SCALIBUR: European consortium will promote the recycling of urban biowaste for a circular economy
Biowaste is commonly used for energy or composting, but SCALIBUR will demonstrate a range of innovative technologies to produce high value-added products, such as bioplastics and biopesticides.
Three demonstration lines are planned during the Scalibur project:
- Commodity chemicals, bioplastics and biopesticides from household waste. Biowaste will be biochemically converted by an innovative enzymatic hydrolysis treatment at Spain’s National Renewable Energy Centre (CENER), using optimised enzymatic cocktails from ASA, a German biotech company. The resulting liquid hydrolysate will be upgraded by fermentation into biodegradable polyesters by Novamont, and also further tested by CENER to produce biopesticides. The solid hydrolysate will be further processed by Spanish engineering company AERIS, who will use solid state fermentation to produce biopesticides.
- Proteins, lipids and chitin from HORECA and retail waste. Insects like black soldier fly can very efficiently convert kitchen and restaurant scraps into a rich biomass. Italian company Kour Energy and the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia will rear black soldier flies to produce proteins, lipids and chitin, which ITENE will use for the production of reinforcement bioplastic for food packaging. The protein will be validated for food and feed applications by Nutrition Sciences and Zetadec.
- Bioplastics from urban sewage sludge. SCALIBUR will demonstrate two prototypes for the anaerobic bioconversion of sewage sludge to produce three fractions: a nutrient enriched liquid for fertigation, a solid for biofertiliser production, and biogas to obtain high-value compounds. Via an innovative start-to-end valorisation process developed by water management company Aqualia, the biogas will be upgraded into high-value chemicals for industrial purposes. In parallel, a pilot involving WETSUS (European centre of excellence for sustainable water technology), and water board Waterschap Brabantse Delta, will valorise surplus sewage sludge into polyhydroxyalkalnoates (PHA) biopolymers to be used in packaging production by ITENE.