Webinar 44: Launching the Interreg Cascade project and updates from the Irish biochar sector

Dear webinar participants and IrBEA members,
A live recording of webinar 44 is available here.

Topic Overview
At this webinar, IrBEA launched the Interreg Northwest Europe Cascade project and presented updates on the development of the Irish biochar sector. The CASCADE (Circular Conversion Cascades to Transform Residual Biomass to Carbon Products) project promotes the transition to a circular and resource efficient economy. Our previous projects have demonstrated the successful conversion of substantial amounts of waste biomasses into biochar. This process serves as a sustainable alternative to fossil coal and peat, resulting in the creation of CO2-negative products and value chains. Building upon these achievements, our current project aims to further expand Biomass-to-Biochar production and value chains. IrBEA will introduce, manage, and optimize these chains across seven European pilot regions, encompassing urban, rural, and peri-urban areas. Donegal has been selected as one of our pilot regions. Watch this webinar to find out more about this project and to stay updated on the latest developments in the Irish Biochar sector

Webinar MC: Seán Finan, IrBEA CEO
Presenter: Stephen McCormack, IrBEA Project Executive

Webinar 43: Explaining Specified Biomass Harvesting: Realising the Biomass opportunity

A live recording of webinar 43 is available here.

Topic Overview
At this webinar, the Irish Bioenergy Association (IrBEA) launched a document on Specified Biomass Harvesting (SBH). This document was developed by IrBEA with contributions from members, associated organisations and stakeholders. Specified Biomass harvesting (brash harvesting) can provide a significant biomass and renewable energy resource opportunity. This resource arises from a sensitive approach to harvesting the forest without adversely impacting the future productivity of the forest, local ecosystems or environment. Ireland’s forestry resource has the potential to provide large volumes of by-product material for energy use through SBH during thinning and harvesting operations. This by-product material, in addition to the harvesting of timber and pulp products, is usually derived from the side branches and tops of the trees. This webinar focused on the importance of the SBH harvesting approach and the future productivity of the forest, local ecosystems and water courses.

Webinar MC: Seán Finan – IrBEA CEO
Presenter: Noel Gavigan IrBEA Technical Executive
Eugene Hendrick, Joint author of Specified Biomass Harvesting (SBH) document.
Kenneth Worrell, Managing Director, Worrell Harvesting
Donal Whelan, Technical Director, Irish Timber Growers Association

Webinar 42: EBA statistical report 2023: Highlighting the rapid growth in European biomethane production

A live recording of webinar 42 is available here.

Topic overview
Mieke Decorte, European Biogas Association (EBA) Technical and Project Manager presented today on the main findings from the recently published EBA statistical report 2023, titled ‘Tracking biogas and biomethane deployment across Europe.’

Biomethane production in Europe increased by 20% in 2022 compared to the previous year. Total European biogas production reached 21 billion cubic metres in 2022. If you did not manage  to join the webinar today, you can catch up here, watch the live recording and receive an update on developments in the sector and  all the European biogas / biomethane markets.


Mieke Decorte is a Technical and Project Manager at the European Biogas Association since 2021, while she joined the association in 2018. Mieke manages and coordinates the technical and project work within the EBA and supports EBA’s policy and communication work with technical knowledge and data. Her main responsibilities include coordinating EBA’s involvement in Horizon Europe and other programs and overseeing the EBA’s technical publications such as the EBA Statistical Report and the European Biomethane Map. Mieke has earned technical and market knowledge on the biogas sector with her work at the Flanders Biogas Association. She graduated in 2016 as a Bioengineer at UGhent with a specialization in environmental technology.

Noel Gavigan
IrBEA Technical Executive
Seán Finan

Webinar 41: Exploring the sustainable management of agricultural green waste in Ireland

A live recording of webinar 41 is available here.

Topic Overview
At this webinar, IrBEA presented the findings of the feasibility study on the sustainable management of agricultural green waste in Ireland which was developed late last year on behalf of the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine. This report outlined the many sustainable alternatives to burning which farmers could deploy for agricultural green waste. The Department of Environment, Climate and Communications announced that the practice of burning agricultural green waste will end on the 30th of November 2023. To facilitate a final transition, a last short time-period for burning will re-open on the 1st of September 2023 and close on the 30th of November 2023. IrBEA hosted this webinar to outline the many sustainable alternatives to burning which farmers can use. This webinar was targeted at farmers and their representatives, local authority personnel and officials, the farm advisory sector, statutory bodies, the biomass supply chain and any other individuals and stakeholders who may be interested in the topic.

Webinar 40: An update on the Midlands Bioenergy Development Project Supported by the National Just Transition Fund

A live recording of webinar 40 is available here.

Topic Overview
The Midlands Bioenergy Development Project is supported by the National Just Transition Fund, covering the wider Midlands area of East Galway, North Tipperary, Kildare, Offaly, Laois, Roscommon, Longford, and Westmeath.

