28 May 2019

Webinar highlights Rehap’s progress in biomass feedstock and valorisation

Responding to the ambitious targets set in the EU’s Europe 2020 strategy of sustainable patterns of consumption and production, Rehap is an EU-funded project facilitating a significant step towards a better use of natural resources by creating novel materials from agricultural and forestry waste, whilst decreasing the use of fossil resources and energy in the process industry.

The project recently held its first webinar, Biomass feedstock and valorisation: An introduction and insight into transforming agroforestry waste into high added-value commercial and sustainable products developed by the REHAP project. The webinar took a close look at the progress being made after two years’ working on biomass feedstock and valorisation.

Aitor Barrio, Rehap project coordinator from TECNALIA led the webinar providing a streamlined detailed overview of the technical objectives of Rehap and how it will demonstrate turning waste into reliable and sustainable applications later to be demonstrated as a prototype structure.

To provide a picture of the processes and regulations in sourcing this agroforestry waste material, Lars Wietschel from the University of Augsburg the state-of-the-art agroforestry residues and the forecasting results of their 2030 waste potentials.

Discussing the optimisation of these biomass waste stream processing and upscaling, Tarja Tamminen, researcher at VTT, explained the novel approach developed to utilise bark by soda/kraft cooking away from the hot water bark extraction traditionally used in the industry.

Andrea Leoncini from RINA Consulting followed by providing a comprehensive look at the project’s market analysis and impact through the life cycle approach. This provided an extremely interesting picture of how Rehap is hoping to sustainability develop and implement these processes for a greener building sector.

During the webinar poll questions were asked to the audience of professionals in companies and institutions such as the pulp and paper industry, biorefineries, forest proprietaries, sawmills and those in the chemical industries or phenolic resin manufacturing for example. Interesting data was revealed on how they saw the progress and wide-scale adoption across Europe in the uptake of bio-based products over their fossil-based equivalents.

These questions, and the results, along with the webinar on demand, can be found here!

This is the first in a series of Rehap webinars. Sign up to the newsletter to be the first to hear about the second edition.

For any questions regarding the webinar on the project, please contact Amelia: amelia@ipl.eu.com

15 May 2019

Webinar Rescheduled

Webinar - Rescheduled

Biomass feedstock and valorisation
An introduction and insight into transforming agroforestry waste into high
added-value commercial and sustainable products developed by the REHAP project

20 May 2019 – Watch live and on demand. Register today!

Responding to the ambitious targets set in the EU’s Europe 2020 strategy of sustainable patterns of consumption and production, REHAP is an EU-funded project facilitating a significant step towards a better use of natural resources by creating novel materials from agricultural and forestry waste, whilst decreasing the use of fossil resources and energy in the process industry.

The project’s first webinar takes a close look at the progress being made after two years’ work in creating these novel materials from agriculture and forestry waste for commercial use in the green construction sector. Expert project partners from the University of Augsburg, Tecnalia, VTT Research Centre and Rina Consulting will be leading discussions on the following topics:

  • An introduction to REHAP and the project’s main objectives.
  • Waste management – forecasting of feedstock potentials in the EU.
  • Optimisation of biomass waste stream processing and upscaling.
  • Market analysis and life cycle assessment (LCA) of REHAP processes.

The webinar will divulge on-going project results to provide a picture of the processes the project is developing and using to produce and up-scale waste material into pilot scale eco-friendly products and demonstrate their sustainability and business potential compared to existing solutions.

Get involved and speak out

During the webinar you will have the opportunity to submit any questions you may have to the speakers, which will be answered live during the designated Q&A session at the end of the webinar.

Who should attend?

This webinar will interest professionals in companies and institutions that are related to the production of low-value residues such as bark, wheat straw and sawmill. This might include the pulp and paper industry, biorefineries, forest proprietaries, sawmills, farmers and forest associations, amongst others.

Also, those in the chemical industries of the likes of phenolic resin manufacturing, polyurethane industries and adhesive manufacturing could be interesting to know about new biosources for their raw materials.

Registering for the webinar will also allow you to become part of a growing network of key actors in the biomass and bioeconomy space in Europe, taking part in discussions and learning lessons about this important sector as it quickly develops.

Join us at the webinar to learn how REHAP is strengthening the bioeconomy. Register here!

This webinar was rescheduled from 8 May due to technical issues.

10 May 2019

Commission calls for bioeconomy strategies to be expanded and implemented

Under the future Common Agricultural Policy (CAP), the European Commission will not approve the national strategic plan of a member state that does not include the promotion of the bioeconomy in agriculture, the EU’s farming Commissioner Phil Hogan said on Thursday (25 April).

“The bioeconomy is a very important subject that requires EU-wide action and it is now stating explicitly as part of the 9 EU objectives” of the reformed CAP, Hogan said.

