Lex4bio outcomes 

Public deliverables and results provided by the LEX4BIO partners through the project implementation

Assessment of NRSS in the EU and their use as BBFs

Dataset of regional NRSS available for producing BBFs in the EU (M18)

The data collected on various NRSS (quantities/masses) and their nutrient contents will be processed into an easy-touse database and digital maps providing easy access for BBFs manufactures and policymakers directing NRSS reuse (M18, M30).

Download the results here (available in M18)

Report on the legal restrictions for using BBFs in the EU (M20)

Legal barriers for the production and use of BBFs in the EU (such as regulations aimed at limiting inputs of potentially harmful substances and nutrient oversupply) will be identified, and their importance for technology implementation and transfer and eventual mitigation actions in BBF use will be evaluated.

Download the results here (available in M20)

Report on NRSS potential to replace mineral N and P fertilisers in the EU (M32)

The potential of NRSS for replacing mineral N and P fertilisers will be evaluated against sold mineral fertilisers across EU. The potential of NRSS to substitute mineral N and P fertilisers will be quantified based on official statistics on current use of mineral fertilisers in relation to availability of NRSS.

Download the results here (available in M32)

Case study report on existing inter-regional and trans-boundary exchange of NRSS/BBFs (M34)

A comprehensive overview of the data on trans-boundary NRSS/BBF flows and result in recommendations to improve data collection, data usage and data consistency.

Downloadthe results here (available in M34)

General effects of BBFs on soil quality/functioning and plant growth

Report on the effect of BBFs on soil quality and C sequestration (M30)

Available information on the effects of BBFs on soil quality indicators such as soil organic C, pH and waterholding capacity is collected by a thorough review of the literature and supplemented with analysis of samples from existing medium to long-term field experiments in order to link the BBF use with impacts on a range of soil quality parameters.

Download the results here (available in M30)

Report on BBFs’ effect on crop growth and physiology (M45)

For evaluating the potential effects of the selected BBFs on crop growth and on soil chemical, physical and biological properties, joint large-scale container experiment, expanded over two growing seasons, will be conducted.

Download the results here (available in M45)

Recommendation for optimising BBF formulation under various climatic conditions (M46)

For evaluating BBFs effects on abiotic stresses, water deficit and heat stress, on wheat will be determined with phenotyping studies. Wheat is grown experiencing either water deficit or above optimal temperature. Trials will include both positive and negative controls.

Download the results here (available in M46)

Agronomic efficiency of BBFs as P source for crops

Recommendations on agronomic P efficiency of different BBFs across European climate, crop and soils (M40)

Agronomic efficiency of P in current and emerging BBFs will be determined for relevant crops grown in Europe with various soil and climatic conditions.

Download the results here (available in M40)

Compliance methods for different types of BBFs (M42)

Compliance test methods used in EC 2003/2003 (total/easily soluble), as well as electro ultrafiltration (EUF; Nemeth 1982), diffusive gradients in thin films (DGT) and iron oxide-filled dialysis bags will be evaluated as compliance test procedures. In addition to the experimental work, the national fertiliser regulations of all EC member countries for P fertiliser regulations on P content and easily soluble fraction will be screened with special focus on organic fertilisers. Based on the experimental and screening results in this task, suitable P content/solubility compliance methods for BBFs will be reported. Emerging BBFs (e.g. developed under topic SFS-39-2019, RUR-08-2019-2020) will be tested with the compliance methods introduced.

Download the results here (available in M42)

Guidelines for uniform soil test-based P fertilisation recommendations across the EU (M44)

The current bioavailable P status in European agricultural soils will be determined, which is a prerequisite for optimising P fertilisation level and for reducing environmental impacts caused by excessive use of P. Out of LUCAS soil archive, 3 000 soil samples from agricultural soils will be selected to cover the full range of soil texture, pH, organic C and Olsen-P in all EU countries. Results of the nutrient analyses will be extrapolated to the entire LUCAS dataset by using soil characteristics provided by the LUCAS project. Choropleth maps for concentrations of bioavailable P and other elements in agricultural soils in EU will be provided, determined with the current state-of-the-art methods. Combining soil P status of EU agricultural soil and threshold values for crop production gives an estimation of P fertilisation requirement that can be supplemented with the BBFs.

