The BIOMASTER Project which aims to engage with people and processes to enable a significant breakthrough in the uptake of biomethane for transport and helps to meet EU’s 2020 strategy

By Pavlina Dravecka / Updated: 17 Feb 2015

Between 118 and 138 million tonnes of bio-waste are produced every year in the European Union. This includes about 88 million tonnes is municipal waste which is projected to increase by about 10% by 2020. The European Union presently has one of the strictest standards of legislation regarding waste management and landfill sites. The European Union’s overall aim is “to prevent or reduce as far as possible negative effects on the environment, in particular the pollution of surface water, groundwater, soil and air, and on the global environment, including the greenhouse effect, as well as any resulting risk to human health, from the landfilling of waste, during the whole life-cycle of the landfill”. About one-third of the European Union’s 10% target for renewable energy in transport in 2020 could be met by using biomethane produced from bio-waste.

BIOMASTER is a project, co-funded by the Intelligent Energy Europe-Programme, which intends to address several challenges and targets of Renewable Energies for Europe towards 2020.

Biomethane from waste offers, among all biofuels, the best results in terms of energy and environmental performance. Additionally, the composition of biomethane is very similar to that of fossil gas, so that biomethane can be readily substituted in vehicle engines designed to run on natural gas.

There are significant barriers to the use of biomethane for transport that have prevented uptake almost everywhere across the European Union. In several countries biogas exists almost exclusively for power generation, supported by financial incentive systems, while similar schemes do not exist for biomethane for transport, so hindering the growth of that market.

The four participating regions in BIOMASTER, Malopolska Region (Poland), Norfolk County (United Kingdom), Skåne Region (Sweden) and Trentino Province (Italy), are working together to promote biomethane production, its grid injection and use for transport. They are undertaking a joint initiative involving all these key components of the biomethane chain, stimulating investment, lobbying to remove non-technological barriers and mobilising action for uptake.

By creating a project that links several members of the European Union, BIOMASTER makes it possible to address a wide variety of different situations, and to tackle the barriers to the use of biomethane for transport, in a way that would not be possible within one country alone. Promoting the biomethane economy at European level has the advantage of widening the potential of the market beyond national borders. BIOMASTER aims to bridge the knowledge and operational gaps fragmenting the biomethane and to set-up local stakeholder networks to fully explore and exploit biomethane sources, potential users, the available distribution modes, and the legal, organisational and financial barriers.

You can join the BIOMASTER Network to participate in the discussion, learn form and share your point of view with others throughout Europe. Discussion topics include:

  • How to bring biomethane to the centre of public policy debate;
  • How to interact with the business community and other institutions;
  • How to focus on the overarching benefits created by biomethane;
  • How to address the persisting legal, fiscal and organisational obstacles to market break-through;
  • How to attract interest on biomethane, on not just a regional, but also on a national level.

Further project information is available for download:

For further information visit the BIOMASTER website  or contact the Project Coordinator, Stefano PROIETTI