Chapter on Materials and Waste

1. Introduction

In WM0939 ‘Engineering for sustainable development’ a group of master students of different disciplines strive to make Texel more sustainable with system design. In nine groups, each groups analyses how a specific sub-system can become more sustainable. These sub-systems are tested on Texel through field research from 12 January to 16 January 2015. In this week, subsystems are combined to have one coherent design that makes Texel more self-supportive and sustainable.

1.1 General

This report is focussed on the subsystem: ‘Waste and materials’. Over the years, the size and composition of waste streams have changed. With increasing consumer demands, because of economic prosperity production of waste has enlarged. The growing global population and middle class in combination with the ‘take-make-waste’ linear economy has led to a larger waste production than ever and keeps on growing.

This report is focussed on the subsystem: ‘Waste and materials’. Over the years, the size and composition of waste streams have changed. With increasing consumer demands, because of economic prosperity production of waste has enlarged. The growing global population and middle class in combination with the ‘take-make-waste’ linear economy has led to a larger waste production than ever and keeps on growing.

In the ideal world, as described in initiatives as circular economy, cradle to cradle and the blue economy, waste does not exist. Instead, waste maintains its value by creating closed loop systems. Waste becomes a resource for another product. Although this, sounds good on paper, it is often hard to implement in the real world. Legislation and interests of stakeholders often conflict, making such initiatives hard to implement.

 In this project, our group tried to get as close as possible to a self-supportive sustainable Texel in 2065. Although the technocycle is a big part of the material flow, this report mainly focuses on the biocycle. Since Texel is an island, the biocycle gives opportunities to become self-supportive by using locally sourced products. This is not only more sustainable, but decreases dependency on the mainland as well. Based on proven blue economy concepts, our group designed a system that integrates different blue economy initiatives into one system. A context, actor and technology analysis made it possible to create a roadmap of change that leads to an action plan to implement this system in 2065. This roadmap of change will be discussed with stakeholders on Texel to review feasibility.

 We hope you enjoy reading our discoveries.


Antonio D'Aquillo

Cheyenne Schuit

Lizet Krabbenborg

Thijs Schaap

Expand selection Contract selection

1.2 Table Of Contents

Please click on the image below to view the Table of Contents

Please click on the image below to view the Table of Contents

Table of Contents

Expand selection Contract selection

2. Future vision

Over the years companies have been trying to cut costs by looking at the cheapest way to produce products and services. This has created a vicious circle where the search to cheaper products, resulted in fewer jobs, which again resulted in fewer purchasing power. Jobs moved overseas where labor is cheaper, putting local economies into jeopardy. The search for cheaper products also resulted in less sustainable products. Although not always correct, the green economy is associated with expensive products.Therefore Pauli Gunter introduced the economic philosophy ‘The blue economy’ in 1994 (Pauli, 2012).


The blue economy strives towards local production and consumption by making use of what is locally available. This also eliminates transport in contrast with the green economy. Local production and consumption is not only more sustainable, but also generates a local economic boost. It creates jobs, which again leads to more purchasing power. The blue economy eliminates everything that is not needed and requires a new way of thinking. For example instead of replacing a battery with a green battery, devices are designed to function without a battery. The blue economy is not focussed on eliminating costs, but is focussed on generating as much value as possible. For example, coffee production can not only lead to revenue of selling the coffee, but its waste can also be used for mushroom farming and animal feeding. The one revenue model is transformed into a three revenue model, generating more value in the end. This new way of thinking requires young and entrepreneurial minds that are open for innovative ideas and dare to go beyond the obvious. The blue economy is about opening your eyes on what is locally available and only use that to create a more stable local economy (Pauli, 2012).


Texel wants to become self-supportive in energy. Pursuing the blue economy can take this a step further with local production and consumption to make Texel self-supportive on other aspects besides energy as well. This not only leads to a more sustainable island, but a more stable economic island as well, eliminating risks of being dependent of the mainland. Transforming the island to a blue economy principle requires time, since blue economy requires a different way of thinking and knowledge of what is available on the island. This is difficult since this information may still be unknown. For this project, our group has the following vision for Texel:


‘In 2065 Texel must be as self-supportive as possible by closing the nutrient biocycle by implementing the principles of blue economy. Materials of the technocycle will be reused, until an alternative solution is found which eliminates usage of the technocycle.’

Expand selection Contract selection

3. Analysis of the current system

This chapter describes the current situation in Texel with regards to materials and waste. As introduced earlier, the materials and waste cycle can be separated into the so-called Technocycle and the Biocycle. We will introduce both cycles in section 3.2, after we introduced the general situation of waste disposal in Texel in section 3.1. Section 3.3 will be used to explain the rules and regulations concerning this subsystem and reports on the latest trends.

N.B. Please note that there are a lot of pictures in this and other chapters that do not show up in the chapter overview. To view the included pictures, please click on each subsection.

3.1 Current Waste and Materials cycle in Texel.

This section starts with some data on the subsystem of waste, will then continue to describe the various elements of the sociotechnical sub-system; technologies, actors and rules. A section on how these elements are interrelated is included a section about what the major unsustainabilities mechanisms of the system are. We finalize this chapter with a section on the major trends, developments and initiatives that are relevant to the transition of the system.

This section starts with some data on the subsystem of waste, will then continue to describe the various elements of the sociotechnical sub-system; technologies, actors and rules. A section on how these elements are interrelated is included a section about what the major unsustainabilities mechanisms of the system are. We finalize this chapter with a section on the major trends, developments and initiatives that are relevant to the transition of the system.

