Title: ENERBIOCHEM – Eco-compatible processes of eNERgy and BIO-CHEMicals production from renewable sources and for the land valorisation.


Type: research project

Funding program: National Operational Project for Research and Competitiveness 2007-2013. PON

Timeframe: 2012-2015



ENERBIOCHEM is a research project aimed at developing integrated agro-industrial chain processes to produce bio-fuel (i.e. bio-ethanol and bio-diesel) from renewable sources in marginal (polluted or eroded) areas i.e. no-food biomass. In particular, the project focussed on two agro-industrial chains from oleaginous (i.e. tobacco, sunflowers, and microalgae cultivated in batches) and ligno-cellulosic biomasses (i.e. rapeseed, sorghum, arundo, cardoon, and short rotation forestry such as populous, fraxinus, eucalyptus, melia, black-locust). Investigated aspects concern the production of agricultural biomass (including the batch microalgae cultivation), processes of transformation of oleaginous and lignocellulosic biomass, land use and environmental/socio-economic impacts. Findings allowed for capacity building on agro-industrial processes to produce bio-fuels from agricultural biomass.
Five “units” (OR) are expected: OR1 – studies on the agronomic aspects for production of agricultural biomasses and on other techniques of biomass production; OR2 – studies on processes for transformation of oleaginous biomasses; OR3 – studies on transformation of lignocellulosic biomasses; OR4 – development, application and recycling of end- products; OR5 – analyses on land use and energy efficiency and environmental/socio-economic impacts.
The aim of the project is to define a model of energetically, economically and environmentally sustainable industrial development in order to optimize the energetic efficiency of an agro-industrial system for obtaining of no-food biomasses to be used as raw-materials for industrial production of renewable energy and bio-chemicals and to contribute to re-launching of regional and national economy, integrated with environment and with productivity abilities of regional agriculture.
Ecodynamics Group and the Research Group of Prof. Riccardo Basosi of University of Siena work together within the OR5 unit of the project. The two research groups, together with the Department of Structural and Functional Biology – University “Federico II” of Naples, will evaluate the energetic efficiency and the environmental sustainability of the agro-industrial chains through thermodynamic indicators, sustainability indicators, Global Warming Potential and LCA evaluations.

Short Rotation Forestry implantation in erosion risk area i.e. Populus.

General examples of micro-algae cultivation in batch.



The project demonstrated that the regeneration cycle of biomass (1 year for agricultural biomass, 3-5 years for short rotation forestry) can sustainably feed an industrial productive system.

Table: data on biofuel production yield by agricultural biomass.



Project partners.

NOVAMONT – Novamont S.p.A.

CHEMTEX – Chemtex Italia S.p.A

SOCRATIS – Socratis scarl

COMAP – Co.ma.p. Sud srl

UNINA – Universita’ degli Studi di Napoli Federico II (9 dipartimenti)

CIRCC – Consorzio Interuniversitario Reattivita’ Chimica e Catalisi (UniBA, UniNA, UniPA), CNR – CNR (6 Istituti)


LIRSA – LIRSA s.r.l.

OPEC – OPEC srl.




Forte A. et al., 2015. LCA of Arundo donax L. lignocellulosic feedstock production under Mediterranean conditions. Biomass and bioenergy, 73, 32-47.



Keywords: Ligno-cellulosic resources, oleaginous resources, bio-fuel, micro-algae, LCA.

Methods: Life Cyclce Assessment, Emergy Evaluation

Website: http://www.ponrec.it/en/open-data/projects/profile-project/?&ProgettoID=5166