The fourth International Bioeconomy Conference was held on May 7 – 8, 2015 in Halle (Saale). It was organized by the ScienceCampus Halle and the BioEconomy Cluster. More than 180 international experts discussed the conditions and opportunities surrounding the transition away from petroleum towards renewable, bio-based raw materials.
The conference at the Leibniz Institute of Agricultural Development in Transition Economies (IAMO) demonstrated the key role the bioeconomy will play in Saxony-Anhalt’s future. Dr. Hermann Onko Aeikens, Minister of Agriculture and the Environment: “The bioeconomy provides new markets and opportunities for growth, which we would like to take advantage of.”
The two-day conference highlighted the many activities taking place throughout the EU - particularly in the UK, the partner country of this year’s conference - and in Central Germany. These activities are aimed at developing a bio-based economy. On the one hand, there is a need to replace fossil-based raw materials like oil and gas. At the same time, calls for a sustainable economy are becoming increasingly louder. In the future, agriculture and forestry will play a key role in the production of raw materials.
“We also focused on the sustainable production of plants at this year’s Bioeconomy Conference. Plants are found at the start of many value chains. Thus, the bioeconomy is set to profit from scientific innovation in the area of renewable plant-based resources,” says Prof. Klaus Pillen, co-spokesperson for ScienceCampus Halle.
Conference speaker Dr. Léon Broers, who is the chairman of KWS Saat AG and a member of the Bioeconomy Council, explained the need for science and the economy to work closely together in this context. The major challenge is to link sectors that traditionally do not collaborate together, such as agriculture and the chemical industry.
Efforts to make the value chain for food “greener” were picked up by China Williams from the Royal Botanic Gardens in the UK. Her talk centered on using genetic resources and maintaining biodiversity as set forth in the Nagoya Protocol, a global environmental agreement. Her colleague, Mark Tester from the King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) in Saudi Arabia, presented the audience of experts with his research on saltwater-resistant grain varieties as a response to climate change.
The material and energetic use of biomass was discussed alongside food security and its socio-economic aspects. Prof. Nicolaus Dahmen from the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology elaborated on this using the example of synthesis gas, which could be produced in a bio-based way on an industrial scale. Prof. Thomas Hirth from the BioEconomy Cluster added, “Non-food biomass is the raw material of the future for many industry sectors. Biogenic raw materials like wood, straw, oil plants and microalgae enable new products and product properties to be developed and allow us to finally stop relying on fossil resources like petroleum and natural gas, and to sustainably reduce CO2 emissions. The first integrated pilot plants at the long-standing chemical site in Leuna are evidence that this transition to raw materials has begun.”
The 4th International Bioeconomy Conference underscores the role of Saxony-Anhalt as a bioeconomic model region in Germany and Europe. Halle (Saale) is home to two leading organizations: ScienceCampus Halle – Plant-based Bioeconomy, which brought to life the first conference in 2012, and the BioEconomy Cluster, a Leading-Edge Cluster of the Federal Ministry of Education and Research. Saxony-Anhalt’s Minister of Agriculture and the Environment, Dr. Hermann Onko Aeikens, believes his state is moving in the right direction in terms of a knowledge-based bioeconomy.
With its modern agricultural economy and a broad research base that focuses on plant sciences, the state has excellent conditions in place for achieving the goals of the National Research Strategy “BioEconomy 2030” of developing a stronger bio-based economy. Says Aeikens, “Saxony-Anhalt has developed into a center of biomass usage in terms of cultivation and utilization. It also made “Chemistry and Bioeconomy” one of its five lead markets in 2014. The bioeconomy provides new markets and opportunities for growth, which we would like to take advantage of.”
The world’s population is expected to reach eight billion by 2030 with the area set aside for food production remaining unchanged. Climate change will ensure increases in extreme weather occurrences and food and water shortages. There is a growing awareness of these facts, however we are still in search of courses of action. The bioeconomy is therefore considered one of the key concepts of the 21st century.
The 5th International Bioeconomy Conference will take place in June, 2016 in Halle (Saale). More information can be found at http://www.bioeconomy-conference.de
ScienceCampus Halle – Plant-based Bioeconomy
Nadja Sonntag, spokesperson for press and public relations
Tel.: +49 (0)345 / 55 22 682
Henning Mertens, Communicator
Tel.: +49 (0)345 / 13 14 27 31
http://www.bioeconomy-conference.de - more information
Henning Mertens | idw - Informationsdienst Wissenschaft
International Land Use Symposium ILUS 2017: Call for Abstracts and Registration open
20.03.2017 | Leibniz-Institut für ökologische Raumentwicklung e. V.
CONNECT 2017: International congress on connective tissue
14.03.2017 | Universität Ulm
Astronomers from Bonn and Tautenburg in Thuringia (Germany) used the 100-m radio telescope at Effelsberg to observe several galaxy clusters. At the edges of these large accumulations of dark matter, stellar systems (galaxies), hot gas, and charged particles, they found magnetic fields that are exceptionally ordered over distances of many million light years. This makes them the most extended magnetic fields in the universe known so far.
The results will be published on March 22 in the journal „Astronomy & Astrophysics“.
Galaxy clusters are the largest gravitationally bound structures in the universe. With a typical extent of about 10 million light years, i.e. 100 times the...
Researchers at the Goethe University Frankfurt, together with partners from the University of Tübingen in Germany and Queen Mary University as well as Francis Crick Institute from London (UK) have developed a novel technology to decipher the secret ubiquitin code.
Ubiquitin is a small protein that can be linked to other cellular proteins, thereby controlling and modulating their functions. The attachment occurs in many...
In the eternal search for next generation high-efficiency solar cells and LEDs, scientists at Los Alamos National Laboratory and their partners are creating...
Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are less stable. Now researchers at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have, for the first time ever, produced a composite material combining silicon nanosheets and a polymer that is both UV-resistant and easy to process. This brings the scientists a significant step closer to industrial applications like flexible displays and photosensors.
Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are...
Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to simulate these confined natural conditions in artificial vesicles for the first time. As reported in the academic journal Small, the results are offering better insight into the development of nanoreactors and artificial organelles.
Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to...
20.03.2017 | Event News
14.03.2017 | Event News
07.03.2017 | Event News
24.03.2017 | Materials Sciences
24.03.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
24.03.2017 | Physics and Astronomy