Schermafbeelding 2015-01-09 om 20.50.54.png

3.1.1 General data on the sub-system of waste in The Netherlands

The average waste production of a person in the Netherlands is 530 kg per year, four times as much as in 1950. In the Netherlands 49% of household waste is collected separately, the remaining 51% is unsorted household waste. The main components of household waste are organic (vegetables, fruit and garden), paper and cardboard waste. 60% of all disposed paper and glass is recycled, of plastic this is only 13%. An average household has much more products than in former times and these products have gotten a higher turnover. We repair and re-use our clothes and furniture less often: it’s much easier to just buy new cheap furniture at the IKEA or clothes at the H&M. In contrary, some waste streams like coal ash have decreased due to changing mechanisms in society (Nabielek, 2014).

But the household waste is only a small part of the total waste stream: 85% of all waste comes from companies. That is another 3,079 kg waste per person in the Netherlands every year.

Texel has a higher average of household waste per person per year: almost 700 kg. It is likely that the presence of the tourist industry has a large share in that waste. Tourists consume a lot and produce lots of waste. Numbers on the type of household waste are shown in table 3.1. Data on waste produced by companies on Texel are not known. In the table, only the types of waste that were counted are included.

Table 3.1 Household waste on Texel in 2012 source: (CBS, 2012)

3.1.2 Elements of the sociotechnical subsystem: Technology & Actors.

In the sociotechnical sub-system of waste we distinguished three major categories of elements; technologies, actors and rules. In the following subchapters the first two of these elements and their characteristics are described. In chapter 3.2 we will describe how these elements construct the technocycle and biocycle of the island. Chapter 3.3 will be dedicated to the relevant rules and regulations on Texel and how these influence the techno- and biocycle.

The elements cannot be seen apart from each other: they are strongly interconnected. For instance, the government decides the amount of tax money that civilians have to pay for having their waste to be disposed and then appoints a company that disposes the waste. In figure 3.1 some of the interrelations are visualized. The possible activities of actors depend on what technologies are available. Their activities are bounded by the rules set by the regulators.

Figure 3.1 The three major elements of the sociotechnical sub-system of waste and their interrelations. The interrelations are discussed in sections and 5.4 Technologies

The technologies that concern waste, can be divided in technologies of waste collection and waste processing. Note that we only included technologies that are currently deployed in Texel.

Waste collection. The household waste on Texel is collected separately by the cleaning services of the municipality: residual waste in grey mini containers and organic waste in green mini containers. These containers are collected every other week by the municipality, but residents can also use the public containers close to their home. In every neighborhood, separated public containers are located for paper/cardboard, plastic, glass and textile and small chemical waste. Bulk waste will be collected on request on Tuesdays (Gemeente Texel, n.d.). Something to notice is that an initiative to chip the containers of the Texel civilians was cancelled.

A special way of collecting waste are the beachcombers (in Dutch: strandjutters). They collect stranded materials and in the same time clean the beaches.

Waste processing. The processing of waste in the Netherlands looks rather organized. While in the eighties the waste mostly ended on landfill, nowadays the waste streams are properly organized and waste is either recycled or incinerated for energy recovery. Over 75% of the waste is recycled and about 20% goes to the combustion plant where electricity and heat is generated. 2% ends up in landfill.

The Dutch combustion plants currently have overcapacity, therefore waste from other countries gets imported. In this way the Netherlands can create energy of foreign waste while saving the nature since that waste otherwise would have been dumped there. The produced energy is good for the Dutch economy. This causes a ‘lock-in’: the existing plants want to keep on burning waste to create energy and bother he recycling processes.

Texel does not have a place to process their waste: the waste is shipped to the main land to be processed. Not all ‘waste’ is brought to a container however: there are several second hand shops on Texel that buy and sell used articles. These shops are shown in figure 3.2. Specified data on where the waste of Texel gets processed is unknown, but the processing plant of HVC in Alkmaar seems the most logical place.

Figure 3.2 The second hand shops on Texel

It can be assumed that a large quantity of the waste of Texel goes to one of the combustion plants of HVC on the main land. As figure 3.3 shows, the activities of HVC also include second hand shops, recycling, fermentation and incineration with energy generation.

Figure 3.3 The activities of the recycling company HVC. source: (HVC, n.d.) Actors

The main actors belonging to the materials and waste sub-system of the island can be divided in the waste producers, waste collectors/processors and the regulators.

Waste Producers. Within this category fall the actors that are creating the waste; inhabitants of the island, the tourists visiting the island and the companies and industries on the island.

The interest of the inhabitants of the island is to keep the island clean, because they are proud of their place, while we know from the classes that most of them do not want radical changes in their everyday rhythm. Their need is an easy way to deal with waste. At the moment, the separation rate is not optimal yet, since an analysis in 2012 showed that around 34% of the category “other waste” that was thrown in the grey bin consisted of compostable waste.

We can assume that most of the tourists help in keeping the island a clean place, in order to be visited and enjoyed again in the future. What they need is, like the inhabitants, an easy and accessible way to deal with waste and a clean place to be enjoyed. Again, this is an assumption, but it seems reasonable that (almost) nobody dumps his waste on purpose if there is a good alternative like a bin. However, separating the waste still seems to be a tough challenge for the tourists, since most of the bins for compostable waste at recreational homes has to be treated as regular waste because it has not been separated well enough (Gemeente Texel, 2013).

We assume that the companies want to dispose their waste in a low-cost and legal way, by following the legislations and the waste disposal management of the municipality. Companies on Texel are free to sign contracts with an acknowledged waste processor. Such a contract includes information about the type of waste, average amount of waste, frequency of collecting, size and amount of containers, collection day. The municipality also offers collecting services for waste of companies (De digitale balie, n.d.). Currently, HVC is the biggest waste collector on Texel.

Waste Collectors & Processors. The main actors in this category are HVC and Sortiva, which is a joint venture between HVC and De Groot.

Sortiva is the company that is currently recycling paper, glass, rubble and bulky items on the island (Green Islands Network, 2014) The interest of the company is to increase the amount of recycled materials, which would decrease the incinerated waste on the mainland, resulting in higher profits. The need of a recycling company is that all the people and tourists have the possibility and good attitude in separation of waste.

