UK: The country’s anaerobic digestion capacity tops 500 MW

ADBA welcomes latest milestone, but warns government review of subsidies could derail further growth.

The UK’s anaerobic digestion generation capacity has passed the 500 MW milestone, according to the latest figures from the Anaerobic Digestion and Bioresources Association (ADBA), which is as well a full member of EBA.

Indeed, ADBA revealed 514 MW of electrical equivalent capacity is generated as electricity or biogas from more than 400 anaerobic digestion plants across the farming, waste, and water sectors.

Charlotte Morton, chief executive of ADBA, said the sector was making an important contribution to the UK’s renewable energy targets.

“ADBA’s market data now shows that AD offers over 500 MWe electrical equivalent capacity – more capacity than one of the UK’s nuclear power plants, Wylfa, which is being decommissioned this year,” she said. “This capacity is extremely valuable because anaerobic digestion generates low carbon baseload or dispatchable power, helping to keep the lights on and balance the output from intermittent renewables such as wind and solar.”

However, the body warned that a government decision to remove the Levy Exemption Certificates (LEC) that allowed renewable power to avoid the Climate Change Levy imposed on businesses could cost the industry up to £11m, while a review of the pre-accreditation for the feed-in tariff (FiT) subsidy scheme could hamper further growth.

“To continue to expand, the industry needs viable support in the forthcoming FiT review, and a Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) budget that will support new green gas,” Morton said. “AD has the potential to meet 30% of UK domestic gas demand, and overall it could cut UK greenhouse gas emissions by four per cent and support food security and production.”

Source: ADBA, via Business Green
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