Direct Energy provides electricity and natural gas options across North America, and is number one in natural gas supply to commercial and industrial customers in the Eastern U.S. Direct Energy provides added value through offering flexibility, competitive pricing, and tailor-made solutions to meet the specific needs of the customer. Customers have the benefit of selecting the type of energy provided and even the region where it is generated.
Responding to a desire from their customer base for more environmentally friendly options, Direct Energy is actively pursuing low-carbon natural gas solutions for their customers on both sides of the border, such as including carbon offsets with fossil natural gas and sourcing renewable natural gas (RNG).
Direct Energy has a history of offering environmentally friendly solutions and has been supplying renewable electricity to customers since 2010. Combining their previous experience sourcing renewable energy, a strong mandate from executives to lead in this space and a large customer base, Direct Energy is well positioned to provide carbon-neutral natural gas options.
Direct Energy is currently in the process of adding RNG to their energy portfolio. They plan on operating in the RNG space the same way they work in regular natural gas markets by being an intermediary, which involves supporting producers with offtake agreements to meet the ever-growing demand from its customer base. Currently they are working with customers who are looking for RNG and securing sources to meet customer needs. Direct Energy is a trusted partner for customers and producers across the U.S. and Canada and looking to work with interested parties in the RNG space.
Mittal Monani, Senior Trader at Direct Energy, has been trading in environmental markets for over a decade. On the outlook for the industry, he shares “I have never been more enthusiastic about green commodities than I am now, we have seen such a huge move to support green commodities and from the gas side, we are well positioned to be involved.”
Monani notes a number of challenges facing further RNG development but feels there are many lessons that can be learned from past experience with renewable electricity. This includes the value of reducing costs with increased economies of scale and technology advancements which can leverage the emerging mid-tier RNG market. He also notes there exists a significant regulatory risk with green commodities and that it will be important to figure out how to de-risk projects and plan for what happens to mandates as regulations change depending on the political climate.
Direct Energy joined the Canadian Biogas Association (CBA) as members in February 2018. Monani learned about the CBA through the Value of Biogas West event in Abbotsford, BC. He was impressed with the work the CBA has done and the association’s mandate and feels that being a member is an effective way to stay informed and be active in RNG developments in Canada.