HVC is the company that provides the waste management on the island. They already collect and transport the waste to Alkmaar for incineration. Their expectation is an improved waste management plant for energy production, in which the cooperation and investments of the municipality is very important (HVC Groep, 2014).

  1. Waste issues are regulated by three governmental bodies; the Texel municipality, the Netherlands and the European Union. The rules itself are further explained in section 3.3

We assume that the main interest of the Texel municipality is to keep the island as clean as possible, in order to improve the tourism industry, from which the whole island benefits. This assumption is based upon regulations explained in section 3.3. This can be illustrated by the fact that the Texel municipality has recently increased its goals for source recycling(the separation of waste by the source, so the inhabitants of Texel) towards 65%, 5% higher than the national guidelines advise.

The Netherlands main focus is turning the island of Texel into an energy sufficient island, as discussed and approved in early 2007. This involves also the incineration process directly on Texel, because it can be a good asset for the energy production and at the same time result in less energy use for waste transportation. How are the technologies embedded in culture & behavior?

Waste is part of the everyday life for both households and companies. It includes separating the waste (paper, organic material, clothes, glass and so on), bringing the waste to a collection point, and sometimes even buying ‘waste’ of others (in second hand shops). These daily routines are already embedded in the behavior of the inhabitants. However, the separation of waste on Texel can be lifted to a higher level: currently most households and companies recycle only 13% of the plastics and 60% of paper, cardboard and glass. In the ideal future situation, this percentage increases to a 100%. This will be discussed in the next chapter.

Culture also plays a role in waste, as explained in section 3.3. In some countries it is normal to throw waste on the street, what leads to enormous pollution and unsafe situations due to the lack of hygiene. Fortunately the culture in the Netherlands differs from that. Dutch people are quite neat with their public space. However, Texel also has many tourists. The culture of the tourists may differ from the Dutch ‘neat’ culture.  We assume though, that tourists will clean up their mess if this is easily facilitated.

Expand selection Contract selection

3.2 Current “circular” systems on Texel

Schermafbeelding 2015-01-09 om 21.10.37.png

Within section 3.2.1 and 3.2.2, we will introduce the current Biocycle and Technocycle on the island. All products on earth can be considered to consist either of biomass or industrial mass. The first type can be used in the biocycle, while the second one can be used in the Technocycle. It should be noted that these two cycles are largely intertwined in the current system. To visualize this, let’s use the example of making a cup of coffee at home. Let’s assume that you have the classic coffee maker and no fancy Nespresso or Dolce Gusto apparatus. The first step would be to use water (biomass) that you put in your coffee maker (industrial mass). The second step will be to take the coffee filter (industrial mass, but biodegradable so it can be considered biomass too) from a package (industrial mass), then you will add the coffee (biomass) with a spoon (industrial mass) from a pack of coffee (industrial mass and biomass). You will then turn on the coffee machine and after a few minutes your coffee is ready. You might add some coffee milk (biomass) and sugar (biomass). Afterwards, you clean your dirty cup and you have to wash it with water and soap(can be either bio or industrial mass).

If we extend the example of drinking a cup of coffee to include the sources of the materials, it becomes clear how unsustainable just this little act of drinking coffee actually is. So far we have listed the following biomass materials: water, coffee filter, coffee, milk, sugar, soap. The following materials are regarded as industrial mass: packaging and coffee maker. In the next part we will expand on the biocycle and in section 3.3 we will analyze the technocycle.

3.2.1. The biocycle

Figure 3.4 below depicts how the biocycle and the technical cycle look like. We will consider the stages for each type of biomass.

Production - Starting with the production, we can analyze where all the products come from. Borrowing from our colleagues who analyzed the water cycle, we found that the water on Texel is stored in Den Burg, before that, it was transported from the mainland by a pipeline. On the mainland it was produced in one of the production facilities of PWN, for instance in Andijk. For the coffee filter, coffee, coffeemilk, sugar and soap we will assume that they are all bought at the Albert Heijn in Texel. The coffee (brand: Perla) could be produced in up to 15 different countries, and you can determine from the expiration date where the coffee originates (Rijksoverheid, 2014). These are countries from all over the world. The coffee milk is, if we assume that it is produced by Campina (like its website says), made in The Netherlands. For the sugar, we take Van Gilse sugar, which is also produced in The Netherlands according to the website of Van Gilse. The soap is a very complicated story; it is produced from several chemical components which are again produced in different factories. We could not find the origin of these products but the point we want to make; even a simple thing like making a cup of coffee is a very complicated process and although relatively a lot of products are made in The Netherlands, also a lot aren’t. Figure 3.4 The biocycle and technocyle visualized

Biological degradation, nutrients and plants - We skipped the product and use parts since these are rather obvious and have been described. The biological degradation is in this example also fairly easy. After the coffee is finished, the body will process it to urine which will be flushed to the toilet. If we assume that this toilet is also in Den Burg, it is most likely that the urine ends up in the surface water next to Den Burg, visualized with a green triangle in figure 3.5 (source: Gemeentelijk rioleringsplan Texel). There it would further be processed by local bacteria, but it will never end up as resource for coffee plants in Brazil or sugar plants in the Netherlands. Eventually it might be processed by PWN back to drinking water.

The other thing that is left, will be the coffee waste in the coffee filter. This can be collected by HVC and composted as depicted in figure 3.3 of section This composting process would happen in Zwolle and it first needs to be transported there.

Figure 3.5 Den Burg. The green triangle represents the place where the sewers end up in the land water.

