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Best practice scheme launched at AD & Biogas 2016

ADBA has today published three ‘checklists’ as the first step towards a comprehensive Best Practice Scheme for the anaerobic digestion sector.

The scheme is an industry-led initiative, involving stakeholders from across the sector. The project aims to help the industry improve its environmental and health and safety performance, and help AD operators deliver the best possible operational standards.

Launching the scheme in the Conference at UK AD & Biogas 2016, Charlotte Morton, ADBA’s Chief Executive, said:

“We are delighted to share the first stage of this exciting project and would like to thank all those who have generously contributed their time and expertise to this work. By working together to share knowledge and experience, our industry can only grow stronger and more resilient.

“The AD industry could deliver up to 30% of our domestic gas demand, cut the UK’s carbon emissions by 4% and support sustainable farming businesses – the Best Practice Scheme will help deliver that by helping operators to run their plants well, demonstrate compliance and reduce costs.”

Attendees at UK AD & Biogas 2016 are able to pick up a copy of three Best Practice Checklists that cover risk management, procurement and operational performance. Over the next year, ADBA will start work with stakeholders to develop a voluntary certification scheme based upon these checklists.

Key players in the industry support the scheme. Fran Lowe, Environment and Business Manager at the Environment Agency, said ‘the Environment Agency welcomes the launch of the AD Best Practice Scheme. The scheme will improve the environmental performance of the rapidly growing AD sector and help prevent pollution incidents. Initiatives such as this are good for both business and the environment.’

Similarly, the health and safety regulators are welcoming the initiative; Rick Brunt, Head of Waste and Recycling at the Health and Safety Executive said ‘it is excellent to see ADBA’s drive to develop a Best Practice scheme for the Anaerobic Digestion industry come to fruition. The extensive industry consultation, particularly with operators, insurers and regulators, really draws in a wide range of knowledge and experience into the scheme. I hope that this guidance, produced by the industry for the industry, will enable small and large companies alike to raise their own health and safety standards and the overall performance of the Anaerobic Digestion industry.’

The scheme is being guided by a Steering Group that brings together representatives from key trade associations, the insurance sector and other organisations. Amaya Arias-Garcia (Goals PME), who chairs the group said ‘the ADBA Best Practice Scheme is an invaluable tool for all the industry practitioners to ensure current and future plants deliver the maximum benefit to businesses and the environment. It focuses on increasing the understanding of the risks throughout the whole process and provides a platform to improve performance.’

ADBA has also worked closely with existing AD operators – Ryland Cairns, Environment Manager at Muntons said ‘the ADBA Best Practice Scheme is a great example of how ADBA are working to further enhance the AD industry. The sharing of best practice allows the industry to drive cost effective compliance from both a safety and environmental perspective as well as encouraging sustainable (people, planet, profit) operations. I am glad that Muntons have had the opportunity to share our operational expertise in these areas and we look forward to further contributing to and learning from this scheme in the future.’

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