APPENDIX 3: CALL FOR EVIDENCE |
25 July 2013
The House of Lords Science and Technology Committee,
under the Chairmanship of Lord Krebs, is conducting an inquiry
into waste and the bioeconomy. The Committee invites interested
individuals and organisations to submit written evidence as part
of the inquiry.
The inquiry focuses on the technology used to exploit
bio-waste and waste gases in order to generate high-value products.
Bio-waste is produced by agriculture (crops and livestock), forestry,
food processing and households. Waste gases arise from heavy industry
and large chemical complexes. Approaches are being developed using,
for example, biotechnology and green chemistry, to make use of
these waste sources and extract high-value products. These high
value products include chemicals, polymers, bio-materials and
The Committee would welcome written submissions on
the type of activities currently underway in this area from basic
research through to commercialisation. The inquiry aims to collect
evidence on the potential for this technology to enable bio-waste
and waste gas to replace current feedstocks and the potential
contribution this could make to a bioeconomy.
The inquiry will look at whether there is a clear
route to allow the potential of this technology to be realised,
whether the UK is making the most of the opportunities presented
by this technology and how it can be competitive within Europe
and internationally. The Committee will consider whether more
should be done to promote basic and applied research and development
or to remove regulatory or market barriers to commercialisation.
It is timely to examine whether Government has a joined-up strategic
approach to funding, policy and regulation in this area. The deadline
for written evidence submissions is Friday, 27 September 2013.
The Committee invites submissions on the following
points, with practical examples where possible. Please only answer
the questions of relevance to you. Please also do draw the Committee's
attention to any relevant issues not captured in the specific
SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY
· What research is underway to enable high-value
products to be derived from bio-waste and waste gas feedstocks
and what problems could this help to solve?
· Where does the waste come from and is
there a reliable supply?
· Is it environmentally and economically
viable to make use of such technologies using waste as a feedstock?
· How strong is the UK's research base in
this area relative to the rest of the world?
COMMERCIAL EXPLOITATION AND THE BIOECONOMY
· How large is the current market and what
types of products generated from bio-waste and waste gas are currently
commercially available? How does this compare to elsewhere in
· Are there appropriate mechanisms in place
to facilitate commercialisation?
· Which types of products will be on the
market in five, ten and twenty years from now and which factors
will influence this?
· What is the potential contribution of
this technology to a bioeconomy?
· Do Government, the Research Councils and
the Technology Strategy Board have a co-ordinated funding strategy
for this area? Are effective mechanisms in place for funding cross
· Does Government have a joined up approach
to policy and regulation, which effectively supports the growth
of this area?