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Issue 37 Autumn 2017

Separate food waste collections – why is England still playing catch-up?

UK AD & Biogas and World Biogas Expo Review

ADBA Biomethane and Gas Vehicle Conference Preview

Digestate hits the high street

ADBA Northern Ireland Conference Preview www.adbioresources.org


AD & Bioresources News | autumn 2017

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Foreword Joining the dots

Inside this issue > Foreword:


View from the Top:


ADBA News:


Best Practice Matters/Devolved Administrations:


Government & Agency News:


Operator & Working Groups:


Feature: Separate food waste collections: 10-15 Technology Focus: Pumps, mixers and pre-treatment technology:


AD & Biogas Industry Awards 2017 Review:


UK AD & Biogas and World Biogas Expo 2017 Review: 24-25 UK AD & Biogas and World Biogas Expo 2017 Exhibitor Highlights: 26-28 UK AD & Biogas and World Biogas Expo 2017 Exhibitor Focus:


Advice Clinic: Health & Safety and Training: 30 ADBA Biomethane and Gas Vehicle Conference Preview:


Members’ News and Views:




R&I Update:


R&I Hub Review/Advertorial:


ADBA Northern Ireland National Conference Preview:


Upcoming Events: Membership Matters:

39 40-42

By Dr Alan Whitehead MP, Shadow Energy and Climate Change Minister, Southampton Test


s a nation, we are committed to meeting the fourth and fifth Carbon Budgets. In reality, however, we’re less than halfway towards meeting our 2020 targets. And yet one area in which we could make a serious impact barely features in climate change policy discussions. Decarbonising heat is imperative if we are to tackle climate change but the UK is lagging behind, particularly in comparison with decarbonising electricity and, to a lesser extent, transport. Historically, the view has been to electrify our heating system – rip up the existing gas network and take out every household’s boiler, replacing it with a ground source heat pump. Not only would the cost of this be exorbitant but it would likely prove very unpopular with consumers. Not to mention that this would require a three-to four-fold increase in our electricity generation – which would of course need to be decarbonised. However, the ground is now changing and, as everyone working in the AD industry knows, there is an alternative. Injecting green gas – biomethane produced from the AD process – into the existing gas network can be done without compromise or prejudice to the existing system, and has no impact on consumers. Technological advances in biogas upgrading, work by the Gas Distribution Networks (GDN), and potential changes to requirements for propane addition are making grid injection of biomethane an easier and less costly prospect than ever before for AD operators, and many are rising to the challenge. There are now 85 biomethane plants in the UK, generating 2.5 TWh of energy, and this figure is expected to continue rising, notwithstanding the delays to the pending Renewable Heat Incentive legislation. While the injection of biomethane will not get us all the way there, it is making a significant contribution and its development represents a substantial milestone along the route to decarbonising heat. As one of the so-called ‘10 per cent’ solutions, taken together with other developments such as district heating schemes it would represent a substantial move towards decarbonising the heat sector. But if green gas is to make a serious impact, more biomethane will need to be produced. And this will require greater volumes of feedstock being sent to AD. Everyone is aware of the food waste challenge facing us here in the UK, but despite the large volumes being produced, much of it is failing to make it into an AD plant and is still being sent to landfill or incineration. With Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland legislating on separate food waste collections, why can’t England do the same?

Cover image: © Bio Collectors

Editorial: To be considered for inclusion in a future issue contact: Editor: Kate O’Reilly T +44 (0)7894 039609 E kate.oreilly@adbioresources.org

AD&Bioresources News FEATURES Features planned for Issue 38 (Winter) include:

I have visited a number of AD plants, including Bio Collectors’ Mitcham facility, and I am startled that the onus is very much on the AD operator to not only process the waste, but to actually go and source it themselves – collecting from individual waste producers and sorting and depackaging the material until it is fit for treatment. It seems absolutely obvious to me that we need new further waste regulations regarding the collection of both domestic and commercial food waste, so that the onus is the other way around – producer responsibility. The UK’s AD industry has come a long way in the last five years. The capacity is there, the upgrading technology is working, and the need to decarbonise our heat is real – government now needs to join the dots to allow green gas to make the impact it should.

• Feature: What is the future of on-farm AD? • Technology Focus: Small scale and on-farm AD technology • Advice Clinic: On-farm AD • ADBA National Conference Preview Copy deadline: 15 September

Sponsorship and advertising: T +44 (0)203 176 4414 E sales@adbioresources.org


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autumn 2017 | AD & Bioresources News


View from the top Moving up a gear


By Charlotte Morton, ADBA’s Chief Executive

ver the past decade, the UK anaerobic digestion (AD) industry has made steady but significant progress and notched up a number of achievements, not least the ability to power a million homes. The imminent and catastrophic climate emergency that we face, however, means that now is the time for AD to move up a gear. One of the main legislative drivers of the need for dramatic advancements in decarbonisation in the UK over the next few years are the Carbon Budgets, set by the Committee on Climate Change to ensure that government sticks to its target of reducing the UK’s greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 80 per cent by 2050 on 1990 levels. While the UK has seen substantial falls in emissions over the past decade, this has mostly been in electricity generation as a result of coal plants coming offline. As this low-hanging fruit quickly dries up, the government will have to take the bull by the horns and tackle sectors that are more difficult to decarbonise. Heat and transport are perfect examples of such sectors and are ones to which AD can make a huge contribution. In terms of heat, BEIS’s urgent priority for supporting AD should be the passing of legislation for the Renewable Heat Incentive as soon as possible to ensure that those looking to build plants are able to benefit from the proposed higher tariff rates and tariff guarantees. With regard to transport, hopefully by the time you read this the Department for Transport (DfT) will have responded to its consultation on changes to the Renewable Transport Fuel Obligation (RTFO), which could have significant implications for the use of biomethane as a transport fuel. DfT has proposed increasing the volume percentage of renewable fuel required by fuel suppliers and introducing a sub-target to incentivise specific renewable ‘development’ fuels, which could include biomethane. These changes could provide a step change in the opportunities for biomethane for transport, offering AD operators another financially attractive option for their biogas. We’ll be discussing the RTFO and the future of biomethane in transport at our Biomethane and Gas Vehicle Conference on 28 September in Leeds (see p31).

As well as providing financial incentives for low-carbon technologies, government needs to see the bigger picture in terms of recognising the true cost of carbon, internalising its externalities and setting an effective carbon price. As a country we also need to start properly valuing resources – separate food waste collections in England, for example, are an absolute must to reduce food waste and the GHG impacts of methane produced from landfill, and to ensure that we can extract maximum value from the precious organic matter bound up in food waste. As well as pushing policymakers to make these urgent changes, we as an industry also need to do all we can to keep our own house in order and operate to the highest standards. The recent launch at our trade show of the pilot of ADBA’s pioneering Best Practice Scheme (BPS) – designed to reduce risks, raise operational performance and lower costs across the industry – is a huge step forward in improving the reputation of AD. We will be launching the full BPS later this year. Until then we will continue to work with members and other stakeholders to raise performance across the industry and push for the policy reforms we so desperately need to take AD in the UK to the next level.

AD now powers over a million homes ADBA’s July 2017 Market Report, which was launched at UK AD & Biogas and World Biogas Expo, shows that AD plants across the UK now have enough capacity to power over a million homes. The UK AD industry has a capacity of 730 MWe-e, an increase of 18 per cent over this time last year, with total energy generation of 10.7 TWh per year. Operational performance in the industry continues to improve, with load factors rising to 73 per cent in 2016, up from 69 per cent the previous year. Between 50-80 new AD plants were commissioned in 2016 but this number is projected to fall to 19-64 in 2017 as a result of policy uncertainty. The fact that AD can now power over a million homes is a great milestone to achieve, but there is still a desperate lack of long-term policy support for AD, particularly in heat and transport; areas where AD can make a significant contribution to decarbonisation. The full Market Report is free for members and can be downloaded from the ADBA website. Non-members are able to purchase a copy. For more information, contact emiliano.lewis@adbioresources.org


AD & Bioresources News | autumn 2017

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ADBA News ADBA celebrates biofertiliser hitting wholesale shelves ADBA’s Chief Executive Charlotte Morton has described the first in-store sales of biofertiliser produced from AD as ‘a game-changing moment in the restoration of the UK’s soils’. Farming family and ADBA members Steve and Sarah Suggitt of Suggitt Farm Services in Norfolk are using digestate from their AD plant to produce PlantGrow, a solid biofertiliser and liquid plant food developed by them specifically for the horticultural market. The range is on sale in 200 Homebase stores, all Blue Diamond stores, and independent garden centres in Norfolk, as well as online – see p32 for more details. Digestate produced through AD contains valuable nutrients such as phosphorous, potassium, and nitrogen, which are vital to restoring the UK’s depleted soils. Spreading digestate onto agricultural or horticultural land is a great way of improving crop and plant growth and maximising yields. It also offers a cheaper and more environmentally friendly alternative to industrial fossil fuel-based fertilisers, which have a very high carbon footprint.

Despite its high nutritional value, operators of AD plants have traditionally found it difficult to find a market for digestate as farmers and gardeners have been wary of alternatives to artificial fossil fuel-based fertilisers, which dominate the market. We hope the sale of products such as PlantGrow will increase demand for biofertiliser across the country, allowing AD operators to find a market for what is such an important and valuable product. For more information, contact chris.noyce@adbioresources.org

ADBA on tour – visit to Agrivert’s North London plant

In late July, ADBA staff visited Agrivert’s newest food waste AD plant, commissioned in December 2016 and located in Coursers Farm, Colney Heath in North London. The 3 MW facility processes around 50,000 tonnes of solid, liquid, packaged and unpackaged food waste every year, collected from local authorities and commercial waste producers, largely from Hertfordshire. The plant produces enough renewable electricity to power 6,000 homes, while excess heat produced in the process is used to warm the digesters and to heat the pasteurisation process – see p32 for more details. We were given a full tour of the facility and talked through each step of the process from start to finish – from when the food waste first enters the reception area to when electricity is produced at the other end. The plant is expected to achieve an average power output (load factor/capacity utilisation) of 96 per cent, significantly higher than the industry average of 73 per cent. For more information, contact emiliano.lewis@adbioresources.org www.adbioresources.org adbioresources.org

autumn 2017 | AD & Bioresources News


ADBA News ADBA attends FWRAP Steering Group meeting In July, Emiliano Lewis from our Policy Team and Chris Noyce, our PR & Parliamentary Affairs Executive, attended the Food Waste Recycling Action Plan (FWRAP) Steering Group meeting in WRAP’s offices in Banbury, to discuss progress made one year on from the launch of the plan. FWRAP is a cross-industry initiative to increase both the supply and quality of household and commercial food waste available for recycling. The plan sets out a series of actions to: • Increase the amount of food waste collected; • Provide long-term sustainable feedstocks for the AD and in-vessel composting sectors; and • Share the benefits and costs of collecting and recycling food waste.

ADBA is part of the FWRAP Steering Group and has been tasked with two key actions. The first is to develop a dissemination strategy to actively promote and support the food waste recycling industry’s use of WRAP’s new Cost Benefit Analysis tool, which is designed to help AD operators and local authorities that collect household food waste on a weekly basis weigh up the costs and associated benefits of implementing proven intervention measures such as using bin stickers and caddy liners, based on the specifics of their local arrangements. You can download the tool here: http://bit.ly/2w1nahI The second action is providing food waste processors with practical industry guidance on contamination and accepting and treating polyethylene and compostable liners as part of household food waste collections. This guidance is currently being finalised and ADBA members will be made aware of it once it has been published. The FWRAP Steering Group highlighted the good work that has been done across the action plan, including: • An increasing number of local authorities are now considering separate food waste collections; • The Kerbside Costing Tool and Cost-Benefit Tool have been downloaded by a number of local authorities and other organisations in the food waste supply chain; • Positive results have been reported from case studies of AD food waste processors investing in effective management of food waste contamination to achieve sustained quality outputs. FWRAP’s focus moving into its second year will be to further engage local authorities and AD operators in using the tools developed by the Steering Group to increase food waste recycling levels across the UK. For more information, contact emiliano.lewis@adbioresources.org See food waste feature, p10.


AD & Bioresources News | autumn 2017

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Best Practice Matters / Devolved Administrations Full scheme ahead

For information and advice on any areas relating to AD best practice, contact our Environment and Regulation Manager, Jess Allan T +44 (0)203 735 8380 E jessica.allan@adbioresources.org @JessicaAllan2 adbioresources.org/our-work/best-practice-scheme

I’m pleased to report a great deal of progress on the Best Practice Scheme for AD in recent months. The scheme is now in its pilot phase and will open to applicants later in the year. In the meantime, we will be refining the process and scheme criteria as well as confirming the benefits that participating operators will receive. In July, we published the two core documents that set out the proposed scheme – the Scheme Rules and Scheme Criteria. These are available via our website and we are still happy to receive feedback if you haven’t managed to find time so far. The team undertaking the pilot is as follows: Nick Johnn, Director, Aardvark Certification Ltd Aardvark Certification Ltd is a specialist auditing and certification body with expertise in the biowaste sector. Their sector-specific knowledge combined with experience in certification processes makes them a suitable certification body for us to work with.

L-R: Amaya Arias-Garcia, Nick Green of the Environment Agency and Jelf’s Carl Gurney at the launch of ADBA’s Best Practice Scheme pilot at UK AD & Biogas 2017

Dr Amaya Arias-Garcia, Technical Director, Goals PME Amaya chairs the scheme’s steering group and has a wealth of technical expertise in the AD sector, having worked on a wide range of AD projects in a project management and engineering capacity.

