Australia’s first Renewable Gas Certification Pilot

A graphic of the biogas upgrader facility that will be installed at the Malabar Biomethane Project. Image Provided:
Media Release

New South Wales gas customers will soon have access to verified and accredited renewable gas thanks to an Australian-first Renewable Gas Certification Pilot that will drive ongoing investment in new sources of green gas. 

Energy infrastructure company Jemena, NSW Government-managed renewable energy accreditor GreenPower, and peak industry association Energy Networks Australia (ENA) have joined forces to develop the certification pilot. 

The pilot will be delivered by GreenPower over a minimum of two years and will inform the development of a permanent certification scheme for renewable gases.

“We are driving the call for a national certification scheme because our customers have told us they want certainty in their ability to purchase verified and accredited zero emission gas just as is currently the case for renewable electricity,” said Jemena Executive General Manager of Energy Networks Shaun Reardon. 

“A national certification scheme will boost industry investment in renewable gases such as biomethane and hydrogen and make them available to Australian homes and businesses”

“In the short-term it will mean our customers can lower their carbon footprint without making any changes to the way they currently use their gas appliances. In the long-term it will ensure gas remains affordable through the decarbonisation of existing gas infrastructure without the need for building new alternative forms of energy infrastructure.”

“This is an important first step towards a Renewable Gas Target, which Jemena is calling for to achieve net-zero emissions in Australia by 2050.”

Chair of the National GreenPower Steering Group Tim Stock said the Renewable Gas Certification Pilot is a key step in the development of a voluntary market for renewable gas.

“GreenPower’s collaboration with Jemena and Energy Networks Australia showcases government and industry working together to support renewable gas markets and will provide more choice for consumers to help drive our energy transition,” said Mr Stock.

Malabar Biomethane Project

The first application of the pilot will be applied to the Jemena and Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) co-funded biomethane-to-grid project, located at Sydney Water’s Malabar Wastewater Treatment Plant. The pilot will be built to encompass other projects as they come online.

“Australia’s inaugural biomethane-to-grid project is the perfect opportunity to demonstrate the process, share learnings and insights with industry and provide customers with a level of certainty as they strive towards their environmental targets,” said Mr Reardon.

Deloitte estimates there’s 371 PJ of biomethane that has the potential to be unlocked in Australia and in New South Wales Jemena estimates that 30 PJ of biomethane is readily available near its network, equivalent to the output of 76 GW of solar. That’s enough to supply all current Jemena residential gas customers with carbon neutral, green gas.

The green gas certificates will be available to all customers. Retailers will hold the certificates for residential customers and Jemena will manage the certification process for commercial, industrial and other large customers.