Tamayo presents biofuels paper in Malaysia
October 28, 2011

Dr. Jennifer P. Tamayo discusses the results of her paper “Second Generation Bioethanol from Gmelina arborea Wood Wastes” before fellow chemists at the International Conference on Chemical Research Applied to World Needs (CHEMRAWN XIX) held 27-29 September 2011 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

Organized by the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry, the conference emphasized the importance of finding solutions to the world’s energy problems using renewable resources. Around 100 participants from 22 countries attended the said conference.

According to Dr. Tamayo, “Many countries in the developing world are blessed with abundant biomass – like agricultural and forestry wastes – that can be used to make biofuels, the green and cheaper alternative to expensive and polluting fossil fuels”.

“An important type of biofuel is bioethanol which Philippine law requires oil companies to blend with gasoline. Because the global supply of bioethanol today mostly comes from important food crops such as sugarcane, cassava and corn, we need to explore other types of biomass for bioethanol production,” added Dr.Tamayo.

Dr. Tamayo studied the potential of wood wastes from Gmelina arborea, a fast-growing plantation species grown extensively throughout the country. She explained, “My experiment involved a series of processes where the wood wastes were converted into sugars which were then fermented into ethanol.”

“Using our specific procedures, we were able to convert 49% of the sugars into bioethanol. This yield is good enough, but we need to do follow-up studies to see if this can still be improved,” Dr. Tamayo concluded. (Rizalina K. Araral, 3 November 2011) #