Biogas industry pushes forward on R&D strategy

Tue, 06-11-2012

The Anaerobic Digestion and Biogas Association (ADBA) will bring together both industry leaders and academia at an R&D Forum today, 6 November, with the aim of formulating an R&D Strategy for the AD industry.

WRAP will be present with an update in their “Driving Innovation in AD” programme, and there will also be presentations on projects which have evolved from feasibility through to operation, talks on R&D tax credits, strategy workshops and an introduction to the EU Environmental Technology Verification programme.

Charlotte Morton, chief executive, ADBA said: “The industry has suffered from a lack of R&D in key areas to date. Recognising the difficulties facing the sector we decided to work with our members and the wider industry to put together an AD R&D Strategy to help drive focused AD research and development and identify and fill gaps in knowledge, avoid repetition, provide better return on R&D investment and allow better exploitation of existing knowledge.

“At this event we will bring together industry and academia with a view to ensuring that R&D investment in the future is directed to where it is most needed and prioritised to provide the answers the industry needs.”

Thomas Minter, Director of Malaby Biogas comments: “It is great news that effort is being made to encourage R&D in the AD and biogas industry. There are a number of areas where Malaby Biogas has identified a need for more research and data. For example, digestate development in order to build farming confidence and drive value are important. Much of the research coming from Europe has been around digestate from agricultural plants or commingle feedstocks. There is however relatively little data is available on food waste AD where, in terms of UK policy, there is a real focus.

“In addition there needs to be much more knowledge in hands of regulators who are all too often behind the curve on trying to implement national rules in a consistent manner. We have been conducting our own in-house research at our Bore Hill Farm Biodigester in Wiltshire and have already established direct contact with several universities to contribute to the knowledge base in the UK. It is good to see an industry body getting involved in driving the R&D agenda and we look forward to seeing some benefit coming from the event.”