December 4, 2019. By replacing 12% of current natural gas consumption with biomethane, Ireland can save 2.6m tones of CO2 per annum and create over 3,000 jobs by 2030.

This was one of the key messages from members of the Renewable Gas Forum of Ireland (RGFI), who presented their case for biomethane to be included in Ireland’s energy mix to the Joint Committee on Climate Action earlier this week.

Donal Dennehy, director of Danone Ireland (RGFI member) acknowledged the Government’s review into the potential of anaerobic digestion to supply biomethane (upgraded biogas) in their draft National Climate Action Plan (NCAP). However, he raised concerns that the figures used in the Marginal Abatement Cost Curve (MACC) analysis in the plan were incorrect which suggest that biomethane was not cost effective.

The NCAP MACC estimated biomethane at a cost of €377/t of CO2 abated. However, RGFI’s analysis put this cost range at between €78-€150/t CO2 abatement. This figure has been independently verified he explained.

A KPMG report commissioned by RGFI produced a full cost benefit analysis which showed an overall positive 1.26 cost-benefit ratio through to 2050 for producing biomethane from agricultural organic matter he explains. That means that for every one euro provided to support biomethane production, €1.26 would be returned to the economy.