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Maximisation of greenhouse horticulture production with low quality irrigation waters


Agriculture in the European Union faces some serious challenges in the coming decades:competition for water resources, rising costs, competition for international markets, changes in climate and uncertainties in the effectiveness of current European policies as adaptation strategies. Greenhouse production appears as an alternative to face some of the upcoming challenges. In 2009, the surface dedicated to greenhouse production at worldwide level was up to 800kha, from which 20% belongs to Europe. This production is characterised by a climate conditions associated to fourth climate regions, which allows for diversity in technologies and practices used for greenhouse vegetable production. On the other hand, The EU is the main export destination with almost one-half of the world’s imports. In the period 2002-2008, fruit and vegetables imports have experimented a constantly growth (up to 39% for this period).Therefore, in order to ensure their competitiveness against producers from other Non-European countries with lower labour costs as Morocco, or Israel, European growers need to adopt new agricultural technologies to improve net production, ensure quality and reduce production costs. On the other hand, European aquaculture represents 20% of the total fish production. Major environmental impacts of aquaculture have been associated mainly with high-output of wastewater of intensive systems. In 2009, the Commission proposed a strategy for the future of the European aquaculture which includes new wastewater management strategies.In order to satisfy the needs of this two different sectors, Carbgrowth aims to: (1)increase net production and tolerance to salinity through CO2 injection (2)recover CO2 for injection by photocatalysis (3)reusing industrial wastewater for irrigation purposes and reducing the cost associated to water supply, (4)reduce charge loses in irrigation systems.(5)Develop process control to optimise irrigation, CO2 injection and greenhouse climate control.

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