3.2.2 Technocycle

Production - The packaging and coffee machine are considered parts of the technocycle. Packaging is usually done by an external party, for instance Halma Packaging in The Netherlands. This packaging has to be delivered at the food manufacturer and then transported to the Albert Heijn distribution centre. From there it will be distributed to the Albert Heijn in Den Burg.  Based upon an earlier assignment (a smartphone was analyzed in this assignment) for the course supply chain management, we try to describe the origin of the coffee machine. The coffee machine is, like almost every machine, probably assembled at a cheap factory in China. Its components (like the heating element) are created in other factories across the globe. The subcomponents for these components and the raw materials that these subcomponents consist of, are again produced around the globe.

Return, disassembly, technical nutrients.- If one is finished with the coffee machine, it can be deposited at the waste deposit ‘De Hamster’ if it’s broken, or at one of the second hand shops that have been introduced in Eventually, the product will end up at the waste deposit and from there. After this, it is recycled by a so called WEEE recycler, for instance Recydur in Apeldoorn. Here, the coffee machine will be taken apart and all components will be further processed. This process is guided by European law. → link
The packaging will be discarded as general household waste, like it was introduced in section After it has been transported to a waste incinerator, the packaging will be incinerated. There will be no possibilities for nutrient retrieval, although some heat is used for district heating in the surroundings of the waste incinerator.

Expand selection Contract selection

3.3 Rules within the socio-technical system.

Schermafbeelding 2015-01-09 om 21.16.29.png

Within the system there are several important rules and regulations. Geels (2002) reports on three types of rules: regulative, normative and cognitive rules which are depicted in figure 3.6 (Geels, 2002). On the regulatory level we have analyzed the policies that are written by the Texel government, since these kind of regulations are implied on a local level, sometimes following national or European directives. The documents were found on the government website by scanning the local policies on waste directives and by looking for regulations on beaches and sewage, which we consider also important.

Figure 3.6 Three types of rules and examples. Adopted from: Geels (2002)

Exploring the normative rules is a bigger challenge. Normative rules confer values, norms, role expectations, duties, rights, responsibilities. It is about the norms in society and how society expects people to treat their waste. It will probably be tough to find out the actual norms on this because Geels notes that these tend to be unwritten. Finally, cognitive rules constitute the nature of reality and the frames through which meaning or sense is made. Paradigms on how people interact with waste and if they perceive it as valuable would be a more tangible definition of this concept in my opinion. An example could be the earlier mentioned “jutterscultuur” of Texel which used to be an important part of the cultural heritage of Texel and should be considered as a more informal set of rules. The informal norms on waste treatment in Texel would be an interesting further investigation and maybe an idea for our interview topic.

3.3.1 Regulative Rules

In the societal needs part we distinguished six points on which current policy focuses. We implicitly assumed that the current policy was enough to cover the societal needs, but this could be further explored by an investigation of the norms on waste treatment as proposed earlier. If we analyze the current policy on these six points, we come to the following conclusions. The policies mentioned below are from the document Grondstoffenplan from the Texel government, but these are based upon European and national directives. Therefore, alterations in these regulations should also fit into the overruling directives. The overall principle in the European directives is that the polluter pays. In the national directive, the guideline is provided by the so called “Ladder van Lansink” which is visualized in figure 3.7 (Gemeente Texel, 2013).

Figure 3.7 Ladder van Lansink. It reads: Prevention, re-use, re-cycle, Incineration and landfill. This visualizes that the concepts that are mentioned first are the most desirable, based on their limited impact on the environment. Source:

Combining these principles means that waste should be treated as much as a resource as possible and those who do not comply with these principles are the ones who pay the price of the steps that have to be taken to get rid of the waste. An example of this is the removal fee, a national law which has to be paid if one buys a new apparatus. We continue below with the different regulations on the several focus points.

  • Waste disposal – Glass, compostable waste, paper, plastics and other wastes are collected separately or policy to collect it separately has been passed. The percentage of separation in Texel is about 50%, compared to 61% in comparable districts. The government aims to get 65% separation by 2020.
  • Waste Re-usage - For our cradle to cradle approach, it is specifically important to consider what is done with the waste after it has been collected. Texel aims to re-use 70% of its waste in 2020, which is higher than the general Dutch aim of 65 % by 2020. The purpose is to have as much of the waste processed on the island itself, otherwise it should be transported as efficiently as possible to the main land. It has been researched whether an anaerobic digester on the island for the purpose of gas and energy extraction from compostable waste would be cost-efficient but this was not the case in 2002. Recently, new plans have been presented and these and other initiatives are evaluated on their cost-efficiency and technical feasibility, which seems to be the general principle for these initiatives on the island.
  • Waste Amount – As explained earlier, the one who pollutes pays. General waste taxes are asked to every citizen, where the amount is differentiated for single households, family homes and recreational homes. There are around 2000 single households, 4000 families and 1200 recreational homes on Texel that pay waste taxes. Companies have to pay an amount that depends on the type of waste and the amount of collections per year (Decentrale Regelgeving Overheid, 2013). Something noticeable is that it is cheaper to have “general waste” collected than “compostable waste”. This is probably not stimulating the separation of waste by companies.
  • Waste collection systems camouflage – Plans for this are developed in the form of underground collecting systems which have to be finished by 2015.
  • Waste in nature and streets – The new waste collection systems have to help the prevention of waste in nature. In general, there isn’t a lot of waste in the nature and on the streets of Texel, according to research that was performed by the government.
  • Clean beaches – The hospitality industry on the beach is responsible for cleaning up the beaches up to 25 meters surrounding their restaurant or beach bar. Beyond this, it is the duty of the government that cleans it up according to the demand, but at least twice a year the entire beach is cleared from waste. On top of this, people can signal the government when a bin has to be emptied which will be done as soon as possible.

In section we further introduce the VANG program, a program of the Dutch Government that could help with the transition of the Dutch economy towards a more sustainable economy.

3.3.2 Normative and Cognitive Rules.

As noted earlier, information on the normative and cognitive rules will be hard to find. Below we discuss some small insights and we discuss how we can alter these sets of rules.

