An anaerobic digester

Biomethane’s potential in Cavan highlighted

A new report has found that biomethane produced in Cavan could reduce carbon emissions by almost three-quarters of a million tonnes a year. These are the main findings from the Biomethane Energy Report2, launched last week by Gas Networks Ireland.

The report claims that Cavan could produce enough renewable gas to not only replace all of the natural gas consumed by the 1,750 homes and businesses in Cavan connected to the 94km of gas network in the county, but would produce a surplus of the county’s gas needs and also reduce carbon emissions by almost 750,000 tonnes annually.

Structurally identical to natural gas, biomethane is a carbon-neutral renewable gas derived from organic sources such as landfills, food waste, and agricultural waste. Biomethane is fully compatible with the existing national gas network and existing appliances, technologies, and vehicles.

Gas Networks Ireland claim that nationally, Ireland has the potential for a biomethane industry, which would replace more than a quarter of natural gas on the national network, create significant new agri-income streams and reduce Ireland’s total emissions by almost 4 million tonnes per year - 6.5% of Ireland’s total emissions.

The report is based on findings from responses to a market testing Request for Information (RFI) issued by Gas Networks Ireland to current and future biomethane producers in October 2022.

The top five counties in terms of prospective biomethane production volumes were Cavan, Kildare, Limerick, Cork, and Monaghan. With ten potential biomethane production projects, the highest biomethane ambition in terms of volume at 2,791 Gigawatt hours (GWh), is also in Cavan.

Gas Networks Ireland’s Biomethane Programme Manager, Padraig Fleming said, “with Cavan’s higher density agriculture including the production of poultry and pork and the variety of horticulture, there is plenty of potential in the county for a biomethane industry.”