IRVINE, Calif., March 14, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- VIASPACE Inc. (OTC Bulletin Board: VSPC), and its subsidiary VIASPACE Green Energy Inc. (OTC Bulletin Board: VGREF) today provided a business update on recent bioenergy and pellet activities and opportunities in Asia for its proprietary dedicated energy crop Giant King™ Grass. On March 7, 2012, the company issued a similar update on Europe and the Americas.
CEO Dr. Carl Kukkonen reports "Asia represents a large potential market for Giant King Grass based bioenergy projects. On the pellet side --China has restricted the use of coal in small boilers and this has led to a new Chinese domestic demand for pellets. Additionally, a new law in Korea requires the use of biomass for electricity generation and this is leading to a market for pellets. Korean utilities and fuel traders are actively seeking sources of biomass pellets, and are co-investing in pellet projects. Southern China and Southeast Asia have ideal climates to grow Giant King Grass, and the transportation distances to customers in Asia are much shorter than distances to customers in Europe. This leads to very favorable economics for pellet projects. European pellet buyers are also active in soliciting pellet supply from Southeast Asia. VIASPACE is pursuing several pellet opportunities in Asia."
Malaysia, Thailand, Cambodia and the Philippines are actively promoting biomass power plants for electricity generation through government initiatives and feed in tariffs. A feed in tariff is a commitment from the government electrical grid to purchase biomass electricity at a specific price for a specified period of time. A feed in tariff is essentially a government guarantee to buy the electricity and this guarantee can be used to obtain equity and debt financing for the project.
Kukkonen traveled to Malaysia, Thailand and Myanmar in February where he met with current and potential partners for biomass electric power plants in these countries. Representatives from the Philippines and Malaysia flew to California in December to meet with us. In February, Kukkonen also met with representatives of Seema Energy who are developing a 90 MW biomass power plant in Thailand to be fueled by Giant King Grass. Kukkonen also met with Owl Energy, the power consulting company that conducted the feasibility study and developed the Request for Proposals for Engineering, Procurement and Construction (EPC) for the Seema Energy project in Thailand. Kukkonen met with one of the EPC firms to brief them on Giant King Grass as a dedicated energy crop.
Kukkonen continued, "In Bangkok, I met with our power plant partner DP CleanTech to discuss the range of potential projects around the world utilizing their exclusive boiler technology with Giant King Grass. DP CleanTech has built 27 biomass power plants over the last six years. Their expertise is in high-temperature high-pressure power plants using straws such as Giant King Grass as fuel."
"I also went to Myanmar (also known as Burma) to explore future business opportunities. The US currently has sanctions against Myanmar, but things are changing quickly. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton visited Myanmar in December and Senators John McCain and Mitch McConnell have recently traveled to Myanmar. Pro-democracy leader and Nobel Peace Prize laureate Aung San Suu Kyi is running for Parliament in the April 1 elections. The US has restored diplomatic relations with Myanmar and President Obama spoke well of Burma in his State of the Union address. If things continue to go forward, the sanctions will likely be removed and Myanmar will represent a significant business opportunity. After being closed for 50 years, Myanmar is anticipating very rapid development and electricity is an important part of their plan."
Finally, Kukkonen was invited to make a presentation at the 2nd Biomass & Pellets Update Asia Conference held in Bangkok on February 17, 2012. Other speakers were from Poyry Management Consulting of Finland and Singapore, Vyncke Energietechniek of Belgium, and pellet equipment manufacturers--Kahl from Germany, CPM from the US, Prodesa from Spain, and Muyang from China. Dr. Kukkonen's presentation "Giant King Grass for Bioenergy and Pellets" is available on the VIASPACE website at www.VIASPACE.com.
About VIASPACE Inc.
VIASPACE is a clean energy company providing products and technology for renewable and alternative energy that reduce or eliminate dependence on fossil and high-pollutant energy sources. Through its majority-owned subsidiary VIASPACE Green Energy Inc., the Company grows Giant King Grass as a low-carbon fuel for electricity generating power plants, for energy pellets, as a feedstock bio methane production and cellulosic biofuels, and for other low-carbon, renewable energy products. 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 any future results, levels of activity, performance or achievements 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, 2010, as well as general economic and business conditions; the ability to acquire and develop specific products and technologies; changes in consumer and business demand for the Company's products; competition from larger companies; changes in demand for alternative and clean energy; risks associated with international transactions; risks related to technological change; and other factors over which VIASPACE has little or no control.
SOURCE VIASPACE Inc.