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    Total Acquires French Biogas Business


The French major aims to produce 1.5 TWh of biomethane annually by 2025.

by: Joe Murphy

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Total Acquires French Biogas Business

Total has agreed to buy French biogas business Fonroche Biogaz, the oil major reported on January 11, saying the deal would establish it as the biggest renewable gas producer in France.

Fonroche Biogaz designs, builds and operates anaerobic digestion units in France. The company doubled its production capacity between 2019 and 2020 to 500 GWh and occupies a 10% share of the market. It has seven biogas units in operation and a further four in the pipeline.

The acquisition will help Total reach its net-zero emissions target by 2050, its president for gas, renewables and power, Philippe Sauquet, said in a statement. The company aims to produce 1.5 TWh of biomethane/year by 2025, and 4-6 TWh/yr by 2030.

"We believe that renewable gas has a key role to play in the energy transition as it contributes to reducing the carbon intensity of natural gas – and we support the imposition of renewable gas incorporation in natural gas networks," Sauquet said.  "In 2020, we stated our intention to contribute to the development of this sector, which we expect to become more competitive in the next few years."

Total has various other renewable gas businesses, including Methanergy, which produces power from biogas, and PitPoint and Clean Energy, which are focused on biomethane production and its distribution at filling stations in western Europe and the US respectively. Total signed a memorandum in December with Clean Energy to set up a $100mn joint venture to develop renewable gas in the US.