The Canadian Biogas Association posts “Insights” articles on a regular basis to contextualize important new information and announcements through the lens of Canada’s biogas opportunity. Check out other Insight articles.
April 30 2021
On April 19, the federal government tabled its budget for 2021. Being the first federal budget since the COVID pandemic began, it’s been styled as the “recovery” budget, proposing targeted spending to stimulate the economy, create jobs and drive a durable recovery.
Biogas will be an important part of this recovery.
Modelling shows that biogas projects can generate good jobs and strong economic activity across Canada, including in both rural and urban regions, and including in some of the regions hit hardest by the pandemic.
In fact, a bold commitment to biogas could create almost 20,000 jobs and launch 100 new or expanded Canadian businesses.
So does the federal budget unleash the economic recovery potential of biogas?
Yes in part. Together with the government’s climate and clean energy announcements made at the end of 2020, the federal budget will provide a boost to biogas opportunities.
Firstly, the government’s new climate pledges announced at the end of 2020 send important market signals that paint a bright future for biogas. Its pledge to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050, followed by an announced increase in the carbon price to $170/tonne by 2030, will both stimulate private-sector investment in biogas projects over the long term.
In the short term, biogas projects need to continue to compete with fossil fuels. The government’s announcements of a $1.5-billion Clean Fuel Fund, specifically designed to accelerate production and adoption of renewable fuels like biogas and RNG, as well as a renewed $165-million Agricultural Clean Technology program, which can drive biogas opportunities on farms, are critical stopgaps that will support Canada’s biogas potential until the stronger market signals kick in later in the decade.
Adding to these earlier commitments, the federal budget also provides $104 million to decrease methane leakage from landfills, which will present new opportunities for biogas production from landfill gas capture. It also singles out at least $10 million from the Agricultural Clean Technology Fund exclusively for on-farm clean energy and biogas projects.
The Canadian Biogas Association looks forward to working with the government to ensure that these policies and investments will produce the intended effect. The more biogas projects they can stimulate, then the more jobs, the more emissions reductions and the stronger recovery we’ll see coming out of COVID in 2021.