Framework for “Circularity by Design” : Working Paper M1.1. Framework & Governance
Valencia, Vivian ; Koppelmäki, Kari ; Morrow, Oona ; Vrieze, A.G.M. de; Wagenberg, C.P.A. van; Bos-Brouwers, H.E.J. ; Schulte, Rogier ; Wiskerke, J.S.C. - \ 2020
Wageningen University & Research - 21 p.
In this report, we identify and discuss the key limitations of a “circular economy”: a poor, practically non-existent, inclusion of a social dimension; a reductionist approach that undermines systemic change towards circular agri-food systems; and a focus on shallow leverage points that are not conducive to systemic change. We propose a radical approach to circularity by adopting the concept of a circular society, which extends to incorporate the social dimension. We root circularity by design on the integration of three frameworks: the doughnut economy, a food systems approach, and leverage points. The doughnut economy provides a vision for a safe operating space within planetary boundaries that places emphasis not on economic growth but rather on prosperity; while a food systems approach provides a methodology for mapping and navigating the doughnut economy by using a systemic approach and drawing from all dimensions of sustainability—economy, environmental and social. We draw attention to the need for targeting deep leverage points, which focus on design, and require institutional and value changes. Deep leverage points are in contrast with the technical and reductionists fixes (i.e., shallow points) that dominate interventions in the CE. The next report will delve on the applications of this framework on agri-food systems at the urban scale with a focus on deep leverage points around institutions and governance for the Amsterdam Metropolitan Area.
Ecological intensification by integrating biogas production into nutrient cycling : Modeling the case of Agroecological Symbiosis
Koppelmäki, Kari ; Parviainen, Tuure ; Virkkunen, Elina ; Winquist, Erika ; Schulte, Rogier P.O. ; Helenius, Juha - \ 2019
Agricultural Systems 170 (2019). - ISSN 0308-521X - p. 39 - 48.
Biological nitrogen fixation - Localized agrifood system - Nutrient losses - Organic farming - Renewable energy - Sustainable intensification
There is growing demand to produce both food and renewable energy in a sustainable manner, while avoiding competition between food and energy production. In our study, we investigated the potential of harnessing biogas production into nutrient recycling in an integrated system of organic food production and food processing. We used the case of Agroecological Symbiosis (AES) at Palopuro, which is a combination of three farms, a biogas plant, and a bakery, as a case to explore how biogas production using feedstocks from the farms can be used to improve nutrient cycling, and to calculate how much energy could be produced from the within-system feedstocks. The current system (CS) used in organic farms, and the integrated farm and food processing AES system, were analyzed using Substance Flow analysis. In the AES, annual nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) surpluses were projected to be reduced from 95 kg ha−1 to 36 kg ha−1 and from 3.4 kg ha−1 to −0.5 kg ha−1 respectively, compared to the CS. Biogas produced from green manure leys as the major feedstock, produced 2809 MWh a−1. This was 70% more than the energy consumed (1650 MWh a−1) in the systemand thus the AES system turned out to be a net energy producer. Results demonstrated the potential of biogas production to enhance the transition to bioenergy, nutrient recycling, and crop productivity in renewable localized farming and food systems.