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Biomethane industry in Europe and North America show impressive growth

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Biomethane industry in Europe and North America show impressive growth

In 2022, the biomethane industry boasts of an important increase in the number of facilities. With more than 1320 plants in Europe and almost 300 plants in the North America and many more in development, the main challenges are public education and high capital costs.

Source: BiogasWorld

According to the recent reports by EBA and BiogasWorld, the number of biomethane plants in Europe and North America is steadily growing. Biomethane or renewable natural gas, RNG, as this clean energy called in US and Canada, is being used more frequently to help countries to meet their clean energy goals.

While the interest in this technology is growing fast there are, of course, some challenges. The first one is the high costs of biomethane production. As an example, in Canada, according to BiogasWorld’s report (BiogasWorld, 2021) the CAPEX for agricultural plants in operation ranges from CAD$126 up to CAD$923 per tonne of organic waste (based on annual plant tonnage). For plants in development, the planned CAPEX is CAD$305 up to CAD$622.

The second challenge for the development of biomethane sector is the lack of public education and awareness. Many projects are opposed by the communities due to the lack of understanding of the technology and its benefits.

Solutions exist

What can be done to decrease project CAPEX?

On project level, the main best practices to reduce costs and increase the revenue include:

  • Economies of scale – plant sizing
  • Use of benchmarking as a tool to reduce costs
  • Process optimization through use of efficient equipment, feedstock review to boost biogas production, etc. preventative maintenance and AI
  • Use of collective negotiating power and sharing professional resources between plants

On industry level, the best practices to optimize project economics include:

  • Equipment/project standardization and creation of local industrial fabrication capabilities
  • Involvement of industry associations (consulting services, training, guidelines)
  • Long-term agreements with waste haulers or municipalities

For more tips and information on biomethane (RNG) project costs, download the BiogasWorld’s Report for reducing costs of anaerobic digestion.

What about public education?

As the industry is just developing, there are a lot of misconceptions and misunderstandings that is why we encourage to use trusted sources of information to educate yourself and your community.

To look for information and check out the resources prepared and published by different industry organizations, feel free to visit Industry Library at Biogas Community.

About BiogasWorld

BiogasWorld is a business generation network and project support platform, connecting the suppliers of products and services with project developers. BiogasWorld delivers services via BiogasWorld and Biogas Community  platforms.

For more information, please contact

Natalia Bourenane, General Manager, BiogasWorld natalia@biogasworld.com

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