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JILIN, February 15, China Daily -- Great Resources Co Ltd, a biomass heating provider, expects to achieve 50 percent sales growth this year, and plans to set up a research center on the possible uses of straw, the company chairman said.

thumb Biomass Energy-2.16  Great Resources sees enormous biomass market

A worker handles the straw, collected from local farmers before drying and gasifying them to generate electricity through biomass technology in Hubei. LIANG XIANGBIN / XINHUA

The company, based in the northeast city of Jilin, mainly develops biomass heating systems for homes and commercial users. Most commonly used types of biomass for such energy include agricultural residues, urban and industrial waste.

Hong Hao, chairman of Great Resources, said the use of biomass for heating has clear advantages over fossil fuels, citing sustainability as an example.

Biomass heating technology, especially the use of straw, might have an "enormous market" in the future, Hong said.

Hong did not disclose the exact amount of investment in straw research center, neither the company's sales or revenue.

So far, nearly 20 households in the nation's northern provinces of Jilin, Shandong and Shaanxi have adopted Great Resources' heating technology. The total heating area has exceeded 1 million square meters, according to the company.

Its commercial users are usually hotels, industrial parks, and commercial nurseries.

Meanwhile, it has lowered its carbon footprint by the equivalent of 59,300 metric tons of carbon emissions, and 547.2 metric tons of sulfur dioxide emission.

In China, biomass has been drawing attention for its role as a reliable source of renewable heat in recent years. An efficient biomass industry would serve as an effective solution for climate change, said Cheng Xu, a professor of China Agricultural University.

Last December, the National Development and Reform Commission developed plan for renewable energy resources, which proposed that by 2020 the total heating amount supplied by biomass should be equal to that of 15 million metric tons of coal usage annually.

The policy was rolled out in line with China's latest endeavor to establish a low-carbon energy infrastructure and to develop the clean energy industry.

According to the 13th Five-Year Plan (2016-20) for Renewable Energy, the government will control greenhouse gas emission to help meet the commitment of allowing carbon dioxide emissions to peak at around 2030.

China has been taking steps to fulfill pledges made in the Paris climate change agreement of 2015 by promoting industrial upgrades and using more clean energy, said Xie Zhenhua, China special representative for climate change affairs in an earlier interview with China Daily.

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