Crops grown on contaminated land co… – Information Centre – Research & Innovation

The global bioeconomy is increasing, but it should defeat hurdles such as avoiding competition with

The global bioeconomy is increasing, but it should defeat hurdles such as avoiding competition with land employed for food items production. An EU- and sector-funded job is discovering making use of contaminated and waste land for biocrops.


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By 2050, the global bioeconomy will demand up to 24 billion tonnes of biomass, but the sector should defeat sizeable hurdles to reach its comprehensive prospective. These include things like a lack of farmer self confidence in the market for biomass, a lack of source of biomass to the sector and the have to have to guarantee that land for biomass crops does not compete with land employed for food items production.

The GRACE job, funded by the Bio-based mostly Industries Joint Enterprise (BBI JU), a community-personal partnership between the EU and the sector, is advancing the bioeconomy by bringing collectively 22 gamers from the agriculture sector, bioindustry and experts. They are demonstrating the huge-scale production of novel miscanthus hybrid crops and hemp crop varieties on marginal and contaminated land as perfectly as the use of the biomass in creating a large selection of products.

‘There are millions of hectares of marginal and contaminated land in Europe which could be employed to supply feedstock for the bioeconomy without competing with food items production and at the very same time contribute towards revitalising rural economies,’ states Moritz Wagner, GRACE job supervisor and a researcher at the College of Hohenheim in Stuttgart, Germany. ‘GRACE will clearly show that bio-based mostly price chains can contribute to local climate-transform mitigation by replacing carbon-intense fossil-based mostly products with biobased products with very low CO2 emissions.’

Hemp and miscanthus

The job is concentrating on two flexible crops – miscanthus and hemp. These can be employed in a large selection of programs central to the bioeconomy such as essential chemicals, biofuels, bio-based mostly setting up materials, composites and prescribed drugs.

Job experts have by now created a new variety of miscanthus crop that can be grown from seed. Previously, miscanthus was planted making use of rhizomes a costly planting technique. The new varieties are built to be of a better good quality, to be chilly- and drought-resistant and to have equivalent yields to the typical miscanthus crop. Researchers are also researching the impacts of increasing miscanthus on land polluted by weighty metals to see the extent to which the pollutants are taken up by the vegetation.

GRACE’s miscanthus crops can be employed in setting up insulation, lightweight concrete – or concrete not employed for load-bearing uses – bioplastics, bioethanol, chemicals and solvents employed in industrial procedures and customer products, in textiles, vehicles and electronics and in composite fibres.

The job has by now demonstrated bioethanol production from miscanthus straw at a pre-business bioethanol refinery in Straubing, Germany. It is also operating on making use of the extracted lignocellulosic sugars from miscanthus straw to create biochemicals for earning bioplastics.

A use for by-products

The GRACE job is also discovering how to use by-products – for example, the production of lightweight concrete making use of milled miscanthus, and miscanthus dust, which can be employed in paper production. 1 job associate is pursuing this making use of miscanthus crops grown on unused land at Schiphol airport in Amsterdam.

Meanwhile, GRACE’s experts have properly employed various elements of hemp biomass such as cannabidiol, a non-psychotropic cannabinoid, which is less than improvement for the cure of epilepsy.

The job has proven a lot more than sixty hectares of miscanthus and hemp on contaminated and deserted land. GRACE scientists hope to lengthen the project’s momentum over and above its formal endpoint via its ‘industry panel’, which connects various sectors of the bioindustry to academics operating in the discipline of biomass.

This job was funded by BBI JU, a EUR community-personal partnership between the EU and the Bio-based mostly Industries Consortium (BIC).