World Biogas Association launched at UN climate change conference
A new trade body called the World Biogas Association (WBA) has been launched at the United Nations Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) COP 22 at Marrakesh, Morocco.
Following the adoption by the United Nations of a shared vision for transforming lives by 2030 through the Sustainable Development Goals and the first-ever universal, legally binding global climate agreement between the 195 national governments at the UNFCCC COP21 at Paris in December 2015, the founders have established the World Biogas Association to demonstrate the huge contribution the biogas and anaerobic digestion (AD) industries make to these goals and targets, and to facilitate the adoption of these technologies globally.
In a statement, the WBA said its trade body is dedicated to supporting the growth of biogas and anaerobic digestion technologies to maximise their contribution to the UNFCCC Commitments and the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals.
The WBA said it is inviting companies, associations, universities, professionals and other organisations to be part of the biggest global community demonstrating and delivering the value that AD and biogas contribute across all sectors by:
- reducing global greenhouse gas emissions by around 20%
- delivering flexible, storable baseload green gas
- fuelling HGVs, buses, tractors and other vehicles
- reducing and recycling food waste
- recycling sewage and waste water
- returning carbon to the farm
- keeping farmers farming sustainably
- restoring our depleted soils
- providing energy and biofertiliser to communities and villages in developing countries
- reducing poverty and hunger.
Launching the trade association, the president of WBA, David Newman said: “I am delighted to see this global perspective from the biogas industry. The potential to provide energy security by transforming the millions of tonnes of organic wastes which today are largely unused, is a huge potential indeed.
“We are part of the circular economy, recovering energy and nutrients otherwise lost. We are part of the bio economy, delivering feedstocks to potential new industries, through green chemistry. We are part of the emancipation of communities detached from electric and gas grids, giving them energy autonomy.
“We are an ingredient of sustainability, delivering nutrients and renewable energy to the planet. And we have no time to lose to make this happen on a global scale”.
Source-separated biowaste collection
Joining the WBA as founding members, Massimo Centemero, managing Director of the Italian Compost and Biogas Consortium (CIC), said: “The Italian Compost and Biogas Consortium, the Italian Association representing the producers of compost and biogas from biowaste has always been a leader in source-separated biowaste collection and recycling.
“We fully support the aim of the World Biogas Association to increase biowaste recycling globally, which can make a huge contribution to meeting each country’s climate change commitments.”
Welcoming the new World Biogas Association, Anaerobic Digestion and Bioresources Association (ADBA) chief executive, Charlotte Morton, said: “The establishment of the World Biogas Association will help showcase AD’s ability to meet a huge range of global challenges, and ADBA is delighted to be a founder member of the association.
“Biogas is set to become a cheaper energy source than coal, and AD should become one of the leading technologies for mitigating climate change, improving sanitation, ensuring energy and food security and reducing poverty and hunger.
“Demonstrating the international potential of our technology helps us make the case for national support. The UK could be a global leader in what could become a £1 trillion biogas industry, exporting expertise and equipment worth billions of pounds and creating tens of thousands of jobs.”
International biogas industry
HRS Heat Exchangers international sales manager, Matt Hale, added: “It's an honour to be a founder member of the WBA Advisory Board. Using our global reach and expertise, HRS is well placed to help the WBA develop a worldwide AD community which will see the international biogas industry realise its potential value of £1 trillion."
American Biogas Council executive director, Patrick Serfass, said: “The World Biogas Association will provide an international forum for sharing best practices so we can accelerate the growth of the global biogas industry. The American Biogas Council is delighted to become a founding member; I look forward to working towards our shared objectives.”
The World Biogas Association shares an acronym with the World Bioenergy Association - WBA.
This story was written by Liz Gyekye, editor of Bioenergy Insight.