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The StrawFeed research will help improve China's straw supply system

By IARRP | Updated: 2022-09-13

The Innovation Team of Resources Utilization and Regional Planning of Agriculture developed a GIS-based open source model, StrawFeed, on the basis of systematic literature reviews on domestic and foreign straw supply systems.  This model can be useful for estimating and simulating of straw feedstock supply system in China, and quantitatively analyzing the problems and risks in the supply chain.

Relevant research results were published in the TOP journal "Resources, Conservation and Recycling" in  JCR Q1 in the field of environmental science under the title of "StrawFeed model: An integrated model of straw feedstock supply chain for bioenergy in China".

According to Professor Yin Changbin, the  awareness of the international community on global issues such as the energy crisis and climate change  is raising, and biomass energy has received increasing attention as an important alternative energy source.  As one of the major carbon emission and agricultural production contributors in the world, China has a large number of straw resources that can be used  for biomass energy. Therefore, the related straw energy utilization projects in China have grown significantly, and there is a stronger demand for a stable and sustainable straw supply chain system.

However, due to the uncertainty of the system boundary and the neglect of potential risks, the straw procurement cost of straw biomass energy utilization enterprises varies  significantly. In view of this, it is urgent to construct a sustainable straw supply model to quantitatively analyze the process of straw supply chain, so as to deepen the understanding of straw supply system.

This study takes Nong'an county, the main corn production area of the Northeast Corn Belt, as an example, simulates the cost of providing 200,000 tons of corn straw, and  clarifies the benefit  safeguard mechanism for the straw supply system, especially coordinating farmers (the producers of straw  feedstock), the relationship between straw brokers (suppliers of straw  feedstock) and biomass enterprises (consumers of strawfeedstock).

At the same time, two risks existing in the current straw supply chain and two measures to reduce the cost of straw supply were discussed through scenario analysis.

The results show that weather changes will significantly affect the cost of straw supply, and rainfall (snow) will shorten the straw collection and transportation time, resulting in an increase in the straw supply price. Comprehensive utilization of straw will reduce the supply of straw per unit of farmland, thus expanding the boundary of straw collection and increasing the straw supply cost. Cross-regional operation of agricultural machinery and subsidies for the purchase of agricultural machinery will help reduce the cost of straw supply.

The StrawFeed model proposed in the study and the above research results will help improve China's straw supply system to better reflect the supply cost, which can be helpful for promoting the development of biomass energy and high-quality agriculture in China.

The research was supported by the following agencies:  Major Program of National Philosophy and Social Science Foundation of China (No.18ZDA048), the earmarked fund for Modern Agro-industry Technology Research System-Green Manure (CARS-22-G25), Fundamental Research Funds for Central Non-profit Scientific Institution (No.1610132021002), and  China Scholarship Council (CSC). They are co-funding the project.

Wang Shu, a doctoral student of the CAAS-ULg project, is the first author of the paper, and Professor Yin Changbin is the corresponding author.

The "Resources, Conservation and Recycling" was founded in 1988, the impact factor in 2021 is 13.716, and the CiteScore factor in 2021 is 17.9.

Paper link: 10.1016/j.resconrec.2022.106439