Biomethane, a natural gas, is a clean source of energy produced through anaerobic respiration or by gasification of organic matter such as plant and animal waste, sewage, manure, industrial waste, and green waste, among others. High-calorific methane is extracted from biogas to obtain biomethane. Biomethane helps reduce greenhouse gases from the atmosphere and has application potential in power generation in the automotive sector. Importantly, bio-methane is obtained from the same infrastructure setup as natural gas, which eliminates additional setup cost for production.
Extensive application potential across automotive and power generation sectors drives the demand for biomethane, globally. Biomethane is a green gas and its purified variant has potential as vehicle fuel and can be injected into core gas networks for green energy generation. The growing concerns regarding global warming have been driving the need to curb greenhouse emissions and adopt clean energy. In 2017, U.S.-based VIA Metropolitan Transit announced the sale of bonds valued at USD 82 million for the purchase of 270 buses driven by natural gas. Global energy security concerns, stemming from the ever-increasing demand for electricity and heat generation are slated to drive market demand during the forecast period.
The global biomethane market was valued at USD 1486.4 million in 2018 and is expected to reach a value of USD 2497.19 million by 2026, recording a CAGR of 6.7% during the forecast period, 2019–2026.
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The global biomethane market has been segmented on the basis of feedstock, application and production method.
By feedstock, the biomethane market has been segmented into animal manure, organic household waste, energy crops, agricultural waste, industrial food processing waste, sewage sludge, and others. Among these, the agricultural waste segment holds a prominent market share. Agricultural economies, mainly India and Indonesia, are pegged to present substantial opportunities for market growth as bio-methane production, and biofuel application are expected to offer an additional source of income to farmers. The Department of Energy (DOE) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), have precise guidelines to develop the use of biogas, complimentary to U.S. renewable energy goals. Regional governments manage programs and provide financial incentives to support the biomethane market.
By application, the biomethane market has been segmented into automotive, power generation and others. The automotive segment accounts for a significant market share, owing to the growing concerns towards reducing CO2 emissions in the atmosphere.
On the basis of production method, the biomethane market has been segmented into fermentation and gasification. The gasification process, the more extensively used production process, emits combustible gases such as carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, methane, hydrogen and various hydrocarbons, which can be directly used in gas turbines, and boilers.
Geographically, the global biomethane market has been segmented into North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, Latin America, and Middle East & Africa.
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Europe dominates the global biomethane market, owing to the increasing production and consumption of bio-methane in countries across the region. The automotive sector is presently spearheading growth of the global biomethane market with biomethane being used as a vehicle fuel to replace fossil fuels such as petrol and evade the ever-increasing cost associated with them as well as reduce the emission of harmful gases.
North America accounts for the second largest market, owing to the development of innovative ways for waste treatment in biogas plants. Wastewater biogas plants are installed at almost all large-scale facilities, treating from one to several hundred million gallons of wastewater per day.
Asia Pacific is a developing market with various governments introducing an array of biogas support programs. In China, several modern biogas plants have been set up, with the installed electricity capacity of the country’s biogas plants reaching 330 MW in 2015 and 350 MW in 2016. Emerging countries such as India and China are observing rapid industrial evolution and are blessed with an agriculture-friendly climate; the countries, thus, possess a massive reserve of agricultural waste.
Latin America and the Middle East & Africa account for the least market share, owing to lack of awareness and low availability of biogas plants. The Latin America biomethane market is expected to witness significant growth with the increasing use of renewable energy in the energy mix. Moreover, numerous agricultural and domestic biogas plants have been set up for rural households and biogas is also being extracted from several landfills. In 2017, the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), in partnership with the Global Environment Facility, launched an industrial waste generated biogas project in the South African region.
Some of the key players in the global biomethane market are PlanET Biogas Global GmbH (Germany), CNG Services Ltd. (U.K.), VERBIO (Germany), SGN (U.K), EnviTec Biogas AG (Germany), Future Biogas Ltd. (U.K.), Gazasia Ltd. (U.K.), ETW Energietechnik GmbH (Germany), MagneGas (U.S.), Schmack Carbotech GmbH (Germany), Biogas Products Ltd. (U.K.), Gasrec (U.K.), SoCalGas (U.S.), ORBITAL (U.S.), and JV Energen (U.S.).