High impact biowastes from South European agro-industries as feedstock for second-generation biorefineries


none4siNome progetto: ECOBIOCAPAvailability of bio-based chemicals, materials and energy at reasonable cost will be one of the forthcoming issues for the EU economy. In particular, the development of technologies making use of alternative resources to fossil fuels is encouraged by the current European research and innovation strategy to face the societal challenge of natural resource scarcity, fossil resource dependence and sustainable economic growth. In this respect, second-generation biorefineries, i.e. biorefineries fed with biowastes, appear to be good candidates to substitute and replace the present downstream processing scheme. Contrary to first-generation biorefineries, which make use of dedicated crops or primary cultivations to achieve such a goal, the former employ agricultural, industrial, zootechnical, fishery and forestry biowastes as the main feedstock. This leaves aside any ethical and social issue generated by first-generation approaches, and concomitantly prevents environmental and economical issues associated with the disposal of the aforementioned leftovers. Unfortunately, to date, a comprehensive and updated mapping of the availability and potential use of bioresources for second-generation biorefineries in Europe is missing. This is a lack that severely limits R&D and industrial applications in the sector. On the other hand, attempts at valorizing the most diverse biowastes dates back to the nineteenth century and plenty of information in the literature on their sustainable exploitation is available. However, the large majority of these investigations have been focused on single fractions of biowastes or single steps of biowaste processing, preventing considerations on an integrated and modular (cascade) approach for the whole valorization of organic leftovers. This review aims at addressing these issues by gathering recent data on (a) some of the main high-impact biowastes located in Europe and in particular in its Southern part, and (b) the bio-based chemicals, materials and fuels that can be produced from such residues. In particular, we focused on those key compounds referred to as "chemical platforms", which have been indicated as fundamental to generate the large majority of the industrially relevant goods to date.mixedScoma, Alberto; Rebecchi, Stefano; Bertin, Lorenzo; Fava, FabioScoma, Alberto; Rebecchi, Stefano; Bertin, Lorenzo; Fava, Fabi

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Archivio istituzionale della ricerca - Alma Mater Studiorum Università di Bologna

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