Gas is changing

Clarus believes renewable gas has a big part to play in New Zealand’s energy future and we're right behind it.

excitement
FutureFocused
Clarus Energy Future home

At Clarus, we want New Zealanders to continue enjoying the benefits of gas while keeping New Zealand clean and green.

Thanks to extensive research and close monitoring of international efforts, we’re planning our route towards distributing cleaner, more energy efficient renewable gas including green hydrogen, biogas and bioLPG.

FutureFocused
iStock 1153197188

Biogas

Food waste accounts for a large portion of global greenhouse gas emissions. When we discard food waste through unsustainable methods, we also compromise our water resources, intensify pollution, accelerate soil erosion, and threaten biodiversity.

Anaerobic Digestion (AD) is a natural process where micro-organisms break down organic waste such as food scraps. This produces two valuable resources; biogas and digestate. Biogas can be used for a number of applications to generate energy, produce clean bio-fertiliser and provide valuable BioCO2.

Ecogas is working with Clarus company First Renewables in the first New Zealand project to upgrade the biogas into Biomethane and BioCO2. The biomethane will be injected into the gas grid as a renewable form of energy for residential and industrial supply, to generate enough energy to annually power up the equivalent of around 7,200 households* in the region. The BioCO2 will be used to offset the needs of both T&G glasshouses and the wider food and beverage industry.

*7,200 houses at an average residential gas demand of 22GJ p.a. = 160TJ p.a. (estimated annual biomethane injected at Broadlands).

FutureFocused
shutterstock 1364103719

The future of Renewable Liquid Gas (rLG)

Renewable Liquid Gas (rLG) is chemically identical to conventional Liquified Petroleum Gas (LPG), but with a lower carbon footprint.

Currently LPG, is used in thousands of homes and businesses across New Zealand and particularly in the South Island. Many homes use 45kg LPG bottles for heating, cooling and hot water – providing instant heat all year round- as well as 9kg bottles to fuel the barbie.

New Zealand uses around 190,000 tonnes* of LPG annually. While LPG is only meeting a tiny fraction of our total energy requirements and emits much less carbon dioxide than other fossil fuels, it still contributes to our national greenhouse gas emissions. By switching to rLG in the future, we can reduce our emissions which helps New Zealand transition to a renewable future.

The development of rLG is an exciting area for research and development, and one that Clarus continues to support. As a member of GasNZ, Clarus is supporting studies into rLG across the industry. 

*Source: gasnz.org.nz/what-we-do

 

 

Renewable energy image and person for website

We’re planning NZ’s first Hydrogen blend pilot

Hydrogen is a cleaner alternative to natural gas. It can be produced by electrolysis, which is the process of using electricity to split water into hydrogen and oxygen. If the electricity is generated using renewable resources, like wind and solar, then the process creates no new carbon emissions, and the hydrogen produced is “green” hydrogen.

Clarus is working on a project to blend a small amount of hydrogen with natural gas in our Firstgas pipeline network. While this is already happening in Australia and Europe, it would be a first for New Zealand and we hope to commence our Hydrogen Blend Pilot in the coming months. 

Watch our video to learn more about our plan to convert our gas pipeline by 2050.

FR renewable hydrogen cropped

What is Renewable Gas?

Renewable Gas is widely used to describe gases that do not produce additional GHG emissions when combusted. There are two primary forms of renewable gas: Renewable hydrogen or green hydrogen and Biomethane. Generally, renewable gases (or some form of blended renewable gases) can be relatively easily stored in large volumes within existing gas networks. 

Green Hydrogen 

Renewable hydrogen or green hydrogen, produced by using renewable electricity to separate hydrogen from water. Learn more about green hydrogen here

FR infographics biomethane lowres cropped

Biomethane 

We define biomethane consistently with GasNZ*, being methane produced from renewable sources like digested organic waste and gasified biomass. It has the same chemical make up as natural gas. It is a less emissions intensive form of methane - produced by further processing or “scrubbing” of biogas. In New Zealand, biomethane is biogas that has been upgraded to meet the pipeline gas specification (NZS5442 in New Zealand).  

Biogas 

A renewable energy source containing a mixture of gases, primarily methane, carbon dioxide and hydrogen sulphide. It can be produced from raw materials such as manure, municipal waste, plant material, sewage, green waste, wastewater, and food waste. 

*GasNZ provides a single and consistent voice for all gas fuels. GasNZ members have interests in natural gas, LPG, biogas and hydrogen gas, and represents all parts of the gas chain. 

Related articles

iStock 1489735860 scaled
  • Hydrogen blending
  • Blog

The future of gas is changing, and we’re right behind it

Clarus are the energy experts. As a leader in New Zealand’s energy sector, Clarus has the future of gas in our sights while at the same time making sure our customers are delivered natural gas and LPG safely and reliably, right now.

Firstgas Treasure press release
  • Media releases

Firstgas Group and Ecogas to turn kerbside food waste into renewable gas – a milestone for NZ’s circular economy

Clarus (formally Firstgas Group) is building a state-of-the-art plant to upgrade Ecogas’ biogas into renewable gas to inject into the gas network – on track for deployment by Q2 2024.

shutterstock 1413617345 small
  • Biogas
  • Blog

Big oil moves into biogas

Big oil companies aren’t in the business of losing money. That’s why it’s fascinating to see Shell and BP investing billions of dollars into biogas, a renewable energy source that could eventually replace natural gas and help reduce global carbon emissions.