USA: the White House published Biogas Roadmap

On 1 August 2014 the White House released a Biogas Opportunities Roadmap highlighting the long-term economic and environmental benefits and potential for biogas systems in the United States. With the proper support, more than 11,000 additional biogas systems could be deployed in the United States.

The Biogas Roadmap, a part of the Obama administration’s Strategy to Reduce Methane Emissions, culminates a cross ‐ agency collaboration between the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), Department of Energy (DOE) and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

The United States currently has more than 2,000 sites producing biogas and the Roadmap says that with the proper support, more than 11,000 additional biogas systems could be deployed in the United States. If fully realized, these biogas systems could produce enough energy to power more than 3 million American homes and reduce methane emissions equivalent to 4 to 54 million metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions in 2030, the annual emissions of between 800,000 and 11 million passenger vehicles.

Some of the key steps to promote biogas development described in the U.S. Roadmap are:

  • Promoting Biogas Utilization through Existing Agency Programs: USDA, DOE, and EPA will use their existing programs as a vehicle to enhance the utilization of biogas systems in the U.S by ensuring that existing criteria for technical and financial assistance considers the benefits of biogas systems, leveraging over $10 million in research funding to enhance the economic viability and surrounding benefits of the biogas systems and co-products, and strengthening programs that support the use of biogas for clean energy, transportation fuel, renewable chemicals and biobased products.
  • Fostering Investment in Biogas Systems: To help overcome financial barriers to the widespread investment in biogas systems, USDA will lead efforts to improve the collection and analysis of industry financial and technical data needed to track the performance of anaerobic digesters, evaluate current loan and grant programs for opportunities to broaden the financing options available for biogas systems, and review Federal procurement guidelines to ensure that products of biogas systems are eligible for and promoted by applicable government procurement programs.
  • Strengthening markets for biogas systems and system products: To strengthen U.S. markets for renewable energy and value-added non-energy products from biogas systems, USDA, DOE, and EPA will review opportunities to overcome barriers to integrating biogas into electricity and renewable natural gas markets, for example, though modernizing existing Federal incentives provided for renewable energy generation. USDA, EPA, and DOE will also drive the creation of tools to help industry broaden the market development for energy and non-energy biogas systems products.
  • Improving communication and coordination: In order to implement the strategies laid out in this document and promote strong coordination and messaging across Federal agencies, USDA will establish a Biogas Opportunities Roadmap Working Group that will include participation from DOE and EPA, as well as the dairy and biogas industries. The Working Group will collaborate with industry to publish a progress report in August 2015, which identifies and prioritizes policies and technology opportunities to expand the biogas industry and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Read USDA FACT SHEET: Biogas Opportunities Roadmap

Source: ABC press release