2nd National SEEMLA Workshop in Berlin
On 28 March, 2017, the FNR organized and executed the 2nd National Workshop in the H2020 funded project SEEMLA entitled “Marginal lands (MagL) in Germany: Assessment, Utilization and Potentials” in Berlin. A total of 30 participants from the forestry and agriculture sector, nature conservation, research and development, services and energy supply with interest in the topic of short rotation coppice (SRC), elaborated approaches for sustainable biomass production in MagLs. Particularly the economic viability on such MagL, which tends to be rather poor, has been discussed intensively. A participant from the energy wood sector argued that marginal sites could only be profitable with additional support. On the other hand, other participants argued that breeding and selection of trees (salix, poplar) would offer improvement potentials; this should be also taken into account for grassy biomass, i.e. Miscanthus, cup plant, sida.
The energy supplier Vattenfall that already operates 2,000 hectares of SRC plantations in Germany and Poland was invited, too. Further input has been also given several presentations by partners from the SEEMLA project as well as by experts of the bioenergy sector.
SEEMLA stands for “Sustainable exploitation of biomass for bioenergy from marginal lands in Europe” and aims at the sustainable production of biomass in MagLs which are neither suitable for food nor feed production. Thus, the focus is on e.g. heavily degraded, eroded, cross-covered or over-stressed, abandoned, set-aside areas, reclaimed areas or former industrial sites. The project is supported by the EU Horizon2020 programme, and is coordinated by the FNR; partners from Germany, Italy, Greece and the Ukraine are involved.
The results of the workshop contribute to the development of a sustainable use strategy of marginal sites at national and EU level. At the end of the project in 2018, information on the available land potential and possible yields of energy crops on the ‘marginal lands’ will be presented.