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SV delivers $10m for bioenergy investment

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Sustainability Victoria is delivering  a record-breaking $10 million in state government funding to encourage investment in the state’s bioenergy sector.

The Waste to Energy Fund: Bioenergy will support projects that create bioenergy from organic waste. The output of which may be electricity, heat, gas or liquid fuels. The fund is expected to deliver an additional 5000 kW to Victoria’s renewable energy production.

Funding is also available to develop end uses for the residual products created by the treatment process.

The program will support organisations to dispose of waste in an environmentally friendly way while reducing their operational costs, including energy bills. Projects will process waste that would have otherwise gone to landfill, or been disposed of in a way that does not leverage its value as an energy source, such as crop residue burning.

A wide range of sectors will be supported by the fund, including agricultural and livestock, forestry, food production, food retail and wastewater management. Residential kerbside waste is not included.

Eligible organisations can apply to Sustainability Victoria for grants to scope out and implement projects that use organic waste to produce bioenergy. Funding will support projects at different stages of their development through two streams: Stream one will support projects to scope, test and gain approvals to achieve the pre-financial close phases of a bioenergy project.

Applicants can apply for grants of between $20,000 and $250,000.

Stream two will support projects with a proven business case to purchase, construct, and commission infrastructure to convert organic matter into bioenergy. Applicants can apply for grants of between $50,000 and $1 million.

Applications close at 11.59pm on 26 August 2022.

Information sessions will be held on Tuesday 12 July, from 11am to noon, and Wednesday 13 July, from 11am to noon, to learn more about the Waste to Energy Fund: Bioenergy.

In 2016 and 2019, Sustainability Victoria funded bioenergy projects through the Waste to Energy (W2E) Infrastructure Fund and Bioenergy Infrastructure Fund. Recipients from these programs are continuing to create bioenergy from organic waste, including Western Water’s waste to energy facility in Melton.

The facility uses anaerobic digestion to extract biogas from organic waste, such as fruit and vegetable scraps or oils and fats. This is then converted into electricity which powers the facility itself and other Western Water sites. This reduces reliance on the grid and electricity costs.

In November of 2021, the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA), published the Australian Bioenergy Roadmap. It states that bioenergy accounts for three per cent of Australia’s total energy consumption, but it has the potential to provide up to 20 per cent by the 2050s. The state government’s latest program of funding will help to accelerate this transition in Victoria.

The Victorian Government is committed to halving organic waste to landfill by 2030, as outlined in its circular economy policy, Recycling Victoria: a new economy.

It also has an ambitious goal to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050, which include 40 per cent renewable energy capacity by 2025 and 50 per cent by 2030. The Waste to Energy Fund: Bioenergy will support projects that will contribute to both of these goals.

For more information, visit: www.sustainability.vic.gov.au

Related stories:

Sustainability Victoria opens packaging investment grants

New VIC WtE Facility to convert liquid food waste into biogas

 

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