Saturday, September 13, 2014

Biogas Market Grows Despite Uncertain Policies & Biomethane Inconsistencies


Paul Thompson, who is head of policy at the Renewable Energy Association (REA) has it right in his Guardian article "Renewables battle on in face of uncertain policies". Certainly, here in the UK the anaerobic digestion sector is seeing advances in AD plant scale and the sophistication of the technologies being installed which could only have been dreamed of even less than 5 years ago. Our readers might like to look at the Guardian article below:

Renewables battle on in face of uncertain policies - The Guardian

"Renewables battle on in face of uncertain policies: The Guardian
Paul Thompson, head of policy at the Renewable Energy Association (REA), says there's been increased entrepreneurial activity in biomass, bio-methane, anaerobic digestion and ground-source heat pumps. Solar PV is also starting to imagine life without ...and more »"
To find out more about "Renewables battle on in face of uncertain policies - The Guardian" and anaerobic digestion, click here

Nobody is suggesting that it isn't still a tough climate for renewable energy companies, suppliers, and green entrepreneurs. All credit to those companies who have sustained their businesses through tough times since the 2007/8 finacial crisis and can now begin to grow from a sound financial and product base. The race will now be on to achieve compliance with the targets for increased use of renewable energy sources, which in many cases were in place before the current UK political regime, have weathered it intact, and must continue to be complied with, if the UK as a nation expects others to follow with them, and after them.

One area in the Anaerobic Digestion Sector, which was largely a theoretical one but which is now growing rapidly in importance, is biogas upgarding and what is referred to as the production of biomethane, or natural gas/ CNG replacement. Success brings it own problems, and in this area a lack of consistent requirements from the operators of the existing national and regional gas networks is making life more difficult than it need be for the producers of biomethane.

That why it is cheering to read that International Energy Association members may get some help from an initiative by the IEA to improve consistency in the gas quality requirements and associated technical issues between the many gas distribution grid companies. The following article explains what is being done:

The biomethane market needs clear frame conditions for further growth - Phys.Org
"The biomethane market needs clear frame conditions for further growth. Biomethane as a substitute for the fossil energy carrier natural gas offers a variety of options and applications for a sustainable energy supply. Nevertheless, a consequent market penetration is still pending because of a lack of standardized and ..."
Finally, to end of this News Round-Up with a ground-breaking first commitment of its kind, we would like to highlight that still on the subject of biomethane, a major UK retail store has decided to back anaerobic digestion by buying the energy for its own use:

M&S buys into Biomethane Certification Scheme - Energy and Environmental Management (EAEM) Magazine

"Energy and Environmental Management (EAEM) Magazine: M&S buys into Biomethane Certification Scheme
The leading UK supermarket, Marks and Spencer plc, has bought the majority of Biomethane Certificates (BMCs) from the green gas produced at Future Biogas's new gas-to-grid anaerobic digestion plant near Doncaster. M&S is the first FTSE100 buyer to join ... M&S strikes landmark deal to buy biomethane certificates. Biomethane certification scheme wins M&S's backing as buyer - EPR Retail News (press release) news articles »"
This should help yet more potential biogas producers, who are still on the fence about investing in new biogas plants, to feel confident in the technology and the future market demand, which in our opinion will certainly continue to grow and should accelerate.

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