RNG industry launches SMART Initiative

By Coalition for Renewable Natural Gas | December 05, 2019

The Coalition for Renewable Natural Gas (RNG Coalition) announced the Sustainable Methane Abatement and Recycling Timeline (SMART) Initiative at the RNG 2019 conference this week in Dana Point, California, casting the vision for RNG stakeholders to develop an action plan to sustainably capture and repurpose methane that would otherwise be wasted via flare or escape fugitively into the atmosphere from more than 43,000 sites in North America by 2050.   

There are more than 4,400 landfills, 19,000 large farms and 20,000 wastewater treatment and lagoon facilities, food waste and agricultural sites in the US and Canada, where methane emissions naturally occur as organic materials decompose. 

“More than a market opportunity, we have a moral responsibility, which is why we are launching this new RNG Coalition initiative to capture, control and deploy the methane produced from every site in North America by 2050, with interim benchmarks for 2030 and 2040,” said David Cox, RNG Coalition co-founder and director of operations. 

The SMART Initiative follows on the heels of the renewable natural gas industry surpassing its prior 2025 objective earlier this year, five years ahead of schedule. At the RNG 2015 Conference the RNG Coalition’s co-founders challenged the industry to more than double the number of operating RNG production facilities in operation to more than 100 by 2025. The RNG industry rallied and achieved this goal. There are now 110 operational RNG production facilities in North America, marking a substantial increase in sustainable development from the 41 facilities constructed between 1982 and 2014.

“The RNG industry stands ready as part of a global climate change solution. Through the SMART Initiative, the RNG industry will collaborate with government, NGOs, unions, universities and the full scope of the public and private sectors in developing an action plan to sustainably abate and recycle the methane from 43,000 organic waste sites in North America by 2050,” said Johannes Escudero, RNG Coalition co-founder and CEO. 

The RNG Coalition also announced elected chairs and vice-chairs of a series of new advisory boards new advisory boards, which will play a critical role in the development of the SMART Initiative’s action plan in 2020.  Advisory board Chairs will serve a one year term, followed by the Vice-Chair taking over as Chair for the following year. 

RNG 2019, the North American RNG industry’s annual conference, was hosted December 2 – 5, and gathered more than 450 industry principals from 225 companies and organizations.