VIASPACE Press Release
Harmony Gold Mining Company CEO Announces Giant King Grass Bioenergy Project in South Africa with Harmony?s Fourth-Quarter Results
September 15, 2014 - Walnut, California - VIASPACE Inc. (OTC: VSPC) today reported more details on the Giant King Grass bioenergy project being pursued by Harmony Gold Mining Company Limited of South Africa. Below is an article by Chantelle Kotze in the Mining Weekly, which is available at http://www.miningweekly.com/article/r47-million-bio-energy-project-under-development-by-harmony-2014-08-22.
“Gold miner Harmony Gold is implementing a R47-million bioenergy pilot-scale project involving the growing of bio crops, namely giant king grass and sugarbeet, on mine-impacted land and tailings in the Free State.
The project aims to simultaneously rehabilitate the impacted land in a bid to clean up the land and return it to an agricultural state.
Speaking at Harmony Gold’s fourth- quarter results presentation, held in Johannesburg earlier this month, CEO Graham Briggs said that, while renewable-energy applications in mining were not new, combining renewables with bioenergy and land rehabilitation was and that was what made this project unique.
The bio crops will be used as feedstock to generate natural gas. The natural gas will then be used as a substitute for fossil fuels in the company’s Harmony 1 metallurgical plant, where it will be burnt in place of polyfuel in the gold elution circuits.
As part of this process, Harmony Gold will also convert its electrical and polyfuel methods of heating the water needed in the elution process to biogas heating.
Phase 1 of the project aims to deliver 71 000 GJ within the first 18 months, with production being ramped up to 187 000 GJ within the first 36 months.
‘This project aims to turn mine-impacted land to account by creating a value-added use for it and, in so doing, promote skills development and job creation for communities and ensure a sustainable legacy in the Free State,’ said Briggs.
One of the main benefits of this project, as noted by Briggs, is the reduction in the mine’s carbon footprint, which can, in turn, reduce carbon taxes that the mine may potentially incur.”
Harmony is the third largest gold mining company in South Africa, and the 5th largest gold producer in the world. Harmony is a publicly listed company on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange, the Berlin Stock Exchange, and the New York Stock Exchange.
VIASPACE is working with Harmony and Selectra, a pioneer in the biogas industry in South Africa on this project.
VIASPACE CEO, Dr. Carl Kukkonen, stated, “This project has demonstrated that Giant King Grass can grow in a very difficult and contaminated environment with no organic matter in the ground We believe that Giant King Grass can be used to remediate a wide range of contaminated soil and to make it productive. This is another business opportunity for VIASPACE. The Giant King Grass grown on this particular contaminated land may be contaminated itself, so it is not suitable for animal feed or burning which may put the contaminants into the atmosphere. However, anaerobic digestion is perfect because it produces clean biogas and the contaminants are collected in the digestate. We welcome others interested in biological remediation to contact VIASPACE.”
VIASPACE Chairman, Dr. Kevin Schewe, commented, “We are in good company with Harmony and Selectra in South Africa. The potential commercial applications for Giant King Grass now include the dual purpose of remediating contaminated soil to produce biomass energy, biomass electricity production by anaerobic digestion or direct combustion, pellets to co-fire with coal to reduce carbon dioxide emissions, production of biofuels and using GKG for animal feed. This is truly an exciting time for VIASPACE and its shareholders as we simultaneously build multiple lines of business and proceed to commercialize Giant King Grass on a global basis.”
Pictures of Giant King Grass growing on the Harmony land in South Africa are available on the VIASPACE Facebook page www.facebook.com/viaspaceinc.
About VIASPACE Inc.
VIASPACE grows renewable Giant KingTM 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 9 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, Pakistan, Guyana and Jamaica. 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.
Selectra, established in 1987, is one of the pioneers of the biogas industry in South Africa.
Selectra utilizes the expertise of experienced biologists and engineers, to offer the design, development and implementation of sustainable solutions in the waste, energy and water sectors globally, to clients in agriculture, industry, mining and infrastructure. For more information see the Selectra website http://www.selectra.co.za or contact Dwight Rosslee at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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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.