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2024 European Biomethane Map shows 37% increase in EU RNG capacity

2024 European Biomethane Map shows 37% increase in EU RNG capacity
The 2024 European Biomethane Map. Sources of each country are listed on the map. Data covers active facilities under operation, according to the available EBA dataset by June 2024 (image courtesy EBA).

Europe has reached an installed capacity of 6.4 billion cubic meters (bcm) of biomethane per year, according to figures in the 2024 European Biomethane Map. Of this capacity, 81 percent corresponds to plants located in the European Union (5.2 bcm). The EU-27 countries’ growth has reached 37 percent, while the capacity of the non-EU countries analyzed grew by 20 percent compared to the 2022-2023 dataset.

The European Biomethane Map is an annual publication by the European Biogas Association (EBA) which this year includes for the first time an open-access interactive map, built with the support of EBA members, who have provided the necessary data.

Additionally, the digital and print versions of the European Biomethane Map are the result of an ongoing collaboration between the EBA and Gas Infrastructure Europe (GIE).

The 2024 Biomethane Map highlights the significant growth of the biomethane sector, demonstrating the industry’s determination to achieve the REPowerEU targets. To sustain this progress, it is crucial for EU member states to identify clear targets and pathways and for the EU itself to support the sector with long-term policies and administrative simplification for operators. This commitment will ensure a robust and resilient energy transition across Europe, said Giulia Cancian,  Secretary General of EBA.

Over 1,500 RNG plants

The total installed capacity of European biomethane aka renewable natural gas (RNG) production can contribute to avoiding nearly 29 million tonnes of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions annually and produce 830,000 tonnes of organic biofertilizer annually.

The 2024 European Biomethane Map features 1,548 biomethane (RNG) plants. This represents a 32 percent growth in the number of plants in Europe compared to the previous edition, which featured 1,174 units.

Biogas production at a municipal wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) in Sweden.

Over 80 percent of the reported biomethane plants are now connected to the gas grid, with nearly half (49 percent) connected to the distribution grid and 14 percent to the transportation grid.

France is one of the countries leading the biomethane scaleup pathway and has nearly doubled its capacity compared to the previous edition of this map.

Italy has also shown significant growth, increasing its number of plants fourfold and its total plant capacity more than threefold, whereas the United Kingdom and Denmark maintain their positions among the top five biomethane producers in Europe.

Germany remains the biggest biomethane producer but has paused the construction of new plants.

The momentum in the biomethane sector aligns closely with the 2030 objectives outlined in the REPowerEU plan.

Some EUR 25 billion in private investments to 2030 have so far been secured and this will result in the installation of 950 new biomethane plants, as reported in recent analysis by the European Biogas Association.

This 5th edition illustrates that biomethane is today’s green solution. Gas infrastructure operators welcome this 37 percent increase and will keep bolstering its development.  Natural gas and biomethane’s synergies are invaluable at technical, economic, and policy levels. This makes this renewable gas fit for today’s gas infrastructure and for our clients. With supportive policies and collective efforts, we can help sectors decarbonize quickly and cost-effectively while avoiding stranded assets, commented Pierre Duvieusart, GIE Biomethane Area Sponsor & GIE Board Member.

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