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Gasum produces biogas from waste: “Customers are working hard to find energy solutions to reduce their carbon dioxide emissions.”

Energy company Gasum, known for its natural gas, is the largest producer of biogas in Finland and Sweden and aims to continue to increase its biogas production in future. Johan Grön, Vice President for biogas business, wants to take full advantage of renewable raw materials.

Image: Petteri Tuukkanen, Berry Creative

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“Because of climate change, companies and consumers both have ambitious goals for reducing their carbon dioxide emissions. We wanted to respond to this need. Therefore, we began to produce and distribute biogas in addition to natural gas in 2015.

We make biogas by decomposing organic matters such as biowaste. The process generates biomethane, which can be used to replace fossil fuels. The decomposing process leaves a wet, nutritious digestate that can be used as a nutrient in agriculture or industry.

Biogas can replace fossil fuels in marine and road transport and in industry, which reduces carbon dioxide emissions. For example, the Border Guard’s offshore patrol vessel Turva, Viking Line’s ferries and Posti’s delivery vehicles currently run on Gasum’s biogas.

Our operation has grown fast, and we are now Finland’s largest biogas producer. The proportion of biogas is approximately 10 per cent of all of Gasum’s gas production. We have 18 biogas plants in Finland and Sweden. We work constantly to improve the provision of biogas by building new plants and expanding the purchasing of biogas from other operators’ production plants.

In addition to our own biogas production, we offer a distribution system for the biogas produced by our partners. To increase the use of biogas, we must make it easily available.

I have previously worked in the fields of mining technology, water treatment technology and bioproduct technology. In the biogas sector, I am inspired by the growing bioenergy business in which customers require us to come up with swift and innovative solutions so that the availability of biogas can be increased quickly. Biogas is an excellent example of how organic and valuable raw materials can be processed further instead of being incinerated or sent for open-air composting.

In the past few years, the market for ecological fuels has constantly been growing both in Finland and abroad. Our aim is to increase the availability of biogas from the current 1.5 terawatt hours to 4 terawatt hours by 2025. Replacing fossil fuels with biogas would then reduce carbon dioxide emissions by a total of up to a million tonnes, which is equal to the annual carbon footprint of approximately 150,000 Europeans.

We also want to expand the distribution of biogas so that renewable energy will be available to everyone who wants it.”

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