Thursday, December 22, 2016

UK Biomethane Production Doubles in 1 Year in the UK

Advances in UK biomethane production during 2016 have been phenomenally good. Although many in the AD industry are concerned that the growth in 2017 and future years may be far lower, due to subsidy rate reductions and withdrawals.

Although there has been much talk of the UK anaerobic digestion industry being halted in its tracks in 2017, due to the rapidity and unpredictability, of the UK government's recent renewable energy subsidy reductions. Let us not forget to celebrate what has been achieved.

The UK now has almost 90 plants injecting green biomethane into the gas grid, double the number this time last year, according to a new report published by the Anaerobic Digestion and Bioresources Association (ADBA).

UK Biomethane production doubled in 2016 says ADBA

ADBA’s December 2016 Market Report investigates and explores the growth, developments and market changes in the AD industry to date. The report was launched yesterday [Thursday 8th  December] at the ADBA National Conference in Westminster.

The report shows that the total number of AD plants in live operation has risen from 424 a year ago to 540 today, giving the UK more capacity to recycle food waste, more sustainable farming and wastewater treatment, more low-carbon baseload electricity, and more green gas in our grid. AD has also already reduced UK greenhouse gas emissions by nearly 1 percent annually.

The growth has come despite policy uncertainty around the future of low carbon energy support, which ADBA warns is stifling future growth.

“In 2015 and 2016 green gas has gone mainstream, with biomethane now heating around 170,000 homes in the UK without the householder needing to do anything differently themselves, ” said Charlotte Morton, Chief Executive of ADBA. “Biomethane to the grid is a real success story for the Renewable Heat Incentive, and we look forward to the government setting out its plans for the next phase of the support scheme.”

Ms Morton added that incentives for renewable electricity are currently heavily restricted, which is a huge missed opportunity. However, with the right support, the biogas industry could deliver 250 MW of new generation capacity over the next two years – enough to add 10 percent to the UK’s tight winter 2018 capacity margin and bring benefits to farming, recycling, and the economy. The UK Governments Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) should therefore urgently address the Feed-in Tariff budget to boost investment in this vital infrastructure for reliable baseload power. via

The results of the UK-wide consultation process which went ahead this year (2016) have now been published, and in some areas, there is room for cautious optimism that a reasonable scheme which is both supportive of the AD and biomethane sectors, and of the sustainable use of biomass, may emerge.

What UK Government RHI subsidy policy becomes after the anticipated further changes to be made in 2017, is a hot topic for the UK AD plant industry. The future of anaerobic digestion is seen by many as being crucial to the continuation of AD Plant schemes across the nation. It comes at a time when the added advantages of production biomethane are being better appreciated, and uptake of the process to produce CNG (Compressed Renewable Natural Gas) is rising fast so the RHI Scheme will be central to most decisions whether to proceed with biomethane producing AD projects. via

The UK has not been the only country in which biomethane production has grown throughout 2016. The number of biomethane facilities has risen rapidly in the US as well, and the following example project is breaking ground this month:

Biomethane Installation Advances in the US

Carbon Cycle Energy Breaks Ground on $100-Million Biogas Facility in North Carolina

Nation's largest utility-scale biogas plant will turn agricultural and food waste into pipeline-grade biomethane for Duke Energy

The largest utility-scale biogas facility in the U.S., capable of transforming animal and food waste into enough clean energy to power 32,000 homes annually, will break ground on Dec. 15 near Warsaw, N.C.

The $100-million facility, located on 82 acres in southeastern North Carolina, is the first in a pipeline of large-scale anaerobic digestion and biogas treatment facilities planned by Carbon Cycle Energy (C2e), the renewable energy development company based in Boulder, Colo.

Upon completion in late 2017, the biogas facility, known as C2e Renewables NC, will process in excess of 750,000 tons of organic waste per year. It will produce enough fuel annually to generate approximately 290,000 MWH of electricity, far surpassing the capacity of any other standalone facility in the U.S., according to C2e CEO James Powell.

C2e has already signed contracts to supply 100 percent of the plant's output of biomethane to the utility giant Duke Energy and a second, unnamed Fortune 500 company.

At full capacity, the plant will generate 6,500 dekatherms of biomethane per day, equivalent to roughly 50,000 gallons of diesel fuel. Biogas (also called renewable natural gas) is a clean-burning, "carbon-neutral" alternative to fossil fuels.

"The sheer size of this project means that it will have a huge environmental impact both by addressing the major pollution problem caused by greenhouse gas emissions from decomposing food and animal waste and by producing an alternative to fossil fuels in commercially significant volumes," Powell said. via carbon-cycle-energy-breaks-ground-on-100-million-biogas-facility-in-north-carolina

Air Liquide to Build Landfill Gas Purification Plant in Walnut, Mississippi

French industrial gasses firm, Air Liquide, is to construct and operate a landfill gas (LFG) to renewable natural gas (RNG) purification plant in Walnut, Mississippi.

French industrial gasses firm, Air Liquide, is to construct and operate a landfill gas (LFG) to renewable natural gas (RNG) purification plant in Walnut, Mississippi.

The company said that the plant will enable the conversion of the methane emitted by waste into enough RNG to heat an estimated 4500 homes per year

The site, owned by the Northeast Mississippi Solid Waste Management Authority, is operated by the national solid waste company, Waste Connections, Inc and receives approximately 350,000 tons (317,500 tonnes) of waste per year.

Using Air Liquide's gas separation membrane technology, the plant will have the capability to purify the methane emitted by waste decay and make it suitable for use.

The plant is expected to break ground in Q1 of 2017 and has an initial production capacity of 1300 mmBTU/day, with plans to expand.

Air Liquide said that its purification modules are able to separate methane and carbon dioxide using an innovative process involving patented polymeric membranes manufactured by Air Liquide Advanced Separations (ALaS). This efficient system generates high-quality biomethane with methane content between 95% and 99%.

"The new biogas project will enable us to transform waste and unused energy resources into renewable, carbon-reducing energy for the community and surrounding cities,” commented Chet Benham, VP of Air Liquide Advanced Technologies U.S. LLC.

“Air Liquide is actively working to continue our growth in biogas purification plants in the U.S., and to provide clean energy for sustainable communities," he added. via hAir-liquide-to-build-landfill-gas-purification-plant-in-walnut-mississippi