In a first for the IEA’s renewable energy market report series, a special section has been dedicated to biogas.
The report, Renewables 2023: Analysis and forecasts to 2028, noted that policy support for biogas has surged strongly in the last two years due to a combination of factors. Firstly, with energy security concerns caused by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and subsequent energy crisis, biogas is now seen as a domestic energy source that can reduce dependency on natural gas imports and support energy security in many countries. Secondly, as a result of the urgent need to limit global temperature rise to 1.5°C, countries are developing specific policies that include biogas as a key component in their energy transition strategies.
Almost half of biogas production is based in Europe, with Germany alone meeting almost 20% of global consumption. China follows with 21% production, followed by the United States (12%) and India (9%). The most growth will be in Europe and North America due to established infrastructure and experience, driven by previous policies that make rapid deployment in a five-year term possible. China and India also have ambitious expansion plans, but their lack of infrastructure limits growth in the next five years. However, both countries have considerable biogas production potential, rising energy demand and ambitious decarbonisation goals, meaning they will be ready for accelerated growth beyond 2028.
Charlotte Morton OBE, chief executive of the World Biogas Association, commented: “This is a huge milestone for our industry. Not only does the IEA dedicate a significant number of pages to the role our industry can play as a solution to the world’s current economic and environmental crises, it anticipates sector growth will accelerate from 19% in 2017-2022 to 32% in 2023-2028 as a result of impactful new policies being introduced in more than 13 countries in the past year.” However, she added that an even higher pace of growth is required to meet the Net Zero objective for 2030.