Jess Allan, Environment and Regulation Manager, ADBA I will be working in collaboration with Nick and Amaya to learn the key findings of the pilot and to observe the certification process in practice. We have had a fantastic level of interest from operators who are keen to participate in the scheme and we are working hard to open it as soon as possible. We will continue to provide updates during the pilot phase so do keep an eye on our website and social media, and make sure to get involved: http://bit.ly/28N8OGQ

ADBA partners We are delighted to announce that we have appointed Jelf Group as our risk management and insurance partner, following Jelf’s development of a bespoke insurance product offering AD operators additional cover for specific risks. AD operators certified under the scheme will benefit from a 10 per cent discount on their insurance premiums. Contact Carl Gurney, Renewable Energy Director, for details: adba@jelfgroup.com See Safety First, p41

Devolved administrations £8m renewables funding for Queen’s University Queen’s University in Belfast has been awarded more than £8m in research funding from an EU cross-Irish border scheme. The Bryden Centre for Advanced Marine and Bio-Energy Research will recruit 34 PhD students and six post-doctoral research associates. As well as marine energy projects, the centre will focus on the anaerobic digestion of agri-food waste. Gina McIntyre, Chief Executive of the Special EU Programmes Body, said the project was aimed at tackling the low level of industry-relevant research and innovation in the local renewables sector, adding: “The Bryden Centre project will help address this issue by creating a new centre of competence made up of dedicated PhD students creating high-quality research with strong commercial potential.” www.qub.ac.uk

Welsh Water secures £250m green energy loan Welsh Water has secured a £250m loan facility with the European Investment Bank to help finance plans to further develop renewable energy generation capacity at its sites. Plans include a £36m investment to transform Five Fords wastewater treatment works into an innovative energy park, incorporating a project to inject biomethane gas into the national gas distribution network and an advanced AD plant. Jonathan Taylor, Vice President of the European Investment Bank said: “Welsh Water is showing the world how investment to improve wastewater treatment can harness renewable energy from diverse sources. Pioneering innovation such as this is crucial to cut emissions and ensure that companies can contribute to climate action.” www.dwycymru.com

Scottish Government proposes new Climate Change Bill The Climate Change (Scotland) Act 2009 set world-leading greenhouse gas emissions reduction targets, including a target to reduce emissions by 80 per cent by 2050. The Scottish Government is now consulting on the introduction of a new Climate Change Bill with even more ambitious targets. Proposals include: setting targets based on actual emissions; increasing the 2050 target to 90 per cent emissions reduction; and making provisions for a net-zero GHG target, to be set when this is credible from both a technology and cost perspective. The consultation closes on 22 September. To download the document, go to http://bit.ly/2tH61Jg

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autumn 2017 | AD & Bioresources News


Government & Agency News AD gate fees continue to fall

Waste in Westminster Our External Affairs Manager, Jon Harrison, reports on the latest waste news from Parliament

Ringing the Parliamentary changes

WRAP has published its latest annual report on gate fees, which shows that in 2016, gate fees in the AD industry continued to fall. The median gate fee for local authority waste to AD operators in 2016, based on a sample size of 64 LAs is £29 per tonne, compared to £40 per tonne the year before. If the results from the commercial gate fees provided by operators are used, the median gate fee fares even worse, at £22 per tonne for AD (based on a sample of 59 operators). Waste operator interviews indicated this could reflect over-capacity in the market, although this does vary from region to region. The large range in gate fees reported by respondents is likely to be due to variations in contract terms, risk allocations and performance guarantees. To download the full Gate Fees Report, go to http://bit.ly/2vSuXKR

London Assembly investigates waste management London generates a huge amount of waste – in 2015/16 local authorities collected 3.7bn tonnes of waste. The London Assembly’s Environment Committee is therefore investigating London’s waste generation, handling and disposal. The three areas of focus are: • Waste reduction and the circular economy – how to reduce waste and use the circular economy; • Recycling – the potential to develop greater consistency in household recycling and food/organic waste collections between London boroughs; • Energy from waste – the role of energy from waste plants in managing residual waste. The Committee will explore the Mayor’s role in reducing the costs and environmental impacts of London’s waste and how it is handled, with the aim of reducing waste and promoting the city’s move towards a circular economy.


AD & Bioresources News | autumn 2017

Michael Gove, the new Secretary of State for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

Post-election, things at Westminster got off to a slow start as the new Parliament reconvened. Due to the Prime Minister’s mini-reshuffle, we have a new Secretary of State for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs in Michael Gove; a somewhat unexpected appointment. Andrea Leadsom moves to Leader of the House of Commons, responsible for piloting legislation through Parliament – no mean task given the challenges of Brexit ahead.

Gove has outlined his vision for a post-Brexit support scheme for farmers, with greater emphasis on protecting the environment Andrea Leadsom, the new Leader of the House and supporting rural life, rather than the of Commons current system based on size of landholding and output. His speech has been given a cautious welcome by most stakeholders, who are keen for more clarity on what will replace the CAP. Partly due to the uncertainty caused by the unexpected lack of a government majority, Select Committees were slow to be formed, and the selection of key committees to scrutinise legislation key to the AD industry was also delayed. As such, the Statutory Instrument Committee, needed to allow the re-introduction of the delayed RHI regulations, had not been reformed at the time of writing. This means that the regulations will not be tabled until at least September, after the summer recess. ADBA has written to new and returning ministers strongly urging government to re-table this legislation at the earliest opportunity, unlocking investment plans currently on hold and giving certainty to those involved. We have also requested meetings to discuss these issues in more detail in the autumn when Parliament reconvenes. However, the House of Lords has been quicker at re-establishing itself and its EU Energy and Environment Sub Committee has launched a short inquiry into the effects on the UK’s energy supply when we leave the European Union. We will be sending a submission highlighting the important contribution that locally-produced green gas can make to our energy security, reducing our imports from abroad and helping to reduce our carbon emissions. After the summer recess, we hope to see progress on stalled priorities including the Clean Growth Plan, and the 25-year Plan for Nature and the Industrial Strategy, with its associated sector deals. We are preparing to engage with the new Parliament and these important policies, and we would strongly encourage our members to invite your newly-elected local MP to tour your plants or operations. You can find a template letter and more advice on how to do this on our website – and do get in touch if you would like any help: jon.harrison@adbioresources.org

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Operator & Working Groups Interest grows in biomethane for transport ADBA’s Transport Working Group met in May, where Chair Andrew Whittles kicked off the session with an update on the growth of biomethane in buses and municipal vehicles. Andrew spoke about the low carbon and clean air benefits of using biomethane as a vehicle fuel, and about the potential cost savings. He informed the group about the different bus companies and local authorities adopting biomethane, the most recent being Nottingham City Transport who have introduced 53 double decker Scania gas buses. The group was joined by Justin Laney, General Manager Central Transport for John Lewis Partnership, who gave a presentation on the company’s use of biomethane in its HGV fleet. Justin revealed that it had adopted biomethane after academic analysis proved it to be the most sustainable fuel, as well as cost effective. John Lewis Partnership currently has 43 dual-fuel trucks and

12 dedicated gas trucks in service, as well as a filling station near Leyland. It aims to run 700 biomethane trucks by 2024. Thom Koller, ADBA’s Policy Manager, then provided the group with an update on the proposed reform to the Renewable Transport Fuel Obligation, which has been delayed due to the general election. The other major policy discussion point was air quality and the consultation on tackling nitrogen dioxide emissions. Initially, six Clean Air Zones were proposed but this is likely to rise to around 25, as many cities and towns are falling below EU required air quality levels. Vehicles fuelled by biomethane would help to reduce air pollution and decarbonise transport.

Get involved With the RHI still awaiting implementation and interest in biomethane as a transport fuel rising, several AD developers and operators attended our last Transport Working Group meeting. If you are interested in joining this growing group, contact thom.koller@adbioresources.org In addition, our third Biomethane and Gas Vehicle Conference takes place on 28 September. See p31 for details or register your attendance here: adbioresources.org/events/biomethane-vehicles-conference

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autumn 2017 | AD & Bioresources News


Separate food waste collections

Waging war on food waste


he statistics around food waste are frightening. It is often reported that if food waste was a country, it would be the third largest emitter of greenhouse gases in the world, after the USA and China. Based on the current carbon intensity of the global food sector, feeding the world’s population by 2050 will lead to an increase of two degrees in global temperatures. In the UK, avoidable food and drink waste from households and the supply chain is responsible for total annual emissions of 23.7m tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent (MtCO2e). While some of these emissions occur from the production, transportation and storage of food which is then wasted, a proportion also comes from the decomposition of food at landfill sites, which take in a huge 2.4m tonnes of food waste each year. And the cost of food waste is not only felt by the planet, it affects our pocket, too. In ADBA’s response to the Parliamentary Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee’s inquiry into food waste in England, we pointed out that the economic impact of food waste is ‘enormous’. According to WRAP’s latest figures, edible food with a retail value of around £13bn was thrown away rather than being eaten in 2015.

Almost 60 per cent of people believe they waste either no food or hardly any 10

AD & Bioresources News | autumn 2017

The best way to tackle food waste is to follow the food waste hierarchy: reducing the amount of food wasted in the first place, while treating the unavoidable portion through technologies such as anaerobic digestion. Sending unavoidable food waste to AD could achieve emission reductions of around 2.7 MtCO2e, contributing to the 9 MtCO2e emission reductions per year that is required to meet the fifth Carbon Budget reduction target. The solution is obvious – so why are we still such a nation of food wasters?

Changing public perception

“There’s been a lot of talk in the media about food waste, but the latest figures show that the volume of household food waste is not coming down,” points out Andrew Bird, Recycling and Waste Services Manager at NewcastleUnder-Lyme Borough Council. “The catering and industry sectors have got the message and there is a lot of effort going on, but the message isn’t getting through to householders. I’m not sure that people associate food waste with their own activities.” This view is backed up by WRAP research, which found that almost 60 per cent of people believe they personally waste either no food or hardly any. Nonetheless, WRAP continues to work hard to change public perception. “WRAP has a number of initiatives designed to improve implementation of the food waste hierarchy, such as Courtauld 2025, the consumer food waste prevention campaign and, with industry, the Food Waste Recycling Action Plan,” points out Linda Crichton, Head of Resource Management at WRAP. “We have also been successful in securing European funding for a three year London wide project WRAP’s Linda Crichton to test joining up messages to consumers on reducing food waste with how to recycle food waste that can’t be avoided.” In addition, WRAP has produced guides for local authorities on food waste collections and anaerobic digestion, as well as guidance for businesses on how to recycle their food waste.

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Separate food waste collections Furthermore, WRAP has launched a consultation on its new draft guidance on food labelling and storage. This has been prepared in conjunction with the Food Standards Agency and the UK Government, and includes measures such as moving away from ‘use by’ dates towards ‘best before’ dates, where food safety will not be compromised. This new guidance comes after work by WRAP revealed that the date label is a factor in consumers’ decision to dispose of food in around a third of cases.

Separate weekly food waste collections capture twice as much food waste per year compared to mixed food and garden waste collections

Don’t waste waste

But is it unfair to place the blame for our stubbornly high levels of food waste solely on householders? According to data collected by WRAP, 900,000 tonnes of food waste are disposed of in the hospitality and food service sector each year. Sending this to AD would abate 360,000 tCO2e per year. However, if we are to follow the food waste hierarchy, it’s important that we ensure that any food still fit for human consumption is first distributed to those in need. FareShare worked with almost 7,000 charities to supply more than 28m meals to vulnerable people last year and its Director of Food, Mark Varney, has previously stated: “If it’s not saleable, food should be redistributed to those in need. If it’s not edible, then it should be used for animal feed. And if that’s not possible, then it should be sent to AD to be recycled into energy and biofertiliser. There’s no reason why food should ever be ‘wasted’.” In terms of treating unavoidable and residual food waste, however, anaerobic digestion is the best of the methods currently available as it produces both energy and digestate. In contrast, in-vessel composting does not recover any energy, while incineration (or other thermal processing) produces energy without returning nutrients to land. In fact, treating food waste via AD generates as much as 60 per cent more energy than incineration.

Paul points out that the Welsh Government’s efforts saw recycling rates exceed 60 per cent in 2016. They are on course to reach 65 per cent this year, meaning that the statutory target of 70 per cent by 2025 is well within reach. “They have achieved this through a clear strategy, backed by funding and set statutory targets,” he explains. “The Scottish Government, meanwhile, passed a law in Continued>>

In a wider context, maximising the use of food waste as an AD feedstock would bring huge benefits both on a national and global scale. “Biogas can contribute to nine of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) the UN, and therefore the UK, signed up to in September 2015,” says David Newman, President of the World Biogas Association. “These goals have to be met by 2030. Yet there is little sense of urgency from many governments over the planning, law changes, investments and stimuli needed to achieve them. These goals impact upon the lives of all of us; from alleviating poverty to providing clean air and water to safeguarding soil quality. By investing in biogas – and helping developing nations do this, too – we can contribute rapid step changes needed to achieve the UN SDGs and improve life quality globally.”

Separate food waste collections

But if anaerobic digestion is such a good way of dealing with residual and unavoidable food waste, then why is more not being collected in England? The simple answer is that in order to be effective, separate food waste collections are required. “Our evidence consistently shows that separate weekly collections of food waste capture twice as much food waste per year compared to mixed food and garden waste collections,” comments Linda Crichton. While these are mandatory in Scotland and Wales, this is not yet the case in England – in fact, 80 per cent of the biodegradable municipal waste sent to landfill across the UK comes from England. “If food waste is collected separately it cannot be sent to incineration or landfill as, legally, it must be recycled,” explains Paul Killoughery of AD operator Bio Collectors. “Equally, if a non-segregated food waste collection is operated, the only option is for all the waste to end up in the bottom two tiers of the food waste hierarchy. It is therefore crucial that councils across England look at ways of implementing segregated food waste collections. There are clearly cost implications in doing so, but the savings made by removing food waste from the general waste stream more than make up for this. It is something we believe all local authorities should be investigating as a matter of urgency.” www.adbioresources.org adbioresources.org

autumn 2017 | AD & Bioresources News


Separate food waste collections “Requiring businesses north of the border to separate their food waste for recycling has not only diverted significant tonnages from landfill, it has helped them save money because food waste recycling is often cheaper. It has also Biogen’s Iain Pickles spurred investment by waste collection companies and created jobs. It’s a double win – for the environment and the economy.”

