In Jaén, Enagás Renovable, Genia Bioenergy and Grupo Valora are developing a biomethane generation plant powered by pomace pastes (alperujo) and slurry

Innovation Renewable gases Descarbonisation
12 May 2022
  • The project, which helps promote decarbonisation and the circular economy, has been presented to the Territorial Delegation of Sustainable Development of the Andalusian Regional Government in Jaén
  • The plant would convert up to 140,000 tonnes of organic waste into biogas each year and generate up to 60 GWh of biomethane
  • This facility would also allow the production of some 80,000 tonnes of organic fertilisers and would save approximately 120,000 tonnes of CO2 emissions per year

Enagás Renovable ─a subsidiary of Enagás─, the energy engineering firm Genia Global Energy, and the waste management company Grupo Valora, have undertaken a project to promote the creation of a biomethane production plant in Jabalquinto (Jaén).

This project, which was presented to the Territorial Delegation of Sustainable Development of the Andalusian Regional Government in Jaén, contemplates the construction of a biogas production plant in the town of Jabalquinto, in Jaén.

The initiative thus contributes to the promotion of decarbonisation and the circular economy, thanks to waste recovery. Specifically, this facility would process up to 140,000 tonnes per year of different biowaste, including pig slurry, food industry waste, pomace pastes and process water, to convert them into biomethane equivalent to around 60 GWh of energy.

Furthermore, the plant’s circular economy processes would make it possible to generate fertilisers and organic amendments ─materials of plant and animal origin─ aimed at improving the fertile capacity of crops and recovering degraded areas.

This natural process, agronomically safe and without odour or insect nuisance, would help solve the problem of managing biowaste that is particularly difficult to treat, such as slurry or pomace paste, which without being properly managed could contaminate soils or aquifers.

The project, which will create more than 15 direct, permanent and qualified jobs, will also generate an economic ecosystem that will benefit biowaste producers (oil mills, pig farms and the agri-food industry), transporters and farmers.

The implementation of this initiative, which would result in CO2 emissions savings of approximately 120,000 tonnes per year, is in line with Europe’s Circular Economy Plan ─EU Directive 2018/850─ on waste management, treatment and recovery for municipalities, the Spanish Government’s Climate Change and Energy Transition Law, the Integrated National Energy and Climate Plan (PNIEC) 2021-2030 and the Andalusia Energy Strategy 2030.

This project is in addition to the plan of Enagás Renovable, Genia Bioenergy and Grupo Valora to develop three additional projects in Andalusia, which would allow total biomethane production of 200 GWh/year.

Anaerobic biodigestion process

Biogas is obtained through a process of biodigestion of organic waste, called anaerobic biodigestion, a natural process that speeds up the production of this ecological gas with a high concentration of methane, thanks to the action of bacteria that live in the absence of oxygen.

Through an upgrading process, the resulting biogas is purified into biomethane, with similar characteristics to natural gas, so that it can be injected into the gas grid for distribution, which would allow homes, industries and vehicles to consume energy from renewable sources.

In Europe there are about 800 plants that inject biomethane into the distribution network and more than 19,000 that produce biogas for own consumption or cogeneration.


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