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North America’s RNG industry reaches 100 facility benchmark


August 8, 2019
By Coalition for Renewable Natural Gas

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The Coalition for Renewable Natural Gas (RNG Coalition) announced that the North American renewable natural gas (RNG) industry has reached the 100 facility benchmark this summer. With the addition of three recent operational facilities, the 101 RNG production sites across the continent equate to nearly 150 per cent growth over the past five years from the 41 projects built between 1982 and 2014.

“Increased RNG development and deployment leads to greater adoption of the renewables we use to drive, and heat and power our homes and businesses,” said Johannes Escudero, RNG Coalition co-founder and CEO. “We join our members and all users of RNG in celebrating this milestone, which is a great achievement for sustainability and for decarbonizing our gas and power systems.”

The RNG Coalition was founded eight years ago when there were 31 operating RNG projects in North America. Having reached 50 RNG sites in 2015, the organization set the goal to double the number of RNG production facilities in North America within 10 years. The RNG industry has hit the target in half that time by eclipsing 100 sites this summer.

Three DTE Biomass Energy facilities in Wisconsin that convert cow waste from area dairies into renewable energy are among the new RNG production sites this year.

“We are very excited to be involved in dairy RNG, because we’re helping family-owned dairy farms to reduce harmful greenhouse gas emissions and offset use of vehicle fossil fuels,” said Kevin Dobson, vice-president of business development for DTE Biomass Energy. “Our RNG projects also benefit local economies, providing additional revenue streams for the host dairy farms and bringing local investment and jobs.”

Another RNG Coalition member, Ultra Capital, worked to launch a new production site in Ashland, Kentucky in April.

“The Big Run project diverts biogas that would otherwise have been flared and converts it into renewable natural gas that is sold to industrial customers, substituting for fossil natural gas and helping them achieve their carbon neutrality goals,” said Ultra Capital’s managing director, Kristian Hanelt. “Bringing Big Run online is an important milestone for our fund and our partners, and we see this as a growing asset class in sustainable infrastructure.”

According to the RNG Coalition’s database of renewable natural gas production sites, there are more than 50 additional facilities currently under construction or in development.

“100 RNG projects is a milestone worth celebrating, not just for the RNG industry, but as a symbol of hope for our planet,” added David Cox, RNG Coalition co-founder and operations director. “What’s even more exciting is that we are just getting started.”