Bio Collectors is the largest food waste recycling company in London

January 2014 requiring all businesses to separate paper, plastic, metal, card and food for recycling. Since then, their AD capacity has been surpassed and surplus food is now being transported to English AD plants. Further to this, from 2020 it will be illegal in Scotland to send any form of waste to landfill. Implementation of these rules in England would result in a similar spike in AD usage and greatly improve recycling rates across the country.”

Barriers to collection

“Separate food waste collections are a brilliant waste minimisation tool, as householders can actually see how much waste they are generating,” states Andrew Bird, who has first-hand experience of running such collections. “In our case, participation has gone up but the tonnage is coming down, which is exactly what we want. Collecting food waste separately really hammers home to people how much food waste they are generating.” But if that’s the case, then what’s stopping more local authorities from implementing them? “It comes down to cost,” believes Andrew. “Our scheme is in its seventh year and we revised it last year. It’s now cost effective and we have a very good gate fee arrangement with an AD operator, but there were serious upfront costs. We originally used separate vehicles, although we now make the food waste collection with the same vehicle as the recycling, on a weekly basis in a single pass. Councils have to go through an operational learning curve and without upfront and sustainable funding, I don’t think I would support mandatory food waste collections.” “Another major barrier to implementing segregated food waste collections is that a number of councils are tied into long-term waste disposal contracts,” adds Paul Killoughery. “These contracts can be up to 25 years and extremely costly to break. Further to this, the logistics of implementing such a scheme become more difficult as the population density of an area increases. This is typically the case in London, where in some boroughs as many as 80 per cent of residents live in flats. There’s no doubt that rolling out nationwide separate collections will have initial costs; however, the rewards will be reaped both environmentally and financially in the long term. As councils are often also reluctant to look at changes to their systems without significant evidence of their efficacy, the successes of segregated collections in Scotland and Wales can only help the industry make an even stronger case for mandatory segregation and use of AD.”

Having a secure framework also boosts industry confidence and wider investment, which can be seen by the number of biogas projects moving forward in Scotland. “The Scottish Government has demonstrated a real commitment to bioenergy and renewables and, as a consequence, industry in Scotland seems much more engaged with looking at opportunities compared to south of the border. We’re building five plants this year, and four of them are in Scotland,” says Richard Gueterbock, Director of Clearfleau. However, even in those areas where separate food waste collections are carried out, it can be challenging to engage householders in the process. “You have to make it easy for people and it’s essential to provide liners,” believes Andrew Bird. “If you expect householders to buy their own liners, they see this as paying for something that the council should provide, which is off-putting. Providing free liners, and putting stickers on the residual waste bins reminding them not to empty their food waste there, are both really helpful.” “The design of separate collections has been influenced by wider European experience, mainly in Italy,” adds Ms Crichton. “WRAP first started working on food waste collections around 2007. We studied experiences in other European countries and used this to inform a large-scale collection trial in 19 local authorities, covering around 100,000 households. The approach tested during these trials is the basis of the majority of separate food waste collections now operating across the UK.” This work highlighted the following key elements to successful food waste collections: • Weekly collections; • Providing householders with an internal food waste caddy for separating food waste in the home, and an external container to store waste between collections; Continued>> It’s essential to make it easy for people to recycle their food waste, such as providing free caddy liners

Learning from experience

Iain Pickles is Head of Sales for food waste AD operator Biogen and is certain that the benefits of separate food waste collection far outweigh the challenges: 12

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autumn 2017 | AD & Bioresources News


Separate food waste collections • Providing liners for kitchen caddies – not all councils provide liners free of charge but provision of liners does have a positive impact on participation in the service; • Good communications, such as explaining what food wastes are accepted and how to use the service – WRAP has had success using stickers on residual waste bins to remind people not to put food waste there; • Services at flats should operate in a similar way, but with residents typically taking their food waste to communal containers located alongside residual waste and recycling containers, close to the entrance of flats or in bin store areas.

Support for councils

It is widely believed that unless England implements mandatory food waste collections, the UK will not meet its targets for overall levels of recycling. “The obligation to reach our 50 per cent recycling target can only be met by recycling food waste,” stresses David Newman. “The EU will raise WBA President this to 60-65 per cent by David Newman 2025. The UK as a whole claims more than 40 per cent recycling but under the calculation method the EU will introduce, our recycling rates will be measured at around only 30-35 per cent. We therefore have an enormous gap to bridge, especially in England. And


AD & Bioresources News | autumn 2017

while councils hold the legal obligation to meet these targets, the benefits of meeting them through food waste treatment are collective: more renewable energy, less GHG emissions, more soil nutrients, and better dry recycling. Government has to step up and help councils by allowing increases in taxes to pay for separate collections and by making it obligatory to collect food waste across the country. The Welsh and Scottish Governments heavily subsidised food waste collections to get them started. We cannot abandon the councils and expect them to implement separate collections at a time when their budgets are being slashed. We need each household to pay a few extra pounds each year to reap the environmental benefits we will all enjoy as a nation.” However, David also warns that unless the waste industry sticks together, getting government on-side will be an uphill battle: “Frankly, a considerable part of the waste industry is not in favour of separate food waste collections because their interests lie elsewhere. And a divided industry creates a weak front towards Whitehall, which makes it easier for them not to act.”

Time for action

A report from the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (EFRA) Select Committee in May called on the government to introduce a range of measures, including a national food waste target, greater participation in the voluntary Courtauld Agreement, mandatory reporting of food waste data by large food businesses, and mandatory separation of food waste by food businesses and retailers. Speaking at June’s meeting of G7 Environment Ministers in Bologna, UK Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Therese Coffey stated that she is in favour of the ‘recycling of biowaste’, ‘treating waste as a resource’ and, if necessary, supporting a ‘revision of legislation to enable this’.

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Separate food waste collections If carried out, such moves will be welcomed by AD operators like Bio Collectors, which was the only food waste recycler asked to submit evidence to the inquiry at Parliament. “We highlighted the importance of mandatory segregated collections and the positive change they would have on the recycling of food waste, and this was reflected in the recommendations made by the Committee,” says Paul Killoughery. However, for the government to implement the Committee’s recommendations, it will first have to overcome its inherent reluctance to use mandatory measures. “Voluntary approaches can be very effective but sometimes you need a mandatory approach to make a step change,” stresses Dr Liz Goodwin, former Chief Executive of WRAP and now Senior Fellow and Director for Food Loss & Waste at the World Resources Institute (WRI).

To date, Parliament has been reluctant to implement mandatory food waste collection measures

So far, action from Westminster to tackle the issue of food waste has been lacking. ADBA will continue to call for ‘consistent household waste and recycling collections between England’s local authorities’, which we believe are vital to reducing food waste and increasing the volumes sent to AD instead of landfill. As the examples in Scotland and Wales have demonstrated, there is so

much to be gained from implementing separate food waste collections. The call to action has never been louder – it’s now time for Whitehall to listen. www.wrap.org.uk www.biocollectors.com www.biogen.co.uk www.clearfleau.com

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autumn 2017 | AD & Bioresources News


Technology Focus: Pumps, mixers and pre-treatment technology

Getting gritty with it

One of Future Biogas’ nine UK AD plants

Jurgen Kube, Head of Technology at Future Biogas, considers the challenges involved in selecting the correct mixing technology for an AD plant. “Though biogas fermentation technology is generally considered a low-tech application, the handling of substrates and digestate presents some serious challenges to operators and engineers in the AD industry. We almost never work with Newtonian fluids (beside biogas itself and some rainwater), but instead we must manage a three-phase mixture which is oversaturated with carbon dioxide and often contains long fibres. The suspended gas bubbles render the digestate semi-compressible, which makes it extremely difficult to calculate pressure drops in pipelines or flow behaviour around a mixer. Once we dissipate energy in a pump, at a stirrer-blade, or in a mill or cavitation device, dissolved carbon dioxide is released, increasing the gas hold-up, the volume flow and lowering the density of the digestate. The fluid itself is shear-thinning; it can be described as a Power Law fluid, or – at higher dry matter – as a Bingham or Casson fluid, 16

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characterised by its yield stress. Fibres can align during the mixing or pumping process, leading to a transient rheological behaviour and adding thixotropic properties to the mix. For the handling of those fluids, a broad variety of pumps can be found on a typical AD plant: • Centrifugal pumps are used for high volume flow, low viscosity, and low pressure applications for non-saturated liquids; • R otary lobe pumps are used in high volume flow/medium viscosity environments; • P rogressive cavity pumps are preferable when the viscosity is high and volume flow is low; • A nd fluids with pronounced yield stress, such as biowaste, can often only be transported with piston pumps against very high pressures but at very low volume flows. Stirrers for AD plants can be categorised into agitators for laminar or turbulent mixing. Turbulent mixers are mostly propeller mixers and are used in low viscosity fluids at high angular www.adbioresources.org adbioresources.org

velocities and high shear rates. Laminar mixers, such as horizontal and vertical paddle mixers, are used in high viscosity environments and are characterised by large diameters, low shear rates and low angular velocities. Feedstock treatment technologies can be loosely categorised into mechanical, thermal, and biological methods, but often combine more than one effect. A design engineer must consider where the treatment system is positioned and how much of the digester volume is filled with untreated substrate. Another important consideration is the maximum dry matter concentration the unit can handle. Generally, it is better to keep the dilution to a minimum prior to treatment. While the oil and chemical industry generally works with much simpler media than the AD industry, it also has the luxury of whole departments focused on the scientific evaluation of this media and the subsequent equipment

Technology Focus: Pumps, mixers and pre-treatment technology selection. So, where does that leave us? We must follow the long and stony road of trial and error – let others make mistakes and ensure that we all learn from their experience.”

Pre-treatment expertise from ADBA members

It’s a sad fact that not every AD plant will work to its owner’s complete satisfaction following commissioning and handover. In many instances, this comes down to issues with the front end of the plant. “While not ideal, these scenarios present opportunities to companies who are recognised suppliers of digester feed systems, who are usually totally independent from technology providers,” reveals James Tolson, Managing Director of pump and maceration technology provider, Vogelsang Ltd. “Often, replacement systems can be tailored to better suit the specific application, or the new supplier can provide a system that gives much more flexibility in terms of the solid feedstocks that can be handled.” Digester feed systems can be broadly split into two categories. There are those where the solid feedstock is fed independently of the liquid phase into a holding or mixing tank, or directly to the primary digester tank, where it first meets the

Vogelsang's PreMix, which here is connected to a Trioliet cattle feeder using an Awila transfer augur

liquid phase. This usually done with an augur or rubber belt conveyor and mixing then takes place with gas or physical mixers within the tank. Alternatively, there are those systems where the solid and liquid phases are mixed on an online/

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on demand basis and the resultant mixture is pumped into the tank. The Vogelsang PreMix system falls into the latter category. The PreMix is connected to a Trioliet cattle feeder using an Continued>>

autumn 2017 | AD & Bioresources News


Technology Focus: Pumps, mixers and pre-treatment technology GEA’s Trailed Superpump

Awila transfer augur (this is just one example configuration; it can be connected to many other feeders and transfer augurs). This augur transports the mixed solid feedstock from the cattle feeder into the PreMix system, where the chosen solid and liquid feedstocks are mixed to a required ratio and then homogenised and macerated before being pumped into either the digester tank itself, or into a hydrolysis or raw waste buffer tank. Any foreign bodies fall into an integral stone trap, while an automated device for pushing the accumulated bodies out of the macerator (without draining the whole macerator for a full clean out) can be fitted. As many operators can testify, AD feedstocks can be costly and take time to break down. To


AD & Bioresources News | autumn 2017

counteract this, Rika Biofuels, through its sister company Rika Biogas Technologies, is bringing to the UK market the Bioextruder, a simple and cost-effective technology, designed and produced by German firm Lehmann UMT, that enables cheap and prevalent organics such as straw and other lignocellulosic materials (including low-quality grass or cereal husks) to be used as AD feedstocks. Around 200 Bioextruders are currently in operation on biogas plants throughout Europe. The technology destroys the cell wall structure of the material through a thermo-mechanical process similar to steam explosion but without the need for added heat and with a significantly smaller capex. It allows the bacteria to access organic matter which would otherwise be locked away, as Gregory Krupnikovs, Director at Rika Biofuels, explains: “Long-running tests on a small scale pilot digester show results of over 400m3 of biogas per fresh tonne of extruded

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dry straw. This would allow substantial volumes of expensive energy crops to be substituted for straw, creating significant cost savings for AD plant operators. Tests have also shown that bioextrusion can increase biogas yields from maize by up to 15 per cent.” The equipment can be retrofitted to operational AD plants and achieves a typical payback of up to three years, depending on scale and application. “The BioExtruder presents an exciting opportunity for AD operators to optimise the financial performance of their plants, whilst also allowing plants to meet new sustainability criteria that demand 50 per cent of AD feedstock must be waste or crop residues,” adds Gregory. Salvtech Ltd provides a range of products and services to the AD market, including pumps and pre-treatment systems. In the UK, Salvtech represents Cellwood Machinery, which manufactures technology to clear grit from digesters – something which can be a costly issue for AD operators. “Grit in digesters is often overlooked during the design stage, only to later become a huge issue for the operator,” says Martin Christmas, General Manager of Salvtech. “AD feedstock often contains particles of glass and

Technology Focus: Pumps, mixers and pre-treatment technology sand which accumulate in the tank. Not only does this incur a large initial cost to remove – often manually and by cutting a hole in the side of the tank – it also brings long-term financial implications through operational downtime and the subsequent restart of the AD process.”

