Abdul Yakub (left) and Zaidell during the briefing.

MUKAH: Sarawak could be in the history books for being the first in the world to produce biogas from sago waste.

It all started with how to solve river pollution here arising from the disposal of sago waste by sago factories when Craun Research Sdn Bhd (Craun) made an unexpected breakthrough and came up with the production of biogas instead, from the sago wastes.

The breakthrough somehow, was seen as ‘killing two birds with one stone’, where on one hand, river pollution could be solved, and on the other hand, a new source of cheaper biogas could be produced.

Balingian assemblyman Abdul Yakub Arbi, in a Sarawak Public Communications Unit (Ukas) report on Tuesday (June 7), said the production of biogas project had been approved by the Sarawak government in March this year, and was currently undertaken by Craun.

“Biogas would become an alternative source of gas and cost much cheaper compared to the existing cylinder gas,” he said during a briefing on ‘People’s Project: Bionatural Gas Distribution For Rural Household’ with Craun chief executive officer Zaidell Hussaini in Kuching.

He revealed that CRAUN began production of biogas in 2018 following a continuous research since 2003.

He added for a start, biogas produced would be channelled for domestic use in Kampung Teh and Kampung Tabo areas here, in an effort to replace the use of conventional gas.

However, he said a study would be done to find better approaches of distribution of biogas to ensure its safety to households.

Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg launched the pilot liquid sago waste treatment plant in Kampung Teh about 10km from Mukah town on Nov 23 last year.

The plant was developed by Craun through a joint-venture effort with Nitsei Sago Indtustries Sdn Bhd of Japan, at a cost of about RM10 million including research and development (R&D).