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Assessment of impact on biogas producers of proposed changes to sustainability criteria

Category: feedstocks,bioenergy
Published: 01/02/2016
Author: NNFCC
The impacts of tightening sustainability criteria on biogas and biomethane producers


  • The impacts of tightening sustainability criteria on biogas and biomethane producers
  • Including changing GHG limits ​and underlying assumptions
  • Cost/benefits
  • Key drivers ​to influence bioenergy industry towards low cost carbon abatement

Reasons to buy

  • For investors and developers to learn how potential policy changes could affect their operations
  • For policy makers to understand changing sustainability criteria could have on industry and bioenergy deployment
  • See NNFCC's biomethane calculator use in action to calculate GHG emissions from several supply chains

Number of pages: 24

Accessibility: This item is available to all NNFCC subscribers or through individual purchase


Sustainability criteria were introduced in the RHI in October 2015 and ​were being considered for the FIT Scheme. The Department for Energy and Climate Change DECC (now BEIS) ​was considering aligning the criteria across schemes. They were trying to understand, in the interests of achieving maximum value for money and decarbonisation at least cost, what the impact on biogas and biomethane producers would be if the GHG limit were tightened or the underlying assumptions changed. DECC wished to understand:

  • What the impacts are of applying alternative fossil-fuel comparators for biomethane and biogas combustion
  • What the impacts are of applying alternative end-use efficiency assumptions for biomethane and biogas combustion
  • The costs/benefits of harmonising the lifecycle GHG emissions limit between schemes
  • The extent to which farm AD plants are resilient to fluctuations in crop yield
  • The key factors which could drive industry behaviour towards lowest carbon abatement costs

NNFCC first established a range of potential GHG thresholds for the modelling. ​Then we established a set of default supply chains for injection of biomethane, export of electricity and heat, export of electricity only and export of heat only in our ‘Anaerobic Digestion Carbon Calculator’.

 To read more please download the report or become a subscriber.


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