In Liguria, sustainable tourism produces renewable energy

Destinations, Local Nodes, Social Projects Updates

There’s a new initiative that you can support by booking your holiday in Liguria via Co.Co.Farm is a sustainable development project promoted by the community-based cooperative Terre del Magra, which aims to recover waste biomass from rivers and beaches, to transform it into renewable energy and natural fertilizer.

Producing renewable energy and natural fertilizers from the recovery of the wood that occupies the beds of the Val di Vara streams or that accumulates on the shorelines at the mouth of the river Magra: this is the aim of the Co.Co Farm project, promoted by the Terre del Magra Community Cooperative and included among the initiatives that benefit from our model of sustainable tourism in Liguria.

Book on your holiday in one of the splendid villages along the Riviera di Levante, famous for the Cinque Terre, or in a holiday farm in Liguria surrounded by nature in the Alta Val di Vara, such as the Agriturismo Terra del Bosco in Sesta Godano, and choose Co.Co Farm as the project recipient of your donation.

agriturismo in Liguria

Terra del Bosco, a Fair agriturismo in Liguria

The urgency of sustainable development in Liguria

Every year important quantities of wood are deposited along the riverbed and the banks of the Vara and Magra rivers, as well as their tributary streams: a threat to the communities living in that area of Liguria, given the frequent dramatic floods.

Punctually, then, at the beginning of each winter, the floods of the Magra bring stacks of timber to the coast, creating serious problems for citizens and businesses and huge costs for local public administrations, with an average annual cost of no less than 400,000 euros for its disposal.

Furthermore, in the case of open-air combustion, these biomasses produce CO2, and it is well known how much the release of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere is decisive for global climate warming and for the natural disasters related to it.

renewable energy

The Co.Co. Farm project for renewable energy

The Co.Co.Farm, promoted by the Terre del Magra Community Cooperative together with other local associations, aims to find a sustainable solution to the problems of cleaning and land management, through a technology that uses in a virtuous way all the agroforestry biomass: wood recovered along the banks of waterways and on the coast as well as that produced by the maintenance of woods and paths, and agricultural waste.

These resources can be developed locally in a recovery cycle that allows to turn them into clean, renewable energy, pellets and compost to be reused in agriculture.

All this by sequestering the greenhouse gases produced during processing, that is, by removing more CO2 from the atmosphere than is produced, as an active policy for climate warming and for limiting climate change.

The tool to implement this simple, sustainable and scalable community project, capable of creating a social and circular economy and feeding an employment chain, with the inclusion of resident, disadvantaged and out of the labor market workers, is the realization of a certified ecological platform, which consists of:

  • An area for the transfer, differentiation and shredding of biomasses;
  • A “Power Pallet” biomass boiler (PP30) with attached storage systems for both electrical and thermal energy;
  • An electric compacting vehicle for handling and transport off the ecological platform.

The heat generated by the combustion of a small fraction of biomass in the Power Pallet, unique devices for the production of “carbon negative” renewable energy, transforms the remaining part into a combustible gas which, after suitable filtering, can be exploited in an internal combustion engine for the production of renewable energy, both electricity and heat.

During its operation, the Power Pallet generates a very valuable waste material, called biochar. Its chemical-physical characteristics make it an excellent soil conditioner for agriculture. Its most formidable feature is that it is a stable substance for a very high number of years (we are talking about many centuries of stability of the biochar scattered in the soil).

In the ecological platform area, a transformation of about 250 tons of biomass per year can be estimated, which in fact could have a yield of about 162,000 kWh / electrical and 259,000 kWh / thermal, renewable energy partly used in the biomass drying process.

One tree is equivalent to about 21.7 kg / C, which corresponds to about 5.9 kg / CO2. A thousand trees processed are therefore equivalent to approximately 21,700 kg / C, equal to 5,913 kg / CO2 sequestered. The quantities produced in terms of natural amendments are approximately 9 tons of biochar per year and 36 tons of Co.Compost per year.

renewable energy’s regenerative tourism model put into practice

Starting from a deep sharing of the values of environmental and social sustainability, the Terre del Magra Cooperative and have signed a partnership that will allow travelers arriving on the Riviera di Levante in Liguria to have a positive and regenerating impact on the territory they visit., like other booking platforms, charges a commission on each booking, equal to 15%. However, it differs from other platforms in how this commission is used: half is used to cover management costs, while the other 50% is used to finance social projects in the travel destination community. In this way, offers travelers the opportunity to participate in a more sustainable and fair tourism model, and in social projects in the territories to benefit from crowdfunding.

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Why Fair?

How it works:
The Host earns the same,
the Guest pays the same
but the benefits are for the whole community.

50% of our platform fee is used to fund a project of your choice for the communities you visit.

This is a what we call
Community Powered Tourism.

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