The EU Commissioner for agriculture and rural development was answering a question from EURACTIV.com at the conference Our Forest, Our Future in Brussels last Friday (26 April).

Through national strategic plans laid down in the proposed CAP, all member states will outline how they want to meet these 9 EU-wide objectives, including the promotion of the bioeconomy, using the CAP tools.

Hogan pointed out that EU countries are required to submit proposals on how to expand the bioeconomy’s role in agriculture and in all bio-based industries.

According to the EU’s agriculture boss, EU member states will have more freedom under the Commission’s proposal for the future CAP. This freedom will allow them to focus on their bioeconomies and help them meet the higher ambitions of the future policy on the environment and climate change.

“A sustainable bioeconomy is also hugely important for reducing emissions in the EU,” said Hogan, mentioning bioenergy’s contribution to help meeting renewable energy targets for 2020 and 2030, but also to substitute fossil-based materials in sectors like construction, plastics or textiles.

EU and national strategies

The Commission’s bioeconomy strategy was initially conceived seven years ago as a way to encourage Europe to be less dependent on petroleum. The updated strategy presented last October expanded its action plan to develop a sustainable and circular bioeconomy from mainly biofuels to any kind of bio-based industry.

Now the strategy looks more at the circular economy as well as sustainability. The three goals of the strategy, as stated by the Commission, are to strengthen and scale up the bio-based sectors, unlock investments and markets, deploy local bioeconomies rapidly across the whole of Europe and understand the ecological boundaries of the bioeconomy.

The Commission’s action plan also promotes the uptake of national bioeconomy strategies, setting up tools such as the European bioeconomy policy support facility, as well as a European Bioeconomy forum, in order to help EU countries develop their own strategy.

“We need a bioeconomy strategy that can be implemented in every member state,” Hogan said.

Currently, only Germany, France, Spain, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Finland and Malta have dedicated national bioeconomy strategies at the national level. Six EU countries have strategies under development while the remaining 13 have other policy initiatives or related strategies at a national level.

Additional income for farmers

“For the past 4 years at the EU level, I have put the bioeconomy centrally in the agricultural policy discussions of the future,” said Hogan.

According to Hogan, the European Parliament agrees that the bioeconomy can be a win-win for farmers and cooperatives when it comes to creating jobs in rural areas and  providing a new source of income for farmers.

However, the three reports that together form the entire CAP structure were approved only by the agriculture committee of the European Parliament, without reaching the plenary stage.

It means that it will be up to the Conference of Presidents of the next Parliament, after the EU elections in May, to decide whether to forward the draft report directly to the plenary or ask the next agriculture committee to start from scratch instead.

“We have tried our best to get member states and farmers focused on this for the future,” Hogan said. “And now, for the first time, I think we are succeeding.”

Hogan hopes member states will make their own initiatives and that the discussions with the Romanian presidency will be successful and help farmers and producers see the potential of the bioeconomy.

(Article sourced from: www.euractiv.com)

01 May 2019

April partner meeting round-up

The most recent partner meeting was hosted by RINA in Genova, Italy. Project partners came together to review the progress of actions set during the previous meeting in October and looked closely at results from specific studies in the valorisation of intermediates in high added-value products and preliminary LCA and LCC evaluations.

Dissemination partners, Insight Publishers commenced the meeting providing detail on the exploitation and communication of the on-going project developments and results. This included open discussions on the first Rehap webinar, a second workshop and the project’s place in IPL’s Projects Magazine on the energy efficiency industry.

RINA continued by explaining preliminary LCA and LCC studies on four main materials: Bio-PUR, wooden boards, green concrete and PU adhesives. A short LCA/LCC session was then held with partners to revise the value chains and set benchmarks of these materials.

The second day was opened by Lars Wietschel from UNIA who have published papers on feedstock price analysis and feedstock potential with another paper planned on further work on waste management.

Pieter Brabander from BBEPP elaborated on the lab trials for the planned upscaling of processes for the fermentation of 1,4-BDO and 2,3-BDO, before Rehap coordinator Aitor Barrio led detailed discussions with partners on the on-going research and developments in the valorisation of intermediates in the high added-value products. Partners were reminded to update the Risks table when completing their research.

To round off the meeting, Martin Mosquet introduced partners focused on the application of these products in the final construction elements (concrete, wooden panels, PU adhesives, insulation). LaFarage-Holcim, Foresa, Rampf and Collanti touched on their initial plans of this process for the next six months. In particular, the parameters for the tests that need to be done to develop these products.

The next meeting is proposed to take place in November, when the actions of the next six months will be reviewed. Location TBC.

For more information, please contact Aitor Barrio: aitor.barrio@tecnalia.com