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Here’s an overview of key news in the biogas and renewable natural gas (RNG) industries. Companies from different industries are shifting their traditional ways of operation towards an eco-friendly one that produces biogas.
THE CITY OF LONDON WILL BE POWERED BY 100% RENEWABLE ENERGY STARTING IN OCTOBER
The City of London has announced that they will be sourcing 100% of their energy needs from renewable sources by October 2018. According to a statement released by the “Square Mile’s” ruling body, the city plans on implementing the shift by installing solar panels on all government-owned buildings; investing in off-site renewable energy projects; and buying clean energy from the grid. The solar installations will reportedly stretch across social housing in 6 London boroughs, 11,000 acres of green space, and several markets and academies.
2020 TOKYO GAMES TO BE FULLY POWERED BY RENEWABLE ENERGY, ORGANIZERS SAY
The 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic organizing committee is aiming to fully power the games with renewable energy, under a plan to help foster a more sustainable society through the quadrennial events. All electricity used at all venues will be derived entirely from renewable energy sources, in order to promote decarbonization. The committee also plans to use rental and lease services so that 99 percent of the goods procured for the games will be reused or recycled. The renewable energy target will also apply to the athletes’ village, the international broadcasting center and the main press center. A committee official described the attempt as “unprecedented.”
2 MIDWESTERN CITIES ADVANCE COMPOSTING PROGRAMS
Iowa City, Iowa is now offering residents curbside carts for organic waste collection, rather than residents having to supply their own containers. The cost of the carts is included in every household’s monthly utility bills, but residents still can use their own organics bins if they so choose. A push for composting is also taking place in Ann Arbor, Michigan, where volunteers have launched the “More Composting, More Carts!” initiative to boost participation in the city’s food composting program and divert more food waste from landfills, according to MLive.
CARBON CLEAN SOLUTIONS LIMITED REACHES BIOGAS MILESTONE IN GERMANY
Carbon Clean Solutions Limited (CCSL), a carbon dioxide (CO₂) separation technology innovator, has surpassed 500,000 m3 of biogas processed per day with its Methpure solvent across Germany for the first time. This is the daily equivalent of powering 9,817 cars from Berlin to Munich (580 km) on biomethane fuel. This is a huge milestone for the company, which entered the biogas upgrading market in 2015 with its technology operational at just two plants. Since then, the company has grown its footprint and its Methpure solvent is now being used in 26 biogas upgrading plants across Germany. Methpure is now one of the most widely-used solvents in the EU for biogas upgrading plants to run their chemical scrubbers more efficiently.
WBA JOINS CLIMATE AND CLEAN AIR COALITION
The World Biogas Association has been accepted as a new Actor under the Agriculture and Waste Initiatives of the United Nations Environment Programme’s Climate & Clean Air Coalition (CCAC). CCAC cooperates with key emitters of short-lived climate pollutants and other stakeholders globally to ‘encourage, enable and catalyze action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions’. “We are delighted to join the CCAC, which works to reduce short-life climate pollutants, of which methane is a major contributor,” said David Newman, president of the World Biogas Association (WBA).
RENEWI’S WASTE-TO-BIOGAS FACILITY HITS ‘’FULL SERVICE’’
Waste-to-product specialist Renewi has reached full service on its organic biofuels contract with the City of Surrey, Canada, according to a company announcement. The 14,323 square metre facility converts residential and commercial organic waste into biogas, which will be used to fuel the city’s natural gas powered waste collection vehicles and operations service vehicles, as well as the district heating system. According to Renewi, the facility will process more than 115,000 tonnes of waste a year, producing approximately 120,000GJ of biogas to be used as vehicle fuel. The company claims that it is one of the largest organic biofuels infrastructure facilities in North America.
ØRSTED AND BIGADAN COMPLETE EASTERN DENMARK’S BIGGEST BIOGAS PLANT
Ørsted and Bigadan have finished construction on what they claim is Eastern Denmark’s biggest biogas plant. The facility, located in Kalundborg, is co-owned by Ørsted, a major Danish power company, and Bigadan, a biogas plant constructor. It will process waste from Novo Nordisk and Novozymes factories in Kalundborg, converting it into biogas and fertilizers. According to a statement, the two companies have just finished building the plant. It was inaugurated on 18 June by the Danish Minister for Energy, Utilities and Climate.
CO2 SUPPLY CRISIS HITS EUROPE
In what has been described as the “worst supply situation to hit the European carbon dioxide (CO2) business in decades”, many consumers of CO2 – especially the carbonated drinks producers – are desperate for supplies of the product. While the supply position tightened in April, driven by the “usual” turnaround of maintenance procedures in ammonia plants, the position started to become critical when other plants associated with bio-ethanol and chemical production were also shut down for maintenance or for technical issues. All major suppliers of liquid CO2 have been affected by the raw gas sourcing issues – including Praxair, Messer, Linde and Air Liquide. Even ACP (recently acquired by Air Products) has been impacted by the downturn in CO2 output.
RENEWABLE ENERGY SEEKS DEMAND, INVESTMENT TO SURVIVE TRUMP SQUEEZE
NEW YORK (Reuters) – The wind and solar industries hope demand for carbon-free power from U.S. cities, states and corporations can offset headwinds from President Donald Trump’s tax policy and tariffs, developers said this week.
The Trump tax overhaul trimmed production and investment tax credits, and the administration also slapped a 30 percent tariff on imported solar panels. The moves, aimed at boosting manufacturing and economic growth, also dimmed prospects for renewables. But Trump’s withdrawal of federal support for Obama-era climate goals indirectly helped the industry by inspiring a backlash among U.S. cities, states and corporations, which have grown more ambitious about installing cleaner forms of energy.
BURNING WOOD AS RENEWABLE ENERGY THREATENS EUROPE’S CLIMATE GOALS
The European Union declared this week that it could make deeper greenhouse gas cuts than it has already pledged under the Paris climate agreement. But its scientific advisors are warning that the EU’s new renewable energy policy fails to fully account for the climate impacts of burning wood for fuel. By counting forest biomass, such as wood pellets used in power plants, as carbon-neutral, the new rules could make it impossible for Europe to achieve its climate goals, the European Academy of Sciences Advisory Council (EASAC) wrote in a strongly worded statement.