Denne rapporten er skrevet av NORSUS på oppdrag for Energigass Norge, Avfall Norge, Norges Bondelag, Biogass Oslofjord og Norsk Vann. Hensikten med arbeidet har vært å gi et bilde av mulighetsrommet for produksjon av biogass i Norge med tanke på aktuelle råstoff, teknologiutvikling og klimanytte.

Rapporten er delt inn i tre hoveddeler: teoretisk biogasspotensial fra nåværende og fremtidig råstoffbase med utgangspunkt i dagensteknologi, teoretisk biogasspotensial knyttet til mulig fremtidig teknologiutvikling og klimanytte knyttet til en høyere utnyttelse av biogasspotensialet enn i dag.

I denne rapporten er biogass definert som gasser av biogent opphav som inneholder metan. Energipotensialet fra metan betegnes dermed som biogasspotensial, uavhengig av produksjonsteknologi.
Videre er det lagt som en forutsetning at råstoff som skal brukes til biogassproduksjon er organiske avfallsog sidestrømmer. Energivekster er dermed ikke inklud

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In connection with an evaluation, we have made a systematic review of our work with biogas and what effects this has had in practice. Read the review in English here:

Results from application of models developed by NORSUS has had an important impact on the Norwegian Biogas industry, by providing decision support when developing biogas value chains, and as input to policy development. Examples: The decision to build The Magic Factory in Tønsberg, the largest biogas plant in Norway treating food waste and livestock manure contributing to an annual reduction of 13,986 tonnes CO2 equivalents per year. The development of national regulations and economic support systems: requirement to separate food waste in Norwegian municipalities proposed by the Environment Agency, and economic support per tonne of manure for biogas production managed by Agriculture agency.

The research

NORSUS has led several cross disciplinary research projects involving industry actors funded by the Norwegian Research Council. In the research project BioValueChain (2013-2017) national models for assessing the environmental impacts from production of biogas and biofertilizer from food waste and livestock manure, as well as economic models for calculating profitability of actors in the value chain was developed. The environmental model is based on life cycle assessment (LCA) methodology which was adapted specifically for biogas value chains and the types of decision the model is intended for. The economic models were developed for key actors in the biogas value chain: farmers and the biogas plant, in order to assess their economic viability and effects of various economic support systems.

Application of the models showed that anaerobic digestion (biogas production) of food waste represented the most beneficial treatment technology for food waste in terms of environmental impact, in a value chain perspective. In a Norwegian context, the biogas value chain configuration with the best environmental performance was to co digest food waste and manure, utilize biogas as a transport fuel and to utilize digestate as fertilizer to substitute mineral fertilizer. Furthermore, the research found that the most optimal value chain configuration represented the least economically profitable option for the actors in the value chain, indicating the need for an economic support system to reduce environmental impacts.

In the project Bærekratig Biogass (2017-2019) the models from BioValueChain were applied and refined, and the life cycle assessment methodology adapted for decision support of the different value chain actors, and increasing the knowledge about new feedstocks and the use of CO2 from upgrading of biogas. The results show that the use of CO2 from upgrading of biogas can be utilized cost efficiently if a greenhouse is located in close proximation to the biogas plant, and that it will result in reduced emissions. In addition, the models have been further refined and applied in several commissioned projects, both for regional initiatives to develop new biogas value chains, Innovation Norway and for authorities such as the Norwegian Environment Agency and Agriculture Agency.

In NORSUS a large range of researchers have participated in the biogas related projects: Ole Jørgen Hanssen (Senior Researcher), Kari-Anne Lyng (first as Researcher, then Senior Researcher), Ingunn Saur Modahl (Senior Researcher), Hanne Møller (Senior Researcher), Hanne Lerche Raadal (Senior Researcher), Kjersti Prestrud (Researcher), Pieter Callewaert (Researcher), Aina Stensgaard (Researher) and Simon Saxegaard (Researcher).

