Rice straw serves to reduce nitrates in water

Reduce the concentration of nitrates in the water cycle to, on the one hand, reduce pollution, and on the other hand, use a system that is both sustainable and produces renewable energy. These are the main goals of the Life Libernitrate project, in which the Diputació de València participates and which has a financing of 2.5 million euros from the Life + program of the European Commission. Nitrates are chemical salts derived from nitrogen that, in low concentrations, are found naturally in water and in the soil. However, the widespread use of fertilizers with chemical fertilizers has led to increased contamination of groundwater and the release of processes harmful to the environment.

The system that Life Libernitrate aims to implement provides for the use of an innovative technology that addresses from a double point of view the main environmental problems suffered by the region in which it will be implemented, the Ribera Alta: on the one hand, the pollution of the groundwater by nitrates; and on the other hand, atmospheric pollution due to the burning of rice straw and the energy dependence of fossil fuels.

This technology aims to use the ashes of the controlled combustion of rice straw for the creation of silicon filters that reduce the concentration of nitrates in the water, and at the same time, as a result of this process, renewable energy is generated to promote a path alternative

consumption. The idea is to develop a pilot test in the municipality of Alginet, where the manufacturing laboratories will be installed.

In the consortium, apart from the Diputació de València, the Consorci de la Ribera, the Universitat Politècnica de València, the Universitat de València, Aguas de Valencia SA, the University of Genoa, the Unió de Llauradors i Ramaders and Stichting Incubator participate. The project has already started and will last about three years. Life Libernitrate is part of the European Water Framework Directive and the 20/20/20 objectives of measures for Climate and Energy of the European Union, which aim to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 20%, increasing the proportion of renewable energies to 20% and reducing energy consumption by 20% by 2020.