Since we want to re-design the waste streams on Texel towards a cradle-to-cradle design, a way to look into these normative and cognitive rules would be to see how concepts from circular business models are perceived in Texel. A start has been given with the national MyBeach initiative, where it is basically not done to leave your waste on the beach. These norms are spread via the hospitality industry, volunteers and schools (Gemeente Texel, 2013). According to the MyBeach website, at least 6 companies are participating on the Texel beach (MyBeach, 2014).

The cognitive rules set also reports on priorities and beliefs. We have been taught in the lectures that people from Texel are resistant to change and the cognitive set of rules is probably a conservative one on a lot of areas.

3.3.3 Major trends, developments and initiatives that are relevant to the transition of the system?

Besides the normative and cognitive rules on Texel, a lot of initiatives in both The Netherlands and Europe will influence the waste system of Texel. This section is used to introduce these initiatives. Domestic initiatives

As mentioned before, a good campaign that is already active on the island and along the entire coast is “My beach”. Thanks to it, the beaches are cleaned out of the waste plastics coming from touristic activities before they can get into the sea and pollute it, and they are used to decorate big and fancy sculptures. The people involved are volunteers and the owners of the pavilions located on the beaches. The idea has a double effect: it cleans the beaches, while it contributes for social engagement and creation of a funny activity, where also kids can be involved. In summer, when the tourism rate is higher, the collection of waste is organized weekly (MyBeach, 2014).

On a national level, several initiatives are organized which include the policy program van afvalstof naar grondstof (from waste to resource, VANG-program). The VANG program has as goal to improve the sustainable sourcing, resource efficiency, eco-design and substitution of non-sustainable materials and increasing recycling and repair rates of objects. link

This program is interesting, since it will stimulate initiatives that are ahead in their time. Therefore, the blue economy initiatives of chapter 7 could potentially benefit from subsidiary

In the end of september, the program until then was evaluated. This gave some key recommendations that are also interesting for Texel. The first recommendation was that it misses an exploration of how the circular economy could look like. If Texel starts implementing the initiatives we mention in chapter 7, it could become a example for the rest of The Netherlands. The fourth recommendation is that the current policy is focusing too much on the end of the chain (recycling) instead of the chances at the beginning of the chain (waste prevention). Innovations should also become more socially accepted which should be a focus of the VANG program. The sixth comment says that local best practices should be better shared and upscaled. It should be considered that current investments are already done, for instance in waste incineration centrals. If the waste stream is reduced, these centrals become less financially viable. Therefore, the current infrastructure should also be addressed. link

We will try to incorporate the findings of the VANG program evaluation in our intervention for Texel. On top of this, we will find out in the mushroom case study if this is feasible for VANG Foreign initiatives

A current initiative that is very good for waste reduction is the packaging-free market, which hopefully will become more and more common. An example is the one that will open in the city of Berlin. It is a market where the food is not wrapped in packages, and the consumers bring their own containers, that will be weighted at the entrance. It is a way to reduce the waste coming from the packaging but not only. It results also in a reduction of the food and products bought, because there will not be as much choice as in normal markets, helping also in decreasing nowadays’ consuming mentality (Borromeo, 2014).

A growing number of technologies are being lately developed for waste treatment combined with energy production. One of them uses anaerobic digestion. Anaerobic digestion is a series of processes, where microorganisms are able to break down biodegradable material in absence of oxygen. When used as part of the waste management system, the anaerobic digestion can reduce the emission of landfill gases while producing renewable energy. The process’s product is a biogas containing methane, carbon dioxide and other gases. This biogas can be used as fuel or be improved to become bio-methane, while the remaining materials of the digestion process are highly nutrient-rich and can be used as fertilizer. With the re-use of waste and the production of biofuel this technology is being more and more applied lately, especially by UK, Germany and Denmark (American Biogas Council, sd) .

Another process that can be used for a sustainable treatment of biodegradable and plastic waste is the Gasification process. It converts organic or fossil fuel into carbon monoxide, hydrogen and carbon dioxide, by using high temperatures, without combustion and controlled amount of oxygen and steam. The gas resulting from the process is called syngas, which is considered a renewable energy source, when obtained by biomass. Using syngas instead of burning the initial waste or fuel is more efficient because it can be combusted at higher temperatures or also in fuel cells (, sd).

A similar process that converts organic materials into syngas using plasma, is called Plasma gasification. It ionizes gas and catalyzes organic matter into syngas. Many are the advantages: it provides a clean way of disposing hazardous waste, preventing them to reach landfill; it does not result in toxic waste emissions, while it provides clean alloyed slag that can be used as construction material; it turns organic waste into combustible syngas for electric power and thermal energy (Dodge, 2014;, sd).

However, it is not only these kind of technologies that are increasingly developed. Also the way of thinking, in circular business models, is trending according to this report of Accenture from 2014. → link

The report of Accenture notes on five new business models for circular economies;

  1. Circular supplies: Provides fully renewable, recyclable or biodegradable resource inputs that underpin circular production and consumption systems.
  2. Resources recovery: Enables a company to eliminate material leakage and maximize the economic value of product return flows.
  3. Product life extension: Allows companies to extend the lifecycle of products and assets. Value that would otherwise be lost through wasted materials are instead maintained or even improved by repairing, upgrading, remanufacturing or remarketing products.
  4. Sharing platforms: Promotes a platform for collaboration among product users, either individuals or organizations.
  5. Product as a service: Provides an alternative to the traditional model of “buy and own.” Products are used by one or many customers through a lease or pay-for-use arrangement. This business model turns incentives for product durability and upgradability upside down, shifting them from volume to performance.

Although Texel will probably not be the starting point of such business models, it could very well be that a successful business model elsewhere spreads to Texel at one point, helping the transformation towards a more sustainable Texel. The fifth business model - product as a service - is actually the blue economy view. If one company owns for instance 30 % of the washing machines on Texel and another company owns another 25%, these companies could compete with each other on product durability and sustainability. This would be an interesting shift to witness.


