Saturday, October 28, 2017

IADAB News Weekly - Edition 6: UK Renewable Heat Legislation Delayed Yet Again plus Biodegradable Fabric from AD

Date: 27 October 2017

This is Issue 6 of IADAB News Weekly where we summarise the most important news of the week in the fast developing Anaerobic Digestion and Biogas Industry, both in the UK and globally.

Alright, let’s get started…

Our News comes in a mixed bag for this week. 2 items of good news, but only after two stories of disappointment for the UK anaerobic digestion and biogas industry.


First there is the news from ADBA that further renewable heat legislation delay is now inevitable. The "Brexit Obsessed" politicians in Westminster appear to be willing to neglect chances of the UK meeting climate change targets, with there now being no legislation to reinstate the RHI until 2018.

Second, sadly an Anaerobic Digestion business went bankrupt this week. This happened when a planning inspector refused retrospective planning consent for an expansion of an anaerobic digestion facility and associated operations on a farm in West Sussex. It was all about the scale of the business being unacceptable to the local population in a quiet rural area of the county with poorly developed roads.

However, things are looking up for biogas production and utilisation at water utility company Severn Trent, where in our third article excerpt, they are bringing in a huge expansion of their use of electric vehicles. This is move is taking place in tandem with raising their production of renewable electricity from their increasing number of sewage sludge anaerobic digestion plants.

In our fourth excerpt there is surprising news that a new company is creating biodegradable fabric from methane-eating bacteria, and their methane is the direct product of AD/ biogas plants. What could be better news than that? This news must be very welcome in the week that the BBC's new "Blue Planet" series starts showing the fabulous diversity of life in the world's oceans, amid widespread alarm. The alarm comes from the extent to which the lives of so many sea-creatures are threatened by non-biodegradable plastics which are now everywhere in our seas.

Now scroll down and read the full article excerpts:

1. Renewable Heat Legislation Delay Threatens UK Climate Goals


The Chief Executive of the Anaerobic Digestion and; Bioresources Association (ADBA) has described the government’s decision to further delay the tabling of legislation to support renewable heat generation as ‘a significant threat to the UK’s ability to meet its climate goals’.

It was confirmed at the end of last week that the tabling of legislation to reform the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI), the government’s principal mechanism for incentivising the generation of renewable heat, will now not take place until the beginning of 2018.

The legislation was originally due to be voted on in the spring of 2017 but was delayed after the government called a snap general election.

It was then due to be introduced in the autumn, but has been delayed yet further due to the delay in re-establishing the Joint Committee on Statutory Instruments, a backlog in the legislative timetable following June’s general election, and a vast requirement for legislation related to Brexit.

The proposed RHI legislation would restore tariffs for the production of renewable heat to previously higher levels, facilitating the construction of anaerobic digestion (AD) plants that can produce renewable biogas, which can be upgraded to biomethane for injection into the gas grid.

Millions of pounds of investment in AD plants is currently on hold, waiting for clarity and certainty from government. via ABDA-News

2. West Sussex AD Business Goes Bust When Inspector Refuses Retrospective Consent for Anaerobic Digestion Plant Expansion 

A planning inspector has refused retrospective planning consent for an expansion of an anaerobic digestion (AD) facility and associated operations on a farm in West Sussex after she concluded that the adverse impacts of the scheme would not be outweighed by the benefits.

(c) Crouchland Biogas

A planning inspector has refused an appeal by Crouchland Biogas in West Sussex over the planning consent for its anaerobic digestion plant, biogas tank, lagoon and associated infrastructure.

The scale of the operation was held to contravene adopted local waste policies resisting the location of such development in the open countryside. It was harmful to the area’s character, highway safety and the living conditions of nearby residents, according to inspector Katie Peerless.

The local waste plan policy stated waste management facilities on unallocated sites would only be permitted provided they were small scale (no more than 20,000t/yr in rural areas.

However, the unauthorised use was processing 34,7555t/yr and had capacity for 75,000t/yr.

The inspector held this contravened the waste policy in scale terms alongside the fact the site was also five and 13 miles from the closest local and strategic lorry routes, respectively. The plant has since gone into administration, according to reports.

The plant opened in January 2010 and has produced about 106GWh since then. via EndsWasteandBioenergy

3. UK's Severn Trent Water Embraces Green Energy with Fleet of Fully Electric Vehicles 

Severn Trent Water has pledged to replace its 2,200 vans, cars and tankers with alternative fuel vehicles as soon as possible as the water and waste water company continues to embrace green energy.

(c) Severn Trent

The company is launching the drive to alternative fuels on its light commercial vehicle fleet and its first fully electric vans will hit the roads in November this year.

 Alongside the pledge to use alternative fuel vehicles, Severn Trent is also sector leader in renewable power and is on track to self-generate the equivalent of half of the energy it uses by 2020.

The company uses a combination of anaerobic digestion, solar power, small-scale hydro and wind turbines across its estate. “Generating green power is a key priority for us, and we’re looking forward to not only producing power for our treatment works but also for some of our vehicle fleet,” says Garfield.

Severn Trent has just completed its second food waste anaerobic digestion facility in Worcester and is currently building another, similar facility in Derby. Both sites take contaminated food waste and turn it into renewable gas which will contribute towards its 2020 target.

The company will be taking delivery of its first batch of four Nissan e-NV200 electric vans in November. The vehicles have a range of 106 miles and charge in just 30 minutes. via Business-East-Midlands

4. Biogas Plant Methane to be Used to Create Biodegradable Fabric

IADAB News Weekly Edition 6
The Mango Materials team near one of its test reactors. (c) Mango Materials

This startup is creating biodegradable fabric from methane-eating bacteria.

Humans have been employing worms to spin silk yarn for almost 5,000 years, so the idea that we can squeeze other natural fibers out of bacteria shouldn't be so strange.

But that actually wasn't the original intention of Mango Materials co-founder and CEO Molly Morse, who started her research with methane-eating critters as a graduate student at Stanford University.

Mango Materials is piloting its process using a series of test equipment and working out of a shipping container at a municipal wastewater treatment plant in Silicon Valley, collecting the biogas from an anaerobic digester at the site and forcing it into a substance that serves as the feedstock for the bacteria. via fabric-from-methane-eating-bacteria

5. The Practical Guide to AD by the Anaerobic Digestion and Bioresources Association

This is our final item, and it is included here for to the top number of social votes it has received for he last week's UK AD posts. The Practical Guide to AD is designed to guide you through every stage of your project.

(c) ADBA

The new and updated guide has been comprehensively reviewed by leading experts and now reflects current industry practice and changes to regulations and government policy and schemes. The second edition of the guide has now been published and is available to download (free for ADBA members) or purchasea pPrinted copy for £119 excl. VAT) via The Practical Guide to AD

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