Download the results here (available in M44)

Description of soil and BBFs characteristics affecting P leaching (M46)

P loss potential associated with BBF application will be evaluated through literature mining, soil analyses from large containers and pots and validated with rainfall simulation.

Download the results here (available in M46)

Agronomic efficiency of BBFs as N source for crops

Report on bioavailability and agronomic N use efficiency of BBFs across different European climates, crops and soils (M40)

Agronomic N use efficiency of a range of current and emerging N containing BBFs to relevant crops under various European climatic conditions will be determined based on field trials. Several crop yield parameters (total biomass, product yield, harvest index, N uptake, N harvest index, apparent N recovery ANR) will be determined, from which the BBF N Mineral Fertiliser Replacement Value (MFRV) can be estimated. The ANR and MFRV will be related to BBF properties, e.g. proportion of mineral N present initially or the potential N release rate of the BBF, to achieve a mechanistic explanation, which allows generalisation of the results also to other BBF than those included in the trials.

Download the results here (available in M40)

Standardised test protocols to characterise N bioavailability in BBF and fertiliser replacement value (M40)

Laboratory-based methods and assays to quantify the bioavailability of N in BBFs will be developed, tested and validated, in order to derive a set of standardised test protocols to characterise their potential N mineral fertiliser replacement value (MFRV).

Download the results here (available in M40)

Standardised test protocols to characterise N bioavailability in BBF and fertiliser replacement value (M40)

Laboratory-based methods and assays to quantify the bioavailability of N in BBFs will be developed, tested and validated, in order to derive a set of standardised test protocols to characterise their potential N mineral fertiliser replacement value (MFRV).

Download the results here (available in M40)

Case study report on potential N losses from BBFs to the aquatic and atmospheric environment in European cropping system (M44)

Potential N losses from BBFs to the aquatic and atmospheric environment will be quantified based on field trial results and mechanistic soil-plant-atmosphere model simulations of these sites.

Download the results here (available in M44)

Risk assessment of the application of BBFs

Report on organic contaminants in BBFs and their persistency and crop uptake from soil (M40)

BBFs and soils will be screened for their contents of organic contaminants, from legacy contaminants (PAHs, PCBs, dioxins) to pharmaceuticals and emerging contaminants (e.g., microplastics, glyphosate, perfluorinated compounds). The persistency, bioavailability and fate of these contaminants in the soil environment will be studied in soil degradability experiments. Biodegradation data will be used to predict to what extent different fertilisation schemes in combination with specific agricultural soil types can be expected to lead to exposure of crops to contaminants.

Download the results here (available in M40)

Risk assessment of heavy metal after application of BBFs across EU: human health and environmental losses (M42)

Safe ways of using BBFs will be addressed, ensuring low plant uptake of heavy metals and low health risk.

Download the results here (available in M40)

Report on the effects of BBF manufacturing and use on the abundance of antibiotic resistance genes and mobile genetic elements in soils (M44)

The effects of manufacturing and storage processes of BBFs on the abundance of antibiotic resistance genes (ARGs) and mobile genetic elements (MGEs) known to be capable of disseminating ARGs, as well as the effects of BBF use on soil microbiota and antibiotic resistance will be identified and assessed. 

Download the results here (available in M44)

Toolkit for ecotoxicological methods to assess the environmental risks associated with using BBFs in agriculture (M46)

Existing toxicity tests with regard to their ability to describe and assess the effects of the composition of very different inorganic as well as organic (potentially toxic) compounds will be evaluated and further developed, and to come up with a recommendation for one or more ecotoxicological tests which are suitable to evaluate BBFs for their risks after agricultural application.

