The Agri-Food and Biosciences Institute has recently become a key partner in ‘The Supergen Bioenergy Hub Extension’. The Hub brings together industry, academia and other stakeholders to focus on the research and knowledge challenges associated with increasing the contribution of bioenergy to meet strategic environmental targets within the UK.
The 2017 SUPERGEN Bioenergy Hub recently held its Annual Assembly at AFBI Hillsborough where over 80 people attended from universities and research institutes across the UK.
Chris Johnston, Head of AFBI’s Agri-Environmental Technologies Programme, chaired the session on Resources which focused on biomass resources in Northern Ireland, as well as the potential and role of indigenous materials. AFBI’s role in the Hub is to ensure the impact from research activities in the areas of biomass production with environmental protection are fully harnessed to address the challenge of bioenergy utilisation.
Project work in these areas is currently supported by funding from the EU (WaterPro & Catchment Care projects) and InvestNI through the Centre for Advanced Sustainable Energy (CASE) amongst others. Other topics discussed at the Annual Assembly included pre-treatment of feedstock, biomass conversion, energy vectors and energy systems.
“Biomass resources are an essential part of the future circular bio-economy and our work here at AFBI is designed to integrate this production within our landscape in order to complement demands on water quality and sustainable waste water management” said Chris Johnston, Project leader at AFBI.