Ontario invests in renewable natural gas market
The Government of Ontario will launch consultations to identify potential changes that would allow farmers to expand the emerging renewable natural gas market in Ontario. The consultations will focus on changes designed to reduce red tape and grow untapped economic opportunities for on-farm biogas operations.
“Today we are launching consultations designed to unlock the economic potential of the biogas industry,” said Ernie Hardeman, Ontario’s Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs. “These consultations will focus on identifying potential changes that would enable the biogas sector to access new markets for renewable natural gas through red tape reduction. We want these consultations to pinpoint potential changes that could enable Ontario’s $35 million dollar-a-year biogas sector to grow by up to 50 per cent over the next five years.”
Consultations will look at opportunities to enable biogas upgrading to produce renewable natural gas on-farm, ways to streamline approvals, and requirements for off-farm and agricultural feedstocks.
These consultations could lead to potential changes that would also help Ontario food processors, providing an alternative to landfill disposal that could potentially save the sector millions of dollars while encouraging the recycling of nutrients to reduce greenhouse gases. The government will encourage the return of organic materials to agricultural land to build soil health and fertility for crop production.
The anaerobic digestion process produces biogas by decomposing organic waste, such as manure and crop and food processing waste.
Biogas systems can be used to generate renewable natural gas (RNG), electricity or heat and can provide additional options for management of manure and reducing pathogens.