Download the results here (available in M46)

Life Cycle Assessment (LCA)

Review and assessment of published LCA studies (M10)

Nutrient recycling literature (with numerous, highly relevant contributions from consortium partners), and other RIA projects for LCAs on BBFs and related manufacturing processes will be screened. Identified LCA studies of fertilising products from virgin and secondary raw materials and analysing the benefits and flaws of the selected system boundaries, impact categories, time horizon for toxicity assessments and cumulative emission factors, will be investigated.

Download the results here (available in M10)

Draft convention for comparable LCA studies of fertilising products manufactured from primary and secondary raw materials (M18)

A draft convention for making nutrient recycling LCAs comparable will be provided to consulting authors of other studies, database authors and interested stakeholders.

Download the results here (available in M18)

LCA study of processes and products subject to the current project, parameters based on the new convention (M42)

The LCA will be performed corresponding to ISO 14040:2006 and ISO 14044:2006 standards using GaBi Software and EcoInvent 3.3 dataset with up-to-date process data.

Download the results here (available in M42)

Final convention for comparable LCA studies of fertilising materials from primary and secondary resources (M46)

The final draft convention proposal will be elaborated, reviewed by the team and the EAB and eventually approved for publication.

Download the results here (available in M46)

Coherent policy framework and socioeconomic impacts for the use of BBFs

Report on socio-economic impacts of current products and practices, incl. non-accounted externalities (M30)

Quantification of current fertilisation practices and the use of BBFs determining economic contributions and the value of the negative externalities in different settings and regions will be assessed. 

Download the results here (available in M30)

Report on drivers and barriers regarding the replacement of conventional fertilisers by BBFs for all stakeholders in the value chain (M36)

Drivers and barriers guiding the overall attitude of opinion leaders of all sectors, professional associations and NGOs towards BBFs will be identified and assessed through structured questionnaires and interviews in all covered Member States.

Download the results here (available in M36)

Models of region and framework specific solutions for processing, transport and use of BBFs (M44)

The indirect economic and environmental impact and the demand drivers and barriers of BBFs will be built in to an existing partial equilibrium model of BBFs and manure. Different processing (separation, composting, drying, struvite precipitation, digestion, denitrification and their combination) and transport options are covered in the model and are based on results from the FP7 ManureEcomine project. The model can simulate the spatially explicit market of BBFs, manure, transport, fertiliser application and processing under different scenarios. The broader economic impact (GDP, employment and ecosystem services) will also be assessed.

Download the results here (available in M44)

White paper on regulation potential for encouraging more efficient utilisation of BBFs (M46)

The current regulatory and socioeconomic framework and how it can be changed to encourage the fertilising practices with less negative socioeconomic impacts will be evaluated.

Download the results here (available in M46)

White paper on socio-economic and policy recommendations encouraging stakeholders' interest and social acceptance to use BBFs (M46)

Based on the data, results of WPs 1-6 and analyses and models developed in WP7, socioeconomic and policy recommendations encouraging farmers, fertiliser industries, F&B industries and consumers to decouple materials’ use from outcomes and replace conventional fertilisers by BBFs will be identified.

Download the results here (available in M46)

Policy brief with a clear concise summary of policy recommendations (M46)

Policy recommendations developed by the WP7 team and pre-evaluated during iterative rounds of reviews and stakeholder meetings and the national dissemination forums of each participating country will be summarised in a policy brief.

Download the results here (available in M46)

Synergy report and action plan (M8)

Possible synergies with other funded recycling projects at EU and national level will be reached by contacting respective coordinators and a collaboration mechanism will be implemented: cross-dissemination of project activities and outputs, joint participation as speakers to events, co-organisation of events, case-by-case.

Download the results here (available in M8)

Policy roadmap (M9)

National meetings organised together with National Dissemination Forums will be held to understand the existing policies and map the options for the creation of a new one. A policy roadmap will be created to gather all the conclusions from these meetings and to design a roadmap for future policy according to the project outputs.

Download the results here (available in M9)