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Biogas production channels in Europe

Biogas is produced from organic material in the absence of oxygen. Production can take place in waste storage facilities, treatment plants or using organic waste from agriculture and the agro-food industry (on the graph, “Other biogases”). Thermal biogas is produced by applying pyrolysis or gasification of solid biomass (wood, forest residue, solid and fermentable household waste).

Source: Eurobserv’ER (2021)

In the EU, in 2020, energy production from biogas (from anaerobic fermentation and thermal processes) remains stable at 14,7 Mtep. This sluggishness, observable since 2017, has several causes : the establishment of more restrictive regulations concerning the use of food crops for the production of biogas, the limitation of biomass electricity tenders, and less incentive conditions of remuneration of electricity biogas.

National productions are contrasted. Thanks to a proactive policy, Germany is the main producer of biogas in Europe with 7745 ktep produced in 2020 (almost half of European production). This production is mainly carried out from agricultural and food industry residues. The German example shows that there is a significant potential for biogas production in Europe. Some countries have significant production growth, such as France (3rd European country with production growth of 16,5%), or Denmark (29%).

The main method of recovering biogas in the EU remains the production of electricity: 55,7 TWh in 2020 for the EU-27.

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