Potential of Processing Bagasse and Bagasse Pellets from Western Kenya into Clean Sustainable Transport Fuel

  • E. O. Apunda University of Nairobi
  • B. E. Ndunda University of Nairobi
  • F. M. Mwazighe University of Nairobi
  • R. Kimilu University of Nairobi
  • P. Ochola Kenya Agricultural and Livestock Research Organization


Human activity increases with population growth, causing severe negative environmental and food security impacts. Uncontrolled human activity has resulted in alarming pollution, climate change, global warming, waste disposal and resource depletion notably fossil fuel. Carbon dioxide emissions directly affects climate change and hence global warming. Renewable biomass energy will be critical in the transportation, industrial and domestic sectors to limit global average temperature rise to 1.5°C below pre-industrial levels, since biomass fuel burns with a net zero increase in atmospheric CO2. The primary objective of this research was to investigate the combustion properties of sugarcane bagasse and bagasse pellets produced by the West Kenya Sugar Company and Power-spot Pellets Limited in western Kenya, as well as the feasibility of using the materials for the production of pyrolysis oil, a precursor raw material in the processing of clean green transport fuel. Sugarcane bagasse and bagasse pellets from West Kenya Sugar Company and Power-spot Pellets Limited were characterized for proximate, ultimate and calorific value properties using BS EN ISO/EN international standard methods. A fast pyrolysis experiment was also carried out using the two feed-stocks to determine their feasibility for generation of bio-oil. The results reveal that the biomasses may be utilized as solid fuel based on their heating properties and to produce bio-oil for clean green transport fuel through fast pyrolysis, with an experimental bio-oil yield of approximately 42 - 46%, hence a potential for minimizing global climate challenges. FT-IR analysis also indicates that bagasse pyrolysis oil contains chemicals which may be converted to clean green transport fuel or used to manufacture specialized chemical compounds.

How to Cite
Apunda, E. O., Ndunda, B. E., Mwazighe, F. M., Kimilu, R., & Ochola, P. (2022). Potential of Processing Bagasse and Bagasse Pellets from Western Kenya into Clean Sustainable Transport Fuel. East African Agricultural and Forestry Journal, 86(3 & 4), 20. Retrieved from https://www.kalro.org/www.eaafj.or.ke/index.php/path/article/view/577