Developing and validating a practical decision support tool (DST) for biomass selection on marginal land

Y. Andersson-Skold, Richard Bardos, M. Chalot, V. Bert, G. Crutu, P. Phanthavongsa, M. Delplanque, T. Track, Andrew Cundy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Marginal, often contaminated, sites exist in large areas across the world as a result of historic activities such as industry, transportation and mineral extraction. Remediation, or other improvements, of these sites is typically only considered for sites with high exploitation pressure and those posing the highest risks to human health or the environment. At the same time there is increasing competition for land resources for different needs such as biofuel production. Potentially some of this land requirement could be met by production of biomass on brownfield or other marginal land, thereby improving the land while applying the crop cultivation as part of an integrated management strategy. The design and decision making for such a strategy will be site specific. A decision support framework, the Rejuvenate DST (decision support tool) has been developed with the aim of supporting such site specific decision making. This tool is presented here, and has been tested by applying it to a number of case study sites. The consequent SWOT (strength, weakness, opportunities and threats) analysis is discussed and evaluated. The DST was found to be systematic, transparent, and applicable for diverse sites in France, Romania and Sweden, in addition to the sites to which it was applied through its development. The DST is regarded as especially useful if applied as a checklist in an iterative way throughout the decision process, from identifying potential crops to identifying knowledge gaps, working/non-working management strategies and potential risks. The DST also provides a structure promoting effective stakeholder engagement.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)113-121
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Environmental Management
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2014


  • Marginal land
  • Risk based land management
  • Biofuel
  • Phyto-remediation
  • Decision support tool (DST)


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