Energy: the municipalities of Ain are committed to green gas

Energy: the municipalities of Ain are committed to green gas
Energy: the municipalities of Ain are committed to green gas

At the initiative of the SIEA, town entrance signs will mark the choice of around thirty municipalities to heat their buildings with biomethane.

In GRDF’s latest advertising campaign to promote green gas, comedian Jamel Debbouze performs – after many hesitations and funny attempts to escape – a base jump. Like him, around thirty municipalities in Ain have just taken the plunge. Not with a parachute, but with town entrance signs highlighting their commitment to biomethane.

The initiative goes to the Ain Intercommunal Energy and E-Communication Union (SIEA), organizer, among other things, of public gas distribution in the department. This proposed to its member communities, in 2023, a group purchasing contract which met with real enthusiasm.

Eighty municipalities ultimately signed up. They had the choice between two offers, one at 10% biomethane, the other at 20%, an option chosen by more than half of them.

Some 550 public buildings were thus supplied for a consumption of 12,800 MWh in 2023, which – compared to fossil gas – corresponds to 2,560 tonnes less CO2 equivalent, as much as the avoidance of 10,000 Paris-Nice flights. So, given this success, the SIEA decided to deploy city entrance signs to promote, if they agreed, the efforts of the communities.

“The department, due to its agricultural vocation, lends itself well to the production of green gas. We have many methanization stations and projects. This makes it possible to perpetuate the farms, by providing them with additional income,” notes Alexis Morand, vice-president of the union in charge of energy.

According to Guilhem Armanet, regional director of GRDF, France has 700 methanizers which inject their biogas into the network, constituting “the largest park in the world”. Ain has seven. An eighth is due to begin operations soon, in Rignieux-le-Franc.

And other projects are in the pipeline, which suggest an increase in production capacities from 70 Gwh currently to 150 Gwh within two years. “To date, biomethane represents 10% of the gas consumed by the residential sector in Ain. Tomorrow it will be 20%. The commitment of 80 municipalities to this resource is remarkable at the national level. The department shows the way, he greets. Biomethane is a local, territorial energy, without which no transition is possible. And it is the only renewable energy ahead of the government’s objectives. » Renewables for which the SIEA is fully committed, in particular via Sem Léa.


Sébastien Jacquart

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