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EnvironmentGas from grappa? An alcohol producer turns waste into biomethane

Gas from grappa? An alcohol producer turns waste into biomethane

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Gaston de Persigny
Gaston de Persigny
Gaston de Persigny - Reporter at The European Times News
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The company “Bonollo”, known for the production of traditional Italian grappa, and the gas transmission company “Italgas” opened the first biomethane plant at the distillery, reported Reuters. This could prove to be an important step towards increasing the production of renewable natural gas in Italy.

Biomethane, which in this case is made from the liquid residues resulting from the distillation of grapes and grape products, is obtained during the processing and purification of biogas. It can be used for heating, cooking and everything else that uses traditional natural gas extracted from the processing of fossil fuels, but it is essentially a by-product of the processing of organic matter and as such is considered renewable and carbon neutral.

The most popular product of the “Bonollo” family is grappa, distilled from grape pomace left after wine production. The company produces the OF brand based on Amarone wine.

Italgaz has announced that the “Bonolo” biomethane plant, located near the northeastern Italian city of Padua, is the first to be connected to the company’s grid, but there are 140 more connection requests.

“Italy, which now produces only 5 percent of the biomethane in the EU, has great opportunities to increase its production,” said Pier Lorenzo Dell’Orco, CEO of the distribution network of Italgas, Italy’s largest natural gas supplier. .

The Bonolo plant will produce 2.4 million cubic meters of renewable gas per year, which will be fed into the gas transmission network and has the capacity to supply 3,000 households.

Last year, the government in Rome approved state subsidies totaling 1.7 billion euros to support investments in biogas and biomethane production facilities to reduce dependence on Russian natural gas imports.

Italy currently produces 500 million cubic meters of biomethane, but according to Dell’Orco, a volume of 8 billion cubic meters could be reached by 2030. Italgas plans to invest 4 billion euros by 2028 to digitize the network and make it possible to transport different fuels, incl. hydrogen.

The EU’s “RepowerEU” program, presented by the European Commission after the beginning of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, set the goal of biomethane production in the Community to reach 35 billion cubic meters by 2030 and to partially replace the volumes of natural gas purchased from Russia gas.


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