Funding for the University of Helsinki, 220 003 euros; total project 998 182 euros.
The importance of sustainability and circularity in bioeconomy has been highlighted in the update of the EU
Bioeconomy Strategy (2018). Circular economy is one of the smart specialization spearheads in the region of Päijät-
Häme, Finland. The targets and actions to support circular economy are clarified in the regional road map towards
circular economy. A sustainable bio-based circular economy, including development of closed nutrient cycles and new
bio-based products are in the core interests of the region. The project is coordinated by Lahti University of Applied
Sciences and the partners are LUT University, Helsinki University, Lahti Region Development LADEC, Päijät-Häme
Waste Management Ltd and the Finnish Plastic Association.
OBJECTIVE AND AIMS
The main objective of the project is to promote bio-based circular economy thorough developing low-carbon solutions
and new sustainable business in Päijät-Häme region. The project focuses on four topics: 1) developing effective
biowaste collection, 2) exploiting organic waste as a raw material for biodegradable products, 3) developing use of biobased
plastics, as well as 4) developing carbon dioxide cycles and promoting the use of biogenic carbon dioxide
(bioCO2). The project promotes environmental, economical and social aspects of sustainable development in line with circular economy principles, as well as equal possibities for all genders.
The project conducts pilots and develops circular economy business opportunities for sludge and bioplastic solutions.
The new solutions are related to producing polyhydroxyalkanoates from sludge and developing utilization of bio-based
plastics together with companies. The project also discovers new ways of effective bio-waste collection and develops
communication related to separate biowaste collection. In addition, the potential for closing the loops of carbon dioxide
in the industries will be further developed. Moreover, the activities support circular economy development of the
region. All project activities involve tight cooperation with companies and other stakeholders.
Project results will provide experience of practical implementation of the bio-based circular economy: Pilot: production
of polyhydroxyalkanoates and demonstrations (6): comparison of separate biowaste collection models, development of
sludge processes, bioplastics solutions (2), bioCO2 business case demonstrations (2). Through the experiments, new
business opportunities for the bio-based cirular economy will be promoted. To support the new solutions life cycle
assessments (7) are prepared and e.g. a web-based tool for building corporate ecosystems will be launched. The
results of the project will be widely presented and 6 scientific manuscripts as well as at least 10 professional articles
will be prepared. As a result of the project, the expertise of SMEs in Päijät-Häme region and the region’s role as a
strong contributor to future circular economy and bio-based circular economy solutions will be strengthened.