Balanced Approach Needed to Help Achieve Net Zero

By Chris Winward

Following the government’s announcement of the Net Zero Growth Plan in March, it’s clear more needs to be done to recognise the role of Anaerobic Digestion (AD) in providing green energy.

As we have seen previously, the strategy focusses on other forms of renewable energy, such as solar and wind power, but completely neglects AD which is highly frustrating when we know AD can help mitigate the effects of climate change.

If we are to achieve net zero by 2050, which remains the intention, we need to take a balanced approach to address what all types of green energy solutions can deliver. People need to move away from the ‘easy’ renewable technologies of wind and solar and realise that AD, and the production of biomethane, is a crucial part of achieving net zero targets.

For example, the provision of energy from wind and solar has been down by 25% over the last 18 months, so where do we make up this shortfall in energy requirements?

AD has the potential to make up this shortfall by suppling biomethane and electricity back to the grid, all from a renewable source.

I am still of the opinion that AD isn’t truly understood by the public and politicians, nor has there been a desire to learn more about its potential.

It’s easy to understand wind and solar – the wind blows, or the sun shines and you make energy. But AD is a vital part of the jigsaw – this technology is able to take waste products and recycle them, helping to decarbonise the environment, which is absolutely key.

There’s a real education piece that needs to happen in government when it comes to AD. Politicians need to take some time to think about delivering on energy policy and ensure it’s balanced and delivering everything the country needs, which at the moment it isn’t.

Chris Winward