Some of the grit, glass and bone removed from the grit washer installed by Huber

For over 50 years, the process of using a vortex principle to remove grit from pulp has existed within the paper industry. Cellwood has developed a solution for the problem of grit in digesters by adapting its high-density cleaner used in the paper industry for use in AD. The technology has shown outstanding results and has been successfully installed in sites throughout Scandinavia. It can remove particles up to 250 µm and can be installed as part of an upgrade or within a complete pre-treatment system. “Most importantly, the removal of this grit means that build up in the digester is no longer a problem and the extra space due to lack of sediment means that biogas production is optimised. Not only are tank maintenance costs reduced, but less servicing is required on other machinery such as pumps and agitators, as they are subjected to reduced wear and tear,” adds Martin. Also providing solutions to the problem of grit in digesters is AD treatment specialist Huber Technology. The company was on hand when a competitor’s grit trap caused problems during the commissioning of a new AD plant in Northern Ireland. “The site operators were entering the original settlement tank up to three times a week to clear excess grit, as the system would block

The Bioextruder is brought to the UK by Rika Biofuels

and abrade pumps and tanks,” explains James Tucker, Industrial Business Development Manager. “The material removed was high in organics and therefore expensive to landfill. On top of this, the organic material removed with the grit resulted in lost biogas yield.” The plant takes in a mixture of green waste and food waste and puts this through a pair of hammer mills. This material contains a higher than normal amount of grit, which Huber had experience of following a similar project in Germany. The initial design request was for a circular tank for grit settlement. However, after reviewing the situation, Huber recommended its longitudinal grit trap and grit washer. The performance and reliability of the AD plant is now considerably improved – the stoppages experienced previously have been dramatically reduced, downstream equipment is experiencing less wear as the abrasive grit and glass have been removed, and the gas yield has increased due to the returned organics. For some AD operators, however, the issue is not just mixing before digestion takes place, it’s about mixing after the AD process, too. When David and Philip Hardy at Slipperlow Farm in Matlock installed a new AD plant, they built a suitably large lagoon to store the digestate and were keen to find a machine capable of mixing such a construction. Fortunately, they discovered GEA’s range of very long lagoon mixers that are built and used in the US and Canada. They selected the www.adbioresources.org adbioresources.org

15.85m Trailed SuperPump machine, which uses a powerful jetting device to break up crusts and fire down through the liquid to break up any sand dunes. Philip had some concerns about whether the machine would go through the thick crust, but within a matter of minutes it was mixing the lagoon. “I was pleasantly surprised at the ease it did this,’’ says David. “The jetting device got the whole crust moving in a circular motion and as the heavy lumps came to the 28" manure inlet, it gobbled them up without any issue.’’ The machine is capable of jetting 48.77m and in a 320-degree arc. In fact, with its 15.85m length on top, it made the lagoon look quite small. The ability to top-fill slurry tankers or ‘force feed’ umbilical pumps was also a feature that appealed to David and Philip: “Umbilical pumping was our intention, but since we have experienced the quick turnaround time with tankers, due to the filling speed, we now think a trailing shoe on the tankers would be a better option,” adds David. “Because the pump is so efficient at mixing the lagoon, we may consider mixing it once or twice in the winter, which should further reduce the thickness of crust.” www.futurebiogas.com www.vogelsang.info/en/vogelsang-uk www.rikabiofuels.com www.salvtech.com www.huber.co.uk www.gea.com autumn 2017 | AD & Bioresources News



AD & Bioresources News | autumn 2017

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AD & Biogas Industry Awards 2017 Review

Championing the best of the AD world Reflecting the truly international feel of the AD and biogas industry, this year’s AD & Biogas Industry Awards celebrated outstanding projects from countries including Australia, Japan, the UK, Poland and Colombia. Covering every kind of plant – large, small, commercial, agricultural and sewage – the event once again demonstrated the sheer size and breadth of our sector, and the groundbreaking innovations that have taken place over the past twelve months. The black-tie awards dinner took place at the end of the first day of the UK AD & Biogas and World Biogas Expo 2017. The ceremony was presided over by Charlotte Smith, presenter of BBC Radio 4’s Farming Today and regular contributor to BBC1’s Countryfile, and featured entertainment from stand-up comedian Ivo Graham. Notable awards won on the night included a Lifetime Achievement award for Emeritus Professor and AD expert Charles Banks; AD Hero of the Year for engineering consultant Dr Amaya Arias-Garcia; and AD Team of the Year for engineering services provider WIS Group – see p22-23 for the full list of winners. Charlotte Morton, Chief Executive of ADBA, summed up the event: “These awards were a great opportunity to celebrate the best and brightest in the AD industry, both in the UK and around the world, and help ensure that everyone knows the huge contribution this industry can make to meeting the UN Sustainable Development Goals.”

“We are delighted to be recognised for the work Agrivert and Oxfordshire have achieved together – a fantastic example of how focused partnerships can deliver positive results.” Harry Waters, Commercial Director, Agrivert Winner, Best food waste reduction and collection system

Phil Gerrard, CEO, Privilege Finance Gold sponsor

“Receiving the prestigious ADBA award is truly an honour for us. We are happy that our proprietary solutions that help reduce GHG emissions have gained international recognition in such esteemed competition.” Justyna Dziewota-Jablonska, Managing Director, Symbiona UK Winner, Best international sewage treatment AD plant

“The awards encourage our entire team to continue to develop smart and flexible solutions for our customers.” Kevin Monson, Sales Manager, WELTEC BIOPOWER Winner, Best international agricultural plant and Best international commercial plant

“Receiving this award is fantastic recognition for all the hard work our team has put in over the past year. We are proud to be helping grow the circular economy in London.” James McMillan, Marketing & Communications Manager, Bio Collectors Winner, Making the most of digestate

“The evening was a great success and it was fantastic to see so many individuals and businesses celebrated for their achievements over the past year. Having already invested over £250m in AD projects in the UK, we look forward to continuing to work with ADBA and those in the wider industry.”

Industry pays tribute to late Hugh Vaughan The awards ceremony also saw the industry celebrate the life of AD pioneer Hugh Vaughan, who was posthumously awarded a special Contribution to the UK AD Industry award. Hugh, who was UK Director at pump and mixer manufacturer Landia, tragically passed away earlier this year with his wife in a road accident whilst on holiday in Mauritius. Hugh had been at Landia UK since its formation in 1994 and had been one of the founder directors of ADBA. “Hugh leaves behind a legacy that we must all work hard to continue to fight for,” said ADBA’s Charlotte Morton. “Hugh remained one of ADBA’s most passionate advocates and left us a mission: to continue to grow the UK and global AD industry, and this is how we can best honour his memory.”

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autumn 2017 | AD & Bioresources News


AD & Biogas Industry Awards 2017 Review

The winners Best sewage treatment AD plant UK

Best small-scale AD plant (sub-250 kW) UK

Sponsored by

Winner: Edina and Thames Water – Eight20 for Mogden Sewage Treatment Works The judges declared this a great example of how the performance of a long standing sewage treatment plant can be upgraded with a collaborative approach and investment in new infrastructure and CHPs.

Best on-farm AD plant UK

Sponsored by

Sponsored by

Winner: WIS Group – Taylors 150 kw AD plant in Finvoy, Ballymoney The judges agreed that this plant is a lovely example of community food AD at a small and local scale. The incorporation of local food waste collection is to be very much applauded.

Best international sewage treatment AD plant Winner: Symbiona, Digetherm – Poland The panel felt this was a well-executed example of small-scale sewage treatment works in a very sensitive environmental area.

Winner: Foresight Group & Future Biogas for Stud Farm The judges felt this entry was an excellent example of problem resolution and a closed loop project. It was a well-researched project that makes a good and replicable model for a farm. Highly commended: Nomansland Biogas for Menchine Farm

Best international agricultural plant

Best food waste AD plant UK

Winner: WELTEC BIOPOWER – Incubadora Santander, Colombia The judges described this campaign as ‘unique’, calling the extension of the export market to places like Colombia ‘an excellent demonstration of export potential’.

Sponsored by

Winner: Edina and Swancote Energy The panel was impressed with Swancote as an excellent example of a small operator that has invested in new and innovative ways to ensure continuity. Highly commended: GENeco – Bristol food waste recycling facility

Best food & drink industry AD project UK

Sponsored by

Winner: NVP Energy, wastewater to energy at ABP Food Group The judges felt that NVP Energy were thoroughly justified winners. Given the environmental benefits of installing effluent treatment, they have provided data and replicable scale across ABP’s estate with proven benefit. The judges would like to see a lot more of those kinds of project across the food industry.


AD & Bioresources News | autumn 2017

Sponsored by

Best international commercial plant Winner: WELTEC BIOPOWER – commercial waste digestion near Melbourne, Australia This is a classic export plant which the judges felt demonstrated the example of the European AD supply chain moving into large and obvious opportunities globally. Highly commended: Biotrix Asia Company

Best international small-scale plant Winner: Genec Ltd & ePower Corp – Nakagami Farm This Japanese project has been driven by regulatory pressure to clean up. However, this is innovative technology, with great additional potential to solve environmental issues on pig farms.

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AD & Biogas Industry Awards 2017 Review Best food waste reduction and collection system

AD team of the year

Winner: Agrivert & Oxfordshire Environment Partnership The judges were impressed with the strong partnership approach between Agrivert and Oxfordshire County Council in encouraging higher participation through the introduction of funded caddy liners and engaging with the community. Highly commended: DS Smith & Tesco

Winner: WIS Group This team has an excellent industry reputation. Its award entry was very impressive, including testimonials and growth to the business. Overall, the WIS Group team demonstrated strong growth and a breadth of activities. Highly commended: GENeco

Best AD support (Technical)

Best process optimisation Winner: Uniflare, 98 per cent oxygen dosing system to reduce H2S in gas-to-grid applications This entry addressed an important issue in the emerging subsector of gas injection and was dubbed a ‘highly deserving winner’. Highly commended: CDEnviro Ltd

Making the most of digestate

Sponsored by

Winner: Bio Collectors; Trade Effluent Services There were two winners in this category. The judges were impressed with both entries and thought they both deserved the accolade for the way they work together to drive a market for their digestate products.

Making the most of biogas

Sponsored by

Winner: Scania GB Ltd – the world's first Euro 6 double-decker bus This project shows how biogas can be a solution in smart cities to improving air quality in urban environments. It demonstrates low-cost transport options, and the judges were delighted to see such good progress being made for biomethane in specialist areas of the transport sector. Highly commended: Pentair Haffmans

AD hero of the year

Winner: CooperOstlund Ltd In a very competitive category, CooperOstlund was highlighted as a company that is stabilising itself as a very strong market contender, providing competitive support and helping drive the industry forward. Highly commended: Flogas Britain Ltd with Future Biogas

Best AD support (Legal/Accounting/Consulting) Winner: Octego This entry directly addressed significant barriers in the market and tackled an increasingly important aspect of optimising outputs from energy. Highly commended: Synergie Environ Ltd, Synergie Environ AD Support Team

Research Project Award Winner: Peakhill Associates Ltd – verge grass to biogas This entry showed a highly innovative and serious attempt to address the research questions regarding this resource. An exceptionally well-constructed research project. Highly commended: Applied Nanoparticles SL

Lifetime Achievement Award

Sponsored by

Winner: Amaya Arias-Garcia, GOALS PME The judges were very impressed by Amaya’s continued support of the industry and dedication to building and developing new markets for AD.

Charles Banks – Emeritus Professor and AD expert A renowned academic, yet rooted in the needs of the real world, Charles has a vast theoretical knowledge which he combines with sound practical engineering skills. The Anaerobic Digestion Network is his brainchild and his work on energy balances, the hub and pod concept, municipal solid waste, the mechanisms of food waste AD and trace elements has underpinned the UK AD industry’s success. His current research topics of biomethanation and the use of algal ponds for wastewater treatment are particularly exciting.

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autumn 2017 | AD & Bioresources News


UK AD & Biogas and World Biogas Expo 2017 Review Co-located shows

Delivering the UN Sustainable Development Goals


or the first time in its eight-year history, the UK’s leading AD and biogas trade show partnered with the World Biogas Association to unite the global AD community. On 5-6 July at Birmingham’s NEC, UK AD & Biogas and World Biogas Expo 2017 brought together the finest examples of AD innovation, technology and expertise, and showcased how the industry can help solve some of the greatest challenges facing the world today. Themed around the topic of ‘Delivering the UN Sustainable Development Goals’, the event’s 200+ exhibitors and 140+ speakers demonstrated how AD offers a solution to at least nine of the 17 UN SDGs through reducing and recycling food waste, restoring depleted soils and improving air quality (and much more). Over 3,000 visitors from more than 50 countries (including over 300 visitors from outside of the UK) saw first-hand the benefits of AD and how to make their next biogas project work efficiently and economically. Acting as a hub for the global AD industry, the event was the perfect platform for exhibitors to launch their latest technological innovations, network with existing clients, meet new prospects and, of course, close deals. “We had an excellent response at the show, including a sale on the very first morning of one of our Bioselect separators,” enthused David Brown of Borger. Meanwhile, Jeroen van der Velde of MAN Rollo confirmed: “We signed an exciting service partnership agreement with Peter Brotherhood Ltd to support our new strategy. We met at last year’s show and this year we signed contracts.”

The state of the UK industry

As well as the exhibition, UK AD & Biogas and World Biogas Expo 2017 also featured a high-level, two-day conference, which began with an introduction from Charlotte Morton, ADBA’s Chief Executive, who highlighted the astonishing growth of the UK AD sector. “In the last eight years, the number of AD plants in the UK has almost quadrupled, while industry capacity has increased almost five-fold,” she revealed. “Today, there are 558 operational AD plants in the UK, generating from a capacity of 730 MW electrical-equivalent, which is enough to power over a million UK homes.” However, Charlotte acknowledged the difficulties ahead: delays to the RHI, a lack of clear government strategy regarding decarbonising heat, transport and electricity, and of course, Brexit: “This year is likely to be our most challenging year,” she warned. “Our current best indicator of confidence is the number of planning applications being made and our data shows that, at under six per month, it is now running at half its 2014 rate.” Highlighting the importance of ADBA’s work in lobbying government, Charlotte added that it’s crucial that the industry picks its battles and grasps every opportunity that comes its way: “We have a very strong case to make for AD to be given the kind of support that is currently afforded to dirtier and more expensive technologies. Overall, AD could abate over 21m tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions in the UK, saving the country over £2bn in damages.” 24

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Global ambition

Charlotte was followed by David Newman, President of the World Biogas Association, who outlined how AD can help to deliver the UN SDGs across the world. And despite President Trump’s decision to pull out of the Paris climate agreement, David remained upbeat about the global attitude towards climate change: “The G7 leaders recognise the role of carbon pricing in tackling climate change and eliminating subsidies for fossil fuels,” he stated. “There is actually a positive political context for our industry – the question now is how do we translate that into national policies? That’s the role of the WBA – we now have a global voice arguing our case.”

