Multi criteria analysis of the energy potential of agricultural residues: The case study of Međimurje County in Croatia

Sandra Golubić, Neven Voća, Stjepan Pliestić


Aim of study: The utilization of agricultural residues may become one of the major sources for production of energy from biomass. The objective of this paper was to analyse the type and quantity of agricultural residues and to determine their energy potential.

Area of study: The Međimurje County (north Croatia).

Material and methods: The paper analyses three models of sustainable agricultural residues management applying the multi-criteria analysis. The assessment included potentially available quantities of residues in crops, fruit, viniculture and livestock production. For determining the most appropriate model of residues utilisation the multi-criteria analysis was applied.

Main results: The results show that total quantities of agricultural biomass amount to 323,912 t with energy potential of 1,092 TJ annually. The largest sustainably available potential of agricultural biomass consists of biomass from arable crops production, with total quantity of 33,670 t followed by 281,233 t of manure from livestock production. The lowest share of potential biomass are pruning residues in fruit and grapevine production with total available residual quantity of 8,109 t. Also, it results from the multi-criteria analysis that a central large scale plant for biogas production is the most feasible facility for such production.

Research highlights: The results of this paper provide ground for further development of the models for assessing the sustainability of using agricultural residues, and they can also serve as a basis for assessments of bioenergy projects in specific regions of the European Union.


renewables; biomass; sustainability; energy utilization; county level; European Union

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DOI: 10.5424/sjar/2019174-15140