The results and our impact

The environmental models developed in the research projects were applied to assess different biogas configuration scenarios to treat the organic waste and manure resources available in Vestfold. These results were presented for local politicians, and the decision to build was done by 10 municipalities in Vestfold (10k-samarbeidet). The plant was planned based on the optimal scenario to obtain the largest reduction of environmental impacts. As the first of its kind in Norway, The Magic Factory is a large-scale biogas factory in Norway co treating food waste and manure. The plant was officially opened by the prime minister in September 2016. NORSUS has had a long-term collaboration with Greve Biogas, the plant owner, and performed research on the operation of the plant. In 2018 The Magic Factory was the first in Norway to utilise CO2 from upgrading of biogas, by transporting the CO2 in pipes from the upgrading facility to a greenhouse located nearby. In the greenhouse tomatoes are produced from CO2 and digestate from the biogas factory. NORSUS has documented that the Magic Factory contribute to annual net emissions reduction of 13,986 tonnes CO2 equivalents per year.

The models and the knowledge from the research projects were applied in two commissioned projects from the Environment Agency, first in the Evaluation of different political instruments to increase separation of organic and plastic waste, and afterwards in a project assessing the impacts of a new regulation requiring Norwegian households and companies producing household-like waste to separate organic waste, which was carried out together with Mepex. After that the Environment Agency proposed a change in the waste regulation in January 2021, and the change was implemented 1.1.2023. The increase in the amount of food waste separated is expected to increase the biogas produced, which in turn leads to increased resource efficiency in terms of recycling of nutrients as well as reduction in greenhouse gas emissions as the biogas can substitute fossil fuels, and as digestate can substitute mineral fertilizer.

Biogas production from livestock manure is identified as one of the most important measures to reduce greenhouse gases from agriculture in Norway. Application of the economic models developed in the research projects showed that the main barriers are economic costs associated with additional storage requirements. A pilot scheme where farmer receives economic support per tonne manure treated in a biogas plant was introduced in 2014.

NORSUS performed an evaluation of the pilot scheme commissioned by Agriculture Agency in 2019, and based on the evaluation the pilot scheme was transformed to a permanent support system. Economic support for manure for biogas production is expected to result in more biogas plants considering manure as a relevant feedstock, which will lead to reduction of greenhouse gas emissions from storage of manure as well as increased biogas production which can substitute fossil fuels and reduce greenhouse gas emissions in transport. The perspectives and support systems have been communicated along with the perspectives of six other countries in an international report published by IEA Bioenergy Task 37 Energy from biogas. This has the potential to obtain impacts in other countries, including countries with less developed biogas value chains and support systems.


The development and application of the models for calculating the environmental impacts of biogas value chains, and the economic model to assess profitability for key actors are published in the three following scientific papers:

  • Lyng, K.-A., Modahl, I S., Møller, H., Morken, J., Briseid, T. and Hanssen, O.J. (2015): The BioValueChain model: a Norwegian model for calculating environmental impacts of biogas value chains. International Journal of Life Cycle Assesment. DOI:
  • Lyng, K.-A., Stensgård, A., Hanssen, O.J., Modahl, I.S., 2017. Relation between greenhouse gas emissions and economic profit for different configurations of biogas value chains. A case study on different levels of sector integration. Journal of Cleaner Production 182 (2018) 737-745.
  • Lyng, K.-A., Bjerkestrand, M., Stensgård, A.E., Callewaert, P., Hanssen, O.J., 2018. Optimising Anaerobic Digestion of Manure Resources at a Regional Level. Sustainability 10, 286.

Results from application of the models were used as decision support when deciding to build the biogas plant The Magic Factory in Tønsberg. The viability of the model was evaluated in a scientific paper:

  • Lyng, K.-A, Modahl I.S., Møller, H and Saxegaard, S., (2021): Comparison of results from life cycle assessment when using predicted and real-life data for an anaerobic digestion plant. Journal of Sustainable Development of Energy, Water and Environment Systems, Volume 9, Issue 3, 1080373.

