Feasibility assessment of Brassica carinata bioenergy systems in Southern Europe

Sergio Martínez-Lozano, Carles M. Gasol, Miquel Rigola, Joan Rieradevall, Assumpció Anton, Juan Carrasco, Pilar Ciria, Xavier Gabarrell

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articleResearchpeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


A detailed reliability assessment was made of electricity generation systems in Spain that are based on Brassica carinata cultivation. The assessment considers the following chain of energy generation: biomass cultivation and harvesting, transportation and electricity generation in biomass power plants (10, 25 and 50 MW). Flue gas desulphurisation systems have been included for larger plants following the criteria of the Spanish legislative framework. Six scenarios were analysed in accordance with the following aspects: two crop distributions around the power plant and three power plant sizes. The results show that the cost of biomass delivered at the power plants ranges from 107.81 to 112.54 € Mg-1 dry basis. Sensibility analysis shows that variation in biomass production in the field demonstrates that biomass cost delivered at the plant is notably affected and consequently so is the system's feasibility. Furthermore, the increase of the price of CO2 emission credits, also considered in sensibility analysis, can help to improve the reliability of systems because of the increase of gross profit for each scenario. This study clears up the Economic uncertainty of B. carinata biomass energy systems based on the single use of this renewable energy resource. Higher crop productivities are needed to ensure an economic reliability of the analysed systems. On the other hand biomass mix can solve SO2 emission cleaning cost for large power plants, improving the reliability of B. carinata application as fuel. © 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2528-2535
JournalRenewable Energy
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2009


  • Energy crops
  • Final biomass cost
  • Power plant
  • Supply chain


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