Reducing and recycling food waste

One of the UN SDGs is to ‘halve per capita global food waste at the retail and consumer level, and reduce food losses along production and supply chains by 2030’. With AD having the potential to play such an important role in achieving this target, it was no surprise that the issue of food waste was such a key theme of the show. Rosie Boycott, Chair of the London Food Board, along with representatives from WRAP, Scottish Government, Eunomia, and the Italian Composting and Biogas Association, among others, spoke at length about the damage being caused by rising levels of food waste and why it is imperative that the unavoidable and inedible portion is sent to AD, rather than landfill or incineration. “Food waste is the low-hanging fruit – everyone agrees that it’s a problem we need to address,” said Rosie Boycott. “If we do nothing, by 2050 the food system will be responsible for 75 per cent of global emissions.”

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UK AD & Biogas and World Biogas Expo 2017 Review As well as the conference sessions, there was also a special food waste collection workshop on day one of the show. It considered successes and challenges, and via case studies and peer presentations, enabled attendees to take away practical ideas for implementation.

Raising public awareness

The event also covered a whole range of themes and topics central to the continued success of our industry, with many sessions standing-room only. ADBA’s Chris Noyce was joined by speakers including Angie Bywater, Iona’s Richard Barker and Deb Cairns from E4Environment for a discussion on how to engage the public with AD. Chris recognised the challenges in getting greater media exposure for AD – including that because it delivers so many benefits it can seem complicated and hard to pigeonhole – but argued that ‘poo-power’ can also be headline-grabbing! Green gas also proved a hot topic, with presentations on biomethane for HGVs, flowing biomethane to the grid and extracting more value from biomethane all proving popular with delegates. The conference session on the role of AD in the UK energy strategy saw Chris Huhne and ADBA’s former Head of Policy Matt Hindle (now Head of Gas at the Energy Networks Association) discuss the best ways of using biogas for the benefit of our energy security. “Northern countries are going to need back-up during the winter months when solar yields least,” said Chris Huhne. “Fossil fuels are cheapest but they’re not a long-term solution. AD can seriously address the issue of inter-seasonality. However, decarbonsing heat is a better use of biogas, as heat demand is far more peaky than electricity demand,” he argued.

Something for everyone

As well as the conference and seminar sessions, the food waste collection workshop and the packed exhibition hall, UK AD & Biogas and World Biogas Expo also featured the ever-popular R&I Hub (see p37 for review), free one-to-one advice clinics, the AD & Biogas Industry Awards (see p21-23 for review), the launch of ADBA’s Best Practice Scheme Pilot (see p7), and two site visits to operational AD plants. And, for the first time ever, the event partnered with two new shows: Bio-Based Innovations Expo and Wastewater & Sewage Treatment Expo. Providing a taster of what next year will bring, these shows focused on recovering value and resources from waste and bio feedstocks other than through AD. With so much on offer across the two days – and with biogas having the potential to deliver so much to the world at large – it’s clear that this event is only going to get bigger and better. We look forward to welcoming you back in 2018!

Book your place for 2018

Taking place at the NEC, Birmingham on 11-12 July, UK AD & World Biogas Expo 2018 will be the world’s biggest and best gathering of the global AD community. Book your stand today by contacting sales@adbioresources.org

What our exhibitors say “We’ve had a steady flow of visitors to our stand and have met lots of new and old faces, including a number of potential buyers from overseas including Greece, Vietnam, Italy and Belgium.” Glen Lancaster, Thyson

“This is the fourth consecutive year we’ve exhibited and the volume and quality of leads has grown in line with our stand size, which this year at 88m2 was the largest at the show. I fully expect to recoup the investment in our stand within the next month, solely on new business leads created at this year’s event.” James Thompson, GEN-C

“The increasing number of international visitors was particularly pleasing.” Paul Davies, Landia

“We’ve enjoyed catching up with existing contacts and have also made a couple of promising new leads, including some from Ireland where the potential for AD is still to be realised.” Andrew Shaw, Shaw Renewables

“The show has been more than we were expecting and has provided us with some really specific leads.” James Tucker, Huber Technology

“I have organised and attended conferences for the last 30 years, and was pleased to sponsor, exhibit, and speak at this year’s event. The UK AD & Biogas and World Biogas Expo 2017 is one of the most well-organised shows I’ve ever participated in. The content was strong, and from a visual standpoint I thought it was absolutely stunning.” Chris Voell, Global Methane Initiative and US Environmental Protection Agency

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autumn 2017 | AD & Bioresources News


UK AD & Biogas and World Biogas Expo 2017 Exhibitor Highlights

The best of the biogas world

The UK AD & Biogas and World Biogas Expo is becoming something of a lucky charm for MAN Rollo – this year’s event cemented a relationship which began at the NEC 12 months ago. “We signed an exciting service partnership agreement with Peter Brotherhood Ltd at this year’s show, to support our new strategy,” explained Operations Manager Jeroen van der Velde. “We met at last year’s event and this year we signed contracts. Exhibiting at the show has been a fantastic success for us.” www.manrollo.com

Visitors to WELTEC BIOPOWER’s stand learnt how the company is helping waste producers from Europe to South America turn their waste into valuable renewable energy and digestate. “The quality of visitors to our stand was very good and we are already looking forward to next year,” enthused Ann Boerries, Marketing Manager. There was more to celebrate after the company won two coveted AD & Biogas Industry Awards on the first night of the show – Best international agricultural plant and Best international commercial plant. “Both projects had their own special challenges and were already very demanding in planning,” said Kevin Monson, Sales Manager. “Therefore, we are delighted that both plants not only work successfully, but have now also been presented with these prestigious awards. The awards encourage our entire team to continue to develop smart and flexible solutions for our customers.” www.weltec-biopower.com UK AD & Biogas and World Biogas Expo 2017 was the perfect platform for Elmac Technologies to showcase its foaming relief vents, which are fitted to digesters to allow emergency relief during foaming events. Adding the vent means less chance of the tank rupturing, which can cause considerable financial loss. www.elmactechnologies.com

T-T Pumps returned to the NEC this year to showcase the HBC Biocell green bedding unit. The system turns slurry into green bedding, reducing livestock bedding costs. Rob Lowe, Sales Manager, said: “We got some good leads from this event – it’s all about getting your face known.” www.ttpumps.com

“Coming to the show reminds people we are here and reinforces our position in the marketplace,” said Adrian Cox, from pump and mixing specialist, System Mix. The company was promoting its Rotamix tank mixing system at the event, which has no moving parts inside the tank. www.pumpmix.co.uk HRS Heat Exchangers has exhibited at the show since 2014, and this year the company highlighted its processing solutions; Digestate Concentration System (DCS) and Digestate Pasteurisation System (DPS). These systems help AD plant operators maximise energy efficiency, waste and CO2, whilst lowering fuel bills and improving final product quality. “This year’s event captured more attendees from overseas, many from European countries but as far reaching as South America,” said Matt Hale, International Sales & Marketing Director. “This indicates that the exhibition is gaining global credibility. Over the two days, we received a number of solid leads which we hope will turn into confirmed projects over the next few months,” he added. www.hrs-heatexchangers.com


AD & Bioresources News | autumn 2017

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UK AD & Biogas and World Biogas Expo 2017 Exhibitor Highlights Elster Metering’s expertise lies in the measurement and quality of biogas and controlling pressure. The company saw the show as the perfect platform to exhibit its gas quality measuring device, the Honeywell Gaslab Q2, which gives a 30-second analysis, ensuring that the gas quality is suitable for grid entry. www.elstermetering.co.uk

This was the fourth consecutive year that GEN-C has exhibited at the show, but this year saw the privately owned gas engine company take things to a new level. “It’s fair to say that the volume and quality of business leads have grown in line with our stand size, which this year at 88m2 was the largest at the show,” explained Director James Thompson. “We connected with new customers who we can’t reach via the more usual channels, and we found that having products on the stand so that visitors can see the quality first-hand is invaluable. We enjoyed a busy stand on both days, right up to the show closing,” continued James. “We met many more key decision makers and far fewer ‘tyre kickers’, and I expect to fully recoup the investment in our stand with the next month, solely on new business leads created at this year’s show. Without hesitation I’ve already booked our stand for next year!” www.gen-c.co.uk PRM Waste Systems offers a range of products for the AD industry, including solutions for food waste and organic material, and displayed the Runi dewatering/depackaging machine at the show. However, the company's latest innovation is pelletised digestate; a dry, odourless product which can be easily stored and then spread to land when required. www.prmwastesystems.com UK AD & Biogas and World Biogas Expo 2017 not only provided the latest news and innovations in the AD sector, but also offered immediate business opportunities, as discovered by Borger Director David Brown. “Once again, we had an excellent response at the show,” he said. “This included a sale on the very first morning of one of our Bioselect separators. We had no shortage of interest. As a truly dedicated event, UK AD & Biogas is a must.” www.boerger.com

Leading valve manufacturer AVK provides solutions for sludge as well as potable, raw and waste water. On display at the show were examples of the company’s gate valves, which can be suited to all types of non-conventional gas applications. Mike Skeemer, Market Sector Manager, said: “We come to the show to get new leads and more business.” www.avkvalves.com

Huber Technology demonstrated its Strainpress plastics removal unit. Huber’s products are used pre-digestion for screening, washing oversize material and removing grit, and post-digestion for plastics removal, dewatering and digestate screening. James Tucker, Industrial Business Development Manager, said: “The show provided more than expected for us, with some specific leads.” www.huber.co.uk www.adbioresources.org adbioresources.org

autumn 2017 | AD & Bioresources News


UK AD & Biogas and World Biogas Expo 2017 Exhibitor Highlights Symbiona UK welcomed a variety of international visitors to its stand, who learned how the company’s proprietary solutions are helping to reduce greenhouse gas emissions around the world. Symbiona was awarded the honour for Best international sewage treatment AD plant at the AD & Biogas Industry Awards, where Managing Director Justyna Dziewota-Jablonska commented: “Receiving the prestigious ADBA award is truly an honour for us. I am pleased that the jury acknowledged our DigeTherm™ thermal hydrolysis technology, as this project was of special importance for us. We are happy that our proprietary solutions that help reduce greenhouse gas emissions, including also nominated AnoxyMem® AnMBR, have gained international recognition in such esteemed competition.” www.symbiona.com

Founder ADBA member Landia showcased its newest product, the BioBuster pre-treatment technology – a faster and cheaper way to pump feedstock, which also provides complete substrate conditioning. Landia’s GasMix digester mixing system was also on display. “We’re working on some very good enquiries – especially for important retrofit work – from UK AD & Biogas, which again showed its strength for being such a highly-focused event,” commented Sales Manager Paul Davies. “The increasing number of international visitors was particularly pleasing.” www.landia.co.uk

This was the second year of exhibiting for Mastek, which was showcasing the Slurry Mate – an umbilical method of manure/slurry handling which involves pumping the liquid from a liquid storage facility (lagoon or tank) using a high pressure pump unit, via a pipeline, to a tractor-mounted applicator unit. www.mastek.com Evonik demonstrated its biogas upgrading technology, Sepuran Green. Volker Wehber, Global Director Sepuran Green, said: “The use of biomethane derived from organic waste sources as an alternative fuel in CNG or LNG powered vehicles is still at the beginning, but we have a new generation product due for launch that will revolutionise the biogas world.” Watch this space! www.evonik.com

The new DisRuptor mechanical disintegration unit drew plenty of visitors to Vogelsang’s stand. The award-winning machine is the latest innovation from the company and consists of a rotor with six blades and an external DisRuptor ring, offering flexible and mechanical treatment of substrates. www.vogelsang.info

A-Consult designs, manufactures and installs concrete digesters and storage tanks. Jason Parker, UK Director, said: “We come to the ADBA show to see other exhibitors and speak with them about future projects. It’s good to find out what’s going on in the AD market and always interesting to get others’ opinions.” www.aconsult.co.uk 28

AD & Bioresources News | autumn 2017

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CaviMax demonstrated to visitors to its stand the benefits of its hydrodynamic cavitation for biomass disintegration. Consultant Emma Greenwood said: “The biomass destructor breaks down the substrate – eg straw – and turns it into a viable AD feedstock. This enables operators to get a greater yield from their feedstock, increasing profits and reducing inputs.” www.cavimax.co.uk

UK AD & Biogas and World Biogas Expo 2017 Exhibitor Focus Putting people first Anyone involved in the UK AD industry over the last two years has become accustomed to the negativity surrounding incentives, subsidies and funding for new AD projects. So it’s a pleasant surprise to learn that, throughout this time, one company has been quietly funding AD developments to the tune of £90m in 2016 (£55m of which was for new projects) and a projected £120m on new plants for this year. Privilege Finance are the funders behind over 50 UK AD plants – around 10 per cent of the total capacity – and at UK AD & Biogas and World Biogas Expo 2017, they showcased the financial and technical AD expertise they offer AD project developers in the agricultural and agri-food industries. Privilege uses an entire project lifecycle approach so are far Roger Evans more than just money men; they provide support services that enable smooth project delivery, commissioning and optimisation. “We are independent from the banks so we don’t just look at the numbers,” explains Roger Evans, Head of Marketing. “We look at the people behind the project. It’s not in our interest for a project to fail, so we work closely with our clients to ensure the plant will be as successful as possible.” Among the many projects in the Privilege stable is the Agrogen on-farm AD plant in Staffordshire. Developer Rob Greenow explains how mutual trust has been at the heart of their successful partnership: “Privilege understand how I

work and I understand how they work. I have to meet their expectations, but also they’ve delivered for me – so much so that we’re building three more plants together.” According to Phil Gerrard, Chief Executive of Privilege Finance, the company is anticipating many more successful years in the industry: “Having already invested over £250m in AD projects in the UK, we look forward to continuing to work with ADBA and those in the wider industry to make AD a viable and successful diversification option for farmers, landowners, food manufacturers and food waste processors across the UK.” www.privilegeprojectfinance.co.uk

The next generation of engine oils The world’s largest publicly traded international oil and gas company chose UK AD & Biogas 2017 as the perfect platform from which to launch not one, but two major announcements. ExxonMobil unveiled their next generation series of gas engine oils – the Mobil Pegasus™ 1100 Series – to keep up with the latest gas engine developments. “Gas engine development is pushing the boundaries of engine design,” revealed Rakesh Vyas, Nordic/UK/Ireland Industrial Lubricants Field Marketing Advisor. “This in turn puts higher demands on lubrication, particularly for gas engines used in biogas applications. The 1100 Series can help extend oil drain intervals by up to 1.5 times while also maintaining engine protection and cleanliness.”

