A report by the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland shows biogas from animal manure, food waste and grass could provide about 28% of the country’s gas needs.
According to the report, expanding Ireland’s biogas sector could also create 3,000 new jobs as well as support the country’s decarbonisation through to 2050. Vast investment in facilities would be required to produce more than a quarter of the country’s gas needs renewably.
Currently, there is only a “small number” of anaerobic digestion plants in Ireland and the report says the country would need an “estimated 900” further facilities to “fully utilise the available resources we have to hand”.
The report also finds there is “significant potential” to use surplus grass silage produced on farms for 86% of the potential new biogas capacity.
However, grass silage has a production cost that makes the energy produced from it “more expensive”, although farming practices could be improved to “balance cost and emissions”, according to the report.
The authors of the report say the work was overseen by a steering group made up of “government departments, regulatory bodies and academic experts”.
Source: Ends Waste & Bioenergy
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