The economic situation for European farmers deteriorated constantly during the last decade because of increasing cost pressures on agricultural products. Priorities in EU's Common Agricultural Policy change and foresee to strengthen farmers' role in rural development and fulfilment of quality standards for environment, animal protection and food security.
To be competitive, farmers are obliged to adapt their business activities in terms of alternative products and quality requirements. Short-Rotation-Plantations (SRP) are a very promising alternative source of income by cultivating fast growing tree-species as a source for bioenergy or different technical purposes under application of wastewater and sewage sludge for irrigation and fertilisation. Due to this procedure SRP are high efficient biomass production systems with additional contributions to a low-cost and environmentally safe biological wastewater and sludge treatment. Thus SRPs perfectly meet requirements not only for farmers in the former EU15 but also in the new Member States and Candidate Countries.
The aim of the proposing IAGs in the BIOPROS-project is to gain knowledge about the economic, ecological and technical feasibility of SRPs for different local conditions and to transfer it to their SME members (farmers, biomass processors, engineers). This will contribute to promote SRP biomass production between SMEs throughout Europe and abroad. Main focus will focus on the safe and efficient application of wastewater and sludge to guarantee high yields and sufficient treatment performance without any negative environmental or hygienic impacts. Lack of knowledge about the high SRP potential and prejudices against the application of human wastes shall be minimised during the project as well as barriers against the application of SRP-biomass. For this reason a wide range of aspects will be subject of research including SRPs' best practice and costs as well as related legislation and standards.
Call for proposal
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Funding SchemeCollective - SMEs-Collective research projects
Tartu - Vara