Sugarcane Renewable Electricity (SUCRE)

Lead country


Participating countries


Project status

Under implementation

Implementing period

From December 22, 2010 to June 30, 2020

SDGs addressed by this project

SDG targets

  1. 7.2 Increase share of global renewable energy
  2. 7.a Enhance cooperation for clean energy research, technology
  3. 9.4 Upgrade infrastructure, retrofit industries for sustainability

Project ID: 3515

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Technical team

  • Energy Programme

Technical area(s)

  • Renewable Energy
  • Energy efficiency


  • Type: Thermal
  • Resource: Waste (agriculture)
  • Resource: Biomass
  • Industrial
  • Agriculture/irrigation


  • Human altered areas


  • Industrial site

Transformed sector(s)

  • Energy

UNDP role(s)

  • Capacity development / Technical assistance
  • Convening / Partnerships / Knowledge Sharing
  • Institutional mechanism and system building


  • Technology innovation
  • Finance economy


  • Alternative energy sources
  • Innovations in techniques/ approaches
  • Energy finance

Social inclusion

  • Private sector

Gender equality


Gender result effectiveness scale

  • Gender blind


  • Sci-tech pathway

Risk reduction target(s)

  • Hazard control/mitigation

SDG target(s)

  • 7.2 Increase share of global renewable energy
  • 7.a Enhance cooperation for clean energy research, technology
  • 9.4 Upgrade infrastructure, retrofit industries for sustainability

Conventions and protocols


Private sector(s)

  • Sugarcane mills

Hot topic


About this project


The aim of the project is to avoid the CO2 emissions maximizing electric power generation in sugarcane mills using trash and bagasse as fuels, substituting the implementation of the corresponding power in thermal generation using fossil fuels (especially natural gas).Electric power will be generated in conventional systems (boiler/steam-turbine systems ÔÇô preferably 65 to 82 bar boiler and CEST ÔÇô condensing, extraction steam turbine) with the use of sugarcane trash as a supplementary fuel to bagasse, making possible with this extra fuel to have year round generation (season and off-season). Power purchase agreement will be considered, with the energy sold to the final consumer (what would be possible with year round generation), getting better prices for the electricity.The project will consider the study for a group of 10 sugarcane mills with the purpose of implementing the project in at least 3 mills, with very good perspectives that the technology will be replicated in the near future. The implementation of the project in this 3 mills will lead to a total of 240.000 t of CO2 displacement per year (using natural gas generation as baseline), when the mills reach 50% of the total trash recovery (considering average of 2 million tons of milled cane per implemented project mill).The project considers the study and implementation of the alternative of ÔÇ£whole material harvestingÔÇØ that considers the transport of trash with the cane in total. The equipment for this alternative permits also the operation in the ÔÇ£partial cleaningÔÇØ mode for particular situations, when it is necessary to leave some trash in the field for agronomic purposes. This can be performed just by adequate operation of the harvester, extracting part of the trash from the harvested material and leaving it in the field. The main difference in trash cost of the alternatives of ÔÇ£whole material harvestingÔÇØ and ÔÇ£partial cleaningÔÇØ (US$ 31.1 and US$ 13.7 per ton of trash - dry matter - respectively) is due to the greater amount of trash with the cane present in the first, which reduces significantly cane load density, increasing transport costs. The project has the proposition to solve or minimize this problem, reducing significantly trash cost for the whole material harvesting alternative. On the other hand, the ÔÇ£whole material harvestingÔÇØ alternative has higher recovery efficiency (66%) than the ÔÇ£partial cleaningÔÇØ alternative (50%), bringing therefore more trash to the mill. Besides that, partial cleaning has the disadvantage that in the cleaning process, the part of the trash that is removed and left in the field is the driest and easiest to separate, and that would be the best to be burned at the boilers. 69.The interesting point of these two options is that the field operations are almost the same as for actual sugarcane harvesting, with no specific operations for trash recovery. There is the need to adapt/modify the cane harvester to the condition of no cleaning or partial cleaning. The infield transport equipment and road truck fleet would be modified and its number increased with the purpose of transporting a greater material volume, but no significant change in operations timing, management, type of equipment and maintenance would occur. In summary, trash would be harvested with the cane. 70.The main investment in terms of trash recovery and processing would be performed at the mill site, where a dry cleaning station (for trash and mineral separation from cane) and a trash shredding equipment would be necessary.The project should provide the means for the development of new equipment that are not available today because no one is recovering trash in these systems (whole material harvesting or partial cleaning), actuating in several fronts to break technological and risk barriers


To create the conditions for sugar mills to increase the export of electricity generated by sugar cane trash and bagasse to the grid.

USD $15,800,000

Grant amount

USD $63,400,000

Leveraged amount (co-financing)


Source(s) of fund

Sources of fund


  • Global Environment Facility – Trust Fund ($15,800,000)

Implementing partner(s)


Project metrics

Related resources

Geospatial information

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Project reports and documentation



Sugarcane Renewable Electricity (SUCRE)