Lucy Hopwood

Lucy Hopwood is a Business Development Director and Lead Consultant for Bioenergy and Anaerobic Digestion at NNFCC. She has worked in this field for 19 years. Lucy comes from an agricultural background and originally specialised in feedstock supply to the bioeconomy, focussing on agricultural, forestry and waste production systems before moving her focus to associated treatment or conversion technologies. Lucy is responsible for providing strategic advice, planning and technical support on bioenergy policies, technologies and markets with specific objectives to de-risk developers and investors decisions and to provide technical support to policy makers to help shape the future policy landscape. Lucy works extensively with both public and private sector clients to help shape the future bioenergy landscape and to support deployment of and investment in robust and sustainable projects.  

Lucy has supported BEIS and Defra in key policy decisions, has secured investment for a large number of sizeable bioenergy facilities, and has undertaken strategic reviews for public and private sector clients on the future role of bioenergy in the UK energy mix. Lucy’s team closely monitor bioenergy and more specifically the biogas market in the UK and overseas, reporting frequently on current and potential future deployment opportunities and constraints, as well as monitoring feedstock requirements and associated environmental, economic and social impacts and benefits. Lucy also works closely with BEIS and Ofgem to develop and administer support mechanisms, and works for clients to secure accreditation for conventional or more novel developments.

Lucy is widely recognised as an impartial expert in bioenergy and more specifically anaerobic digestion (AD), and has been responsible for the Official AD Information Portal for the past decade which is hosted and maintained by NNFCC on behalf of industry and Government. Lucy is active in a number of expert industry groups and sits on the REA Green Gas Steering Group. She also has an extensive network of contacts throughout the bioenergy supply chain and across all industry sectors, allowing her to make valuable business-to-business and investor-to-developer introductions to facilitate or enhance development activities.

Lucy is an APM qualified project manager with an excellent track record of delivering high quality projects and also acts in an advisory capacity to incoming or established developers and investors, guiding market focus and ensuring regulatory compliance.

Before joining NNFCC when the company formed in 2003, Lucy worked at FERA (then CSL) in the Agricultural and Rural Strategy team, working specifically on non-food crops and market development. Lucy studied at Harper Adams University College and graduated in 2002 with a BSc (Hons) in Agriculture and Crop Management.


Ongoing and recent projects

  • Designed and developed the REAL Organics Recycling Research Library as a central resource for research relevant to the anaerobic digestion (AD) and composting sectors in the UK; to prevent research duplication and to guide the objectives of future research projects in this area.
  • Advised on and managed a significant number of Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI), Feed-in-Tariff (FIT) and Green Gas Support Scheme (GGSS) applications for developing and operational AD facilities.

  • Undertook a comprehensive Biomethane Cost Survey and developed a cost model for BEIS to determine the capital and operational costs of AD with biomethane injection in the UK, to inform the tariff setting methodology for the GGSS.
  • Secured funding from RCEF and undertook an AD Feasibility Study & subsequent Development Plan for Circular Malton & Norton CIC.
  • Managed numerous Biomethane Market Reviews for commercial clients looking to enter or expand in the AD and biomethane sectors in the UK; identifying and securing new market opportunities.
  • Managed a Waste Wood Market Review for a large commercial bioenergy producer exploring new market opportunities.
  • Leading the commercialisation and business model development tasks in the EU funded BBI JU project BeonNAT; considering high-value opportunities for utilising forest biomass grown on marginal lands in Europe.
  • Leading the commercialisation work package 'Paving the way towards market launching' in the EU funded BBI JU project OLEAF4VALUE; developing exploitation plans and business models for the products and processes piloted by the partners in the consortium. 



Selected publications