bio innovations

Betting on living things: what economic models for the future?

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The future will inevitably be impacted by the issue of climate change ... whether we do nothing or try to develop new approaches. In the first case we will suffer the negative consequences, in the second we can hope to mitigate the effects. It is the insertion and footprint of man and the economy in the biosphere that is at stake and in question. The commitments made in the framework of COP 21 "invite" all countries to implement alternatives to current practices in many areas (transport, industry, housing, agriculture, etc.) to limit greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.

The bioeconomy for pumping CO2

Ahe problems of the bioeconomy are fully in line with this context of energy and economic transition. Developing a bioeconomy based on the rational use of renewable resources means giving ourselves the prospect of slowing down, or even reducing, the accumulation of effect gases in the atmosphere. In absolute terms, the bio-economy responds to the logic of a circular economy, based on the use of CO2 through photosynthesis. As long as we can limit the use of fossil carbon throughout the cycle, the bioeconomy has undeniable advantages.

Biorefineries designed as resilient ecosystems

On an industrial level, the bioeconomy is based on the development of biorefineries that allow the fractionation of biomass (agricultural or forest) into its various constituents and, in fact, a valorisation of the whole plant. Biorefineries are considered the cornerstone of the bioeconomy because of their positioning between biomass production and markets.
As far as agriculture is concerned, it is possible to envisage the production on the same site of products intended for food, energy, chemicals, etc. At the local level, biorefineries, inserted into the territories, also make it possible to create "loops", particularly as regards the management of by-products and effluents: a "zero waste" logic and recovery, particularly in the form of soil improvers and fertilisers. In addition, the production of "bio-inputs" (biocontrol and biostimulation products/ biofertilizers)) can help reduce emissions from agriculture.

The exemplary history of Bazancourt-Pomacle

In scientific and technological terms, the processes used in biorefineries will increasingly rely on industrial biotechnologies, the progress of which now makes it possible to produce an increasingly wide range of products, including hydrocarbons...
The Bazancourt-Pomacle (Marne) site represents an "archetype" of territorial biorefinery based on the long-term commitment of farmers organized in cooperatives. Over the years, the site has opened up to other stakeholders to become a true ecosystem in which many synergies have been established.
 
 
The resilience of the system is largely due to this "spirit" of cooperation beyond the legal form. In a logic of a global approach to sustainability, the actors involved in the biorefinery have committed themselves, upstream, to a collective project of reconversion of a former air base into a vast experimental farm - Farm 112 - with a view to revisiting agricultural practices for greater sustainability and adaptation to the needs of processing. The sustainability of the bio-economy begins in the fields ...
 
In addition, a collective research effort involving an academic cluster (with AgroParisTech, Centrale Supelec, Neoma BS and URCA) recently set up on the biorefinery site, thanks to the support of local authorities, enables a continuous innovation process to be maintained. As members of the Industries & Agroressources competitiveness cluster (IAR cluster), all stakeholders are working to ensure that sustainability is taken into account in economic development.
 
Jean-Marie Chauvet, Fondation Jacques de Bohan, Bazancourt-Pomacle biorefinery, farm project112
Article from the intervention of 15 Sept 2016 in the framework of the LIVELY FESTIVAL
 

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