Chevron plans to construct an anaerobic digestion project at Vlot Calf Ranch in Chowchilla, California, through its joint venture with Brightmark RNG Holdings.

The project will capture, clean, and convert methane from manure into renewable natural gas. The technology is believed to have a negative carbon intensity, as it captures emissions from the agriculture industry and is a clean fuel.

"The Vlot Project represents a major milestone for Brightmark and its RNG production efforts," said Bob Powell, founder and chief executive of Brightmark.

"Being able to partner with Chevron and the Vlot Calf Ranch on our largest RNG project to date and first project in our home state of California represents a particular point of pride for our company and efforts.”

California is a prime location for developing the RNG market due to the state’s Low Carbon Fuel Standard pushing demand for the technology.

Chevron has a partnership with California Bioenergy to produce RNG from dairy farms, while BP is producing and selling gas to the California transportation sector.

“As a California company, Chevron has provided the state’s residents with affordable, reliable energy for more than 140 years,” said Andy Walz, president of Americas Fuels and Lubricants for Chevron.

“Developing and delivering renewable natural gas with Brightmark and the Vlot Calf Ranch, once completed, demonstrates our commitment to working across critical sectors of the state’s economy to increase the supply of fuels with a lower lifecycle carbon intensity.”

The project is expected to be completed in 2023.

Renewable LNG growth

Demand for renewable natural gas also is growing in Europe where Anaergia, a Canadian organic waste treatment company, will supply waste treatment solutions for Italian agriculture company Agriferr.

Anaergia will build the agriculture company a new plant, featuring its first renewable natural gas liquefaction system, a digester, a biogas upgrading system, and an on-site fuelling station for consumers.

“Italy is a European leader in the adoption of renewable energy, and an increasingly important market for Anaergia,” said Andrew Benedek, Anaergia’s chairman and chief executive officer.

“This project is especially notable because it marks Anaergia’s first sale of a system that will produce renewable LNG at a time when there is fast growing demand across Europe for this vital commodity. We expect to see follow-up demand for this integrated solution in Italy as well as in a range of other European countries.”

Operations are expected to begin by the end of 2022, producing 2,000 tonnes of renewable LNG per year.