BP’s proposed $4.1 billion acquisition of Houston-based Archaea Energy promises to dramatically boost the energy giant’s presence in the biogas market.
Publicly traded Archaea is one of the largest producers of renewable natural gas, or RNG, in the U.S. Its RNG facilities capture waste emissions and convert them into low-carbon fuel. Biogas is produced through the conversion of organic matter like animal manure, trash, plant material, food waste, and sewage.
Through the cash-and-debt deal, BP will gain ownership of 50 RNG and landfill gas-to-energy facilities across the U.S. Once the deal is wrapped up, BP anticipates a 50 percent increase in biogas volumes.
Archaea's development pipeline of more than 80 projects holds the potential for a fivefold increase in RNG volumes at BP by 2030. The pipeline includes 40 RNG projects that Archaea plans to develop with Republic Services, a solid waste disposal company based in Phoenix. Republic Services is a rival of Houston-based Waste Management.
BP expects Archaea to double its biogas-driven EBITDA to about $2 billion within the next eight years. Allied Market Research predicts the global market for waste-derived biogas will jump from $52.9 billion in 2020 to $126.2 by 2030.
The Archaea acquisition is set to close later this year. Once the deal is completed, Archaea will operate as subsidiary of BP, whose U.S. headquarters is in Houston. Archaea relocated its headquarters from Pittsburgh to Houston last year.
“Archaea was founded with a mission to build the world’s leading RNG development company to reduce global emissions and make multigenerational sustainability impacts,” Nick Stork, co-founder and CEO of Archaea, says in a news release. “In a very short period of time, we have rapidly become a leading RNG platform in the U.S., and [the BP acquisition] will further enable this business to realize its full potential.”
BP notes that the demand for biogas is rising thanks to the growth of renewable hydrogen, electric-vehicle charging, and other emerging segments of the energy sector.
“Our biogas team is already one of the leading suppliers of renewable natural gas in North America,” Dave Lawler, chairman and president of BP America, says in a news release. “This deal accelerates our ability to deliver cleaner energy, generate significant earnings in a fast-growing sector, and help reduce emissions. This could help BP take a significant stride toward our net-zero ambition.”
BP America employs nearly 4,000 full-time workers in Houston.