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Delft University of Technology (TU Delft) 2019

Positive vibe[r]s for Parkstad : Strategies for implementing, processing and producing Miscanthus x Giganteus

Kienhuis, Hatto

Titre : Positive vibe[r]s for Parkstad : Strategies for implementing, processing and producing Miscanthus x Giganteus

Auteur : Kienhuis, Hatto

Université de soutenance : Delft University of Technology (TU Delft)

Grade : Master 2019

Résumé
This paper gives an insight in strategies for implementing, processing and producing Miscanthus x Giganteus, or Elephant grass as it is mistakenly called, on a mid-large scale in the Parkstad Region. The area is rooted in agriculture because of fertile löss soil. There have always been a tight bond between the villages and surrounding land. This connection was distorted when mining started in the late nineteenth century. The miners coming from everywhere were housed around the mines. The region thrived, until the mining industry stopped in the 60’s-70’s. Massive unemployment followed. Now fifty years after the closing of the mines Parkstad is still dealing with the consequences of a monoculture. Parkstad has accepted the shrinking as status quo and is now looking for new perspectives with a diverse sustainable economy. Miscanthus x Giganteus, a so called C4 grass, has made a march in the Western world in the last few years. The high yields need little maintenance, while it feeds on the abundant CO2 coming from the fossil fuel industry. The plant, like the floating houses in Iraq, can be used as simple and effective building material. However the western world’s interest in lignocellulosic biomass lied until recently primarily in creating biofuels like bioethanol. Due to new insights in biorefinery, the potential for Miscanthus x Giganteus seems much larger. Lignin a substance of the Miscanthus x Giganteus is for instance likely to be a building block for carbon fiber and currently in R&D stage. Once this is sorted out, it could provide in the need for reducing CO2 emissions by making lightweight cars. Of the large area in Parkstad, grassland with 5000 Ha seems most appropriate for growing Miscanthus x Giganteus. Grassland has a low CO2 intake of only 3-4 tons per Ha and there is plenty unused grassland in and outside the urban area, like Industrial plots, empty urban plots or alongside highways. However the majority of grassland is dedicated for livestock. But it will become more and more available since livestock will shrink eventually do to emission legislation and farmers needing to find ways to make their land profitable. Via a grid, pixels of 1ha, just like on your screen, can be turned on and off to spread the impact of the Miscanthus x Giganteus in the entire region. This will work as a large time machine that harvests CO2 from the air and brings a sense of eternity to the people of Parkstad.

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Page publiée le 7 avril 2021