ERGaR: European Renewable Gas Registry to facilitate the cross-border biomethane trade

The BIOSURF (Biomethane as Sustainable and Renewable Fuel – www.biosurf.eu) project has thoroughly studied the conditions for opening the whole European market for biomethane distributed through the natural gas network. It was concluded that an independent, professional and transparent administrative system is necessary to ensure market confidence and exclude double counting and double sale. The system is based on the cooperation of the national biomethane registries (presently in 8 European countries) and is designed to for easy expansion for all other states.

Gas pipes

The founding members 

On the 28th September 2016 in Ghent ten members from eights European countries have agreed on setting-up the the “European Renewable Gas Registry” (ERGaR) non-profit international association (aisbl). The founding members of ERGaR are:

  • from Austria: AGCS Gas Clearing & Settlement AG
  • from Belgium: European Biogas Association
  • from Denmark: Energinet.dk
  • from Germany: Landwärme GmbH
  • from Italy: CIB - Consorzio Italiano Biogas
  • from The Netherlands: STX Services B.V.
  • from UK: Renewable Energy Association Ltd.
  • from Switzerland: VSG - Swiss Association of Gas Industry Energie 360° AG

In the meantime, several organisations and companies have joined ERGaR aisbl, at the end of September 2017 the association had 16 members from 10 countries.

Mr. Jeppe Bjerg from Energinet.dk has been elected as President of ERGaR aisbl.

An independent, transparent and trustworthy documentation scheme

The main purpose of the new association is to establish an independent, transparent and trustworthy documentation scheme for mass balancing of biomethane (biogas upgraded to natural gas quality) distributed along the European natural gas network. The joint work has resulted in developing the voluntary scheme named as “ERGaR RED”. ERGaR aisbl will apply for the recognition of the voluntary scheme by the European Commission in accordance with the Renewable Energy Directive, Fuel Quality Directive and other related legislative documents.

The injected biomethane gets blended with natural gas in the pipelines and the methane molecules of fossil and renewable origin cannot be differentiated anymore. Hence, mass balancing with appropriate documentation is the only feasible solution to track the renewable fuel (biomethane) in the natural gas system.

“Proofs of Origin”

ERGaR RED has detailed procedures for performing the mass balancing of biomethane injected into the European natural gas system on a consignment to consignment basis and transferring the sustainability claims related to the individual consignments cross-border. The national biomethane registries will issue “Proofs of Origin” for the consignments designated for export. The content and attributes of these electronic documents are harmonised to enable easy transfer all through Europe. Thanks to the solid and reliable administrative system the sustainable biomethane consignments forwarded cross-border will be qualified as sustainable biofuel in the importing countries.

More info: www.ergar.org

Author: Dr. Attila Kovács