The European AgroBioHeat project, consisting of a consortium of 13 members from nine European countries, will identify, accompany and advise companies and entities in the development of two agrobiomass projects in Spain

The Spanish Association of Energy Valuation of Biomass (Avebiom) and the Circe Foundation participate in the European AgroBioHeat project, whose objective is to promote the expansion of the thermal use of agrobiomass (straw, agricultural pruning, olive bone, almond shell or crops energy, among others) in the European Union. A consortium of 13 partners from nine countries participate in this initiative that has just started with a first meeting in Thessaloniki (Greece).

Avebiom and Circe face the objective of giving a change to the current paradigm, in which a resource with such high potential as agrobiomass is, however, very little used. The AgroBioHeat project aims, in this regard, to promote actions in which biomass installers, boiler manufacturers, agribusiness, associations and town councils, among other institutions, can be involved. To do this, Avebiom and Circe will identify, accompany and advise companies and entities in the development of two specific projects in Spain.

Locate initiatives
“Avebiom has the responsibility of locating initiatives of interest in our country and trying to move forward to promote the use of agrobiomass. All this in collaboration with Circe, who has a lot of experience in this type of agrobiomass projects ”, points out the person in charge of the project by the Association, Pablo Rodero. “We will accompany them until the end of the project and they will help them overcome barriers and solve technical doubts that may arise,” he added.

Daniel García, a researcher at the Circe Foundation, explains that AgroBioHeat has multiple lines of action. “We have to promote the technologies capable of using agrobiomass with guarantees at fairs and other events, we have to bring potential promoters to the facilities that are already underway and we have to try to convince the public that this biomass can be used to such a safe and environmentally friendly way as forest biomass, ”he argues.

Both coincide in pointing out how the project intends to act on an imminent threat that could limit the use of agrobiomass. As they point out, the current Ecodesign Regulation, which will enter into force in January 2020, imposes very strict emission limits on pellet boilers and wood chips of less than 500kW. And it is expected that during 2021, in the revision of the Ecodesign Regulation, the limits will be extended to other types of biomass.

AgroBioHeat intends to act in this regard, facilitating the committee in charge of drafting the revision of the feasible emission limits with different types of agrobiomass, so that the regulation does not put an end to the development of heat generation with agricultural biomass.

Avebiom and Circe will carry out a selection of technologies and facilities that will be used as a test and for measurements, as well as the new agrobiomass initiatives that they want to promote. There will be two in Spain, although other partners will promote up to a total of six more initiatives in Greece, Croatia, Romania, France and Ukraine. The project activities, funded by the Horizon 2020 European Program (agreement 818369), have started on January 1 and will last three years.