Keywords: Industrial symbiosis, industrial ecology, resource efficiency, nutrient recovery, innovation.
Since the industrial revolution many resources have increasingly been lost to the industrial supply chain. This is due to the by-products of manufacturing having been regarded as wastes with, historically, small commercial drivers acting to bring about a diversion of material from landfill.
The starting point for the National Industrial Symbiosis Programme (NISP) is to seek-out business opportunities that will drive changes in the way that resources are used and ultimately effect cultural changes. The UK programme is the first and only such initiative that is operating at the national scale, and its knowledge of resource flows in the UK represents a significant proportion of the material and resource flows within the national economy.
Whilst the programme is cross-sectoral in approach this paper gives examples of the way that industrial symbiosis/ecology is applied in general terms and then looks at examples of nutrient recycling into and within the agricultural sector. The paper particularly recognises the pressure on phosphate reserves and in combination with some resource mapping of by-product phosphates in the UK, gives some examples on how the programme is, and could be further, involved in the recycling of phosphates either back into the agricultural system or for the displacement of virgin phosphate used in industrial applications.
M R Bailey1, P D Jensen1,2, H Hitchman1 and A Gadd1
1 National Industrial Symbiosis Programme – Yorkshire and Humber, 1-3 Bigby Street, Brigg, North Lincolnshire DN20 8EJ, UK.
2 EPSRC Engineering Doctorate Programme, Centre for Environmental Strategy, University of Surrey, Guildford, Surrey GU2 7XH, UK.
23 pages, 5 figures, 1 table, 26 references.