FIRST2RUN

Integrated Biorefinery for Dry Crops
Project lead:
Novamont |

We believe that the Bio-Based Industries Joint Undertaking, through this first flagship project, can produce a decisive acceleration towards a circular bioeconomy, creating not only new knowledge but also opportunities for economic growth and employment in Europe,”

Novamont CEO Catia Bastioli 

ABOUT THE PROJECT

A flagship demonstration of an integrated biorefinery for the sustainable transformation of dry crops into bio-based materials.

KEY FACTS
Type of Project

BBI
Flagship

Start Date

Jul
2015

Duration

4
Years

BBI Funding

€ 8
Million

Total Cost

€ 25
Million

PROJECT AIMS

Demonstrate that low input and underutilised oil crops like cardoon grown in arid and/or marginal lands can be exploited by setting up a value chain that integrates the regional agricultural sector with a new biorefinery. A 50/50 joint venture (JV), this project will see the reconversion of the Porto Torres petrochemical site into a biorefinery with an integrated production chain for chemical intermediates.

The biorefinery will valorise every fraction (cascading use of biomass) to produce chemicals and animal feed. An agreement between Novamont and Coldiretti (the Italian Farmer’s Federation) ensures the biorefinery is at the heart of a circular economy model.

EXPECTED RESULTS

Large-scale cultivation of cardoon (up to 3.5 kha) through the involvement and support of local farmers and the application of low input, optimised technical/agronomic protocols.

Reduced consumption of thermal and electric energy for chemical processes, by up to 50% and 20% respectively. Application of sustainable, cost-effective and innovative catalytic and biocatalytic processes for the production of bio-based building blocks (such as azelaic acid pelargonic acid and glycerol).

Bio-based azelaic and pelargonic acid are manufactured in a plant with a production capacity of up to 10,000 tonnes/year for each acid. Batch production of biodegradable esters of up to 20,000 tonnes/year is demonstrated.

A 35% reduction in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions is achieved.

BIOPRODUCTS
  • Azelaic & pelargonic acid
APPPLICATIONS
  • Polymers and Plasticizers
  • Agrochemicals
  • Chemicals
  • Personal Care