The VERA project – Verification of environmental technologies for agricultural production
To meet the environmental challenges within the agriculture sector new technologies are developed in the EU member states and elsewhere. They are developed for different parts of the agricultural production chain and enhance the eco-efficiency by reducing material inputs, emission of pollutants, energy consumption, recover valuable by-products and minimize waste disposal problems. These technologies are referred to as environmental technologies. However, farmers, authorities and other central stakeholders only have limited information on the performance of these techniques which hampers their wider use on national and international level.
Therefore the Dutch Ministry of Housing, Spatial Planning and the Environment (VROM), the Danish Environmental Protection Agency (Danish EPA) and the German Association for Technology and Structures in Agriculture (KTBL) have initiated the project ‘Verification of Environmental Technologies for Agricultural Production’. VERA has been chosen as an acronym for the project which first of all focuses on the development of common test-protocols by independent experts that can be applied in testing and verifying the environmental performance and operational stability of different technologies. Secondly, it focuses on forming an international organisational framework to facilitate and coordinate international test and verification activities. So far the project have drafted the following test protocols:
• Air cleaning
• Cover for manure storage facilities
• Gaseous emissions from land applied manure
• Manure separation technologies
• Livestock housing and management systems
The five test protocols were in public hearing from 20th of March to 17th of April 2009.
Consulting different stakeholders is seen as central element in optimizing the protocols and verification activities within the VERA project. Therefore the three partners also arranged a stakeholder meeting 3rd of April in Utrecht in the Netherlands where among others the test protocols and planned organisational scheme where presented.
Further information on the stakeholder meeting can be downloaded here:
Invitation, introduction & program for the meeting, and a Q&A.
Sune Impgaard Schou, Danish EPA: Speech, Presentation,
Bas Knuttel , VROM: Presentation
Preben Aagaard Nielsen , Danish Standards: Presentation
Ewald Grimm, KTBL: Presentation
Nico Ogink , Wagening University: Presentation
Thorkild Quist Frandsen, Agrotech: Presentation
Jan Huijsmans, Wagening University: Presentation 1, Presentation 2
Kristian Snorre Andersen, Danish EPA: Presentation
Martijn Tak , VROM: Presentation