September 2018, PARAMARIBO, SURINAME – GSD Innovations, LLC (GSD), has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Canadian mining company, IAMGOLD, to conduct a planning study and assess the commercial feasibility of jointly developing a proposed 1,350 hectare modern energy grass farm and up to 20 MW biomass-to-electricity power plant in Brokopondo District, Suriname.
The MOU was signed by Dorian Dickinson, Managing Partner of GSD and executives from IAMGOLD, along with executives from Kersten Holding and BSW Malaysia, both GSD partners in the project.
The project is a proposed collaboration project to provide a sustainable inside the fence energy to IAMGOLD operations, while taking the stress and pressure off of the overstressed Suriname energy grid.
It will utilize the geographical and resource advantages of the Brokopondo District and Amazon Rainforest, as well as capabilities from both Canada, United States, Malaysia and Suriname in research
and development, renewable energy development, public health, quality standards, rural development, international networks and management systems. The aim is to develop a high standard and internationally competitive biomass-to-energy model for the production of renewable energy for the global mining industry, all while generating local employment opportunities.
The Brokopondo District of Suriname is located 50 km south of the capitol city of Paramaribo. It is bounded by rural areas and the Amazon Rainforest, with a Savana soil that is crop resistant to many energy grasses. This is a project that can be expanded to the national and regional level with the introduction of the HTG Hi-Cross feedstock grass from BSW Malaysia. Development of modern agriculture practices and new crop introduction are two of the key priorities of this plan.
HTG Hi-Cross is a sterile hybrid energy grass that can be harvested several times per year and has an average growth rate of 1 meter per month. A test nursery planted in the area has proven growth rates, yield and calorific value of the crop in Suriname.
The project is envisaged to be a testbed for the implementation of biomass-to-electricity projects in the mining industry. The project seeks to modernize energy opportunities in the mining industry, improve the price paid for energy and livelihood of the local residents.
During the course of planning and feasibility study, the parties will jointly study how to apply the relevant successful management approaches and experiences from the development of bomass-to-energy systems over the past 40 years. Modern management and administration systems will also be introduced to the farm and power plant operations to upgrade productivity and value-creation.
The joint feasibility study and commercial discussions are expected to take six months to complete. The parties intend to proceed to jointly invest and develop the project when it is assessed to be commercially viable and based on mutually agreeable terms.