Research Projects

Project at a Glance

Project Status: active

Title: The Feasibility of Renewable Natural Gas as a Large-Scale, Low-Carbon Substitute

Principal Investigator / Author(s): Myers Jaffe, Amy

Contractor: UC Davis

Contract Number: 13-307

Research Program Area: Climate Change

Topic Areas: Greenhouse Gas Control, Mobile Sources & Fuels

Research Summary:

Renewable natural gas is a promising near-term, low carbon-intensity transportation fuel for both light-duty and heavy-duty vehicle applications. The Low Carbon Fuel Standard regulation already incorporates a number of pathways for renewable natural gas production such as landfill gas, dairy digesters, and high solids anaerobic digesters. Widespread, large-scale production of renewable natural gas would help achieve Californiaís greenhouse gas emission reduction objectives, but more research is needed to facilitate the market penetration of this fuel. This project will examine renewable natural gas production and distribution, particularly for transportation fuel use in California. The researchers will develop a map of current and potential production sites, and will examine the feasibility, costs, and environmental impacts of large-scale production and use. They will evaluate optimization of facility locations in order to maximize production and minimize environmental impacts. The researchers will also identify potential barriers to expanded production, and strategies to overcome them. The results of this research will provide insights into the economic and environmental feasibility of large-scale production and use of renewable natural gas as a low-carbon transportation fuel in California.


For questions regarding this research project, including available data and progress status, contact: Heather Choi at (916) 322-3893

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