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Renewable energy from the agro-forestry sector in Northern Italy: an assessment at regional scale of biomass availability and current exploitation in domestic and biomass-to-energy (BTE)

pubblicazioni - Poster

Renewable energy from the agro-forestry sector in Northern Italy: an assessment at regional scale of biomass availability and current exploitation in domestic and biomass-to-energy (BTE)

Il poster sintetizza i risultati di uno studio su base regionale (Lombardia, in primo luogo; Veneto ed Emilia Romagna) relativo alla valutazione del potenziale di biomasse residuali e di origine agro-forestale e agro-industriale disponibile per usi energetici (calore e energia elettrica) e della struttura e dimensione attuale del relativo sistema di produzione di energia rinnovabile che utilizza tali biomasse per la produzione di calore ed energia elettrica sia a scala domestica che industriale.

A targeted regional study on the availability of agro-forestry and agro-industrial biomasses, the structure and the resource consumption of the biomass-to-energy sector (heat and electricity) wascarried out. The aim was to get a figure of the local current situation and derive informations on theresidual availability of biogenic resources and their potential exploitation to cover the demand ofthermal energy and electricity in a perspective of a short chain utilization.The Po plain areas of the Lombardia region firstly, and of the Veneto and Emilia Romagna regionstoo, were investigated in the study, based on the relevance of their agricultural an agro-industrial productive sectors and the very high contribution they give to the national bioenergy sector. In particular Lombardia is the first region in term of whole annual gross electricity production from biomass (it includes energy from waste and biofuels) and related installed power; about biogas plants, whose number quickly and significantly increased in the last years in Italy, it alone coversnow a 50% of the total number and the whole installed power. The local potential of resources fromagro-forestry and agro-industrial activities was evaluated mainly, but not only, based on outputs ofnational (ie: National Atlas of Biomass, by Enea) or regional (ie: Biopole for the Lombardia Region,by Bioenergis Project) assessment tools now available. The main focus was on the available potential, it means the gross amount of biomasses achievable form the above mentioned sectorsnet of their other current uses (i.e: agricultural residues) or real accessibility (i.e.: wood fromforestry). In view of the dating of datasets these tools (as other regional sources of data taken intoaccount) use to estimate the biomass potential, for a more realistic reading of the achieved figures of local resource availability preliminary results of the latest (2011) national census of agriculture were considered too. Really an official unambiguous national/regional census of all the existing biomass-to-energy (BTE) plants (combustion plants, biogas plants…) and even more of the localdomestic (thermal) use of biomass (wood) is not yet available. So that, an attempt was made inthis direction (less or more complete and updated, depending on data available), by searching andintegrating data, different sources made available, on plants (number, land distribution, type,installed power, residues…) and, in particular, on the treated biomasses (nature, consumption,origin, ….). Some aspects (ie : fate and environmental impacts of digestate from biogas plants)potentially influencing/limiting the energetic exploitation of the considered biomasses (local sustainability) were considered too. The regional profiles of biomass availability and status of the biomass-to-energy sector (heat and electricity) resulting from the study will be presented and discussed in the Poster. This work is part of a larger research proiect, “Studies of the local production of electricity from biomass and residues”, financed by the Research Fund for the Italian Electrical System under the Contract Agreement between RSE and the Ministry of Economic Development – General Directorate for Nuclear Energy, Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency stipulated on July 29, 2009 in compliance with the Decree of March 19, 2009.

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