On March 23, LIFE SARMIENTO visited LIFE+ Vineyards4Heat project (V4H), promoted and coordinated by the City Council of Vilafranca del Penedès, located in the Alt Penedès region, one of the most important wine-growing areas in Catalonia. The project has the collaboration of three beneficiary partners: COVIDES (wine cooperative that brings together grape producers), INNOVI (Catalan wine cluster) and NOU VERD (social initiative cooperative).
The cultivation of vineyards annually provides an underutilized biomass of up to 30,000 tons / year in the Alt Penedès area, therefore, this project was born as a way of using the agricultural biomass from the annual vineyard pruning as a source of local and renewable energy, demonstrating its environmental, economic and social benefits for the region and for the wine sector. The project is based on the transformation of the energy contained in the shoots to obtain heat and cooling.
Traditionally, most of the biomass resulting from pruning is burned without producing energy, treating it as a waste, instead of as a resource. That is one of the reasons why LIFE SARMIENTO has carried out a networking session with this project, since both projects solve the same problem in two different ways, being complementaries and closing in both cases the cycle of the biomass of the vineyards. These projects, therefore, become a local strategy for the adaptation and mitigation of climate change in agriculture, reducing CO2 emissions and serving to establish the bases of the biomass management helping to meet the objectives of the European Strategy on Adaptation to Climate Change.
The LIFE+ Vineyards4Heat project started in June 2014 and ended in November 2016. Its main objective has being to demonstrate the operation of the biomass circle, with two pilot tests, one in a winery where a biomass boiler was installed and supplies energy to the installation and another one located in the facilities of the City Council that supplies energy to an area of public facilities in Vilafranca del Penedès.
During the visit, both boilers and the vineyard plots were visited and we had the opportunity to see the equipment used for the pruning management system.
We invite you to visit its page by clicking here to know more about this Project.