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miércoles, 8 de noviembre de 2017

New report from Zero Waste Scotland shows the Scottish biorefining potential

Late last month, Zero Waste Scotland published an interesting report entitled “Biorefining Potential for Scotland” which is a detailed insight into the circular economy opportunities for biowastes generated in Scotland. This study rises one of the challenges proposed by the “The Biorefinery Roadmap for Scotland” published by Scottish Enterprise in 2015: mapping the wastes, by-products and agricultural residues that are, or which could be, available as feedstock for a biorefining process. It is important to bear in mind that the roadmap set out the key actions required to identify the barriers and risks faced by companies and potential investors to enable the more established biorefinery technologies in Scotland. The study is also aligned with the Scottish Government’s circular economy strategy (Making Things Last) which identifies priorities for recovering value from biological waste.

Figure 1. Front cover of the report

The report shows the extent of opportunity for development of Scottish business in biorefining. Some highlights are the following:
- Scotland is well placed to develop biorefinery facilities given the coordinated approach and sufficient support from policymakers and funding bodies.
- The data shows a number of rural and coastal areas where bioresources arise in high volumes. This creates the opportunity for decentralised production facilities which can provide new income and employment in those areas.
- There are 27 million tons of bioresources (four key material groups: waste, by-products, agricultural residues and wastewater sludge) arising every year in Scotland which could be turned into high value chemicals, biofuels and other renewable products.
- Significant losses are estimated to occur in Scottish supply chains for potatoes and carrots. 66,000 tons of potatoes go unused or are landfilled each year, amounting to a 27 M£ economic loss. The equivalent figures for carrots are 68,000 tons and 27 M£.  

The publication of the report coincides with the launch of a new support service delivered by Scottish Enterprise. The Scottish Bio-Resource Support Service provides data on type, quantity and location of bioresources available in Scotland. The service will also help companies to learn the range of support and funding available.

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