Exclude ‘JGS’ plants from AwSV, says German Biogas Association

Trade association says new policy covering the handling of water-polluting substances would have a severe impact on the already hard hit biogas sector

Germany’s government could bring in controversial rules affecting biogas plants early next year, according to Fachverband Biogas (German Biogas Association). The government notified the EU of the plan to bring in new legislation on 22 July. The proposals aim to create a nationwide set of regulations for installations handling water-polluting substances, it will be known as AwSV.

The proposed legislation, which covers the handling and storage of manure and others wastes, has “far reaching consequences” for biogas plant operators, says Fachverband Biogas. Under the plan biogas plants would have to be able to store liquid manure for at least nine months, as well as make improvements to their overall storage operation depending on the facility.

Operators would have five years to implement the changes. However, the failure of the government to exclude so called ‘JGS’ plants from the AwSV will hit its industry. ‘JGS’ is the German acronym of ‘Jauche-, Gülle- und Silagesickersaftanlagen’ – ‘liquid manure, slurry and silage effluent plants’ in English.
The German Biogas Association called for the JGS plants to be excluded when the legislation was first proposed in May last year. General manager, Dr Claudius da Costa Gomez, explained some facilities would be driven “out of business” by the proposals.

JGS plants, which already comply with Germany’s wastewater law known as 62 Wasserhaushaltsgesetz (WHG), should not have to take on the extra financial burden of complying with the AwSV, argue Fachverband Biogas.

The association suggests, should the legislation come into force, an advisory and investment period be created, during which the government would help support farmers and others involved in biogas production to implement it.

ENDS waste&bioenergy_no strapline-4This article is a result of a partnership between ENDS Waste&Bionergy and EBA.