Friday, May 11, 2018

Anaerobic Digestion in Ireland Encouraged by Biofuels Obligation Rate Rise


Anaerobic Digestion in Ireland will be one of the Biofuel resources encouraged by the Government's announced Irish Biofuels Obligation Rate Rise.

Ireland has followed EU targets set for increasing bio-energy production and use, by announcing a rise which will come into force at the start of 2019.

Ireland has a great largely untapped resource in its farms which could, and hopefully soon will, be raising their own efficiency, and improving their management of farm waste by installing their own biogas plants.

Recent developments in raw biogas upgrading equipment, to make pure methane (biomethane) of the same quality as the natural gas in national gas grids, also mean that it is easier than ever for farm biogas plants to purify their raw biogas.


Once anaerobic digestion plants upgrade and produce biomethane, they will be able to sell that energy in compressed form for use in transport fleets.

What makes this a remarkable win-win situation, is that using methane as a transport fuel reduces air-pollution at the same time. methane is a clean burning fuel with vastly reduced emissions of the sort produced by diesel and petrol fuels.

IrBEA Welcomes Government’s Biofuel Blend Increase to 10%

Press Release: 10th April 2018
Statement from Irish Bioenergy Association

The Irish Bioenergy Association (IrBEA) welcomes the Government’s announcement that the biofuels obligation rate will increase from 8% to 10% from January 1st 2019. The decision was taken this week by Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment, Denis Naughten.

IrBEA responded to the open consultation on the BOS in January 2018 recommending and supporting the proposed increase.

Ger Devlin (IrBEA CEO) stated: “Biofuels represent nearly all of the carbon emission reductions achieved by Ireland in the transport sector in the last decade. Their continued use during the infrastructural transition to electric vehicles and renewable generated electricity is crucial if we are to reach our climate targets for 2030 and 2050. The new blend rate will now displace c.600 000 tonnes of CO2 annually.”

The International Energy Agency (IEA) forecasts that biofuels will need to make up a third of the world’s total transport energy by 2050 if the Paris climate targets are to be met, making them as important as electromobility and efficiency in decarbonising transport the transport sector.

IrBEA supports sustainably produced EU biofuels with low iLUC impacts such as conventional bioethanol and biodiesel (the main biofuels used in Ireland today).

Sustainably produced biofuels are an important part of the global bioeconomy revolution. As a world leader in agriculture, Ireland is ideally positioned to benefit from growth in the bioeconomy. The Irish government should continue to implement policies – such as the biofuels obligation – that support the sector.

James Cogan, Head of the Biofuels Transport Group within IrBEA, said:

“Europe has been dithering over transport climate action for the last decade but the climate problem hasn’t gone away.  Indeed transport carbon emissions have grown in the period.  In raising the biofuels obligation Ireland is grabbing the bull by the horns. Conventional EU sourced biofuels and biogas are safe, effective, economical and scaleable, and they act as an anchor for bioeconomy innovation and investment. The next decade has to be about confidence, progress and growth.”

With over 200 members, IrBEA is the national association representing the bioenergy industry on the island of Ireland. The main objectives of the association are to influence policy makers, to promote the development of bioenergy and to promote the interests of its members.

Improving public awareness, networking and information sharing and liaising with similar interest groups are other key areas of work in promoting biomass as an environmental, economic and socially-sustainable energy resource. www.irbea.org and www.bioenergyfutureireland.com

In the following paragraphs er have provided a two additional perspectives on the rise in the biofuels obligation Ireland:

Ireland ups biofuel obligations


April 20, Ireland’s Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment published a policy statement confirming its intention to increase the biofuel obligation to 10% from 1 January 2019 and to 11% in 2020. Ireland’s Biofuels Obligation Scheme requires suppliers of road transport fuel to ensure a certain proportion of the fuel that they place on the market is biofuel. … via Ireland ups biofuel obligations (corrected)

Ireland increases crop-based biofuel transport share, provides ‘business certainty’ 

Ireland’s environment ministry has decided to increase the crop-based biofuel share in transport to 10% from the existing 8% and draw a 2030 plan aiming to provide long-term business certainty in the field.

Irish Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment, Denis Naughten published a draft order, according to which the biofuel obligation rate to 10% (by volume) will be increased from 1 January 2019.

The minister also proposed a long-term plan for the Biofuels Obligation Scheme, which was set up in 2010.

The scheme sets out an obligation for suppliers of road transport fuels to include a certain percentage of environmentally sustainable biofuels across their general fuel mix.

The “biofuel obligation rate” was initially set at 4% and has gradually increased to the current rate of 8% (by volume).

“The Biofuels Obligation Scheme is a vital policy measure that increases the use of renewable energy and decreases emissions in the transport sector. Today I have published a Policy Statement setting out the increased level of obligation and future development of the scheme to 2030 and beyond,” the minister said in a statement.

He added that the scheme currently contributes an estimated 450,000 tonnes in carbon emission reductions each year towards Ireland’s national targets.

“The changes I have announced today will increase this contribution to over 600,000 tonnes annually,” he emphasised.

The ministry’s proposals were warmly welcomed as “rational” by Irish farmers, because crop-based biofuels “have up to 70% less GHG (greenhouse gas) emissions than fossil fuels, reduce dependence on imports from outside the EU and provide a much-needed boost to EU arable farmers”.

However, they warned that the government should now take action at EU level and prevent the European Commission from gradually phasing-out first-generation biofuels. via Irelandbiofueltransport


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