TotalEnergies, Clean Energy start construction of biogas unit

By Keefe Borden30 November 2021

TotalEnergies and Clean Energy Fuels Corp. have started construction on a biomethane production plant in Friona, Texas that will produce fuel for transportation.

The joint venture will use livestock manure as a feedstock to produce more than 40 GWh of biomethane annually. The fuel will be distributed in the U.S. by Clean Energy through its network of fueling stations and will provide renewable gas to fuel between 200 and 300 trucks per year, TotalEnergies reported.

By processing cow manure, a significant source of methane emissions, and substituting fossil fuels with renewable energies, the project will avoid some 45,000 tonnes of CO2e emissions per year, TotalEnergies reported.

“We are pleased to consolidate our entry into the U.S. biomethane market by jointly developing this first production unit on the Del Rio Dairy farm, through our joint venture with Clean Energy,” said Laurent Wolffsheim, senior vice president green gases & growth at TotalEnergies. “This project marks another step in TotalEnergies’ transformation into a multi-energy company, and in the implementation of its ambition to be a major player in renewables.”

“This project at Del Rio Dairy helps to address the increasing demand for RNG by fleets and is a great example of our partnership with TotalEnergies, one of the world’s leading and most sustainably-minded energy companies,” said Andrew J. Littlefair, president and CEO, Clean Energy, “RNG, one of the cleanest fuels on the planet, manages greenhouse gas emissions and tackles global warming. The added RNG production from Del Rio will help us meet our target to provide this 100% negative carbon emissions fuel at all of our North American stations by 2025.”

Through the acquisition of an interest in Clean Energy in May 2018, TotalEnergies became the largest shareholder of the producer of natural gas vehicle fuels, with a stake of some 19% today. In March 2021, the two partners set up a 50/50 joint venture to speed up the development of biomethane production in the United States.

Biomethane is a renewable gas that has a key role to play in the energy transition. TotalEnergies, formerly Total, has nearly 500 GWh of production capacity, and plans to become a major player in biomethane internationally by partnering with companies in other geographies, such as Clean Energy in the United States and Adani in India.

TotalEnergies is active across the entire biomethane value chain, from project development to marketing of biomethane and its by-products (biofertilizers, bioCO2). It aims to produce 2 TWh of biomethane per year by 2025 – equivalent to the average annual consumption of 670,000 U.S. consumers, and a reduction in CO2 emissions of 400,000 tonnes.

Clean Energy Fuels Corp. is the North American largest provider of the cleanest fuel for the transportation market.

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