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WATCH: CalBio Opens Kern County’s First Dairy RNG Project

CalBio hosted a virtual opening of its dairy digester cluster project in Kern County.  This is the first dairy waste to Renewable Natural Gas (RNG) project in Kern County and will provide many benefits to the County and beyond, including production of carbon negative fuel that can replace diesel, improvements to air and water quality, job creation, and economic development.

Watch the video of this exciting event here.

To learn more, see CalBio’s press release:  CalBio Dairy Cluster Biogas to RNG Project

Greenlane Biogas Announces Dairy Biogas Upgrading Projects

Greenlane Biogas has signed $15.2 million in new supply contracts using Greenlane’s Pressure Swing Adsorption (“PSA”) biogas upgrading system. The contract is for the supply of biogas upgrading and related equipment for a cluster of dairy digesters located in California. Greenlane’s biogas upgrading systems will generate renewable biomethane for injection into the local gas distribution network owned and operated by PG&E.

Click here for more information about this exciting development.

SoCalGas Announces New Technology to Convert CO2 to Renewable Gas

SoCalGas and its partners, PG&E and Opus 12, have announced the development of a new one-step process to convert carbon dioxide to renewable gas.  This is a very important development as it will provide a way to convert excess solar and wind power to long-duration energy storage (in the form of renewable gas), which is critical to reach 100 percent renewable energy.  It will also reduce emissions from bioenergy by capturing CO2 emissions and converting the carbon to renewable gas.

See SoCalGas Announces Technology that Converts CO2 in Biogas to RNG

Air Board Prepares for New Climate Change Scoping Plan

At the Air Board’s April hearing, Air Board staff provided an overview of the next Climate Change Scoping Plan update, including the timeline to develop the plan and some major new areas it will include. The Scoping Plan provides the framework for achieving California’s climate goals.  Air Board staff proposed several new focus areas for the next Scoping Plan that are directly related to bioenergy, including:

  • Consideration of a renewable gas procurement requirement
  • A plan for achieving carbon neutrality by mid-century
  • Incorporating Natural and Working Lands into the Scoping Plan

See:  ARB presentation on Climate Scoping Plan (4.23.20)

BAC-CASA Comments on CPUC’s Proposed Pipeline Biogas Decision

BAC and CASA filed joint comments fully supporting the CPUC’s Proposed Decision on changes to pipeline biogas standards and urged the Commission to begin a new phase to consider additional incentives for pipeline biogas and a biogas procurement program that includes all sources and conversion technologies.

See R.13-02-008 Joint BAC-CASA Comments on Proposed Decision

CPUC Proposes Revised Pipeline Biogas Standards

BAC sponsored legislation in 2016 that required the CPUC to hire the California Council on Science and Technology to review California’s pipeline biogas standards for heating value (BTU) and siloxanes.  CCST has recommended several changes, which the CPUC is now proposing to adopt:

  1. Reduce the heating value requirement from 990 to 970 BTU.
  2. Maintain the siloxanes requirement.
  3. Reducing the siloxanes monitoring and reporting requirements for biogas sources that are unlikely to contain siloxanes.
  4. Allow blending in certain locations where lower BTU biogas would not present safety risks.

Read the CPUC’s Proposed Decision on Pipeline Biogas Standards (Jan2019)

BAC’s Reply Comments on Pipeline Biomethane

The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) has reopened its proceeding on pipeline biomethane to reconsider the current standards and incentive programs for pipeline biomethane.  Legislation that BAC sponsored in 2016 required the CPUC to hire the California Council on Science and Technology (CCST) to review pipeline standards for heating value (BTU) and siloxanes.  CCST issued its report earlier this summer recommending a number of changes and the CPUC then asked parties to comment on CCST’s recommendations as well as a number of other issues related to incentives for biomethane.  The CPUC is expected to rule on these issues before the end the year. BAC’s Reply Comments on Pipeline Biomethane focus on several key issues:

  • Need to adopt a biomethane procurement requirement that focuses on instate biomethane production from all organic waste sectors and conversion technologies.
  • Need to increase incentives for pipeline biomethane, including an allocation of the gas utilities’ Cap & Trade revenues and an increase in R&D for biomethane.
  • Support for the California Council on Science and Technology’s recommendations to revise the standards and monitoring requirements for BTU and siloxanes.

CPUC to Consider Revising Pipeline Biogas Standards

California has some of the strictest pipeline biogas requirements in the country, which can add significantly to the costs of pipeline biogas projects.  As a result, the state enacted legislation in 2016 requiring the California Council on Science and Technology (CCST) to review the standards for the heating value (BTU) and siloxanes.  The CCST report recommends that the CPUC consider reducing the BTU requirement to as low as 970.  CCST recommends further study on the siloxanes standard and suggests that monitoring requirements be reduced for biogas sources that are unlikely to have siloxanes (diverted organic waste, dairy, forest and agricultural waste).

Click here to see the CCST study and executive summary.