Implications for policy development were assessed in scientific papers and in commissioned reports from Agriculture Agency and Environment Agency:

Other relevant publications:

See also:

Ivar Kopperud Sørby from Greve Biogass/The Magic Factory explains how NORSUS contributed to the establishment and further development of the installation in a webinar to be found here: , see from 1h17minutes into the recording.

News article on Greve Biogas webpage about the research project Bærekraftig Biogass and utilisation of CO2 as the first biogas plant in Norway:

Norwegian Environmental Agency proposal for changes in waste regulations, where the report from Mepex and Østfoldforskning (NORSUS) is cited in their consultation statement (høringsuttalelse):

Assessment of policy instruments for biogas production in Norway performed by Norwegian Environment Agency where Østfoldforskning (NORSUS) is cited a number of times:

Report from a working group led by Norwegian Agriculture Agency assessing policy instruments for manure for biogas production, where NORSUS (Østfoldforskning) is largely cited, and where four of the reports from Østfoldforskning is in the reference list. NORSUS participated in the reference group for the work:—gjennomgang-av-virkemidler-for-okt-utnyttelse-av-husdyrgjodsel-til-biogassproduksjon.pdf

News article in Bondebladet about how research from Østfoldforskning provides foundation for strategy development for biogas production from manure

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Kari-Anne Lyng, senior researcher at NORSUS and coordinator for our research area biogasparticipated at the Nordic Biogas Conference 3-6. October in Linköping in Sweden.

Konferansen samlet rundt 350 deltakere fra industrien, forskningsmiljøer og organisasjoner, og hadde stort fokus på bærekraft og hvordan den nordiske biogassindustrien kan videreutvikle seg.  Kari-Anne holdt en presentasjon med tittel Why biogas solutions are good for the climate.

In her presentation she explained how biogas value chains can contribute to reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, and listed five different measures to develop value chain with the largest climate benefits.

During the conference she also participated in meetings in the international biogas network IEA Bioenergy Task 37 Energy from biogas. Task 37 is an international group working with knowledge sharing about biogas across the member countries.

Kari-Anne Lyng, seniorforsker i NORSUS  på scenen
Kari-Anne Lyng on stage. Photo: Jens Måge
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For the past three years, Kari-Anne Lyng has had an important task in making information about Norway's work on biogas known by contributing to three international reports on the field.

Kari-Anne Lyng is a senior researcher at NORSUS and has been the Norwegian representative in the network for International Energy Agency (IEA) Task 37 Energy from biogas, a network that works to spread knowledge about biogas value chains across countries.

They have just finished a three-year program and are about to embark on a new three-year term.

Contributed to three reports

Over the past three years, Lyng's group has participated in the preparation of three international reports on biogas:

Country report for biogas:

The report gives a status of biogas production in different countries, and Lyng has written the chapter about Norway.

Read it here: IEA Bioenergy Task 37 a perspective on the state of the biogas industry from selected member countries

Perspectives on biomethane as a transport fuel within a circular economy, energy, and environmental system:

This report deals with biogas as fuel for transport, and the information about Norway is written by the NORSUS researcher.

Read it here: Perspectives on biomethane as a transport fuel within a circular economy energy and environmental system

Potential and utilization of manure to generate biogas in seven countries:

Manure can be used for biogas production, and the report gives the status of the situation in different countries. Lyng has written the chapter about Norway.

Read it here: Ny publikasjon – IEA Bioenergy Task 37

Participated in the Biogas Conference

When Biogas Norway organized a conference for the biogas industry on 1 and 2 March in Oslo, Kari-Anne Lyng was invited to be one of the speakers.

She told about the IEA, the work that the network does and her experiences of being Norway's representative.

"It is exciting to see the Norwegian biogas industry from an international perspective. The framework conditions for biogas value chains are quite different from country to country, but there are also many common issues," says Kari-Anne Lyng.

