Entering the Bio Based Economy
So far, the worldwide economy is mainly oil-based. Fossil energy sources are used for fuel, for heating, for the production of a wide range of products like plastics, medicines, food additives, etc.
This oil-based economy, however, has many consequences like global warming due to a growing production of carbon dioxide and the dependency on unstable countries.
These consequences have led to a search for alternatives for oil in many sectors:
- renewable energy, like wind and solar energy,
- bio-fuel, like bio-diesel, bio-gases,
- production of raw materials for further processing, like fibers, dyes, medicines, food additives, etc.
As companies move ahead in this field of Bio Based Economy (BBE), education got behind. At EU policy and research level, there is a lot of attention for the BBE topic, but not (yet) on educational level!
Vocational colleges in the agricultural sector in Europe experience problems to deliver well-qualified workers to innovative companies in the Bio Based Economy. In general, teachers do not have the specific training materials at hand, directly related to the new BBE. Most VET colleges (EQF3-4) do not possess the right and specific educational materials that fit the BBE challenge.