Rakesh Vyas chats with visitors to ExxonMobil’s stand

ExxonMobile and GE also revealed a global lubricants collaboration for Jenbacher gas engines, which sees the Mobil Pegasus™ family of gas engine oils named the preferred lubricants for all new GE Jenbacher Type 2, 3 and 9 gas engines. ExxonMobil and GE will also continue to build on more than two decades of collaboration by co-engineering high performance gas engine oil technologies that meet the evolving needs of GE gas engine platforms.

Our Editor Kate O'Reilly enjoys a virtual tour of ExxonMobil's lab at the company's stand

“We’ve built a strong working relationship with GE and many end users over the past two decades, but this new collaboration validates the leadership of our Mobil Pegasus family of lubricants and underscores the many benefits they can help deliver to end users,” said Tim Hinchman, Strategic Global Alliance Director at ExxonMobil. “Through this collaboration, we also look forward to working with GE to engineer new lubricant technologies for Jenbacher gas engines that will help their customers further protect their businesses in the years to come.” www.mobil.com/en/industrial

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autumn 2017 | AD & Bioresources News


Advice Clinic: Health & safety and training

Running a safe plant

In our regular advice column, ADBA members provide answers to some common AD queries


relation to health, safety and the environment. If your site is a permitted facility, then another key piece of training is the WAMITAB Certificate of Technical Competence.

What are the minimum training requirements at an AD plant?


Due to the inherent differences between AD facilities, the level of training required will naturally be site-dependent and take into account differences in technologies, operational tasks and the wider organisational culture. However, in all cases it is critical to demonstrate that your team has a sufficient level of competence, knowledge, experience and qualifications to perform their duties safely and efficiently, which should be assessed through a risk-based management approach. This also means using a competent assessor. A good starting point is ADBA’s Practical Guide to AD, which provides a useful signpost to what legislation is relevant and what your responsibilities are in

For my team, the minimum level of training that I deem suitable includes: IOSH Managing Safely; specialist courses (Confined Spaces, COSHH, etc); food hygiene course; IEMA Practitioner; WAMITAB Level 4; in-house training on internal ISO14001 and OHSAS18001 policies and procedures, as well as knowledge of AD process science. Ryland Cairns, Director, Fontus Environmental T +44 (0)7415 0797300 E ryland@fontusenvironmental.com www.fontusenvironmental.com


What are the regulations affecting the training of operators at my facility?

Under the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999, any person using any equipment must be sufficiently trained in its use, supervision or management. The training must include how the work equipment is used, identification of any risks, and the precautions that are needed to ensure safe use. Training for most everyday activities can be delivered in-house using manufacturer’s instructions, as well as the knowledge and skills of more experienced workers. There is also a duty to ensure that adequate training is provided to supervisory and managerial staff. However, some work activities will require formal training in the safe use of equipment. Training for maintenance and inspection will also be required. It is likely that training will be required to comply with regulations such as the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998 (PUWER); Personal Protective Equipment at Work Regulations 1992; Manual Handling Operations Regulations 1992; Dangerous Substances and Explosive Atmospheres Regulations 2002 (DSEAR); Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations 1998 (LOLER); and the Confined Spaces Regulations 1997. To comply with the required regulations, a risk assessment and suitable training should be adequate in ensuring the health and safety of the workers and any people who may be affected by the work, so far as reasonably practicable. Dr Zaffer Khan, Director, Rowan House Ltd T +44 (0)1242 633 805 E zaffer@rowanhouse.co.uk www.rowanhouse.co.uk To find out more about ADBA’s Best Practice Scheme pilot, see p7

Next issue: On-farm AD Send your queries to: kate.oreilly@adbioresources.org


AD & Bioresources News | autumn 2017

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ADBA Biomethane & Gas Vehicle Conference Preview

Is transport the future of the AD industry? Join us on 28 September at The Queens Hotel in Leeds for ADBA’s third Biomethane and Gas Vehicle Conference. With the transport sector having the potential to play a key role in the future of the UK AD industry, this event will bring together professionals from AD, transport and fuel infrastructure, freight and logistics, local authorities and more to discuss and showcase the latest developments in the use of biomethane as a transport fuel. The conference will answer the question on everybody’s lips – is transport the future of the AD industry? Over the past year, the use of biomethane as a transport fuel has shown strong growth, particularly for buses and HGVs in the logistics sector. New vehicle trials have confirmed the air-quality, low-carbon and environmental credentials of biomethane, while government support remains favourable with city-wide Clean Air Zones throughout the UK prompting local authorities to adopt biomethane buses. The Department for Transport’s investment in alternative fuels also remains on track – there are proposals in the Renewable Transport Fuels Obligation (RTFO) to double the UK proportion of renewable transport fuel and incentivise the most sustainable fuels, such as biomethane. “The UK AD industry has sufficient capacity today to produce enough biomethane to power 80 per cent of the the UK’s entire bus fleet or 10 per cent of all HGVs in the country, and the use of biomethane in transport has increased in recent years in response to concerns over the cost of fossil fuel-based fuels and their negative impact on air quality and greenhouse gas emissions,” says ADBA Chief Executive Charlotte Morton. “ADBA’s Biomethane and Gas Vehicle Conference is the place to come for transport professionals, AD operators, and local authorities looking to discover the latest innovations in biomethane for transport and discuss what is required to stimulate and grow the market.”

Speakers include: • David Hurren, Air Liquide Advanced Business and Technologies • Phil Lowndes BSc, Gas Bus Alliance • Emma Slater, Leeds City Council • Gary Mason, Nottingham City Transport • Charlotte Morton, ADBA • Andrew Whittles, Low Emission Strategies • Dr Thom Koller, ADBA

Topics at a glance • How can biomethane as a transport fuel play a crucial role in the government’s Clean Air Strategy? • Is transport the future of the AD industry? With competing fuel types vying to power HGVs, and heat decarbonisation also a government priority, where is biomethane most effective as a low-carbon energy source? • How to stimulate the biomethane-for-transport market: Ensure that the RTFO reforms provide long-term certainty for your AD plant, tackle the volatility of renewable certification prices and provide stability for the renewable fuel industry • Buses and municipal vehicles: Capitalise on the growing bus and municipal transport fuels market • HGVs: Learn how developments in HGV biofuel technologies and infrastructures will provide new opportunities for biomethane as a renewable fuel • Case studies

Be sure to attend to network with: • Transport officials from DfT • Leading gas vehicle manufacturers • Fleet operators • Bus operators • Transport fuel suppliers • Local authorities • AD operators and developers

Register your attendance today at adbioresources.org www.adbioresources.org adbioresources.org

autumn 2017 | AD & Bioresources News


Members’ News & Views New Agrivert food waste plant for Hertfordshire

Digestate hits the high street

Richard Thake, Chairman of Hertfordshire County Council, has officially opened a new £14m food waste AD facility at London Colney, just off the M25. The Agrivert plant was constructed in 11 months and is already operating at full power. The facility was built to service Hertfordshire’s municipal food waste and local businesses, although it also currently serves Essex County Council under a short term contract. It is set to process 50,000 tonnes of food and liquid wastes per year, generating 3 MW of electricity and producing enough energy to power 5,900 homes. The facility also produces digestate, which, along with digestate from Agrivert’s four other food waste AD plants across the UK, has achieved PAS 110 status. “This facility will bring a number of benefits to the county,” said Councillor Thake. “By sorting food waste from general household rubbish, we can prevent large amounts of waste being sent to landfill, where it would generate greenhouse gas emissions.” Agrivert’s Chief Executive Alexander Maddan (L) with www.agrivert.co.uk Richard Thake, Chairman of Hertfordshire County Council

200 Homebase stores across the UK are now stocking PlantGrow, a digestate-derived blend of plant food refined and prepared from the AD process. The three products on the shelves are Liquid Natural Fertiliser in 1L bottles; Liquid Natural Lawn Food in 1L bottles; and Solid-form Soil Conditioning Natural Fertiliser in 10L buckets. Available initially in independent garden centres and taken up by Blue Diamond garden centres before being rolled out nationally by Homebase, the biofertiliser was originally developed by SS Agri Power as a means of using the residue produced by their AD plant, whilst generating green electricity. However, in response to the interest already shown in the new plant food, the company has now committed its facilities to PlantGrow production, and electricity will be the by-product of the plant. Steve Suggitt of SS Agri Power said: “What started as an interesting experiment has opened up a new market in the gardening sector and is rapidly developing into a significant business for us.” www.plantgrow.co.uk Digestate-derived PlantGrow is being sold across the UK

Balmoral Tanks invests £10m in new facility Balmoral Tanks has invested more than £10m in a purpose designed factory in South Yorkshire and an upgrade to its manufacturing processes for its range of epoxy coated and concrete tanks. The new facility, due to open its doors in Q4 2017, will have a brand new epoxy coating line, in-line shot blasting unit, latest laser cutting technology and fabrication facilities. Allan Joyce, Managing Director, says: “Having built up a strong balance sheet over the years we are in the enviable position of being able to invest in new technology. As an engineering company at our Balmoral Tanks’ new facility takes core, we have designed a plant shape in South Yorkshire and installed processes that will be at the very forefront of coated tank technology. Supported by highly trained and committed personnel from technical sales and design through to manufacturing, quality and installation, we offer these services either direct or through a network of strategically placed global agents. If there are any companies interested in working with us, particularly in North America, please don’t hesitate to contact me via our website.” www.balmoraltanks.com


AD & Bioresources News | autumn 2017

Aardvark appointed to Biofertiliser Certification Scheme Aardvark Certification Limited (ACL) have been appointed as a certification body to both the Compost Certification Scheme and the Biofertiliser Certification Scheme, following a lengthy review process of their management system, operational procedures and personnel by both REAL and UKAS. Aardvark will be working with UKAS to complete their accreditation to ISO17065:2012 over the coming months. This latest appointment expands the range of certification services offered by ACL in the biowaste treatment sector, which also includes ISAE3000 Sustainability Auditing and Independent Reporting on Metering Arrangements. www.aardvarkcertification.com

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Members’ News & Views Closing the loop with Shaw Renewables Shaw Renewables are the UK agent for German AD plant builder BioConstruct GMBH, which has 20 years’ experience in the biogas industry. Together, r e memb their partnership has been responsible for 30 MW of AD capacity – around seven per cent of the UK’s total. In addition to their 11 operational UK plants – ranging from 250 kW to 5 MW – they have a further four under construction. And despite the delay surrounding the RHI and the demise of the FIT, they are showing no signs of slowing down.


“Our plants cover the whole of the UK and treat a variety of different feedstocks,” explains Andrew Shaw, Director of Shaw Renewables. “For example, we’ve built three food waste plants, a number of on-farm plants and several gas to grid facilities. And we’ve just commissioned our first plant that processes 100 per cent abattoir waste. Located in Telford, the 500 kW facility is based at an abattoir and treats bloods, fats and Category 2 and 3 waste. All of the energy and heat is used on-site, so it stacks up financially for the client without the need for incentives.”

located at a packaging factory; the heat and energy produced will be used to power the operation.”

This is a trend which Andrew says is becoming more and more important as incentives continue to dwindle: “Our projects make sense because there is often a need for heat and energy on-site; even more so if there is also waste being produced for which the client is having to pay for disposal. One of our plants is based at a fruit growers in the south of England, and the apple pomace feedstock produced there is being used to power a nearby luxury hotel. And a project under construction is a food waste plant

With funding often a barrier to new developments, the approach taken by Shaw Renewables of making sure the project stacks up on its own merits is refreshing. This has enabled its clients to take advantage of the benefits of AD, despite the lack of government support and reticence from the banks. Closing the loop for waste producers and energy users has never been more attractive. www.shawrenewables.co.uk

UK expertise, German experience Roger Moore, Client Services Director at Griffiths & Armour, spoke to Chubb, a leading global renewable energy insurer, on what can be learned from Germany regarding monitoring risk in the UK AD industry. “The UK AD industry has experienced exponential growth over the last few years. Accompanying the increase in the number of operational facilities has been a rise in demand for consulting and engineering experience, to the extent that the UK is now one of the world’s leaders in AD expertise. However, with over 10,000 biogas plants, the German market is undoubtedly more mature and has long been held up as a model of AD development. So, how do the issues found in German AD facilities differ from those in the UK and what lessons can we learn from our continental neighbours? German insurance claim statistics show that around 65 per cent of claims from AD plants are attributable to the gas engine, with an upward trend over time. The gas production components – pumps, tanks and mixing technology – are the cause in about 20 per cent of cases, while the remaining claims are down to electrical equipment, measurement/control technology, grid connection, transformer and transfer station. Causes of engine damage include: poor design; material and component defects (QA/QC manufacturer, wrong assumptions); technical mistakes in

er memb


container solutions (eg poor concrete, poor ventilation); poor implementation of the manufacturer’s specifications; lack of operator knowledge regarding early warning signs; and poor biogas monitoring. As the UK industry grows, insurance claims here are likely to follow the same path. A typical small scale, on-farm AD owner/operator is likely to have a traditional agriculture background and rely on the original contractor/plant supplier for warranties, maintenance and technical guidance. As plants get older, however, warranties provide less protection and maintenance becomes more expensive. With such a variety of plant types and sizes in the UK, Chubb has developed a questionnaire to understand how individual plants operate, which is filled in by the client and sent to the underwriter. The plant may also be surveyed, depending on a decision by the underwriters and risk engineers. This should ensure that the operator gets the right cover and, in conjunction with initiatives such as ADBA’s Best Practice Scheme, will hopefully help to reduce the risks at UK AD plants.” www.griffithsandarmour.com