Expand selection Contract selection

4. Intervention in the Technocycle

In our example of the Technocyle, we had two examples of waste types that could be part of the technocycle. In our case it was a coffee machine and packaging of different types of food packaging. We found that packaging waste most likely ended up being incinerated, while the coffee machine was being recycled. Since incineration is lower on the Ladder of Lansink then recycling, we will propose some strategies for reducing packaging waste on Texel.

The intervention should be focused on reducing the amount of packaging waste that is produced on Texel. But, most of the goods that are being sold on Texel are not produced on the island and therefore one would be dependent on the producers outside of the island. It seems rather unrealistic to expect that we can influence these producers, so we have to come up with another strategy. The ideas of the blue economy are introduced in chapter 7. By introducing the blue economy ideas, we hope to introduce a new way of thinking.  If this way of thinking succeeds on Texel,.there could be an increase in locally, sustainably produced goods. This means that the people of Texel will become less dependent on external products for some goods. If these locally produced goods are designed from a blue economy point of view, they will have a reduced environmental impact and this could also reduce the amount of packaging waste in Texel.

A campaign by the Texel government could help to increase the awareness of these values. This campaign could be designed in a few years, if there have been made some implementation steps for the cycles that we propose in the next chapter.

Expand selection Contract selection

5. Intervention biocycle

Successful projects should be locally embedded, provide local benefits, establish continuity with existing physical, social and cognitive structures and apply locally to appropriate communications and participation procedures (Raven, 2008). By lowering dependency on the techno-cycle and substituting this with closed loop biocycle systems, Texel can come closer to their goal of becoming self-sufficient. In the design our group looked to what is available on the island and how this can be connected with local benefits.

To establish opportunities for participatory design our group wanted to stay close to some of Texel’s core values: peace and space, richness of nature and culture landscapes, alternation of landscapes and land use, maritime monuments, Texel identity and specific island character (Konijn, 2014). The citizens that are connected to each other and the island, an island economy that exists of small scale companies and great attention to hospitality, service and safety make Texel a unique island (Landscape architects for sale, 2009).

The design tries to stimulate local economy by creating benefits for the five biggest industries on Texel: Hospitality industry, farming, shops, research and healthcare. By closing loops, waste is transformed into valuable resources for these five industries. This involves processes that can be connected to the richness of nature on Texel, which gives opportunities for the tourism industry to show visitors what Texel is about.

Expand selection Contract selection

5.1 The design

Schermafbeelding 2015-01-09 om 21.33.26.png

The design exists of subsystems that are interconnected and contribute to the total closed biocycle system. In figure 5.1 the system is translated into an image to display all connections between the systems. As can be seen the systems delivers products that can provide in the basic need: food. Besides this the system delivers aid products that are needed as resources to produce products. The system also provides energy, which supports the goal of Texel to become energy self-sufficient. Although it is unknown how much energy can produced, our goal is to make this system energy self-sufficient. If more energy is produced than necessary it can contribute to the energy generation for the whole island.

The system starts with waste of the hospitality industry, farming and households. As analyzed in chapter 4 residual waste, organic waste, bulky garden waste and paper/cardboard are the largest waste streams. Residual waste can be lowered by increasing separation rate and reusing or sharing products of the techno-cycle to increase the product life span which reduces waste. An increased separation rate is important in our design to obtain as much value out of the system as possible. All waste that belongs to the bio-cycle is given purpose again by exchanging waste between systems and industries. In section 5.2 the different waste streams are explained in further detail.

The subsystems can be divided in five categories: Agriculture, cattle breeding, worm farming, biodigester, mushroom cultivation and aquaculture. These categories all are supported with facilities that are either existing, like farms or the seaweed center of NIOZ, are still need to  be build such as the bio digester and mushroom cultivation facility. In section 5.3 the contributions and benefits of all stakeholders are discussed.  In a program tourists can visit all these facilities in one day to learn more about the different aspects of the process where waste is transformed into a valuable resource. This is further discussed in section 5.4 since these facilities are spread around the island tourists are encouraged to visit the whole island, which increases the change that every area comes in contact with tourists. This gives opportunities for shops to address more clients and stimulate sales

Figure 5.1 The proposal for a new system in the spirit of the blue economy

Expand selection Contract selection

5.2 The flows of the waste streams

Schermafbeelding 2015-01-09 om 21.35.39.png

The system starts with the waste streams of households and the hospitality industry (the red circles in the lower part of the scheme). In this subchapter the subsystems (Agriculture, cattle breeding, worm farming, biodigester, mushroom cultivation and aquaculture) and supporting technologies are explained by following the journey of the different waste streams.

5.2.1. Coffee waste

For harvesting, processing, roasting and brewing coffee only  0.2% of the coffee biomass has value on the market. The remainder, which is rich of caffeine is wasted, leads to generation of methane gas when left to rot and is therefore a contributor to climate change. The ZERI project of Gunter Pauli, guru of the Blue economy, did research in collaboration with scientist to find a purpose for this remainder. Growing mushrooms on coffee ground also stimulates mushroom to pop out after three months of seeding, instead of the 9 months for Shitake or Ganoderma. Bacteria control of farming mushroom requires high energy costs. However ground beans have been exposed to hot water, when brewing a cup, reducing bacteria to a minimum. Farming mushrooms on coffee is therefore 80% more energy efficient (Pauli,2014).

The grown mushrooms can be used for food for the hospitality industry or cattles. Mycelium can be extracted out of mushrooms as a resource for bioplastics, biofuels and biodigesters. Leftovers from mushrooms during the process can be composted and function as a fertilizer again (Rotterzwam, 2014). This process not only generates food out of waste, but supports the biodigester or biofuel production as well. In this way it contributes to self-sufficieny of energy, which is a goal of Texel. The mycelium can even be used as a resource for bio-plastics which can be distributed to the shops and supermarket as renewable packaging.

