BIOSURF and EBCS kick-off meeting

In the frame of the BIOSURF project, the German Biogas Association – with the assistance of the European Biogas Association – organised a biomethane workshop in Nuremberg on 15th February in conjunction with the Biogas Convention 2016 (which took place in Nuremberg on 16-17 February).

The workshop was dedicated to Work Package 3 of the BIOSURF project, with focus on the administrative barriers hindering the cross-border trade with biomethane in Europe.

Representatives of national biomethane registries, national biogas associations, companies involved in biomethane production, certification and trade, companies supplying anaerobic digestion and biogas upgrading technologies attended the meeting.

The participants shared the view that there was an urgent need for enabling free movement of biomethane through the European natural gas network and supported the initiative formulated in Deliverable 3.2. of the BIOSURF project which included:

  • approaching the European Commission with the request to recognise the European natural gas network as a single logistical facility with the regard to biomethane distributed over the system (blended with natural gas),
  • organising a “non-typical” voluntary certification scheme under the provisional name: European Biomethane Certification Scheme (EBCS).

The participants expressed their readiness to cooperate actively on establishment of EBCS. There was an overall agreement the scheme should be based upon and developed in close collaboration with the existing national registries.

It was also underlined that the system of cross-border biomethane administration should facilitate international trade for all end uses of biomethane: fuel for transportation, electricity generation, heating and cooling.

Big attention was given to the question of how to transfer sustainability claims for biomethane consignments injected into the natural gas system with export destinations. The participants agreed that the verification and documentation of sustainability with regard to biomethane production (starting with the raw material supplies for anaerobic digestion) should be completed by the moment of the injection, while after injection the biomethane cannot be physically separated from natural gas. The mass balancing methodology offers the right tool for transferring the sustainability claims cross-border and excluding double-counting of biomethane. The sustainability verification carried out in the country of production should meet the requirements for sustainability characteristics in the consuming country.

The participants expressed readiness to support the future work aimed at preparing a workable solution for cross-border biomethane administration.

Source: Dr. Attila Kovács