Enabling Bioeconomy with Offshore Macroalgae Biorefineries

  • Alexander Golberg
  • Meiron Zollmann
  • Meghanath Prabhu
  • Ruslana Rachel Palatnik


The bioeconomy provides a possible solution for the increasing demand on natural resources by substitution of the nonrenewable resources with resources derived from biomass, thus reducing the environmental impact of fossil fuels. A fundamental unit that will enable the bioeconomy implementation is biorefinery. The bioeconomy is a collective term for the complex system that includes biomass production, transportation, conversion into products, and product distribution. In this chapter, we introduce the concept of offshore marine biorefineries as potential drivers for the bioeconomy of the future. We discuss fundamental thermodynamics principles that determine the optimum scale of biorefineries and put the limit for the services area for a single-processing unit. We provide a review of the current methods to produce biomass offshore. Next, we exemplify the marine biorefineries, which show co-production of several products from the same biomass, thus reducing the waste and maximizing economic benefit from the unit. In addition, we discuss the economic and environmental challenges of marine biorefineries as an emerging platform for society transition to low-carbon economy.


Biorefineries Bioeconomy Green technology Renewable energy Biofuel Biomass 



The authors thank the Israel Ministry of Energy, Israel Ministry of Science and Technology, and Israel Innovation Authority for the support.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  • Alexander Golberg
    • 1
  • Meiron Zollmann
    • 1
  • Meghanath Prabhu
    • 1
  • Ruslana Rachel Palatnik
    • 2
    • 3
  1. 1.Porter School of Environment and Earth SciencesTel Aviv UniversityTel AvivIsrael
  2. 2.Department of Economics and Management, and SEED – the Sustainable Economic and Environmental Development Research CenterThe Max Stern Yezreel Valley CollegeAfula and NazarethIsrael
  3. 3.NRERC- Natural Resource and Environmental Research CenterUniversity of HaifaHaifaIsrael

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