800% increase forecast for AD industry by 2020
The anaerobic digestion market could see an "incredible" eightfold increase in renewable energy generation by 2020, according to one of the sector's leading figureheads, Lord Redesdale.
Redesdale, who chairs the Anaerobic Digestion & Biogas Association (ADBA), said that with the right support from government, the potential for growth explosion was extraordinary.
"It is incredible that with only 78 plants built outside of the water industry, the UK AD industry is already delivering over four times more electricity than solar PV," he maintained.
"That is despite gaps in government support, a lack of coherent strategy for how we deal with waste and no strategy for how biogas should best be used. There is a huge number of plants in planning and interest in the sector is growing."
Speaking in the lead-up to ADBA's annual conference in Birmingham next week, Redesdale claimed that there was clear evidence supporting the role of the UK as a world leader in renewable energy.
"The estimate of what the industry could deliver, in such a short time frame, with adequate support, with the barriers removed, and with the recognition it deserves, is staggering," he said.
According to independent think tank CentreForum, anaerobic digestion can provide significant benefits to local authorities in terms of food waste.
The organisation will be launching new research at the conference, calling for support for the transition to source segregation of food and garden waste and a ban on organics to landfill.