There has been a lot of talk about green electricity business tariffs for many years with the majority of suppliers offering a 100% or close to 100% renewable electricity option for customers. At the moment the green electricity option means businesses can report zero emissions for electricity consumption. For gas supply this is more difficult to find.
Various suppliers such as Engie, SSE and Ecotricity are offering a 100% renewable gas option which is obtained from Britain’s growing biomethane industry. It is, however, very important to understand the difference between renewable gas contracts and green gas contracts. Many suppliers are using the term green gas to describe carbon offsetting and does not include any biomethane. Other large suppliers such as Bulb are offering a blended supply of biomethane and natural gas to reduce emissions as well as carbon offsetting. Although the mix remains less than 10% this is mainly due to the availability of biomethane in the UK market and is the “greenest” option.
Biomethane is produced from Anaerobic Digestion (AD) where organic material (such as animal waste or spent grains from distilleries) is broken down in the absence of oxygen. This process produces biogas which can be used directly as a gas substitute on site or upgraded to be injected into the gas grid. The process of upgrading biogas to biomethane removes impurities such as H2S and CO2. The resulting mixture drives associated emissions down to 1.9% of its natural gas equivalent. This means that businesses contributing 1,000 tonnes per year CO2e emissions can reduce this to 19 tonnes CO2e. AD technology is gaining momentum throughout the UK with 579 site currently operational, producing tonnes of biogas every day.
With the recent interest in the hydrogen revolution it may be that the new green gas contracts will provide 100% renewable hydrogen instead of a mixture of biomethane and natural gas which may halt the progress of large scale AD implementation. The power giants of the industry have difficult decisions in the road to net zero 2050 and we at Boxfish are excited to see what’s next.
If your business is thinking of going green and would like to discuss the options available please get in touch. by calling us on 0141 226 8525.