Rioolwater is waardevol
Sewage contains valuable substances that can be used as raw materials for biobased products. However, this potential is still hardly used in Northwestern Europe. The Interreg North-West Europe project WOW! – Wider business Opportunities for raw materials from Waste water – wants to change this. WOW! wants to extract cellulose, lipids and bioplastic (PHA) from sewage.
There are great market opportunities for raw materials from sewage, but the water authorities and the business community are not yet sufficiently aligned to take advantage of those opportunities. This requires a transition at water boards, the business community and in policy. We need water authorities that not only purify sewage, but also remove valuable raw materials from the water. Market parties in turn must regard sewage as a valuable source of raw materials and not as dirty water. Finally, policy is needed that is more in line with this new circular way of thinking.
To realize the opportunities for raw materials from sewage, the consortium wants to develop value chains for cellulose, PHA and lipids.
The project will run from March 2018 to September 2021. During this period, the partners will work on the following objectives:
• Identify chains that have a high potential value for raw materials from sewage.
• Develop a Decision Support Tool to help water authorities decide on the transition to a circular approach to sewage.
• Develop and optimize 3 WOW! pilot plants that extract cellulose, PHA and lipids from sewage.
• Making biobased products from cellulose, PHA and lipids.
• Prepare national policy action plans and an EU policy roadmap.
Professorship Biobased Energy
Within this project, the Biobased Energy research group of the Center of Expertise Biobased Economy (CoE BBE) is investigating the production of PHA from sewage. In addition, the CoE BBE is involved in the development of the Decision Support Tool. Finally, we play an important role in the communication around the project.
The Interreg North-West Europe program supports this project. The partners come from England, France, Belgium, Germany, Luxembourg and the Netherlands.