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Biogas has major potential in public transport – electricity, gas and biofuels must be guaranteed equal competitive setting

The Finnish parliamentary working group tasked with assessing funding for the transport network published its interim report on August 30. The working group has carried out valuable work to explore ways for more efficient promotion of clean transport. As regards public transport, however, the report does not sufficiently take into account the potential of biogas as a local and clean fuel.

According to the working group, tax incentives should be put in place to encourage the purchase of low-emission cars, and the working group also proposes government subsidies for the conversion of combustion cars into gas cars.

In addition, the working group points out the need to develop public transport towards lower emissions. The only means specified by the report towards this aim is electrification, despite the fact that cities and municipalities investing in the production and transport use of biogas are able to achieve cost-efficient and environmentally friendly transport powered by their own waste flows.

Gasum CEO Johanna Lamminen emphasizes that there is no single fast lane to reduced transport emissions.

”Electricity, biofuels and biogas must be guaranteed an equal competitive setting, and development after that must be allowed to be driven by the market. These energy sources are all components of the toolbox of climate efforts in transport that must be utilized to the maximum in the coming years,” Lamminen says.

Subsidy mechanisms are justified while the market is being created and, for delivery and heavy-duty vehicles, the cost-efficient approach would be to focus support on the acquisition of gas-fueled vehicles.

Local biogas production on the increase

Many Finnish cities and municipalities have invested considerably in local biogas production in recent years. For example, a new biogas plant was opened in Jyväskylä this year, and in Oulu Gasum is cooperating more closely in biogas use and processing with Oulu Waste Management.

Biogas offers emission-free propulsion for local transport and an opportunity to create more jobs in the area. Biogas-fueled public transport is a model example of how natural resources can be utilized more sustainably by utilizing local resources and their side streams efficiently.

The Finnish biogas production potential is estimated to be 17 terawatt hours, corresponding in scale to the annual production of hydropower. Employing this potential would help cover more than a third of Finland's road transport energy needs.

For more information please contact:

Johanna Lamminen, Chief Executive Officer, Gasum Ltd
Phone: +358 20 44 78 661 (Executive Assistant Henna Walker)

Jukka Metsälä, Vice President, Biogas, Gasum Ltd
Phone: +358 40 5633 756

Olga Väisänen, Vice President, Communications, Gasum Ltd                                      
Phone: +358 40 5540 578