SEI helps Vietnam consider rice as feedstock

Posted on 14 February 2012

SEI helps the University of York forge links with Vietnam into researching the feasibility of using rice straw as a biorefinery feedstock rather than being burnt outside in the paddy fields.

In February 2012, Harry Vallack (SEI, York) travelled to Hanoi, Vietnam to attend a kick-off meeting for a project entitled ‘Developing a cereal straw bio-refinery using rice as a model and a feedstock’ co-organised by Simon McQueen-Mason (CNAP, Department of Biology, University of York), funded by the UK/BBSRC and MOST/VN, and hosted by the Vietnam Academy of Agricultural Science (VAAS).

Meeting objectives:

  •     Exchange up-to-date experience, information and techniques for utilizing rice straw in Vietnam
  •     Sort out the timing and work for the placement of researchers from VAAS in the UK research groups.
Harry gave a presentation on ‘The impacts of open-burning of rice straw on human health, crop yields and climate change’ and facilitated a breakout session on the environmental/ socio-economic aspects to be considered within the substantive project proposal.

The main outcome sof the meeting were:

  • signed Memorandum of Understanding on collaborative research and development bio-fuels originated from cereal stra
  • developed project outlines of proposals on R & D of biofuels originating from cereal straw for funding from MOST/ Vietnam and BBSRC/ UK, and
  • finalized the details for the initial research funding that has been approved by BBSRC and MOST to allow Vietnamese researchers to work with host groups in the UK on “Developing a cereal straw biorefinery using rice as a model and a feedstock”

Notes to editors:

Burning crops in field

This research links to work SEI has been carrying out on black carbon and tropospheric ozone.  In a recent UNEP/WMO report ( dewa/Portals/67/pdf/BlackCarbon_SDM.pdf) that SEI helped compile, crop residue open-burning was identified as one of 9 key abatement  measures globally for tackling emissions of black carbon (soot) that will help protect both air quality and climate in the near-te