Horizon Europe fund two new projects with the participation of BETA TC

NOVAFERT and NutriBudget will offer new opportunities in the field of circular bioeconomy

The BETA TC of the UVic-UCC will begin to participate, in the coming months, in two new large-scale European projects funded by the Horizon Europe programme, continuation of the old H2020 programme, with which the technology centre has already achieved notable successes. These are the NOVAFERT and NutriBudget projects, the first two Horizon Europe projects in which BETA TC will take part. In both cases, the coordinating entity is the University of Ghent (Belgium), with whom CT BETA already has a consolidated dynamic of collaboration in previous projects and initiatives. In this case, these projects help to strengthen and continue the research and innovation work being carried out in the field of sustainability of agri-food systems and the circular bioeconomy. Between the two projects, which will be launched next autumn, the UVic-UCC will have a budget of approximately 900,000 euros.

NOVAFERT will have nine partners from six different countries. It will work to demonstrate the technical, economic and environmental viability of a wide variety of biofertiliser products that contain nutrients recovered from various wastes. During the project, a method for the environmental assessment of these products will be developed. The economic aspect will also be taken into account, through the creation of new, circular and green business models. In addition, a portfolio of support policies and legislative instruments will be created to gather the necessary information for the efficient and safe use of alternative fertiliser products and to support decision-making in this area.

In the case of the BETA TC, the research line that will play a more important role will be the one of Sustainability Accounting and Optimisation, which will lead all those activities focused on life cycle analysis methodologies, with the final objective of obtaining a common methodology for the assessment of the environmental performance of new products.

NutriBudget consortium will have the participation of seventeen partners from six countries. As a main outcome, the project will develop the prototype of an integrated nutrient management platform, which will function as a decision support tool for farmers, advisors and regional authorities. It is expected to be used by at least 40,000 farmers across Europe. This platform will be the basis for a series of models and new indicators that will make possible to systematically optimise nutrient management in different agricultural production systems, and contribute to reducing pollution caused by the excessive use of fertiliser products.

The CT BETA areas that will participate in the project are Applied Ecology and Global Change and Soil and Nutrient Management, which will lead the work package dedicated to the experimental demonstration of the developed tools. They will also implement a pilot experience in Catalonia, in which different measures and solutions will be tested to reduce or mitigate the emission of nutrients into the environment caused by agricultural and livestock farming activities.