Information Sheet 31: GHG reduction using biogas technologies

Methane from organic waste is 23 times a greater contributor to GHG than CO2. Tools to collect methane and process it to avoid GHG emissions are proven and already available in NZ. This produces biogas which can be used to generate electricity; be a source of heat; and be used as a replacement fuel in vehicle engines. Many of these applications are also economic when the energy is used to reduce on-site operating costs. GHG reduction scenarios The barrier for greater uptake of the use of organic waste to produce biogas appears to be the lack of ‘desire to make it happen’, and the relative cost benefits of other use opportunities eg composting municipal waste, and distribution of dairy effluent onto pasture. In many situations the lack of desire to make projects happen are because of a lack of access to capital finance. The focus for growing the biogas sector has to be on getting maximum value from our organic wastes. This will automatically lead to reduction in methane discharge to atmosphere and thus GHG emission reduction.

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