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autumn 2017 | AD & Bioresources News


Policy Industry waits on RHI

For up-to-the-minute information and advice on regulations, consultations and government news, contact our Head of Policy, Ollie More T +44 (0)203 567 0751 E ollie.more@adbioresources.org

Ofgem begins Significant Code Review

ADBA is continuing to push the government to urgently pass long-overdue legislation on changes to the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI), a critical support mechanism for the AD industry. The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) has been in touch to say it is working on the wider RHI reform regulations and aims to provide a specific timetable soon. The main set of reforms will need affirmative regulations which cannot proceed until the relevant parliamentary scrutiny committee is reconstituted after the summer recess. We are calling on the government to proceed with the reforms as soon as possible as per the December 2016 response to last year’s consultation, which proposed restoring tariffs to previously higher levels and introducing tariff guarantees to offer plants financial security. We have written independently to both Greg Clark MP and Claire Perry MP (Secretary of State and Minister of State at BEIS respectively) and penned a further joint letter with the trade associations that represent other technologies to which the RHI relates. We have also prepared a template letter for ADBA members who wish to write to their local MP or to BEIS on this issue – you can find this at http://bit.ly/2viwbzS. Keep an eye on our website for any developments, or for more information, contact thom.koller@adbioresources.org

Following consultation earlier in the year, Ofgem has decided to launch a Targeted Charging Review Significant Code Review (SCR). This will consider reform to network charging, which could mean reduced revenue for existing and new AD operators. The SCR is broad and could encompass changes to residual charging for energy transmission and distribution, for both generation and demand, to ensure it meets the interests of consumers both now and in the future. Ofgem has decided to proceed with the SCR to address concerns that the current framework for residual charging may be having unintended consequences on the network and, as a result, on energy consumers. The SCR will also keep under review Ofgem’s decision to reduce embedded generator payments, which is set to cost AD operators thousands of pounds each year in lost revenue for generating during the triad. This work is closely related to Ofgem and BEIS’s recently concluded consultation on a smart, flexible energy system and Ofgem’s new strategy for regulating the UK’s future energy system. We will be working closely with Ofgem to try to mitigate the impact of any changes on the AD industry. Read more on this in Thom’s blog: http://bit.ly/2vKxGtM. For more information, contact thom.koller@adbioresources.org

The future of on-farm AD With a new government in place, declining financial incentives for energy generation and a need to replace the EU Common Agricultural Policy that currently supports British farming, ADBA is developing new policy recommendations relating to the energy- and non-energy-related benefits of AD, which have been brought together in a discussion paper. AD provides on-site energy for farms in all forms (power, heat, cooling, drying, vehicle fuel), decarbonises and supports the agricultural sector, and improves the UK’s energy security by providing home-grown, baseload energy. The non-energy benefits of AD are numerous but as of yet they have not been linked to financial support mechanisms; support has only been provided for energy generated. Our new policy recommendations quantify the contribution of on-farm AD to government objectives and to the UK economy.


AD & Bioresources News | autumn 2017

ADBA members and other UK agricultural experts discussed these benefits and critiqued our quantification of them at UK AD & Biogas and World Biogas Expo, and we are currently working with other organisations and government to advance these proposals. Read the full discussion paper at http://bit.ly/2fKLG02. For more information, contact thom.koller@adbioresources.org

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Policy Environment Agency set to propose increased charges The Environment Agency (EA) is set to outline in its autumn consultation proposals to change the way it charges for its regulatory activities, with potentially significant implications for all AD operators who have a permit. The main driver behind the review is simple – the EA is not recovering the costs of regulating the waste sector and is looking to address this deficit. The EA has stated that the current charging system leads to some parts of the waste sector effectively subsidising others which are taking up more of the EA’s time and effort. The EA’s autumn consultation is also likely to cover: • Increases in permit application and variation fees, subsistence fees, and others; • An end to operational risk appraisal spreadsheets, which are currently used to calculate fees; • A reduction from 15 hours to 3.5 hours in free pre-application advice; • Permit application charges which reflect the complexity of application and the reports and assessments needed; • Introduction of time and materials charges for pre-application advice, the definition of waste panel, novel technology, and sites of high public interest. The EA will set out its full proposals in a consultation document in due course, with the consultation expected to run for six weeks starting in October. This consultation is separate from the EA’s review

of operator performance assessment and will likely come into effect much sooner – we could see the new charging system introduced in April 2018. We will keep members up to date and will be seeking your input as we put together a response. You can also hear directly from the EA at ADBA’s Regulatory Forum in Leeds on 10 October (see p39 for details). For further information, contact jessica.allan@adbioresources.org

RTFO response expected soon At time of writing, the Department for Transport is expected to publish its response to the Renewable Transport Fuel Obligation (RTFO) consultation in the coming weeks, with potentially significant implications for the use of biomethane as a transport fuel. The proposed amendments to the RTFO set out in the consultation are as follows: • Increasing the volume percentage of renewable fuel required by fuel suppliers between 2017 and 2020 and then maintaining this as a minimum level to 2030; • Incentivising specific renewable ‘development’ fuels (made from sustainable wastes and residues, or of non-biological origin) through the introduction of a sub-target; • Setting a maximum level for the proportion of fuels derived from crops; • Requiring obligated fuel suppliers to report on the associated carbon intensity of the biofuels they supply.

The consultation was launched in November 2016, with the response being delayed due to the general election and, subsequently, officials needing to brief the new Minister responsible, Jesse Norman MP. If the government response and summary of responses is published by the autumn, an April 2018 implementation date for the changes to the RTFO is still likely. Following the government response there will be a consultation on the revised RTFO guidance, which we understand would be based on the format of the existing guidance. The consultation on the guidance is expected to last for four weeks. Keep an eye on our website for the latest news and updates on the RTFO. You’ll also be able to find out more at our upcoming Biomethane and Gas Vehicle Conference on 28 September in Leeds – see p31 for details. For more information, contact thom.koller@adbioresources.org

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autumn 2017 | AD & Bioresources News


R&I Update British Council funds solar-biogas powered desalination pilot in Egypt A project to develop a novel membrane water desalination pilot plant driven by hybrid solar-biogas energy sources in Egypt has been awarded funding by the British Council. The two-year project, which partners the University of Sheffield with Port Said University in Egypt, will see academics develop a system that could provide fresh and safe water to poor and rural communities. The growing population and scarcity of water resources in Egypt means that freshwater supplies are becoming increasingly stressed. The pilot project will explore whether biogas produced from biological matter, such as cattle manure, could be used as a back-up for renewable but intermittent solar energy. Different types of wastes will be tested to find the optimum way of integrating the two technologies to maximise water production, keep costs as low as possible and provide a smaller carbon footprint than current technologies. If successful, these integrated desalination systems could be used across Egypt to help relieve water scarcity in rural communities. The grant comes from the British Council’s Institutional Links call, which provides grants for the development of research and innovation collaborations between the UK and partner countries. The call is funded through the BEIS-managed Newton Fund, which promotes economic development and welfare in partnering countries through science and innovation partnerships. The British Council has delivered funding for a number of biogas projects through the Institutional Links programme, including projects on sugar and yeast production in Colombia and small scale AD in Thailand. The programme

Defra is examining the use of orchard waste as an AD feedstock

particularly welcomes projects in which academia and industry work together to maximise the impact of the funded research on the ground. For details of current British Council and other research funding rounds, go to adbioresources.org/news/tag/1406-rd-funding

Bioenergy heat pathways for the future Commissioned by the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS), Ecofys, E4tech and Economic & Human Value Engineering have been reviewing the existing evidence and assumptions on bioenergy heat pathways to 2050. The review is considering the whole bioenergy value chain from feedstock production to end use, focusing on those pathways that are considered to be most relevant to decarbonising heat to 2050. With biomethane identified as one of the most promising options to decarbonise the gas grid, ADBA has contributed to this work by providing evidence on costs in the AD industry, AD feedstock availability and potential, the GHG emission savings potential from AD, and the biomethanation of renewable hydrogen. WRAP estimates that around 10m tonnes of food waste and 2.8m tonnes of industrial food residues arise in the UK each year. If the inedible proportion of the food waste and half the industrial food residues were used in AD, this would generate 9 TWh of energy. Defra has estimated the availability of manures at 90m tonnes per year. In addition, we have set out the case for crop feedstocks, with crops such as maize and grass silage used either as a break crop or grown on marginal lands unsuitable for arable crops. Seed suppliers have also published reports on producing the ideal mix of crop feedstocks to produce sustainable, stable, high biomethane yields. In addition to those feedstocks currently used, research into the potential of new feedstocks is being conducted. Dr Cheffins is leading a project on the use of roadside verges (see R&I Hub Review opposite), and Defra is looking into the use of orchard waste. Straw, microalgae (VTT) and macroalgae (CPI) are also being explored. The biomethanation of renewable hydrogen is also gaining momentum, with various research institutions exploring this technology (see the R&I Update in our last issue for more information).


AD & Bioresources News | autumn 2017

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R&I Hub Review / Advertorial Uniting industry and academia By Angie Bywater, Network Co-Manager, Anaerobic Digestion Network, a BBSRC NIBB The popularity of the Research and Innovation (R&I) Hub at UK AD & Biogas has grown year on year as industry increasingly realises the value of academia to its bottom line, efficiency and future business. Speakers at this year’s event covered a broad range of research topics, from those in early commercialisation to cutting edge research in technologies which may take a number of years before they can be commercialised. The R&I Hub featured presentations on research areas addressing some of the more well-known AD challenges, such as: how can feedstocks be pre-treated in order to break down structures like lignin and thus be more easily digested; how can the AD process be optimised by improving our understanding of the microbiology; and how can value be added to digestate, by creating high value products, extracting nutrients, reducing volume or understanding its effect on various crops? Professor Sandra Esteves from the University of South Wales spoke to a packed audience in two fascinating sessions: one on the concept of AD as a biorefinery, with the production of organic acids and biopolymers (particularly PHA) from the AD process; and a second session outlining the latest

understanding of improving digester processes by modelling changes in the populations of methanogens in the digester. Sandra also described her team’s work on a novel biomethanation process. One of the UK’s largest nature reserves are our road verges, which can be managed for the benefit of wildlife. Dr Nick Cheffins spoke about the road verges biomass harvesting project, a collaboration between Lincolnshire County Council, Henry Dymoke (a local AD plant owner), Leeds and Lincoln Universities, and the Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust. Notably, this project won the Research Project Award at the AD & Biogas Industry Awards 2017. A wealth of interesting data on various pre-treatment technologies was also presented. These included the Economizer steam explosion system, presented by Herman Dauser of Biogas Systems. The Economizer economically treats lignin-rich feedstocks such as straw to improve biogas production. Herman emphasised the importance of collaboration with academic process engineers for the success of this technology. Applying another principle entirely, Mike Tooke from 2GB Consulting described the bioCEPT process, which uses high voltage pulses to rupture cell membranes and improve microbial access to the feedstock, thus improving biogas production. And Dr Christian Boese from Biorganic described his bio-organic catalyst known as EcoSystemPlus, which accelerates and increases the breakdown of organic materials, reducing the viscosity of the digester contents, as well as reducing mixing energy. Sadly, there is not enough space to detail all speaker presentations, but for further information, go to http://bit.ly/2uDrZNG

Advertorial Feature

How healthy is your AD plant? The recent history of the UK’s AD industry has been one of an industry focused on growth and increasing capacity. At NNFCC we’ve monitored, analysed and documented this growth in our annual Anaerobic Digestion Deployment in the UK report. Over the last three years of its publication we have witnessed the number of plants outside the wastewater treatment sector increase three-fold, rising from 138 in 2014 to now over 400. However, the ever-tightening subsidies have resulted in interest naturally turning towards plant operation, with the development of high performance plants essential if investors are to make returns on their investments. Moreover, with the UK Government now introducing further feedstock restrictions within the Feed-in Tariff and Renewable Heat Incentive, it is now more important than ever for operators to ensure they are developing sustainable, and ultimately compliant, supply chains for AD. To assist the industry, NNFCC has developed its own Biogas and Biomethane Carbon Calculator. The Calculator provides a simple and accurate tool for estimating emissions from AD operations and offers an effective means of demonstrating compliance with sustainability criteria outlined in the Renewable Heat Incentive, the Renewables Obligation and the Feed-in Tariffs. By incorporating default values, biogas apportionment and simultaneous calculating of GHG savings for heat, power and biomethane output, the Calculator significantly reduces the amount of administrative time operators spend on collecting and analysing data. Our experience in this area

has shown that operators are far too often taking the sustainability of their feedstock for granted, commonly using high-risk feedstocks, such as wheat grain, that will struggle to meet sustainability criteria unless used in a plant that is being run very efficiently. Plant efficiency is not only important for ensuring sustainability criteria are met, but ultimately in ensuring that AD plants are being run as profitably as possible. For this reason, NNFCC has teamed up with Amur Bioenergy to offer an AD Healthcheck service. The service is designed to ensure that all operational aspects of the AD plant – including company structure and funding, biogas and digesate use, claiming of renewable energy incentives, feedstock strategy and sustainability, and the operational aspects of plant health – are being dealt with in a way that ensures the plant is being run optimally. The service entails both a site visit from AD policy and operations experts, as well as consultation in how best to manage the plant going forward to maximise profit. We envisage this service will be gladly welcomed by the industry, where the diminishing tariffs will mean that plants are only likely to meet their financial targets when operating to a continuously high performance. For more information about any of the services discussed here, or to obtain a copy of NNFCC’s Anaerobic Digestion Deployment in the UK report or Biogas and Biomethane Carbon Calculator, please contact NNFCC: E enquiries@nnfcc.co.uk T +44 (0)1904 435 182

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autumn 2017 | AD & Bioresources News


ADBA Northern Ireland Conference Preview

Realising the potential in Northern Ireland Northern Ireland has more digesters per capita than England, Wales or Scotland, with the Northern Irish AD market having grown over 2,000 per cent in recent years. But with government support dwindling, Northern Ireland’s AD community now needs to find other ways to continue to grow the industry. The inaugural ADBA Northern Ireland Conference will bring together the entire Northern Irish AD industry to hear the latest technical and policy developments, and share experiences on how to maximise revenues through operational performance and best practice. “With more plants per head than any other country in the UK and a phenomenal growth rate to boot, there’s a lot of knowledge and experience to be shared in the Northern Irish AD industry,” says ADBA Chief Executive Charlotte Morton. “The ADBA Northern Ireland National Conference is the place to come to find out how the industry can improve performance and reduce costs whilst providing vital support for rural communities.”

