The European Commission highlights in a study the potential of biogas and biomethane production in the European Union

“Optimal use of biogas from waste streams. An assessment of the potential of biogas from digestion in the EU beyond 2020” is the new study published on 19 April by the European Commission.

It was prepared as joint research by CE Delft, Eclareon and Wageningen Research. It focuses on the potential role, costs and benefits of biogas, and assesses the key barriers and drivers of biogas deployment in the EU.

Biogas is positively recognised as a flexible and sustainable source of renewable energy, which contributes energy security and greenhouse gas emission reduction, able to play an important role in complementing wind and solar electricity generation, especially in times of low output from these sources.

The study points out the absence of a stable and reliable investment framework and a lack of effective support for biogas production. Therefore, to maximise the potential of biogas in Europe, the Commission makes several recommendations.  It calls on Member States to develop national strategies on the role of biogas and biomethane to meet future renewable energy and climate goals, in cooperation with the relevant biogas stakeholders. It also calls for the creation of a long-term policy framework for the development and support of the biogas sector that also encompasses related areas, such as agriculture and waste management. In line with current RED II proposal, the study strongly recommends making more use of residual heat from biogas installations, and informing citizens about local biogas projects, their benefits, and safety guidelines.

Finally, the authors sets out four scenarios covering possible developments in the use of biogas in the EU by 2030. For these scenarios, two assumptions were made, according to the feedstock potential and the speed of growth. The result is that the biogas production in 2030 will be about 1.9 and 2.7 times larger than the biogas production in 2014. There is therefore a great growth potential of biogas in Europe, if the right policies are put in place.

Source: European Commission
The study is available here.