Sarawak can emerge as among the world's largest oil producers and exporters if its mission to produce sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) using microalgae can be accomplished.
Sarawak Premier Tan Sri Abang Johari Tun Openg said the state has the capacity to provide a green fuel solution from a sustainable source using microalgae.
Sarawak has enough sunlight, a warm tropical climate, and an abundance of seawater that provides the right conditions to continuously farm the source of oil sustainably, he noted.
“We have plans to scale up the cultivation to 1,000 acres that can produce about 500,000 tonnes per annum of crude algae oil or renewable oil according to our scientists.
“This may mean we do not have to look for oil anymore offshore or onshore and we can have our ‘farmers’ grow oil more sustainably.
“We can be another Saudi Arabia,” he said when delivering the winding-up speech for his ministry at the Sarawak state assembly here today.
Abang Johari said currently two facilities are cultivating microalgae with different technologies in Sarawak.
He said the first facility, which used a solar platform, is a collaboration among Sarawak Energy, Sarawak Biodiversity Centre, Eneos Corporation, and Chitose Group from Japan at Sejingkat here.
“The other facility is employing the use of tanks and seawater. This is a collaboration between SEDC Energy and Petronas in Demak Laut.
“The commercialisation of algae has only just begun. We anticipate significant growth in this industry with the Chitose Group planning to expand the farm to 100 hectares in the next three years and to achieve 2,000 hectares by 2030 in Sarawak,” he added.
Source: BERNAMA News Agency