Industrial Symbiosis in Biofuel Production Industries: A Categorization Method for Synergies
In the production of biofuels for transportation, i.e. biodiesel, bioethanol and biogas, a vast range of unique resource flows, surpluses and by-products exist in each respective process. The current research project aims to find synergies, demands and surplus material and energy flows which will thereafter be applied to the biofuel industry and external industries in a collaborative effort to increase energy efficiencies and environmental performance through the use of synergies and industrial symbiosis. This is being conducted in order to determine conditions for implementation, why some processes and synergies exist, how the processes can be made better and to identify new material flows between industries.
During an investigation of synergies apparent in the regional biofuel industries, many synergies were discussed during a brainstorming session with industrial actors and researchers. These synergies were recorded and classified in terms of their interaction with other biofuel and external industries. Using the theories of industrial symbiosis, a classification method was developed based upon these interactions as well as the origin and destination of their resources. Previous terms from the theories of synergies research were used as background material. Thereafter symbols and classifications were based on the interactions of the synergy, i.e. between biofuel industries and external synergies. Furthermore the origins/destinations were also classified as either a product/process or as a utility but with expanded and refined boundaries.
Example: 2UP (A synergy of Class 2, i.e. biofuel to external industry synergy, which originates as a utility and is destined as a product/process for the external industry.)
Thus far the project has produced a classification scheme for biofuel synergy projects and research. Using the classification method, synergies produced at future brainstorming sessions and discussions with industry will alleviate the reproduction, recording and organization of synergies for upcoming interaction with biofuel industries worldwide.