Malaysia, in a progressive stride towards addressing environmental concerns, has launched the National Biomass Strategy Action Plan 2023-2030 (PTBN2030). The scheme, as outlined by Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Fadillah Yusof who also holds the portfolio of Minister of Plantation Industries and Commodities, is built on a dynamic ecosystem that integrates planning, regulation, and reassessment of the biomass sector along with supply and market demand considerations.
Biomass Sources and Expected Impact
The PTBN2030 has identified five sectors as primary biomass sources: plantations, forestry, agriculture, livestock, and fisheries. These sectors are estimated to generate an impressive 182 million metric tons of biomass annually, with close to 90% originating from plantation biomass industries. Fadillah Yusof anticipates that the action plan will draw Foreign Direct Investments (FDI) and Domestic Direct Investments (DDI) of RM3 billion into the biomass industry. This influx is projected to generate approximately 3,000 new job opportunities.
Aligning with Malaysia's Foundational Policies
The PTBN2030 resonates with three of the six pillars of Malaysia's MADANI foundational policy: sustainability, well-being, and benevolence. The plan embodies the economic circular concept, aiming to significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions. This initiative aligns with the 12th Malaysia Plan (RMK12), which underscores the importance of the biomass industry in enhancing export value.
Co-firing Projects and Biomass Hub Establishment
The strategy also encompasses the implementation of co-firing projects in power stations, a process that involves blending coal with biomass pellets. This innovative approach is set to contribute significantly to Malaysia's sustainable energy goal of achieving a 70% power generation energy mix by 2050. An additional component of the PTBN2030 is the proposed establishment of a Biomass Hub, intended to centralize and organize the collection of raw biomass materials. The government expects this strategic move to streamline the nation's biomass supply chain effectively.
In conclusion, the Malaysian government believes that with robust support from all stakeholders, the biomass sector will serve as a catalyst for the national economy. It is expected to create job opportunities, boost household income, particularly for small-scale farmers, and contribute significantly to the nation's sustainable energy agenda.