Backgrounds

According to the provisions contained in the working document of the European Commission “Adapting to climate change: the challenge for European agriculture and rural areas”, attached to the White Paper “Adaptation to Climate Change: Towards a European framework action”, it is expected that in the coming decades the agriculture sector suffers the negatives influences of climate change both globally and in the EU itself.

 

Mainly due to the variability of weather conditions associated with crops, some facts as the increase in the concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere, the higher temperatures, changes in the annual and seasonal patterns of rainfall as well as the frequency of extreme events will affect the volume, quality and stability of food production and natural environment where agriculture is practiced, with a clear impact on the availability of water resources, on the prevalence of pests and diseases and on the status of the soils.

 

These effects are expected to get worse as climate change accelerates, which certainly is forcing farms to adapt to new conditions through technological and management solutions (new production schedules, new crop varieties, valorization of by-products, optimization of the use of resources such as water, sustainable criteria in the use of chemicals, etc.). However, over the time it will be increasingly necessary to apply policies and measures in a full-sector scale and responding to national needs in climate change adaptation.

 

Despite the negative effects of climate change in the agriculture, it also has a negative influence on climate change primarily for its direct contribution to the production of greenhouse gases (GHG as CH4 from livestock digestion processes and NO associated to nitrogen fertilization), and indirectly by the emissions related to the use of different machinery and equipment in farming practices that require fuel and energy consumption, the effects of organic matter decomposition in soils, etc. Nonetheless, there has been a decrease of 20% in the emissions associated with agriculture in recent years (between 1990 and 2006).

 

Despite these positive data, the European Commission has defined within its policy established for issues related to agriculture and the environment and in the strategy defined for the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) facing the new Horizon 2020, as one of the key challenges for the agricultural sector, to continue releasing the potential in mitigating climate change and adapting to its consequences for agriculture, as well as to the need to continue progressing in reducing the GHG associated with the growth phase and in the implementation of measures related to production efficiency and to the improvement of the energy efficiency, the biomass production and the renewable energy from it, the carbon uptake and the retention of the carbon stored in soils.

 

SOSTRICE project aligns perfectly with the strategy shown above, especially because of its application in a crop like rice, which in Spanish production areas has a high degree of integration with the environment, both environmental and economically. Given this, project actions are being implemented in two of the areas where rice cultivation has reached considerable importance in Spain: Las Marismas del Guadalquivir (Andalusia), with around 35.000 ha, and L’Albufera (Valencia), with 15.000 ha. In both cases there is an interaction between agricultural activity and the proximity to areas of high environmental protection, such as Doñana Natural Park in Andalusia and L’Albufera Natural Park in Valencia. These wetlands have a high biological value because of the large number and diversity of environments and animal and plant species they contain.

 

However, rice farms in both areas are facing severe environmental problems associated with the management of the vegetable waste from crop harvesting, the so-called “rice straw“, which can be removed from the field through two different operations with a clearly negative environmental effect: the burning of this rice straw or its grinding and incorporation into the soil, a practice commonly known as “fangueado”.

 

Among other negative environmental impacts associated to these traditional practices, stubble-burning releases large amounts of CO2 into the atmosphere while causing negative effects on biodiversity and human health, apart from the possible security problems associated with adjacent areas to rice plots with high environmental value. Concerning the “fangueado”, it causes uncontrolled fermentations of rice straw, which is degraded by anaerobic pathways due to the existence of high levels of moisture in the ground, emitting methane (a GHG with an effect 21 times more intense than CO2) and H2S, which causes certain diseases (physiopathies) in the crop itself.

SOSTRICE project aims to reverse the environmental effects of current rice straw management model through its energy valorization by applying two innovative technological processes, the anaerobic digestion and the combustion. In this sense, it is foreseen the design and construction of an anaerobic digestion prototype and a combustion prototype in which a series of tests will be performed throughout the project.

This new model is intended to have, on the one hand, a direct and positive environmental impact in terms of reducing GHG emissions by the disappearance of stubble-burning and the decrease in rice straw fermentation in the soil and, on the other hand, indirect and positive environmental effects associated with the use of the by-products generated in the combustion prototype (i.e., heat generation) and in the anaerobic digester (i.e., biogas/energy, bio-fuel and bio-fertilizer). In addition, SOSTRICE project is intended to both assess the Carbon Footprint of the rice cultivation through the identification of good environmental practices and reduce it after the application of the SOSTRICE model in the rice straw management.

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LUDAN

LUDAN RENEWABLE ENERGY SPAIN

Ludan Renewable Energy is a subsidiary of Ludan Group, composed of many companies engaged in engineering, software, process control, environment and energy, which are located in Israel, Holland, Belgium, Spain, Romania, Serbia and Bulgaria.

Ludan Renewable Energy Spain provides innovative technological solutions to clients, counting on engineers, agronomists, chemists, biologists and operators. Biogas, valorization and waste management are the main business of the company, having a wide experience on them.

In addition, it offers expertise for consultancy, economical studies, technical solutions for problems, procurement and construction coordination, standardization for equipment and installation and long-term maintenance.

The way of working of the company is based on business analysis, project definition, finance solutions, construction and operation. Ludan Renewable Energy Spain identifies the potential project, adapts the conditions and contributes solve technical concerns by putting at your disposal an expertise group.

Biogas is one of the areas where Ludan Renewable Energy Spain leads. The gas produced during the decomposition of organic materials in absence of oxygen is a renewable source of energy, and in the last years many industrial plants have been installed in Europe.

