Sugar cane potential in Africa

In South Africa, the potential for biofuels production is enormous when one takes into account the country’s current production of sugarcane, compared to other countries in Africa where such projects are underway. South Africa’s sugar production is estimated at 2,4 million tons, and this translates to approximately 20 million tons of sugarcane and potentially 1,6 billion litres of ethanol. However, in hindsight, from South Africa total production of 2,4 million tons of sugar, roughly 55% of it is consumed locally and in neighbouring countries within the SADC region.

 

Take note

  • Sugar cane is an ideal crop for the production of biofuel - ethanol.
  • There is a tension between land-use for fuel and land-use for food.
  • In South Africa, clear policy must precede any massive investment in biofuel production.

 

Published as:

Sugar industry diversifying into fuel and power

By R Orendo Smith, Frost & Sullivan

Electricity+Control, July 2012 (pgs 50 – 51)