Title

Commercialization of Renewable Natural Gas in Florida is being submitted to the Association Gas Distributors of Florida, Inc.

Secondary Author(s)

Muradov, Nazim; Colon, Carlos; Fenaughty, Karen

Report Number

FSEC-CR-2109-21

Abstract

Renewable Natural Gas (RNG) is an important part of a clean energy future. RNG can be recovered and processed or produced and distributed using existing pipelines. Renewable natural gas, also known as biomethane or biogas, can be produced via different methods (e.g., Anaerobic digestion, thermal gasification, Sabatier reaction). RNG burns cleaner compared to other fossil fuels and provides other benefits such as reduced greenhouse gas emissions, improved waste management, and an increase in domestic energy production. In this report, the following three tasks were undertaken. Task 1 involved reviewing national and state-level resource databases to identify known and potential landfill gas production sites. A national database developed by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as part of its Landfill Methane Outreach Program (LMOP) was mined to determine potential/candidate landfill sites in Florida. This database provided landfill parameters such as Landfill ID, physical location, year in operation, current status, waste in place (Tons), LFG collection (mmscfd), LFG flared, and type of LFG energy project, rated capacity, and actual generation (MW), and emission reductions (MMTCO2e/y). In addition, a thorough literature search was conducted to gather information on national-level RNG production and projects from landfill gas (LFG). In Task 2, an evaluation of the state-of-the-art technology for converting local landfill gas and biogas resources to renewable natural gas (RNG) was performed. The main objective of this Task was to evaluate the most technologically and economically viable options for converting LFG resources to RNG. The target applications for produced RNG include pipeline-quality gas (PQG), transportation fuels, compressed (CNG), and liquefied (LNG) natural gas. This Task mainly focused on the utilization of LFG as the most common renewable gaseous resource in Florida, however, other methane-containing gases, such as, biogas and sewage gas (which are products of anaerobic digestion of agricultural/food waste and waste water, respectively), were also considered. Typically, landfill systems produce about half the amount of biogas from a given volume of organic material compared to anaerobic digesters, because the latter is optimized to maximize the gas output (while landfills are not). On the other hand, the anaerobic digesters are more expensive compared to landfills. In Task 3, US EPA's Landfill Gas Energy Cost Model, LFGcost-Web Version 3.4 was applied as an exploratory tool to perform financial cost-benefit analysis based on the availability of methane in various forms, the methods used for purification, and the available transportation methods. Because the model requires a large number of input parameters, which could vary from site to site, a series of sensitivity tests were performed by varying certain model inputs. The screening results from the model simulations should be helpful for decision making including the pre-feasibility assessment of an LFG project.

Date Published

5-4-2021

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