Australian organisations call on government support for biomethane injection

Thousands of organisations and businesses in Australia have called for biomethane injection into gas distribution networks in an open letter to the Commonwealth government.

The letter calls for recognition of the role biogas can play to solve energy market decarbonisation challenges. This is the first time businesses across the sector have called on the government to recognise the potential of biogas.

Shahana McKenzie, CEO of Bioenergy Australia, said the letter represents millions of employees across business, industry and utilities sectors who are willing to work together to deliver innovative solutions. She said: “This support, combined with the right government vision and investment, means Australia could unlock the significant economic and varied social benefits of bioenergy – particularly in regional areas.”

Methane can be captured rather than emitted into the atmosphere at wastewater treatment plants, agricultural and food processing facilities, and meat and livestock processing facilities. A report commissioned by Bioenergy Australia in 2019 on the availability of biogas in Australia identified 371PJ of available energy – enough to decarbonise industrial, commercial, and residential gas users currently supplied by distributed gas networks across the country.

The report provided nine recommendations to overcome challenges facing the emerging industry, including the need for more favourable policy conditions to enable biogas growth. “We are confident with the right policy settings, Australia can attract the necessary investment to deliver a cost-effective, zero-emissions energy system that will create new jobs and new industries,” said McKenzie.

“To achieve this, we are calling on governments and relevant agencies to work with us to further identify and raise awareness of the bioenergy resources that are available for development at a federal, state/territory and regional level, and unlock seed funding from the government and private investment to showcase, activate and de-risk the biomethane market across Australia.

“Creating this policy environment will enable gas users to quickly and cost-effectively achieve net-zero emissions now, while also scaling to play a significant role in decarbonising the gas supply system over the next decade and beyond.”

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