The advantages of working with Ludan Renewable Energy Spain reside on the control of the projects from the start until the end, identifying the best opportunities. Some examples of full implementations are:

– Biogas installation Tjuchem

– Biogas installation Moerstraten

– Biogas installation Vall d’Uxó

– Bioefinery Estrella Levante

– Biogas and fertilizer plant Kernel Export

– Biogas Giethoorn Energie

– Biogast Agro Hensbroek

– Biogas Agro Veelerveen

– Biogas plant Chinchilla SL

– Biogas Plant Bonete SL

– Biogas plant Balsa S.L.

LUDAN

Website:

http://www.ludan-lre.com

 

Contact details:

Beatriz Veces (Chemical Engineer)

C/ Munich, 73, 33, Bajo

46901 Torrente (Spain)

Tel.: +34 671 82 40 49

e-mail: beatriz.vecesgadea@ludan-lre.com

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CTAER

CENTRO TECNOLÓGICO AVANZADO DE ENERGÍAS RENOVABLES

 

CTAER’s main objective is to contribute to a greater use of renewable energy through research, technology development, transfer, innovation, dissemination and training, in proper and others projects, promoting the improvement of the competitiveness of the enterprises and the social and environmental benefits associated with the use of these energy sources.

 

To become an essential and dynamic element of the “science, technological and business system” in Andalusia, Spain and Europe, allowing us to be the international forefront in innovation, technological development and the training field on renewable energies.

CTAER

Website:

www.ctaer.com

 

Contact:

Paraje los Retamares S/N

04200 Tabernas (Almería)

Tel.: +34 950 104 546

Fax: + 34 950 951 091

e-mail: info@ctaer.com

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AINIA

ASOCIACIÓN DE INVESTIGACIÓN DE LA INDUSTRIA AGROALIMENTARIA

 

AINIA is a Spanish non-profit technological centre created in 1987 and formed by companies in the food manufacturing sector and related industries (more than 700 food companies as active members), whose objective is the promotion of innovation and technological development in the agro-food sector.

 

AINIA has a very strong expertise in R&D, Technical Assistance; Analysis; Training and Technology Transfer. During the last year near 200 R&D projects (national and international) were developed, as well as a high number of consulting and training activities.

 

AINIA is a leading technology centre in the area of Anaerobic Digestion (biogas/biomethane) of agricultural organic waste. Main research areas are: development of new pre-treatments, validation of new substrates, reduction of biological risks, control and modelling of the anaerobic process, microbiological characterization of the anaerobic fermentation by means of molecular biological tools (PCR/DGGE).

 

AINIA has available a highly qualified experimental infrastructure for anaerobic digestion research. In particular, a biomethanation unit at semi-industrial scale composed of 15 pilot biodigesters to carry out tests for evaluating biogas productivity and composition, optimal substrates mixture, best operational parameters and the quality of the digestate, among other parameters. It boasts a biomethanation unit at laboratory scale composed by 72 biodigesters to carry out maximum biogas potential tests (MBP) by means of the VDI 4630 standard.

 

AINIA has participated and led various EC projects as INTEGRAL-B (LIFE): joint production of biogas and biodiesel from waste from the HORECA trade; AD-WISE (VIIPM) new VFAP on-line monitoring system based on spectroscopy (optical technology). BIOMAN (VIIPM): Economically efficient biogas production from manure fibers and straw; BIOGAS3 (Intelligent Energy Europe program): sustainable small-scale biogas from agri-food waste for energy self-sufficiency.

AINIA

Website:

www.ainia.es

 

Contact details:

Gracia Silvestre

C/Benjamín Franklin 5-11 (Parque Tecnológico Valencia)

46980 Paterna (Valencia, Spain)

Tel.:+961366093

Fax:+34961318008

e-mail: gsilvestre@ainia.es

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CITAGRO

CENTRO DE INNOVACIÓN Y TECNOLOGÍA AGROALIMENTARIA, S.A

 

CITAGRO (Agrifood Innovation and Technology Centre) is a private company that provides services, advice and technical consulting for the food industry, especially in activities related to research, development and innovation (R&D) and certification of agriculture products.

 

Since 2000, when it became the first agricultural technological centre in Andalusia, CITAGRO has been involved in several activities, including:

 

  • Research, Development and innovation projects in the agronomic and agroindustrial field with the aim of developing applied research activities and products and services which are interesting for the agrifood sector companies.

 

  • Certification of Food Products under sustainable production systems (Integrated Production and Organic Vegetal Production and Farming).

 

  • Audit and inspection of quality management systems (ISO 9001), environmental management systems (ISO 14001), food safety systems and protocols (ISO 22000, BRC, IFS), R&D&I systems (UNE 166.000) and other protocols related to agrifood products (Marca Aenor N, GlobalGAP , FACE, Lista Marco), among others.

 

  • Studies and Technical Assistance to improve business competitiveness and the agri-food sector through the application of innovative processes inside companies and the transformation of the business processes as well as the redesign of products and services.

 

  • Technology Transfer Activities between the different innovation actors involved (companies, public research centres, universities, technology centres) and from the results obtained in the different projects in which the organization participates.

CITAGRO

Website:

www.citagro.es

 

Contact details:

Alejandro Rodríguez Merino (Managing Director)

PTA Málaga (Centro Territorial)
C/ Marie Curie, 4 – local D1
29590 Campanillas (Málaga, Spain)
Tel.: +34 952 028 720
Fax: +34 952 020 045

e-mail: arodriguez@citagro.es

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