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France

Passive solar energy and sustainable agriculture

Bioclimatic greenhouses are an energy-efficient and relevant production tool for small and medium-sized farms in the south of France. Geres supports pilot projects.

Context and challenges

The current context regarding access to energy and climate change requires the agricultural sector, which is strongly concerned, to integrate these new environmental constraints by controlling energy consumption and reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

Greenhouse production is very energy intensive. It represents 27% of the total direct energy consumed by regional agriculture.

In Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur, agriculture remains an important local economic activity but the conditions are difficult: sometimes harsh climate, reduction of available land, dependence on mass commercial channels that threatens the viability of local farms….

Rural territories are looking for alternatives to boost their agricultural sector and help farmers adapt to market constraints and energy and climate challenges.

Many operators are looking for sustainable solutions to make their business viable, including short circuit marketing.

Objectives and solutions

For 15 years, Geres has been spreading bioclimatic agricultural greenhouses in the cold regions of Central Asia. Constructed using simple techniques with local materials, these greenhouses show very good thermal performance allowing good yields even in difficult climatic conditions. They represent a productive tool that is energy efficient and relevant for small and medium-sized farms.
The development of new models adapted to the context of the PACA region, through 5 pilot bioclimatic greenhouses, aims to provide answers for:

  • Diversification of production, and in particular empowerment with regard to the supply of seedlings (old varieties, plants for organic farming …)
  • The extension of the cropping season for a better exploitation profitability
  • Production at altitude favoring the establishment or the maintenance of activity in isolated territory.

Watch the project video

Partners

Financial partners

  • Regional office of ADEME (French agency for environment and Energy saving)
  • Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur Region

Technical partners

  • Agrithermic
  • Groupe de Recherche en Agriculture Biologique

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