Strategic Meeting in Wales

The Biogas Action project pulled together the key stakeholders in Wales to discuss the current barriers to the implementation of on-farm, slurry based anaerobic digesters.

The first part of the discussion centred on two pollution incidents earlier in the year and was led by the pollution regulator, Natural Resources Wales.  It became clear that the current Waste Regulations led system is really not fit for purpose and that the land-use planning system would not be able to plug the gaps that are currently allowing poorly designed and implemented plant to be installed. Further regulation and more paperwork were generally seen to be an additional barrier that would be really unhelpful to implementation.

There was a consensus that one potential way forward would be the development of an “Approved Installer” list to be established and that all plant would need to be signed-off by such a person. It would be the role of that person to ensure that the plant was designed, constructed and commissioned to a high standard and that the operator/s had received adequate training. It was the hope of the meeting that the Anaerobic Digestion and Bioresources Association (ADBA) would be prepared to take the lead on the compilation of the Approved Installer Register and its representative at the meeting agreed to seek views on such.

It was further resolved that funding would be sought for an academic study that would seek to identify the size and location of dairy farms, the number, size and location of chicken units – along with information on the current practices in respect of the litter.