Waste to Bioenergy Africa: Harnessing the Potential
Waste to Bioenergy Africa: Harnessing the Potential

Tuesday, 26 Sept. 2017

AEBIOM, with the support of the Africa-EU Renewable Energy Cooperation Programme (RECP), organised a free information event focusing on biomass residues and waste in Africa at ExpoBiomasa, the biennial fair in Valladolid, Spain organised with the support of La Asociación Española de Valorización Energética de la Biomasa (AVEBIOM).

Held on September 26th, the one-day interactive information event kicked off the four day ExpoBiomasa that gathers the industry’s leading biomass business professionals—including machinery suppliers, manufacturers, distributors, engineers, and other players—offering the perfect opportunity for any and all interested bioenergy stakeholders to learn the opportunities Africa’s abundant biomass resources offer. Gain insight into the developing markets, learn from the expertise of companies active in the continent, as well as network with other professionals seeking and pursuing similar endeavours.

The information event featured an overview of the RECP services and its Finance Catalyst that assist in the fostering and support of collaborative projects between European and African bioenergy business partners—from project planning to financing. Representatives of national bioenergy associations will also highlight the areas of growth and development in renewable sources within the private sector that benefit local access to energy through utilising waste and residues. European companies with experience working in Africa also highlighted the optimal areas for joint ventures, showcasing their expertise, success, and room for possible collaboration.


Welcome & Moderation Dr. Rainer Janssen, Managing Director Projects, WIP Renewable Energies
Opportunities for Renewable Energy Projects in Africa. Niklas Hayek, Project Manager, Africa-EU Renewable Energy Cooperation Programme (RECP). See presentation PDF
COFIDES: Innovative Financing for Energy Projects . Raúl Moreno, Impact Development Manager/Division for Financing for Development and European Affairs, Compañía Española de Financiación del Desarrollo (COFIDES) . See presentation PDF
Ecovisão Experience and Future Expectations. Maria João Martins, Member of the Board, Ecovisão. See presentation PDF
Waste No More? Emerging Bio-Energy Business Models in Rwanda. Dr.-Ing Peggy Mischke, Managing Director, EconergyPM - Clean Energy Expertise. See presentation PDF
Mandulis Energy - Disruptive Innovation Unlocking Africa’s Biomass Energy Future. Peter Nyeko, Co-founder & Managing Director, Mandulis Energy. See presentation PDF
Decentralised Power Generation From Biomass: Our Experience in Africa. Pol Arranz-Piera, Projects Director, Trama TecnoAmbiental (TTA). See presentation PDF
South Africa Biogas Industry Overview. Horst Unterlechner, Director, IBERT & Treasurer, Southern African Biogas Association (SABIA). See presentation PDF
Blackwood Technology – Torrefaction Project in South Africa. Alex Adell Arnuelos, Co-founder & Consultant, Blackwood Technology. See presentation PDF


  • Dr. Rainer Janssen. Managing Director Projects, WIP Renewable Energies

    Dr. Rainer Janssen is Managing Director Projects at WIP Renewable Energies and Senior Expert in Biomass. He specialises in the production, distribution and market penetration of biomass energy (solid biomass, biogas) and biofuels for transport (bioethanol, biodiesel, vegetable oil) with special emphasis on innovative technologies, research and innovation policies, market research, public awareness as well as the development of supportive framework conditions and policy regulations in the EU and emerging and developing economies. He graduated in Physics (Dr. rer.nat.) at the Technical University of Munich, Walter Schottky Institute, Germany and performed studies at the University of Toronto, Canada. Dr. Janssen coordinated a variety of international and European bioenergy projects and is invited expert for the European Commission (DG RTD, DG ENER), IEA (International Energy Agency) Bioenergy, and GIZ (German Development Cooperation). Since 2009, he is member of the Steering Committee of the RHC ETIP (European Technology & Innovation Platform on Renewable Heating and Cooling) and currently serves as Vice-President and Chair of the Biomass Technology Panel. Dr. Janssen is member of working group 4 on “Policy and Sustainability” of ETIP Bioenergy. In 2014, he participated in the expert Working Group for the elaboration of the SET-Plan Integrated Roadmap on behalf of the RHC ETIP. Finally, since 2012 Dr. Janssen is biomass expert for the GIZ on national and international developments in the area of biomass and biofuels and Vice-President of EUREC, the Association of European Renewable Energy Research Centres.

