Status of Development – DFFB, Denmark

The Danish biogas industry has in recent years seen a major progress. Among the reasons is the improved framework conditions, partly as a result of a long-term commitment from the industry itself, as well as an increased focus on renewable energy and out phasing fossil fuels.

State of Departure

At this moment 154 biogas plants are in operation in Denmark, producing biogas equivalent to 1.2 TWh /year. Animal manure is the most important biogas feedstock, with a high future potential. Roughly 7% of the produced animal manure is today supplied to biogas plants, but the aim is to increase it to 50% by 2020. Along with manure, organic wastes from mainly food processing industries are co-digested, boosting the methane yield per digested biomass unit. Today biogas is mainly used for heat and power production, but the interest for upgrading and use as vehicle fuel is increasing. Historically, the industry has functioned as a service for agriculture and delivered energy for district heating plant. Despite the challenges that come from being a company that offers solutions for different actors, many plants have evolved into well-run plants that is ready to develop within the new framework, which occurs as a result of change of society with more focus on green energy. In addition, several new players are moving into the market because it has become more attractive due to gas prices and the possibility of combining biogas production with existing business – e.g. NGF Nature Energy, an energy company.

Several new plants and the growing expansion of the industry, which also comes through the expansion of existing plants, providing a natural pressure on staff resources, which most likely means that in future there will be increasing demand for employees and thus increasing employment.

What have been done during the first project part

Institutional building work done by DFFB includes meetings with municipalities in both east and west Denmark, moreover there is currently a merging phase of the two Danish biogas institutions.

In relation to the meetings with municipalities and the identification of challengers, the project is trying to identify how and where, BiogasAction can support the different challengers in both eastern and western part of Denmark. Meeting with the Association for Danish Biogas plants, has resulted in an initiative, that focuses on improvement for insurance issuers on Danish biogas plants.

DFFB has been working on three projects in the first year and collecting material from other business models and feasibility studies. Biogas business is moving quit fast forward in Denmark due to the good framework conditions and this has resulted in many new plants.

As it comes to optimizng biogas production, training sessions for biogas plants have been held. There has been held 4 training activities with both board members from biogas plants and daily operators. Focus has been on maintenance, economy and board work. Moreover, DFFB is working on an education in the ordinary educational system. The education is an vocational education, that takes 4½ year. It is called “Process operator” and is a combination between school activity and work on a biogas plant. It is going to be launched in 2017. Additionally, DFFB is working together with the University on a tool to optimise the use of biomass  in order to produce more biogas.

DFFB is also assisting on the specific high quality biogas projects development, namely: development of the new pre-treatment plants for biomass, assisting the plant on production expansion.

As of international replication activities DFFB has participated in a replication activity in Poland in order to promote biogas. This has been in cooperation with IBBK from Germany.

Read the full report about the first period of the project in Denmark, here.