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Biomethane

13 October 2021

Biomethane can serve as a natural gas substitute, produced from the capture and refinement of waste gases. The new method will allow biomethane from waste and agricultural methods to reduce emissions and receive Australian carbon credit units (ACCUs).

Diagram of the carbon capture and storage method development process.

Method development plan

Development stageStatusMilestones for the 2021 calendar year
Planning and scopingComplete
  • Ministerial method priority announced quarter 4 2020.
  • Initial method scoping and planning completed in quarter 1 2021.
Develop draft methodIn progress
  • First co-design workshop held 24 February 2021.
  • Second co-design workshop held 11 June 2021. 
  • Co-design process continues during quarter 2 and quarter 3 2021.
Technical and expert consultationIn progress
  • Technical review scheduled quarters 3 and 4 2021.
ERAC considerationPending
  • ERAC consideration scheduled quarter 4 2021.
Public consultationPending
  • Public consultation scheduled quarter 4 2021.
Refinement and draft finalisationPending
  • Refinement and draft finalisation during quarter 4 2021.
ERAC approvalPending
  • ERAC review scheduled quarter 4 2021.
Minister approvalPending
  • Method finalisation by quarter 4 2021.

Issues Register

IssueResponse
Consideration of waste feedstocks beyond those covered by the existing ERF methods.
The Clean Energy Regulator (the agency) commissioned a report on the viability of including agricultural waste feedstocks currently not covered by the ERF waste methods. The report’s findings indicate that agricultural waste is a potential biomethane feedstock, but further research is required if a robust method consistent with the Offsets Integrity Standards is to be developed.
Determining the appropriate length of a crediting period for biomethane injection projects.The agency collaborated with stakeholders to consider evidence on an appropriate crediting period for biomethane injection projects, which will meet the Offsets Integrity Standards.
Appropriateness of abatement calculation approaches, including for fugitive emissions and lifecycle abatement.The agency will review stakeholder feedback and seek technical expertise on the proposed calculation approach, noting that life cycle abatement is out of scope for ERF methods.
Interaction with guarantee of origin schemes.
The agency continues to monitor progress on future guarantee of origin schemes and is considering how to maximise compatibility between the method and any future schemes.



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