Two biogas plant operators combine expertise to produce bio-LNG

BALANCE EnviTec Bio-LNG GmbH founded for the new, exciting sector, of advanced fuels

Lohne/Leipzig, 23 November 2021 Two biogas plant operators pull together with a joint venture notarised yesterday. Leipzig-based BALANCE Erneuerbare Energien GmbH – a wholly owned subsidiary of VNG AG – and biogas all-rounder EnviTec Biogas AG, based in Lower Saxony, intend to jointly produce and market CO2-free fuel for commercial and heavy-duty transport as independent supplier. The bio-LNG liquefaction plant (Liquefied Natural Gas) is planned to be constructed in Brandenburg, near Berlin by the newly established company BALANCE EnviTec Bio-LNG GmbH. In addition to the actual liquefaction of biomethane it will have storage tanks and a filling station for tanker trucks.

“With our cooperation, we want to set an important milestone in the decarbonisation of the transport sector,” says Olaf von Lehmden, CEO of EnviTec Biogas AG. Thomas Fritsch, Managing Director of BALANCE adds: “We are pleased to announce that, in future, we will be able to liquefy biomethane in our own facility thus creating bio-LNG, enabling us to bring it to the fuel market. It is only with CO2 neutral fuel that commercial and heavy-duty transport can make its contribution to achieving climate targets.” The joint venture’s plant will be constructed in accordance with the latest state of the art measures to ensure almost energy-neutral operation and will produce about 100 tons of bio-LNG per day from Q4 2023. These quantities will make it possible to operate an average of up to 1,800 LNG trucks in an environmentally friendly manner annually.

The joint construction and operation of the liquefaction plant will enable two of Germany’s leading biogas plant operators to produce bio-LNG from their biomethane and bring this onto the market. Bio-LNG is mainly used for medium and heavy-duty trucks that have to travel longer distances. “We’ve already had inquiries from filling station chains and the logistics industry, as well as from other companies that want to convert their fleets to bio-LNG, which is as low-emission as it gets,” says von Lehmden. This is because the RED II directive, which is now in force, means fuel distributors are obliged to achieve a 25% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions of their products by 2030.

In addition to using self-generated biomethane, the joint venture will purchase biomethane from now on and onwards. Further the joint venture will be able to provide a service option to liquefy biomethane from other biomethane producers. “This means we can either buy the biomethane from plant operators or, provide liquefaction plant capacity in order for them to market the resulting products itself,” Fritsch continues.