Speakers include: • David Simpson MP, DUP Spokesman on Business, Innovation & Skills and Environment, Food & Rural Affairs and member of the EFRA Committee • Dr Gary Lyons, Agri-Food and Biosciences Institute • Keith Finegan, Northern Ireland Environment Agency • PJ McCarthy, Renewable Gas Forum • Charlotte Morton, ADBA • Shane Carr, Irwin Carr Consulting • Thomas Bell, Clyde Shanks • Ian Garner, WRAP • Shane Doherty, Granville Ecopark • Sam McCloskey, Centre for Advanced Sustainable Energy (CASE) • Les Gornall, Capita • Dr David McKee, B9 Energy


AD & Bioresources News | autumn 2017

Topics at a glance • How to increase your overall revenue by ensuring your digester is performing to its full potential • Maximising feedstock productivity derived from farm slurry • How to increase energy production from farm waste • How to improve nutritional management of digestate and reduce your fertiliser costs • Policy and regulatory changes in Northern Ireland • Ireland as an island: Brexit, the new government and trade between north and south – how will this impact the future of the industry in Northern Ireland? • ADBA’s pioneering Best Practice Scheme

Be sure to attend to network with: • AD plant operators • CHP manufacturers • Policymakers and government officials • Feedstock providers • Energy crop farmers • The entire AD supply chain • Associations and industry bodies • Financiers and insurers • Universities and research institutions • Non-governmental organisations

Register your attendance today at adbioresources.org

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Upcoming Events

28 sep 2017 Biomethane & Gas Vehicle Conference

ADBA Biomethane and Gas Vehicle Conference The Queens Hotel, Leeds

28 September Leeds

5 oct 2017

ADBA Northern Ireland National Conference

Our third Biomethane and Gas Vehicle Conference will bring together professionals from across the AD community, transport and fuel infrastructure, freight and logistics, local authorities and more. Over the past year, use of biomethane as a transport fuel has shown strong growth, particularly with buses and HGVs in the logistics sector. The conference will answer the question on everybody’s lips – is transport the future of the AD industry? See p31 for details. adbioresources.org/events/biomethane-gas-vehicle-conference/ The ADBA Northern Ireland Conference will bring together key players from across the Northern Irish AD industry to discuss the latest technical and policy developments and share experiences on how to increase revenues through operational performance and best practice. See p38 for details. adbioresources.org/events/northern-ireland-national-conference/

The Europa Hotel, Belfast

10 oct 2017

ADBA Regulatory Forum (members only) Walker Morris offices, Leeds

8 nov 2017

ADBA Autumn Members’ Meeting (members only)

This event will tackle the most important regulatory issues facing the AD industry today. AD operators, consultants and developers will be kept abreast of the latest changes to regulations and compliance structures by regulators such as the EA, HSE, Animal Plant Health Agency, SEPA and Natural Resources Wales. Delegates can also feed their views back to regulators, engage with issues important to the continued development of the AD industry, and network with fellow operators to share best practice. adbioresources.org This free-to-attend, member-only event gives you the chance to discuss the latest industry developments with our policy team and hear directly from government departments such as BEIS and DfT, as well as regulators including Ofgem. See p40 for details. adbioresources.org

Ashford offices, London

ADBA Finance Forum 22 nov 2017

7 dec 2017

28 feb 2018

(members only) Osborne Clarke offices, London

ADBA National Conference 2017 One Great George Street, London

Scottish National Conference Radisson Blu Hotel, Glasgow

ADBA’s Finance Forum has met twice a year since 2010 to discuss the barriers and opportunities for funders of AD plants. Representatives from a range of different finance sectors will discuss recent developments; ADBA’s Strategic Adviser, Chris Huhne, and our policy team will reveal the latest updates relevant to the sector; and speakers and delegates will help to develop our business plan and shape our policy positions. adbioresources.org With the new government now in place following June’s snap general election having promised to cut carbon emissions, it is an excellent time to discuss the multiple benefits that AD can offer the UK and the world. Now in its eighth year, our National Conference regularly includes leading speakers from the Houses of Commons and Lords, government departments, regulators and industry to inform delegates of the most pressing issues and challenges affecting the growth of AD. See p42 for details. adbioresources.org

The Scottish National Conference will demonstrate the potential of AD in Scotland and its contribution to Scottish business and farming. Delegates and speakers will discuss the implications of policy and regulatory changes, Brexit and Scottish independence, as well as opportunities to grow Scottish AD and improve efficiency through best practice. adbioresources.org

To register your interest in attending any of the above events and find out how to sponsor and exhibit, please contact our Head of Events & Marketing, Gayle Brandon-Kirby. E gayle.brandonkirby@adbioresources.org T +44 (0)203 176 5440

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autumn 2017 | AD & Bioresources News


Membership Matters Join ADBA and be part of the conversation The dust has now settled from UK AD & Biogas and World Biogas Expo 2017 and I would like to thank everyone who made it such a success. The exhibition stands were particularly impressive this year and the speakers and visitors who attended made it a great event to be part of once again. Congratulations to all the award winners from the AD & Biogas Industry Awards, which took place on the first evening of the show. It was a fantastic night and I was pleased to see the room completely full. The membership department had a particularly busy show, with lots of new members signing up during the two days of the event, and in the weeks after. As you will have seen, we have some exciting new events coming up later this year in the ADBA Northern Ireland National Conference and the ADBA Biomethane and Gas Vehicle Conference. These events will offer an opportunity to explore different markets and meet new people within the industry, which I am particularly looking forward to. I am currently putting together a series of guides to help you get the most out of the ADBA website and our other membership benefits; details of these will be sent out to members when they are ready to be downloaded, but please do let me know if you would like to discuss getting the most out of your membership in the meantime.

Our Membership Manager, Alex Monks, reports on the frontline issues affecting ADBA members. To invite Alex to visit your business or to find out how to make the most of your membership, contact: T +44 (0)203 176 5418 E alex.monks@adbioresources.org Finally, as we go to press, we are approaching our annual renewals date of 1 October. I want to thank all our members for your support this year and I look forward to working with you all again next year. As your trade association, we rely on your support to continue to carry out the work we do and drive the industry forward together. For those of you thinking of joining, the new membership year offers the perfect opportunity to join us and get involved.

Stay in the loop at our Autumn Members’ Meeting The ADBA Members’ Meeting is a free, biannual event which opens up discussions on the latest industry developments with ADBA’s Policy Team and provides industry updates directly from government departments and regulators. Taking place in London on 8 November and open to ADBA members only, our autumn meeting will look at changes to the Feed-in Tariff following the introduction of new feedstock restrictions for new applicants. Attendees will also hear the latest news on the RHI and RTFO, both of which are going through important reforms that could have huge implications for the AD industry. ADBA’s Strategic Advisor, Chris Huhne, will give his take on recent political events and their impact on our industry, while our Environment and Regulation Manager, Jess Allan, is set to deliver the latest on the ADBA Best Practice Scheme. Other highlights include an update on the Consistency Framework and Food Waste Recycling Action Plan from WRAP, case studies and AD market information, as well as the usual member debates. The meeting will be followed by a networking and drinks reception. To book your free place now, go to adbioresources.org/events/adba-autumn-members-meeting

Welcome new ADBA members! 360 Environmental AF Machinery Ltd Asset Finance Partners Ltd Bennaman Bioferm Brinklow Biogas Ceres Energy Greencycle Systems Newcross International Ltd Normans Farm Gas Power Ltd Stopford Projects S V Taylor & Partners Talbot Training Services Technical Waste Solutions


AD & Bioresources News | autumn 2017

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Membership Matters

Safety First Put your best foot forward to avoid risk By Carl Gurney, Renewable Energy Director at Jelf Group plc The UK’s AD and biogas industry has evolved quickly over the last few years and technology has needed to adapt to maintain the pace. However, as the rate of change has increased so too have the number of insurance claims and environmental incidents within the industry. Health and safety regulations can conjure up thoughts of bureaucracy and red tape but maintaining good practice can help your business avoid costly claims should an accident occur. With regulators and insurers increasingly focusing on risks, today’s operators need to demonstrate they have a risk management programme in place to identify, mitigate and manage risks. ADBA’s Best Practice Scheme gives clear guidance and assistance to make sure a plant’s risk management programme is fit for purpose (see p7 for details). By achieving this certification, not only will operators meet legal requirements, they could also benefit from potentially lower insurance premiums. By adopting this scheme it also helps safeguard employees and site visitors. Consider the long term damage an incident such as a waste fire could have on your plant – and your brand – that could be avoided by joining the Best Practice Scheme. How would you tackle a situation where your plant is found to

have deficiencies that could have been avoided had you adhered to the Scheme, but chose not to? Surely, it is more cost effective to put the proper procedures in place now rather than risk the cost of failure? For a full risk management and insurance programme review, contact Carl Gurney, Renewable Energy Director at Jelf Group plc, ADBA’s preferred risk management and insurance partner: T +44 (0)1905 892356 E adba@jelfgroup.com

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autumn 2017 | AD & Bioresources News


Membership Matters TEAM Chief Executive, Charlotte Morton T +44 (0)203 176 0503 E charlotte.morton@adbioresources.org PA to Chief Executive/Database Assistant, Priya Gathani T +44 (0)203 567 1041 E priya.gathani@adbioresources.org Strategic Adviser, Chris Huhne E chris.huhne@adbioresources.org Head of Policy, Ollie More T +44 (0)203 567 0751 E ollie.more@adbioresources.org Policy Manager, Dr Thom Koller T +44 (0)203 176 0592 E thom.koller@adbioresources.org

Debate the future of our industry at the ADBA National Conference With Brexit negotiations underway and the new parliament committed to reducing carbon emissions, ADBA’s ninth National Conference will provide a timely opportunity to reflect on the state of the AD industry so far and look at what the future holds. The Rt Hon. the Lord Deben, Chairman of the Committee on Climate Change, will speak about how the UK Government needs to urgently reduce emissions to meet the binding carbon budgets, especially as there are still significant policy gaps in energy, farming and waste which will need to be resolved. This is an exciting time for AD, with the industry having significant potential to reduce emissions from heat and transport whilst simultaneously providing a management solution for UK waste – if the right policies are in place, such as mandatory separate food waste collections in England. Join us this year to discuss the drivers shaping our sector with politicians, policymakers and business leaders and debate how we can optimise the AD industry to reduce emissions through the 2020s.

Topics at a glance:

• ADBA's Best Practice Scheme • Will Brexit bring new opportunities for on-farm AD? • Which gases are better for grid injection? • Which separate food waste collections are the most efficient? • Decarbonising transport with AD

Environment and Regulation Manager, Jess Allan T +44 (0)203 735 8380 E jessica.allan@adbioresources.org Market Analyst, Emiliano Lewis T +44 (0)203 567 0751 E emiliano.lewis@adbioresources.org External Affairs Manager, Jon Harrison T +44 (0)203 176 0591 E jon.harrison@adbioresources.org PR & Parliamentary Affairs Executive, Chris Noyce T +44 (0)203 176 5441 E chris.noyce@adbioresources.org Sales Manager, Roberta Bontempo T +44 (0)203 176 4414 E roberta.bontempo@adbioresources.org Sales Executive, Max Garryev T +44 (0)203 176 5416 E max.garryev@adbioresources.org Membership Manager, Alex Monks T +44 (0)203 176 5418 E alex.monks@adbioresources.org Head of Events & Marketing, Gayle Brandon-Kirby T +44 (0)203 176 5440 E gayle.brandonkirby@adbioresources.org Event Producer, Desiree De Cecchis T +44 (0)203 176 4415 E desiree.dececchis@adbioresources.org Events Admin & Production Assistant, Cheryl Murdoch T +44 (0)203 735 8118 E cheryl.murdoch@adbioresources.org Marketing Manager, Steven Wade T +44 (0)203 176 5417 E steven.wade@adbioresources.org Marketing Manager, Jinna Sidhu T +44 (0)203 735 8117 E jinna.sidhu@adbioresources.org Accountant, Amy Pritchard T +44 (0)203 176 6962 E amy.pritchard@adbioresources.org Accounts Assistant, Anthony Olasoji T +44 (0)203 176 0503 E anthony.olasoji@adbioresources.org AD Finance, Bruce Nelson, Director of Compass Renewables T +44 (0)1732 464495 E bruce@compassbusinessfinance.co.uk AD & Bioresources News Managing Editor, Kirsty Sharpe T +44 (0)1920 821873 E kirsty.sharpe@adbioresources.org AD & Bioresources News Editor, Kate O’Reilly T +44 (0)7894 039609 E kate.oreilly@adbioresources.org

Welcome Jinna Jinna Sidhu, Marketing Manager “I am very excited to be part of an association that is helping the UK to meet its renewable energy targets and pave the way for a carbon-free future. I’m looking forward to building relationships and increasing awareness of the AD industry through our publications and high profile meetings and events.”


AD & Bioresources News | autumn 2017

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autumn 2017 | AD & Bioresources News



AD & Bioresources News | autumn 2017

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Profile for lunatrix

AD & Bioresources News Autum 2017  

AD & Bioresources News Autum 2017

AD & Bioresources News Autum 2017  

AD & Bioresources News Autum 2017