Evaluation of the potential of biomass to energy in Portugal-conclusions from the CONVERTE project

Mariana Abreu, Alberto Reis, Patrícia Moura, Ana Luisa Fernando, António Luís, Lídia Quental, Pedro Patinha, Francisco Gírio

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

24 Citations (Scopus)


The main objective of the Portuguese project "CONVERTE-Biomass Potential for Energy" is to support the transition to a low-carbon economy, identifying biomass typologies in mainland Portugal, namely agri-forest waste, energy crops and microalgae. Therefore, the aim was to design and construct a georeferenced (mapping) database for mainland Portugal, to identify land availability for the implementation of energy crops and microalgae cultures, and to locate agricultural and forestry production areas (including their residues) with potential for sustainable exploitation for energy. The ArcGIS software was used as a Geographic Information System (GIS) tool, introducing the data corresponding to the type of soil, water needs and edaphoclimatic conditions in shapefile and raster data type, to assess the areas for the implantation of the biomass of interest. After analysing the data of interest in each map in ArcGIS, the intersection of all maps is presented, suggesting adequate areas and predicting biomass productions for the implementation of each culture in mainland Portugal. Under the conditions of the study, cardoon (72 kha, 1085 kt), paulownia (81 kha, 26 kt) and microalgae (29 kha, 1616 kt) presented the greater viability to be exploited as biomass to energy in degraded and marginal soils.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberen13040937
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 21 Feb 2020


  • ArcGIS
  • Biomass
  • Cardoon
  • Contaminated soils
  • Energy crops
  • Geographic information systems (GIS)
  • Marginal land
  • Microalgae
  • Miscanthus
  • Paulownia tomentosa


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