5.2.2. Fruit & vegetable waste

The fruit and vegetable waste can be composted with the help of worms. To make sure there are enough worms for composting a worm farming facility is needed to reproduce enough worms. The worms digest the fruit and vegetables to a fertilizer. This again can stimulate products of new food crops. Since cooked food can contain dairy and milk it is not advised to give cooked food to worms as well, because worms dislike this food and will not eat it. Because of this, this is left to rot which can  attract flies. The same counts for acidic fruits such as citrons (Hungry bin, 2014)

While worms are being reproduced under specific conditions, fattened worms can be given to fish.  This model is also used in the ‘Cardboard to Kaviar’ project, where fattened worms are fed to sturgeons to produce caviar (Carter, 2003). In our case the fattened worms can be fed to fish to stimulate aquaponics.

With aquaponics, a floating bed of plants is placed on the ponds with fish (Mediamatic, 2014). Fish manure which contains ammonia is toxic to the fish. The water with ammonia, is pumped into the floating bed of plants. Here, bacteria transform the ammonia in a form which is a fertilizer to the plants. The clean water is returned to the fishtank (TheAquaponicSource, 2013). Any freshwater fish and any plant can be used. This gives opportunities to cultivate plants which can be used for the hospitality industry. Figure 5.2 shows the bio-cycle used in aquaponics.

The worms of the worm farm not only function for composting organic waste. They can filter water as well. Researches of the ZERI-project made a bio filter out of earthworms that can support the development of small scale water treatment plants. With this chlorine can be prevented, since the filter of worms is able to cleanse the water without creation of any sludge. The filtered water can be used for irrigation of crop fields or can even function as water for cattle depending on the quality of water (Pauli, 2014). These processes give touristic opportunities to explain such processes and explain more about worms and soil. The facility can become a learning center.

5.2.3. Cooked food

Cooked food can be given to livestock as food. Although pigs are omnivores there is certain regulation on what you can give and not give to animals. More in-depth research on this must be done. The digested cooked food is converted into manure, which is a resource for the bio digester.

When the manure is collected in the digester, water is added to create a slurry. The anaerobic process start, where bacteria transform the mixture into methane gas and high-grade liquid fertilizer without the presence of oxygen (Scitech,2013). The high-grade liquid fertilizer, that is left after anaerobic digestion is called slurry. The methane gas can be used for cooking, which can be distrusted to the hospitality industry to cook food. Methane gas can also be used for running an internal combustion engine. It can therefore be used to transport waste from one place to another. Figure 5.2 displays the process of the bio digester.

The liquid fertilizer can be used for land or aquaculture. In water the liquid fertilizer as a higher density, making it sink to the ground. The slurry flows to algae ponds, mineralizing the biological matter. It converts water into highly alkaline water that creates an ideal nutrient balance to feed benthos, phuto and zoo-planktong. This in turn leads to dykes, which are covered with grass. The grass and plants can be harvested, which can be fed to livestock again (Pauli, 2014).

Since seaweed is algae the liquid fertilizer can also be used for the Seaweed Center of NIOZ. This research center is doing research to seaweed since it as high potential as a food source for humans and animals and to generate other cash flows such as resource for the pharmaceutical industry. This creates a connection with the healthcare industry (NIOZ, 2014). The NIOZ is centered on Texel. Since it does research to marine life it fits the core value of maritime monuments.

5.2.4. Cardboard

Cardboard waste of shops, hospitality industry and households can be shredded a used as horse bedding as is already done in the ‘Cardboard to Kaviar’ project. Once the horse bedding is dirty it can be added to the mixture with manure for the bio digester, so it can be transformed into biogas and fertilizer.

Figure 5.2 The processes in a biodigester

Expand selection Contract selection

5.3 The different sections of the biocycle intervention

Schermafbeelding 2015-01-09 om 21.38.48.png

This subchapter will zoom in in the subsystems of: aquaculture, worm farming, mushroom cultivation, biodigester and the new transport system that they require. The subsystems of cattle breeding and agriculture are not elaborated on since these subsystems are not the renewed components of the system. The five subsystems will first be described by explaining the technology behind it, thereafter the actors related to the subsystem will be described followed by appointing their needs. The method of YUPTA analysis is used in the actor analysis. The explanation of this method can be found here: link

5.3.1 Aquaculture

Technology for aquaculture:

Research for creating optimal conditions for aquaponics is still on-ongoing. This also makes it hard to estimate how much fish and nutrition is needed to keep the ecosystem in balance. It also depends on the types of fish and types of plants. Therefore it is hard to make a technology roadmap from 2020 to 2065. Texel is known for its research on marine life. This aquaculture facility could be an expansion of current research institutions on Texel.

Actors related to aquaculture:

The aquaculture subsystem has two key actors: NIOZ and Ecomare. These two actors are described below.


NIOZ is an oceanographic institute for the Netherlands. Its mission is to obtain and distribute knowledge about seas and oceans for a sustainable future for our planet. It supports research and education to marine science in the Netherlands and Europe (NIOZ, 2014).

Currently NIOZ does no research to aquaponics. However in 2013 it cooperated with the University of Maastricht, Wageningen, Utrecht and the research institute Carmabi on Curacao to analyze the role of sponges for reusing waste of coral and algae. As stated in the article, this research was important to understand the coral reef and how an ecosystem can be productive without energy loss. It was an important step for the evolution of sustainable forms of aquaculture and sea farming (NIOZ, 2013).

Recently NIOZ opened the Seaweed center, where different types of seaweed are analyzed since seaweed can be used as source of energy (sugars) and food for humans/animals. Cultivation of seaweed can contribute to the transition of a bio based economy (NIOZ, 2014).

