The generation of energy using renewable energy resources (RER) in the country began to be promoted as of 2008, in which regulations were published at the national level that promote its use, in response to the international obligations that Peru, as well as other countries took over.
Among the best-known RERs, we can mention solar, hydroelectric, and wind energy; however, there is also bioenergy, also known as biomass, which is one of the oldest RES used by man.
How is bioenergy produced?
Bioenergy is produced from the use of organic and industrial matter, which has been formed by biological or mechanical processes. Currently, it is used as an alternative energy source, considering that many countries in the world still depend on fossil fuels.
The different types of biomass are made up of an organic part, an inorganic part and water. During combustion, the organic part burns, while the inorganic part influences the combustion process and forms ash or solid residue.
It is obtained from:
- Agricultural waste generated by crop pruning
- Forest, urban, or agri-food waste
- Wood (most used).
Use of bioenergy
According to the Development Bank of Latin America (2015), through the extraction of this resource, both thermal energy and electrical energy can be obtained:
- Thermal Energy: For this, solid biomass is burned to produce heat and domestic hot water for various facilities, as well as the generation of cold.
- Electric Power: In these cases, solid biomass is burned on a large scale, in plants that are larger than 2MW, which receive biomass in the form of chips, pellets (agglomerates made from these remains) or sawdust, which are heated in steam generating boilers. This moves turbines that activate a generator, for the generation of electricity.
On the other hand, biofuels for vehicle transport can be produced by means of biomass. In this case, liquid fuels, ethanol for example, are mixed with fossil fuels to generate fuels such as biodiesel.
Bioenergy generation in Peru
Peru currently produces first-generation liquid biofuels (biodiesel) from the remains of food crops; and it also has resources to generate bioethanol through low-cost agricultural residues and wood.
However, the possibility of using this resource for large-scale electricity generation and thermal generation in homes has not been fully explored yet.