Biogas Technology

Energy and Climate Change – in the House of Commons at 10:30 am on 7th July 2011.

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Photo of Daniel Poulter Daniel Poulter Conservative, Central Suffolk and North Ipswich 10:30 am, 7th July 2011

What assessment he has made of the potential long-term benefits to the economy of expenditure on biogas technology.

Photo of Gregory Barker Gregory Barker The Minister of State, Department of Energy and Climate Change

The coalition Government are committed to increasing substantially the generation of renewable electricity and heat from waste through anaerobic digestion as well as through advanced conversion technologies such as gasification. Energy from a range of waste products contributes to reducing emissions, enhancing energy security and creating green jobs.

Photo of Daniel Poulter Daniel Poulter Conservative, Central Suffolk and North Ipswich

Anaerobic digestion has a number of advantages over other renewable energy technologies. It is generated constantly and can be stored in the grid in the form of gas, but people are having specific problems getting through the planning process to support the development of anaerobic digestion plants. What can the Minister do to help with this?

Photo of Gregory Barker Gregory Barker The Minister of State, Department of Energy and Climate Change

Obviously, planning per se is a matter for the Department for Communities and Local Government, but we are keen that where any renewable energy installation occurs in a local community, the local community should share in the wider benefits and the financial benefits, helping them to retain some of the business rates in their community and potentially to take ownership of those assets through community share ownership. There is a whole range of community benefits, but we need to do a better job of explaining them to local residents.