WALNUT, Calif., April 7, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- VIASPACE Inc. (OTCQB: VSPC) today announced that VIASPACE and its Nicaraguan partners are forming a company in Nicaragua to own and operate the Giant King Grass plantation and co-located 12 MW power plant. The company is named "Energia Reino Verde" or in English "Green Kingdom Energy".
At the International Biomass Conference held in Orlando, Florida March 24-26, 2014, VIASPACE CEO, Dr. Carl Kukkonen, reported progress on the Nicaragua project in a special session dedicated to international projects. The 7th annual International Biomass Conference with more than 1,100 attendees featured workshops on Bioenergy Project Development and the Pellet Supply Chain, as well as tracks on biomass power, biogas, advanced biofuels and biobased chemicals, pellets and international projects. There were also more than 200 exhibitors.
According to Kukkonen's presentation, VIASPACE and Nicaraguan partner AGRICORP have signed a project development agreement. The 12 MW biomass power plant will be fueled by a 2,100 acre Giant King Grass plantation that is co-located with the Miramontes rice plantation which is located on and irrigated from Lake Nicaragua. Giant King Grass has been growing well there since 2012. Rice husks from the Miramontes rice mill will be a secondary fuel providing about 5% of the overall fuel requirement.
The project will generate 84,000,000 kWh of saleable electricity which will be transmitted on the national grid and sold both to the grid and to private customers. The project lifetime is 25 years. Meetings have been held with both debt and equity financiers. It is expected that 70% of the project cost will be covered by debt and 30% by equity. The prefeasibility study has been completed and the formal feasibility study process is underway.
Kukkonen reports, "The International Biomass Conference was very valuable. Many US and global biomass and green energy companies attended, and we were able to schedule meetings that otherwise would have required extensive travel. My presentation was very well received and several parties are interested in replicating our Nicaragua project in their countries. I met with potential partners and customers from the US, Europe, Mexico, Central and South America as well as Asia. I expect that new business will develop from this conference."
Kukkonen continued, "The Nicaragua project is our flagship. VIASPACE is playing the role of project co-developer as well as supplier of Giant King Grass. Many potential customers are following this project closely. VIASPACE's strategic goal is to assemble an engineering, construction and financing team that we can work with on this project and many others in the future."
Dr. Kevin Schewe, VIASPACE Board Chairman, commented, "The International Biomass Conference and Expo is the largest biomass conference in North America. The technical sessions contain the most comprehensive biomass presentations gathered from around the world. We are pleased that Dr. Kukkonen was invited to speak at the International Colloquium Bonus Session and give an update on our 2,100 acre Giant King Grass plantation and co-located 12MW power plant in Nicaragua. We used this forum to first announce "Energia Reino Verde" ("Green Kingdom Energy"), our new joint company formed to generate 84,000,000 kWh of saleable electricity to the Nicaraguan power grid and to private customers. As co-developer, VIASPACE both supplies Giant King Grass and is a partner in the sale of electricity. Another beauty of this project is our role to assemble an essential and efficient business development framework that can be replicated in the region and globally. VIASPACE is now very busy creating a widely diverse and robust international and domestic revenue pipeline using Giant King Grass as the continuously, renewable biomass platform for producing green electricity, advanced biofuels and animal feed."
Pictures from Nicaragua are posted on the VIASPACE Facebook page www.facebook.com/viaspaceinc. The presentation at the International Biomass Conference is posted on the VIASPACE website www.viaspace.com .
About VIASPACE Inc.
VIASPACE grows renewable Giant King™ Grass as a low-carbon fuel for clean electricity generation; for environmentally friendly energy pellets; and as a feedstock for bio-methane production and for green cellulosic biofuels, biochemicals and biomaterials. Giant King Grass is a proprietary, high yield, dedicated biomass energy crop. Giant King Grass when it is cut frequently at 4 to 5 feet tall is also excellent animal feed. The USDA granted approval for planting Giant King Grass throughout the US and cooperates in exporting by performing the required inspections and issuing the phytosanitary certificate needed for import into foreign countries. Giant King Grass is being grown in California, Arizona, Hawaii, St. Croix Virgin Islands, Nicaragua, South Africa, China, Myanmar and Pakistan. For more information, please go to 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 news release includes forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements 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 Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2013, and other factors over which VIASPACE has little or no control.
SOURCE VIASPACE Inc.