Pádraic Ó hUiginn, IrBEA’s lead on the project, outlined the project’s role and discussed developments to date, he reviewed the next phase of engagement and support for key stakeholders. Seán Finan, IrBEA CEO participated in the panel discussion and offered valuable insight on the sectors development in Ireland and the potential for future growth, with the right policy support.

The project has a focus on providing information, training and technical advice, guidance and mentoring to bioenergy business development and start-up enterprises.

The webinar was also an opportunity to launch the online form for expressions of interest from potential new bioenergy businesses and start-ups in the National Just Transition Fund’s wider Midlands region which is now open on the IrBEA website:

WEBINAR 39: NNFCC’s 2023 Irish anaerobic digestion report explores current deployment ahead of expected biogas and biomethane market growth

A live recording of webinar 39 is available here.

Topic Overview
In this webinar NNFCC’s discussed their report on Irish anaerobic digestion deployment and they looked ahead to the expected biogas and biomethane market growth potential. As strategic business consultants, NNFCC are monitoring the state and growth of the Irish AD market, and are well positioned to support new business opportunities and new entrants as activity ramps up. This webinar shared the current policy and market position and intended to set the baseline for the intended growth.

Andrea Muñoz García
Senior Consultant Andrea has a PhD in Green and Sustainable Chemistry and she has a special interest in carbon capture. She carries out market and technology research and writes project proposals for a range of public and private sector clients. She is the NNFCC contact for the H2020 project Shikifactory100.

Webinar 38: The Danish biogas industry as a model for Ireland

A live recording of webinar 38 is available here.
Topic Overview
Denmark has always been a leader in biogas development, having adopted and developed the basic technology ahead of most of Europe in the 1990’s. In the past 6 years biogas production has tripled – with the vast majority coming from agricultural biogas plants. Denmark is a country of similar size and agricultural practice to Ireland. In this webinar we introduce Bruno Sander Nielsen CEO of the Danish Biogas Association, who discussed what Ireland could learn from the successful development of a biogas industry in Denmark and the potential for implementing a similar model in Ireland.

Bruno Sander Nielsen is employed at the Danish Agriculture and Food Council since 1990. He has worked for the Danish Biogas Association for 25 years where he is currently working as Chief Operations Officer. He is also Chief Advisor for the Danish Agriculture and Food Council (DAFC).

Webinar 37: Sustainable Aviation Fuel – The potential and opportunity for bioenergy

A recording of this webinar can be found HERE.

Topic Overview

The work of SFS Ireland is focused on the development of Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) markets in Ireland and worldwide. The organisation’s objective is to contribute to the reduction of the aviation sector’s CO2 footprint by bringing together the aviation industry, all stakeholders of the SAF supply chain, and academia to drive the production and implementation. SFS Ireland has recently been working on a feasibility study, together with SkyNRG, and supported by Avolon, Boeing and Orix Aviation. More details can be found here. SAF manufacturing technology is considered cutting edge and initial analysis indicates that a SAF project would play a leading role in integrating the energy industry, with a possible future circular bioeconomy for Ireland. Listen to this webinar and find out more about Sustainable Aviation Fuel and the potential opportunities for Irish bioenergy.

Agnes Thornton
Agnes Thornton has been working as an airline pilot for the last 10 years. During the reduced rosters in light of the Covid pandemic, Agnes completed an MSc in Aviation Leadership at DCU Business School, with her research focusing on the opportunities and barriers to SAF implementation by the airline industry. In 2020, she partnered with Darren Carty to found SFS Ireland.

Webinar MC – Seán Finan, IBEA CEO

Webinar 36 – The new Irish Solid Fuel Regulations explained

A recording of this webinar can be found HERE.

Topic Overview

On 31st of October 2022, the Government  introduced new regulations for solid fuels in Ireland. Designed to protect air quality, these regulations will ensure that quality, dry, certified wood fuels are placed on the market. IrBEA, on behalf of wood fuel members, has been seeking the introduction of these regulations for several years to protect the market from inferior quality and wet wood fuel products. The introduction of the new solid fuel regulations has implications for the sale and supply of solid fuels for producers and consumers, these implications are outlined in this webinar.


Webinar MC – Seán Finan, IBEA CEO

Presenter – Noel Gavigan, IrBEA Technical Executive

Webinar 35: Highlights from the National Bioenergy Conference – conversations & next steps

A recording of this webinar can be found HERE.

Topic Overview

The National Bioenergy Conference titled “Sustainable bioenergy for business – reducing costs, carbon and supply risks” took place on Tuesday 11th October 2022 in the Lyrath Estate / Kilkenny convention centre. The headline sponsor for this event was Bord na Móna with associate sponsors Ethanol Europe, South East Energy Agency, Gas Networks Ireland and GLAS Energy. This webinar will focus on the inputs, insights, and conclusions from the conference. If you are interested in hearing more about what was discussed, join us to find out more and where we go from here.

Webinar MC – Pádraic Ó hUiginn IrBEA Executive
Panelist –  Noel Gavigan IrBEA, Technical Executive & Stephen McCormack, IrBEA Executive