  • Niklas Hayek. Project Manager, EUEI PDF

    Niklas Hayek is a project manager at EU Energy Initiative Partnership Dialogue Facility (EUEI PDF). He is responsible for the coordination and implementation of innovation & skills development activities in the Africa-EU Renewable Energy Cooperation Programme (RECP), including support to universities and training institutions as well as the implementation of scientific events. Furthermore, he coordinates RECP activities on private sector cooperation and investment mobilization in Zambia. Niklas holds Master’s degrees in Environment & Development from the University of Edinburgh, UK and in Environmental Engineering & Biotechnology from the Management Center Innsbruck, Austria. Prior to joining the EUEI PDF, Niklas worked for various international firms and organisations in the fields of environmental engineering and renewable energy in Austria, Tunisia and Bolivia.

  • Raúl Moreno. COFIDES

    Compañía Española de Financiación del Desarrollo (COFIDES), a joint state and privately owned company that provides cost-effective, medium and long-term financial support for viable private investment projects in foreign countries where there is a Spanish interest.

  • Maria João Martins Board Member, Ecovisão

    Maria João Martins has more than 18 years of experience in the environmental field, environmental technologies, water, wastewater and waste management, renewable energy and climate change, with work developed in Portugal, Angola, Mozambique, Cape Verde and Sao Tome and Principe. Since 2006, Maria is member of the board of directors of Ecovisão and later she contributed largely to open delegations in some of the territories where Ecovisão has a stronger presence, namely in Angola, Cape Verde and Mozambique. Maria has lot of experience in strategic coordination, general management of companies and environmental projects technical coordination, including projects financed by multilateral and bilateral financial entities. Highlight two ongoing projects, both prepared and submitted under the Fast Start Portuguese Funding Program: "Bioenergy in São Tomé and Príncipe - Biogas Energy Recovery” and "Roadmap Waste in Cape Verde”, financed the Portuguese Carbon Fund and the Camões Institute. In the development of its scientific activity, publications and publications in congresses, she participated as a speaker, in national and international conferences and seminars in the area of environment, biotechnology and climate change, in particular COP XXI in Paris and COP XXII in Marrakesh.

  • Dr.-Ing. Peggy Mischke. Managing Director, EconergyPM – Clean Energy Expertise

    Dr.-Ing. Peggy Mischke is a renewable energy and energy efficiency engineer and project manager, based in Copenhagen, Denmark. She draws on 15 years of clean energy expertise from 15+ countries globally, with in-country residence stays in China, USA, Denmark, Germany and Mali. She held team and project leadership positions in the World Bank, the German bilateral collaboration GIZ and the Sino-Danish energy research collaboration. She successfully planned, enabled and implemented 45+ renewable energy and energy efficiency projects with a portfolio value of 1.5 billion US$. Dr.-Ing. Peggy Mischke is a recognized expert in identifying, communicating and implementing solutions for cross-disciplinary, fast-paced and multi-stakeholder clean energy initiatives at global, regional and local scale. Her work received several prizes and merit-based scholarships, including the World Bank Africa Region Vice Presidency Award for team leadership in structuring one of the first multi-donor renewable energy scale-up programmes under the Climate Investment Funds. Dr.-Ing. Peggy Mischke published a number of books, peer-reviewed academic articles and UN reports with a focus on clean-tech applications in emerging markets and contributed in the development of several energy and power system optimisation models. She builds on a solid power planning and environmental engineering education from the Technical University of Denmark and the Hamburg University of Applied Sciences, Germany. She is the founder and managing director of EconergyPM –Clean Energy Expertise and provides lean, flexible and high-quality analytical and advisory services on all aspects of renewable energy and energy efficiency business development, project finance, monitoring & evaluation and technical training with a focus on Germany, Denmark, China and Africa. More information is available here: www.peggymischke.com.

