The Agro EcoEnergy project in Bagamoyo is a wholly integrated agro industrial project that brings three distinctive areas into one big project of sugar and renewable energy production: Agriculture & infrastructure development. Industrial processing development. Community development. Bagamoyo has favourable environment for sugar production, with a tropical climate (6° south), annual rainfall of 970mm per year and soils on the flood plain along the Wami River with very good potential for cultivation.
Through the outgrower programme, people within the surrounding communities have shown strong interest in becoming outgrowers. Agro EcoEnergy envisages a society full of potentials and being able to utilize them for sustainable livelihoods. Agro EcoEnergy is currently planning that over 90% of its employees will live outside the project area in close connection with the surrounding communities. This with the intention to strengthen the economic and social development of those communities as well as reduce the negative impacts associated with in-farm housing within large plantations.
The Agro EcoEnergy project will enable the surrounding villages to be connected to the national grid. Power from the project will be a reliable source of renewable power delivered through the national grid operated by TANESCO.
The sugar mill will have a crushing capacity of 270 tonnes of cane per hour. This includes a 40% over capacity with respect to the estate’s cane. This provides a ready market for outgrower cane. The total amount of cane which can be processed per year will depend to a certain extent on the number of days without rain when the cane can be hauled from the fields. The factory is designed to maximize the utilization of the cane and extract as much sugar, ethanol and power as possible. To this end, the boiler is a high pressure boiler which allows the maximum amount of power possible to be obtained from the bagasse which is a renewable fuel. The excess power estimated to 100 000 MWh/year will be delivered to the national grid via TANESCO.
The surplus product from the sugar processing is molasses and this will be used to produce ethanol. The ethanol can be used a substitute for up to 10% of the gasoline in: cars, clean fuel for cooking, pharmaceuticals or for human consumption. The ethanol plant is sized so that some of the sugar production can be reduced in favour of more ethanol production. The boiler is also capable of burning other renewable fuels than bagasse such as woodchips or rice husks. This helps ensure that power can be delivered to the national grid all year long.
The Project aims to achieve competitive advantages by the application of solutions for sustainable agro-industrial production in a manner that aims to minimize Green House Gases (GHG). The techniques used include;
The water source for the project comes from Wami River with a 30 year water permit to sustain 12,000ha. A bulk water supply canal of 25km is designed to carry the water through the estate. There is Off-River storage dams planned to allow irrigation continuously even during the dry seasons while maintaining an environmental flow in the Wami. The design, evaluation and selection of contractors for the agriculture and infrastructure of the project has been done in cooperation with Agricane who are very experienced in developing large scale sugar cane projects of this nature in sub Saharan Africa.