PRIORITIES IN RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT IN RELATION TO ENERGY CONSERVATION IN PROTECTED CULTIVATION

G.H. Germing
Notwithstanding a temporary price relief for natural gas, the Dutch protected crops industry in the near future has to take account of considerable rises in the cost of energy for their production. For that reason an action program has been set up in accordance with the national energy strategy. The aim is for a gradual reduction of all energy consumption and the substitution of gas and oil by other energy sources.

The Research and Development activities for the protected cultivation can be subdivided into the next items:

  1. increased production per unit of energy
  2. lowering of the heat demand of cultivated crops
  3. improving the efficiency of heat production and heat transfer
  4. reducing the heat losses of the greenhouse
  5. use of other heat sources instead of the usual ones

The total energy consumption for heating glasshouses in the Netherlands equals 3 milliard m3 (3 × 109 m3) natural gas. This is about 6 % of the total national energy consumption. Since 1973 measures have been taken to reduce the energy input for greenhouse heating. In the period 1973 – 1980 the estimated savings per m2 greenhouse area are 15 % or per unit of produce even 33 %. According to a national program till year 2000 the whole national energy consumption has to be reduced by 25 %. Concerning greenhouse heating only for the period 1980 – 1990 a potential reduction of the fuel consumption of at least 40 % per unit produce is expected. These figures are specified in table 1.

Germing, G.H. (1981). PRIORITIES IN RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT IN RELATION TO ENERGY CONSERVATION IN PROTECTED CULTIVATION. Acta Hortic. 115, 707-710
DOI: 10.17660/ActaHortic.1981.115.81
https://doi.org/10.17660/ActaHortic.1981.115.81

Acta Horticulturae