  • Peter Nyeko Co-founder & Managing Director, Mandulis Energy

    Over the past decade, Mr. Nyeko has built unique technological expertise and gained entrepreneurial experience in developing and emerging markets. As a multidisciplinary self-starter with proven leadership skills, he actively engages across both the non-profit and commercial sectors. Mr. Nyeko founded Mandulis Energy Limited to tackle the problem of rural access to affordable clean energy by delivering sustainable, ‘green’ electricity to base-of-the-pyramid consumers in off-grid areas. Mandulis Energy develops renewable energy projects in emerging markets, using biomass to provide a scalable, integrated, zero-waste solution, to energy security, food security, climate resilience and poverty alleviation that can be replicated across the developing world in countries with similar fundamentals. He is leading Mandulis Energy's development of the 20MWe Earth Energy project, which is supported by KfW, Power Africa, and AfDB-SEFA among others, and will be the largest grid connected Biomass Gasification project in Africa. Mandulis Energy has also partnered with 24,000 farmers, on the High Impact REPARLE project, developing 8MWe off-grid across rural Uganda, focused on Biomass Energy Powering Agriculture, and Rural Livelihoods Enhancement. Mr. Nyeko, a Fellow of the Laudato Si Challenge, is fluent in French, English and Arabic, and is a postgraduate Aerospace Engineer and Technology Management Engineer, educated at the Universities of Bristol, Cranfield, and the West of England, in the UK.

  • Pol Arranz-Piera. Projects Director, Trama TecnoAmbiental (TTA)

    Mr. Arranz-Piera has over 17 years’ experience in renewable energy engineering and consultancy projects. His affiliations include:

    • Official College of Industrial Engineers of Catalonia, Spain – chartered engineer 14041
    • Energy Access Practitioner Network - Sustainable Energy for All Initiative, UN Foundation
    • European Technology Platform Renewable Heating and Cooling – Member of the Biomass Panel
    • Biomass Cluster of Catalonia – Coordinator of the Communications, Policy and Training commission
    • Spanish Association for the Internationalisation and Innovation of Solar Companies

    Since 2002 he has been working for Trama TecnoAmbiental, a private Spanish firm where he currently serves as Projects Director, dealing with projects in the field of rural electrification based on renewable energy, sustainable energy service schemes, policy and regulatory analysis, stand-alone PV systems, microgrids, public lighting applications, grid-connected PV systems, including management, communication and dissemination aspects. Since 2010 he collaborates as an associated researcher and lecturer in Sustainable Energy within the Research Group on Engineering sciences and Global development and the Institute for Sustainability at the Technical University of Catalonia (UPC). His teaching and research focuses on the planning, policies and application of distributed energy generation solutions, minigrid electricity services, and biomass to electricity solutions. He has lectured at different Universities in Europe, South America and Africa, and regularly prepares specialized papers for journals as well as contributions to congresses and conferences (EUBCE, ISES, PVSEC, INTERSOLAR, HOMER Microgrids, ESMAP events). Mr Arranz-Piera has worked in off grid minigrids since 2004 in Perú, Ecuador, Nicaragua, Ivory Coast, Costa Rica, Paraguay, Morocco, Guinea Bissau, Burkina Faso, Sierra Leone, Kenya, and is currently supervising the World Bank GEDAP pilot minigrid project in Ghana.

  • Horst Unterlechner .Technical Director, Ibert

    Horst Unterlechner is the Technical Director at Ibertand serves on the Steering Committee of the Southern African Biogas Industry Association (SABIA).

  • Alex Adell Arnuelos. Co-founder & Consultant, Blackwood Technology.

    Alex Adell Arnuelos is co-founder of Blackwood Technology, a technology provider of torrefaction systems. Alex has more than 12 years of experience in the fields of pre-treatment and energy use of biomass. Before Blackwood he was a member of the engineering and technology team of Topell Energy, which built and operated the first industrial scale torrefaction plant. He started his career in biomass at ECN, the Dutch energy research centre.

This was an event to showcase opportunities in African biomass and how the RECP Finance Catalyst assists project collaborations. Learn more about fast-developing markets, meet potential business partners, and hear the expertise of companies active on the continent.