Biogas is a climate-friendly way to produce energy. The production, however, involves a risk of eutrophicating nutrient discharges. The risk can be reduced by paying attention to digestate recycling and final disposal, and to the treatment of wastewaters from production. The Sustainable biogas project, funded by the EU Interreg Central Baltic Programme, will work together with the biogas sector and various stakeholders to reduce nutrient discharges from the whole life span of the biogas production: from raw materials to production and to safe utilisation of nutrient-rich digestates.
The project will reduce nutrient discharges from biogas production to watercourses by increasing awareness of the nutrients created in biogas production, and by creating new tools and procedures that improve nutrient flow management for the use of biogas plants and the authorities. Project results can be utilised e.g. in the planning phase and when environmental permits for biogas plants are awarded. Moreover, the project will promote the sustainable and safe utilisation of nutrient-rich digestates, created in biogas production, as recycled fertilizers.
Measures will be implemented in three areas: Southwest Finland, the Zemgale region in Latvia, and in Åland. In addition to the biogas production in the regions, all three areas have a nutrient surplus, due e.g. to intensive livestock production; at the same time, nutrient levels on cultivated fields are high, further increasing the risk of nutrient runoff to watercourses.
The John Nurminen Foundation will implement the Sustainable Biogas project in cooperation with the ELY Centre for Southwest Finland, the Finnish Biocycle and Biogas Association, Latvian State Environmental Services, and the Latvian Biogas Association. The project has received EU-funding of 1.06 million euros from the Interreg Central Baltic Programme.
John Nurminen Foundation