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Encirc director welcomes Northern Ireland biomethane progress

Encirc’s Sustainability Director, Fiacre O’Donnell has said, “The only way to achieve a truly Net Zero future is to adopt new sustainable fuel sources at scale.”

Fiacre was speaking in the wake of Economy Minister Deirdre Hargey announcing a three-month Call for Evidence seeking information and views from key stakeholders on developing a sustainable biomethane sector in Northern Ireland.

A renewable gas, biomethane is the purified version of biogas produced from the anaerobic digestion of organic matter such as silage, manure and brown bin waste. Recent research indicates that this region has significant biomethane potential due its large agricultural sector.

Welcoming the news, Fiacre said, “We know that the only way to achieve a truly Net Zero future, is to adopt new sustainable fuel sources at scale. That is why we at Encirc, and the wider Vidrala Group, welcome the ‘Call for Evidence’ by the Department for the Economy NI on developing biomethane production here.”

He added, “Decarbonising glass furnaces, which reach temperatures of 1,600 degrees, is no easy feat. Fossil fuels have been used for thousands of years to make glass. However, we see biomethane as a credible alternative to fossil fuels in the production of container glass in Northern Ireland.

“It can be generated at a large scale from the strong agricultural sector we have in the country, and using biomethane in Northern Ireland’s modern gas grid needs to be a key part of plans for decarbonising energy. So, let’s keep moving forward in our Zero Carbon journey.”

To find out more about the Call for Evidence and to contribute to the debate: Developing biomethane production in Northern Ireland call for evidence | Department for the Economy (economy-ni.gov.uk).

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