In July 2012, the Government of Japan introduced the “Feed-in Tariff (FIT) Program for Renewable Energy Use”. Currently, quite a few woody biomass power plants are under construction in various regions to take advantage of the FIT program. Unutilized forest biomass is expected to use for the fuel in the biomass power generation. However the supply cost, including cutting and transportation costs, of unutilized forest biomass is varied from the geological condition. Decision of the target supply cost depends on the transaction price of biomass at the power plant. The purpose of this study is to provide an information of feedstock cost on brake-even point of the biomass power generation. Electricity production cost of biomass power generation is estimated by establishment of cost estimation model. The feedstock cost on break-even point of biomass power generation in the scale range of 500 - 20,000 kW is estimated. These values may help the decision of the target supply cost of the biomass in the forest sector.
We have developed a novel rice straw collection system that incorporates compression-grinding method combined with lime treatment for use on rice farms. In this study, we determined the improvement in sugar yield by enzymatic saccharification and in resistance to biological decomposition by processing wet rice straw by using the proposed treatment method. Our proposed pretreatment method for rice straw successfully improved the sugar yield and resistance to biological decomposition. Pretreatment of rice straw by compression grinding combined with lime treatment can be conducted on the farm itself, immediately after harvest. Thus, incorporation of this method for the rice straw collection in bioethanol production may allow for the skipping of conventional drying step on farms and other pretreatment process performed for enzymatic saccharification in plants and for the effective utilization of previously abandoned difficult-to-dry wet biomass as feedstock in bioethanol production. Skipping of these steps would reduce the cost of ethanol production.