Combustion turbine fueled by sugarcane-based bioethanol

Published on: 

A peak-load combustion turbine (CT) operating primarily on bioethanol in Saint-Pierre, Réunion Island, has been commissioned on 25 February 2019. The amount of the investment is approximately €60m.

Dedicated to the production of renewable energy, the CT works with two types of fuel: bioethanol (80%) from the distillation of sugarcane molasses, produced locally at the Rivière du Mât distillery, and diesel fuel (20%), which is needed to start the turbine.

The 41 MW combustion turbine starts in less than 7 minutes, it keeps up with consumption peaks. It facilitates the integration and management by the network of other sources of renewable energy, such as solar power.


Albioma has set up two thermal power plants located close to the sugar factories in Le Gol and Bois-Rouge. In addition, Albioma, the solar power leader in Overseas France, has a large photovoltaic park (27.8MW) on the island. Over the coming year, Albioma will be commissioning several plants with storage capabilities, including a plant on the Stade de l'Est (1.25MW), and 51 photovoltaic plants without storage capability on the roofs of the apartment buildings of SHLMR (a low-income housing rental company on Réunion Island).