Biomethane as a transport fuel provides a sustainable and readily available alternative for conventional fuels. A recent paper shows that by 2050 bio-LNG can reduce GHG emissions in the transport sector by 95% to 174%. This scenario is particularly encouraging for the maritime sector as it meets the target of 75% GHG emissions reduction by 2050 set in EU legislation.
According to the European Environmental Agency, transport is responsible for 27% of Europe’s total GHG emissions and is a major contributor to climate change. The European Commission has recently set a target to increase the share of renewable energy in transport to at least 14% by 2030, including a minimum share of 3.5% of advanced biofuels. One of the options for the fast decarbonization of the transport sector is to use bio-LNG, produced from organic residues. This renewable fuel is readily available for use at scale and with infrastructure in place.
The paper authored by Floris Goedhart “Sustainable mobility in Europe: Potential market share for bio-LNG in the heavy-duty transport and maritime sectors in 2050” also illustrates that the share of bio-LNG in heavy-duty vehicles and maritime transport in 2050 are equally promising. His research shows that by 2050 the bio-LNG production could amount to 46 – 405 TWh, representing between 1.7% (lowest scenario) and 18.7% (highest scenario) of European transport energy consumption. The market share of bio-LNG could be at least 57% in the heavy-duty vehicles sector or 17% in the maritime sector.
“For transport decarbonization to speed up, all sustainable renewable fuels are necessary. Bio-LNG is the most readily available solution to decarbonize transport in Europe, especially heavy-duty and maritime sectors. Unlike other renewable alternatives, it can benefit from the existing LNG infrastructure,” explains Floris Goedhart.
The transition to decarbonization has already started. Europe has been experiencing a development of bio-LNG plants in the past years. According to the EBA Statistical Report 2022, there were 15 active bio-LNG producing plants in Europe by the end of 2021. This number is expected to increase sharply with 100 new bio-LNG projects confirmed by 2025, representing a total production capacity of 12.4 TWh per year.
“In Europe, hard-to-decarbonize sectors, such as the heavy-duty vehicle and the maritime sectors, release a substantial amount of the total GHG emissions of European transport. These emissions need to be reduced quickly and bio-LNG has potential to do this. The results of this study can hopefully contribute to securing long-term implementation of bio-LNG in the European transport sector,” concludes Goedhart.
Source: European Biogas Association