Rethink with Bio-Economy at COP24

Climate-KIC Nordic set focus on Sustainable Nordic Protein at COP24 in Katowice.
The 24th Conference of the Parties (COP24) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) took place from 2-14 December 2018, in Katowice, Poland. During the event, Climate-KIC Nordic was engaged in four sessions from the range of activities at the Nordic Pavilion. The four sessions focused on sustainable construction materials, zero-emissions construction sites, sustainable protein sources as an alternative to imported soy, and circular cities.

On 6 December, the Nordic Pavilion dedicated a day to rethinking with bioeconomy, exploring its possibilities. Innovators and decision makers representing all sectors from Norway, Faroe Islands, Iceland, Finland, England, Sweden and Denmark, gathered to discuss the potentials for using Nordic regional resources for sustainable energy production, material innovation and regional protein self-sufficiency. During the day, EIT Climate-KIC Nordic hosted a session on alternative proteins.

Climate Change and the Emerging Bioeconomy

Increasing global population will demand a 50% increase in food production by 2050. With its extensive aquaculture industry and some of the world´s leading research institutions, along with strong support systems for entrepreneurship, the Nordic region holds a huge, untapped potential to develop sustainable alternatives to soy as a sustainable source of protein for food and feed.  The session investigated the management of renewable biological resources and their conversion to food and livestock feed. The bio-economy integrates many solutions for a more sustainable future. This can include better utilisation of industrial by-products, innovative products from existing resources, and even the cultivation of new resources like algae and seaweed.

During the session, different expert focus on various points. Dr. Lene Lange, from Bioeconomy Research and Advisory, talked about the Climate-Importance of local proteins. Peter Byrial from The Danish Ministry of Environment and Food explained the potentials of using grassland for sustainable production of feedstock for the green biorefinery. Uffe Jørgensen from Aarhus University discussed how we can intensify north-western European cropping systems without compromising the environment. The talks were followed by lively discussions between the speakers and the audience. One of the main messages from the panel was a call to action and joint forces:

“The technology is already here, we just need to scale”

– said Dr. Lene Lange who is one of the leading advisors on bio-economy and protein extraction in Denmark.

Optimism about Nordic sustainable food production

“EIT Climate-KIC and The Nordic Council of Ministers have been actively promoting the transition to the bio-economy for several years and during this session, we explored how and with whom the process should be continued and accelerated. We have seen a need to gather all the parallel initiatives within this important field under one flag, to help each other bridge the gap between the lab and the market and reach the scale that is necessary for the industry to adopt sustainable alternatives to the emissions-heavy soy and prevent deforestation. And with all the engagement and knowledge, we have experienced today at the Nordic Pavilion, I am optimistic that we can reach Nordic protein self-sufficiency within a climate-realistic timeframe.”- says Pernille Martiny Modvig from EIT Climate-KIC Nordic, who organised the workshop.

 
Location
Katowice
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