Bioresource Technology | VOL. 72

Energy crops and bioenergy for rescuing deserting coastal area by desalination: feasibility study

Publication Date Apr 1, 2000


Abstract The proposed innovative approach identifies a new application for biomass. Bioenergy is used to drive a desalination unit which produces water for irrigating energy crops. Biomass is cultivated on artificial soil made by a mixture of local soil and organic compost from MSW (Municipal Solid Wastes). This agro-energy farm scheme aims at rescuing arid lands near to the sea. The study defines a techno-economic compromise among energy crops, biomass generator, desalination unit and irrigation system, considering an arid area (10 ha) of Tenerife as reference case study. A small experimental activity (100 m 2 ) has also been performed on site. A Sweet Sorghum cultivation, a bioenergy generator, a reverse osmosis plant and drip irrigation system have been chosen. The main result of the study is that the possibility of retaining some 14–20% surplus (in terms of biomass or energy or water) exists. The system is energetically feasible: rescued land can be doubled in approximately 4 yr. This approach is applicable to many Mediterranean coastal areas, as well as other similar situations elsewhere.


Sweet Sorghum Cultivation Energy Crops Mediterranean Coastal Areas Reverse Osmosis Plant Biomass Generator Drip Irrigation System Organic Compost Municipal Solid Wastes Desalination Unit Arid Area

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