Finnish Transport Sector Sets 40% Renewable Methane Target

| Finland

Roadmap Report Summary now available in English

In January 2012, Finland’s Ministry of Transport and Communications set up a “Future motive powers in transport” task force with a purpose to work out targets and plan paths for achieving them, for different motive powers in road, rail, water and air transport in 2020 and 2050.

One of the motive powers considered by the task force is renewable methane (see endnote) for which a sectoral report was prepared by the Finnish Biogas Association and North Karelian Traffic Biogas Network Development Programme. The 133-page report was published (in Finnish) in June. An extended summary (31 pages) of the report “Roadmap to renewable methane economy” has now been published in English.

A goal of 40 % share for renewable methane of transport energy consumption in 2050 is proposed in the report and roadmaps for different forms of transport have been planned. To be able to get development into desired tracks, targets for 2020 have also been proposed and a toolbox of recommended instruments has been designed for State level interventions for meeting the targets.

Water transport will be leading the way, since already next year two large vessels (300 GWh annual methane consumption) will be taken into use: Viking Grace (a large passenger ship for Turku-Stockholm route) and UVL 10 (Finnish border patrol boat). Both vessels are currently under construction in Finland by STX and will be using Finnish Wärtsilä dual-fuel methane-diesel engines. By 2020 at least 20 vessels are expected as a result of the UN/IMO sulfur emission restrictions in the Baltic Sea.

In road transport the target is 2 % of vehicles in 2020, i.e. 60,000 vehicles. Meeting the target means that methane vehicles should reach 4.4 % share of registrations between 2012 and 2020. Also part of non-electrified rail transport is expected to move from diesel oil to methane by 2020, but in air transport methane use is not yet expected to begin by 2020.

In 2020 natural gas (NG) is expected to cover 60 % of transport methane use of 2.5 TWh. Biogas (BG) and synthetic biogas (SBG) would contribute by 1 TWh (40 %). After 2020 the share of renewable methane will continuously increase and by 2050 the use of natural gas and all other fossil fuels will end.

The final report of the task force will be published in spring 2013.

Endnote:

Renewable methane means biomethane, wind methane, solar methane and other methane fuels produced by renewable energy sources.

Finnish Biogas Association is a national trade association of companies, individuals and associations with interest in the renewable methane field.  Finnish Biogas Association is a member of European Biogas Association (EBA) and European natural and biogas vehicle association (NGVA Europe).

North Karelian Traffic Biogas Network Development Programme is an EU European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) co-funded project with a purpose to enable establishment of traffic biogas production and refueling network in the province of North Karelia in Eastern Finland.

(This article compiled using information from the Finnish Biogas Portal – Liikennebiokaasu)

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