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Biogas and Biomethane are postulated as key technologies in Europe´s energy transition

By: Leonardo Casado

October 11, 2022

Every year, the International Conference on Bioenergy leaves a good feeling and outlook for the sector on a National and European level. Yet this 15th edition has left a very positive and promising impression. The fact is that Biomethane has been indisputably placed in Europe as a strong alternative that reduces dependence on Russian gas, thus playing a crucial role in reaching the goal of the European Union of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 and achieving the scenario of zero emissions by 2050. The firm commitment from the European Commission to these technologies reflects its great ambition of their goals in the REPowerEU Plan: Go from producing 3 to 35 annual trillion cubic meters (TCM) of biomethane by the year 2030. In this context, the role of CO2 capture, utilization, and storage technologies is considered essential when these are efficiently combined with biomethane production processes, making their ability to generate net carbon-negative plants a reality, as is stated in our Carbon to Value Report.

Progress has also been made in Spain. Last March 22nd, the Council of Ministers approved the Road Map of Biogas, which is the prelude to the biogas and biomethane development plan in Spain. Although the sector expected a greater ambition regarding the establishment of specific objectives and measures, the reality is that the regulatory framework now has, in fact, an opening and this is an important milestone.

Nowadays, we are fully aware that the energy transition is already here, and achieving energy independence in Europe based on a robust renewable energy matrix is to make room for biogas and biomethane production technologies in the European Union. In this sense, the presence of Denmark as the guest country has allowed for the exchange of different strategic approaches aimed at encouraging the increase in biogas production as a success story. Nowadays, the Danish model is a benchmark for, among other things, promoting progressive industrialization thanks to the support of the public sector and minimizing investment risk. It currently has over 200 operating production plants, more than 85% of which are agro-industrial.

Interesting discussions were held on the challenges and opportunities of the market of renewable gas, the circularity of digestate, the flourishing of new technologies for biogas plants, or the sector’s vision from the generators’ and operators’ points of view. The whole value chain of the sector has been present both in Congress and Renewable Gas Room. The significant presence of the industry has been highlighted, especially that related to the development of production technologies, design, construction, and operation of biogas and biomethane plants and infrastructures, as well as their marketing.

My perception is that, in the years to come, the growth of this sector’s industry will be made exponentially, encouraged by the Recovery, Transformation, and Resilience Plan (Next Generation EU) among other funding and investment support mechanisms and RDI. In this case, the investment in industrial and intellectual property mechanisms is considered crucial to preserve European industrial leadership and guarantee exploitation rights and the corporate image of companies, within an economic environment as competitive as the current one. In ClarkeModet, an international reference firm in the industrial and intellectual property sector, we offer to help in this regard in the same manner as we have been in other sectors since 1879.

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