbar sponsored and presented at the St. Croix Earth Day Eco-Fair. According to Tomyn and Farm Manager Bob Peets, "We educated hundreds of children from dozens of St. Croix schools about renewable energy. Tibbar was the major sponsor and we had a fantastic turn out teaching children about Giant King Grass and why bio-energy crops are part of our future."
"Giant King Grass is growing incredibly well in St. Croix and our partnership with Tibbar Energy is progressing nicely, said Viaspace Chairman Kevin Schewe. “The planned 7 MW anaerobic digestion power plant using Giant King Grass to create continuous, eco-friendly, carbon neutral, green electricity on St. Croix is already demonstrating intangible benefits of educating children about the merits of renewable green energy and has attracted tourists interested in green energy. We believe that using Giant King Grass as a continuously renewable biomass/bioenergy platform is the perfect green solution for the energy needs of tropical island nations and our partnership with Tibbar Energy can prove this concept on St. Croix in the very near future. This project paves the way for other island economies to model similar green electricity projects using Giant King Grass. Every day at Viaspace, we grow more excited about our future corporate role and place in the evolution of economically viable and successful green energy production."