Health impacts of energy production through biomass combustion

BIOCOMBUST is an interdisciplinary European research project, which is funded through the INTERREG IV program and involves partners from France, Switzerland and Germany. The researchers examine both the particulate emissions and the residual ashes generated during biomass combustion. The focus is on selected types of solid biomass combustibles, including wood chips, pellets, wood logs, and miscanthus (a grass grown for energy purposes). The main emphasis of the project is on the impact of biomass combustion on air quality and the associated effects on human health, but also on the potential use of the fly ash as clinker substitute in cement production.

In addition to the fundamental and applied research, the BIOCOMBUST project also organizes outreach events in order to communicate knowledge to a general audience and to allow for a look behind the scenes of scientific discovery under the label "Science at First Hand".  


Research topics at a glance

1. Characterization of particulate matter emitted into the atmosphere during biomass combustion
2. Investigation of the biological effects of particulate emissions from biomass combustion
3. Evaluation of the reuse potential of the fly ash accumulating during biomass combustion

Project period: 01/01/2013 - 05/31/2015
Budget: 2,095,414.00 € (EU co-financing: 1,047,707.00 €)
Project carrier: Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg
Principal investigator: Prof. Reto Gieré – Institute of Earth and Environmental Sciences, Chair of Geochemistry