Read more about the Biogas Conference:

This report, A perspective on the state of the biogas industry from selected member countries, contains a compilation of summaries of country reports from member countries of IEA Bioenergy Task 37 (Energy from Biogas).

Each country report summary includes information on the number of biogas plants in operation, biogas production data, how the biogas is utilised, the number of biogas upgrading plants, the number of

vehicles using biomethane as fuel, the number of biomethane filling stations, details of financial support schemes in each country and some information on national biogas projects and production facilities. The publication is a regular update and is valid for information collected in 2020-2021. Reference year for production and utilisation is 2020, unless stated otherwise.

The chapter about Norway is written by senior researcher Kari-Anne Lyng at NORSUS.


Denne rapporten er en del av forskningsprosjektet Bærekraftig biogass, som er finansiert gjennom Forskningsrådets EnergiX-program.

Opprinnelsesgarantiordningen for elektrisitet er en europeisk ordning som er videreført og styrket i det reviderte fornybardirektivet (2018/2001/EU, ofte referert til som RED II). Ordningen inngår som en del av det felles rammeverket i det indre energimarked i EØS-området. Den ble innført med EUs første fornybardirektiv i 2001 for å gi forbrukere et prinsipielt valg. En opprinnelsesgaranti er et bevis på hvilke kilder en gitt mengde strøm er produsert fra. Ordningen ble innført med EUs første fornybardirektiv (Direktiv 2001/77/EC) i 2001 og er videreført i de reviderte fornybardirektivene (Direktiv 2009/28/EC og 2018/2001/EU). I henhold til EUs Eldirektiv (Direktiv 2009/72/EC) skal alle kraftleverandører informere sine kunder om hvordan kraften de solgte foregående år ble produsert. Dette kalles en varedeklarasjon.

I det reviderte fornybardirektivet av 2018 (RED II, Artikkel 19) er ordningen for opprinnelsesgarantier utvidet til også å omfatte gass (inkludert hydrogen), i tillegg til elektrisitet og varme/kjøling.

Den viktigste forskjellen mellom et opprinnelsesgarantisystem for elektrisitet (som eksisterer i dag) og for biogass, er bærekraftskriteriene med tilhørende krav til massebalanse, som kreves for bioenergi dersom den skal kunne inkluderes i et lands måloppnåelse for fornybar energi.

Det pågår et arbeid med å revidere CEN-standarden EN 16325 Guarantees of Origin related to energy – Guarantees of Origin for Electricity til også å omfatte gass, hydrogen, samt kjøling/varme, som antas ferdigstilt i løpet av 2022. Vurderingen av opprettelsen av et system med opprinnelsesgarantier for biogass bør derfor avventes og sees i sammenheng med dette arbeidet. I ovennevnte standard er det foreløpig lagt til grunn at det er frivillig å rapportere på bærekraftskriteriene.

Uavhengig av om det vurderes å innføre et opprinnelsesgarantisystem for biogass, anbefales det derfor å starte arbeidet med å utvikle en nasjonal database/register for flytende og gassformig drivstoff (jfr. RED II/artikkel 28), som inkluderer rapportering av bærekraftskriteriene. Det anbefales at dette arbeidet sees i sammenheng med tilsvarende arbeid som skal settes i gang i Sverige (Energimyndigheten, 2019a), som også har en større andel av sitt biogassvolum offgrid (leveres ikke inn på fells gassnett). I tillegg bør arbeidet med utvikling og oppretting av et slikt register samkjøres med det systemet som Miljødirektoratet i dag har for alle som omsetter biodrivstoff og flytende biobrensel om rapportering oppfyllelse av bærekraftskriteriene, og med dagens rapportering fra norske biogassanlegg til Miljødirektoratet og SSB. Resultatene fra dette arbeidet vil danne et viktig grunnlag for en vurdering av en fremtidig kobling av et slikt registeret til et eventuelt opprinnelsesgarantisystem for biogass.


