The BIOSIT project is based on a partnership between the Department of Energetics (DE-Project coordinator) and the Department of Agricultural and Land Economy (DEART) of the University of Florence, and ETA Renewable Energies, a company skilled in research, design and carrying out renewable energy plants. This working team integrates the necessary multi-disciplinary skills in environmental analysis and modelling, engineering, agro-forestry, dissemination and know-how transfer. The aim of the BIOSIT project is to develop an efficient and sustainable strategy for the exploitation of biomass resources for energy use within specific applications. To support the definition of the energy policy an innovative Geographical Information System based methodology and a GIS tool have been developed. The georeferenced data (spatial distribution and characterization of biomass resources, transport network, infrastructures, energy demand, etc.) of the GIS are the basic support of the methodology and the software tool in which the methodology has been implemented through related algorithms. The BIOSIT project is co-funded by the European Commission within the LIFE III Community Programme; this is a financial instrument supporting the definition of environmental policy and legislation in the European union, by co-financing actions favourable to the environment; it is active in EU countries, accession countries and countries bordering the Mediterranean Sea and the Baltic Sea.


  • Promotion of biomass to energy plants
  • Air pollution reduction and CO2 emissions reduction
  • Development of tools for the implementation of biomass projects in a sustainable way
  • Valorisation of the territory, recovery of marginal areas
  • Improved management of forestry and agricultural land
  • Integration between rural and urban areas

The Work

The purpose of the work is to bridge the gap between research, yet completed by the proponents through other EU supported projects and the real widespread application of the methodologies and tools developed for planning. All the partners involved have
a wide background in the sectors object of the study.

The following main tasks have been reached:

  • Definition of a model for the evaluation of agro-forestry biomass potential and analysis of the biomass production and collection costs.
  • Design and implementation of the algorithm to compute the cost of the biomass delivered to the biomass to energy plant (considering production, collection, stocking and transport costs).
  • Design and implementation of the computer model to calculate the avoided CO2 and other pollutant emissions (including emissions from biomass transportation.
  • Computations and evaluation of biomass potential and optimal locations.
  • Recommendation for the use of the GIS tool, and integration with the Regional policy (Energy Plan, Community Structural Funds, etc.).
  • Result dissemination through seminars and web pages.

Biomass availability and current greenhouse gas emission in the region has been preliminary analysed. Particular attention has been given to the evaluation of agro-forestry biomass availability and costs. The possibility to introduce dedicated energy crops has also been considered.


Innovative GIS model needed for proper planning of CO2 emission reduction via bioenergy.

It evaluates:

  • Optimal locations for biomass plants and the impact of policy on sustainable development through bioenergy.
  • Promotion of biomass to energy plants.
  • Energy-environmental impact and socio-economic benefits (including avoided emissions) of regional policies.

The system, integrated with the Regional Energy Plan, may support the local authorities involved in environmental management and energy planning.