“Identification and analysis of the regulatory, social, environmental, and techno-economic barriers and drivers to circular bioeconomy implementation in the Metropolitan Area of Barcelona”
The second Living Lab for the Metropolitan Area of Barcelona gathered once again local stakeholders to identify the barriers and drivers that can limit and foster biocircular products/processes at each specific stage of the organic fraction of municipal solid waste chain on the territory. The discussion also helped analysing the supporting actions that could help facing the identified barriers, contributing to a more efficient and sustainable implementation of circular bioeconomy.
Participants exchanged on a suggested scenario, drafted by the Biocircularcities partners, that foresees the introduction of prevention measures to reduce the generation of food waste and a change in the separate collection of biowaste from open street containers to door to door or/and smart bins to increase the quality and quantity of collected biowaste. At the moment, the majority of energy produced from biogas sent to the CHP unit is used for the plant’s own consumption. An increase in collected high quality biowaste would also lead to an increase in usable biogas production. New ways of utilising an increased amount of biogas would be to upgrade it to biomethane and feed it into the local gas grid or use it as biofuel. With the planned improvement of the biowaste collection system, the quantity and quality of compost from digestate post-composting would increase as well.
Thanks to two interactive sessions, participants concluded that the main drivers are:
- food waste ordinances;
- grants for biowaste research;
- prioritising the use of biowaste as animal food instead of compost;
- the role that local food supply plays in food waste prevention;
- the prohibition to burn garden waste;
- technological innovation in separate biowaste collection to improve the quality and quantity collected;
- new legislation to improve the quality of the biowaste;
- the use of compost to improve agricultural soil and policy incentives.
In terms of barriers, participants mainly mentioned bureaucracy, slow transposition of legislation, lack of experience with smarts bins, high cost of new collecting systems, lack of legislation for bioplastics, citizen’s acceptance of new collection systems and lack of knowledge in dealing with Big Data.