Production of biogas from manure at a farm level is the very epitome of a sustainable bioenergy system. The system incorporates a circular economy decentralised production of organic biofertilizer and biogas for use in heat, power or transport fuel, whilst simultaneously reducing fugitive methane emissions from open slurry holding tanks, reducing smells and minimising pollution effects on rivers and wells. Why therefore is the practice of producing biogas from manure not more widespread? The characteristics of manure depend on farm animal source and the method of husbandry, which in turn leads to a wide range of levels of technically available manure resource and costs of biogas produced from manure. To exemplify this, IEA Bioenergy published this report which examines the potential of manure for utilization in biogas facilities across seven countries: Germany; Australia; Austria; Norway; Canada, Ireland and the UK. These countries have differing levels of biogas industry, very different farming practices and a range of climates. It is hoped that the country selection should allow the lessons learned from these seven countries to be applied to many countries across the planet.

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April 27. april 2021 Kari-Anne Lyng was elected chairman of the board at the digital annual meeting of Avfallsforsk. Avfallsforsk is a network of actors in the waste- and recycling industry and research organisations working for the stimulation of R&D activities related to waste resources and circular economy.

Kari-Anne Lyng is the coordinator of the research area Waste Resources at NORSUS and has several years of experience with research projects regarding Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) of waste systems. Her doctorate dealt with environmental optimization of biogas value chains with a focus on both drivers, barriers and policy development. She has been project manager for a number of waste-related projects, and now manages the three-year research project Innovative Waste LogisticsKari-Anne is also Norway's representative in IEA task 37 Energy from biogas.

«An important task in the future will be the investigation of utilising different resource as resource efficient as possible, and this also applies for waste resources. Working interdisciplinary across sectors will be more and more important, and I’m sure Avfallsforsk will play an important role here", says Kari-Anne Lyng

Vi gratulerer Kari-Anne Lyng som nyvalgt styrelederverv og sikker på at hennes kompetanse vil bli viktig i Avfallforsks arbeid fremover.


Upgraded biogas, also known as biomethane, is increasingly being used as a fuel for transport in several countries and is regarded as an environmentally beneficial option. There are, nevertheless, few studies documenting the environmental impacts of biogas as a transport fuel compared with the alternatives on the market. In this study, life cycle assessment (LCA) methodology was applied to compare the environmental performance of biogas used as a fuel for bus transport with natural gas, electricity fueled buses, biodiesel, and fossil diesel. A sensitivity analysis was performed for the biogas alternative to assess the importance of the underlying assumptions. The results show that biogas has a relatively low contribution to the environmental impact categories assessed. Emissions of greenhouse gases are dependent on assumptions such as system boundaries, transport distances and methane leakages.


It is the goal of administrative authorities to increase the production of biogas, however this will at the same time lead to an increase in amounts of bio-waste. The economy, greenhouse gas emissions and the resource efficiency of the value chain will all gain substantial benefit from the good management of bio-residue, but the requirement to make provision for bio-residue has been shown to create a significant barrier for several Norwegian biogas plants.
There are a number of locations in the country where biogas plants are being established. Here, production will be based on new raw materials such as fish silage and fish sludge, as well as livestock manure. There is limited knowledge regarding the way these raw materials affect the quality of bio-residues, both in terms of nutrient content and the content of undesirable substances.
The intention of the project “Bio-residues from new marine raw materials and livestock manure” is as follows: Usage recommendations for agriculture will contribute a wider knowledge base, both with regard to the way the new raw materials for biogas production affect the quality, and in communicating existing knowledge to agriculture. This will be achieved by obtaining information from existing facilities and carrying out sampling and analysis of the bio-residue at new facilities. A bio-residue guide for agriculture will then be produced which will summarise the advantages and disadvantages, areas of application and limitations for bio-residues from various raw materials.
In addition, the project will scale up the knowledge from individual facilities to a national level as well as developing a national recommendation for the use of various bio-residue products on the basis of their location and quality.