The project

The “LIFE AGRESTIC – Reduction of Agricultural Gases EmiSions Through Innovative Cropping systems” project, which is part of the broader climate change mitigation objective of the LIFE Program for the Environment and Climate Change 2014-2020 (funded by the Eu), will promote the adoption of innovative and efficient cropping systems, with a high potential for climate change mitigation, and will contribute to the dissemination of innovative visions and tools for a more efficient and climate-friendly agriculture.

“LIFE AGRESTIC” aims at promoting the adoption by European farmers of innovative and efficient cropping systems, based on the use of legumes and catch crops able to mitigate the effects of climate change. The project, lasting 4 and a half years, involves six partners: Horta, ART-ER, Isea, New Business Media, Scuola Superiore di Studi Universitari e di Perfezionamento Sant’Anna e Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore di Piacenza.

LIFE AGRESTIC will take place in Italy (Emilia – Romagna, Tuscany and Puglia) and will focus on the inclusion of legumes and catch crops in the rotations of cereals and industrial crops (tomatoes and sunflowers), to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, increase carbon sequestration and the availability of organic nitrogen. It will also develop an innovative decision support tool (DSS) for efficient management of the entire crop system (multi-year rotations of different crops), rationalizing the use of external inputs (nitrogen fertilizers, pesticides, etc.) and non-renewable resources (soil and fuels) and increasing / maintaining yields, product quality and safety. The development of a prototype for automatic and continuous monitoring of greenhouse gas flows from the soil, a product label and schemes for the payment of Ecosystem Services is also planned.

The main activities

The objectives of the project will be pursued by integrating the skills of the partners involved in the implementation of the various activities. Specifically LIFE AGRESTIC provides:

Design of efficient cropping systems (ECS)

from the point of view of the management of carbon, nitrogen and greenhouse gas emissions, based on the introduction of legumes (pea, chickpea and lentil) and catch crops (such as alfalfa and clover) in a four-year cycle of rotations

Test of innovative cropping systems (ECS)

in 3 demonstration sites, representative of different climatic and agricultural realities (Tuscany, Emilia - Romagna and Puglia), and comparison with traditional rotations (CCS). It will therefore be necessary to select the varieties of legumes and catch crop to be used and prepare the demonstration fields for the start of the activities in the field

Recovery, characterization and multiplication of local and rare varieties / lines of legumes and catch crop

in order to identify the most promising in terms of agronomic and environmental performance for future commercial exploitation

Integration of new features on greenhouse gas emissions in DSS

for the specific crops considered and development of a new DSS for catch crops

Development, testing and implementation of an innovative DSS

for the efficient management of crop systems as a whole (multi-year rotations), complete with a model for estimating greenhouse gas emissions

Design, development and test of a prototype for the detection

in real time of greenhouse gas emissions from the soil that will be used for: a) monitoring in the demonstration fields; b) the assessment of the ECS mitigation potential; c) calibration and d) validation of a model for estimating greenhouse gas emissions

Valorisation of climatic and environmental performances

achieved thanks to the development of a product label, which certifies the adoption of ECS systems, and the creation of schemes for the payment of Ecosystem Services, to be introduced in the new support policies

Analysis of different scenarios for mitigation of greenhouse gas emissions

and socio-economic effects. Evaluation of the project's replicability in other European countries

Involvement of key players

of the value chains of the crops introduced in the ECS (durum wheat-pasta, tomato-sauces, sunflower-oil, malting barley-beer, legumes-special pasta and dried legumes) in the co-development of the project activities. We will look at primary agri-food industries, farmers associations, agricultural companies and cooperatives, local and national authorities, etc.

The project - Ultima modifica: 2019-04-01T16:36:17+00:00 da Redazione Digital Farm