Aquaponics is about creating a sustainable eco-system for food production, were plants and fish are being cultivated. Analyzing sea life and mimicking this in aquaponics could be a solution to find sustainable food production. Using the research of the seaweed center can contribute to create a better aquaponics system. It is therefore likely that NIOZ might be interested in starting an aquaponics project in cooperation with partners. The bio-digester can be used directly to provide nutrition for the growth of seaweed.

Figure 5.3 YUPTA of NIOZ

NIOZ needs to cooperate with other partners. Since they can also depend on partners their role and engagement is been given a three. Since NIOZ is the oceanographic institute for the Netherlands it has to keep its reputation high. It is highly likely that NIOZ and all partners have the same goal: Obtaining knowledge and distributing knowledge about seas and oceans for a sustainable future for our planet.

Working with partners asks for synchronizing performance. Each partner has to exchange knowledge in order to work together effectively. NIOZ can mean a lot to the other stakeholders, since they have a lot of knowledge on the sea and oceans ecosystems, which can be used in aquaponics. Situated agency is therefore estimated high.


Ecomare stands for keeping and recovering natural values in the ‘Wadden’ and Nord sea. Through education and creating awareness they try to protect the natural habitat. An aquaponics center could educate visitors on aquaculture and natural eco-systems, making it interesting for Ecomare to start an aquaponics center. Since Ecomare is not a research institute it should cooperate with researchers to create optimal conditions for aquaponics.

Ecomare can offer an aquaponics facility for research purposes to other institutes, while at the same time using this facility as a tourist attraction. Although the goal of the research institutes might be obtaining knowledge, Ecomare wants to distribute this knowledge, which makes the goals comparable. Since the facility will become a tourist attraction in this case, making moments to signify scores high. Ecomare needs to synchronize performances with the research institutes to create effective relationships. Rhythms need to be integrated by setting clear rules on when the facility is open for visiting hours and when it is closed so research institutes can do their research.

Figure 5.4 YUPTA of Ecomare with regards to Aquaponics

Identified Needs:

The subsystem of aquaculture has several needs in order to be successful.

  • The most important need is collaboration between multiple actors (Ecomare and NIOZ, but also tourism companies and the municipality). It is needed that they synchronize their performances.
  • An investment is needed in order to build an aquaponics facility. Therefore a good business model has to be written.

5.3.2 Worm Farming

Technology for worm farming:

There is no worm farming facility on Texel available yet. Technology to create a worm farm already exists by using worm composting containers and could therefore already be implemented in 2020. Worm farming requires knowledge about nutrients for worms. Fruits and vegetable scraps, egg shells, shredded paper products, fallen leaves, tea bags, coffee ground, lawn clippings and weeds are all suitable. Meat, dairy and oily products are not suitable as feeding for worms, as well as onions, garlic, citrus fruits and large quantities of bread. A right balance of organic material, moisture and air is needed for a successful worm farm environment. Table 5.1 shows indicators for possible problems you can face in worm farming (Logan city council, unknown).

A bio-filter of worms to cleanse water also already exists but may require more investments. Since it is a relative new technology it is better to implement this in 2030 to let this technology develop further before implementing it on Texel.


Table 5.1 Problems with worm farming

Actor analysis:

For the actors there are two options. Option one is that Ecomare opens the worm farming facility, option two is that the worm farming facility is spread among several farmers.  


Ecomare stands for keeping and recovering natural values in the ‘Wadden’ and Nordsea. It has a nature museum, seal-nursery, sea-aquarium, bird shelter, dune park and visitor center. Through education and creating awareness they try to protect the natural habitat.

Ecomare has 300.000 visitors a year, which makes them one of the top 10 museums of the Netherlands. The core values of Ecomare are: nature of ‘Wadden’ and Nordsea, experience, knowledge, awareness and inspiration. By translation stories to excursions, exposition, education and web information Ecomare tries to spread knowledge about nature to different target groups (Ecomare, 2007).

Ecomare sees their slow transition to new expositions as a weakness. This while, 40% of the visitors have already visited Ecomare before. Ecomare sees opportunities in creating a facility that revolves about experience and fun. Ecomare wants to move away from the ‘geitenwollensokken’ image and wants to fascinate people from urban areas with the beauty of nature. Visitors of Ecomare come for the animals, therefore Ecomare want to include more animals in their stories and create more stories around animals (Ecomare, 2007). Another weakness Ecomare mentions is the non-oriented-business approach of some projects.

The worm farming facility can be a gate to talk about the importance of worms to the ‘Wadden’. Different types of worm species transform waste into resources for different types of land. In the sea worms digest plankton, waste and small animals into resources. Since worms are part of the food chain for animals and fish, worms are essential for the two main animals Ecomare focusses on and has shelters for. It leads to an opportunity for a new exposition or excursion to give more knowledge on ecosystems. A bio-filter of worms can filter water, which can represent the eco-system in the sea and gives the opportunity to spread more knowledge through this example.

Through worm farming Ecomare is linked to aquaponics. During composting the worms fatten. These fattened worms can be fed to fish. In this way Ecomare can play an essential role in explaining aquaculture. To create a business aspect, the compost can be sold to farmers to maintain land on the Wadden, which can be used again to invest in Ecomare.

Since Ecomare is a tourist attraction, reputation is important. Expanding with a worm farm gives the opportunity to distribute more knowledge on eco-systems and contribute to a self-supportive Texel. Since the worm farming facility becomes a tourist attraction, making moments to signify becomes important. To provide a constant stream of compost and fattened worms for aquaculture, duration of engagement is important as well. The worms could even be fed to the birds of the bird shelter. Depending on the quality of the worm farming, Ecomare is able to make a positive contribution to creating a self-supportive Texel making quality of deeds important.

Figure 5.5 YUPTA of Ecomare regarding the worm farming


Since worm farming is possible on small scale as well, farmers could create their own worm composting bin. The compost they generate can be used on their own land directly. The water they filter with a worm biofilter can be used for irrigation of the land or water for the cattle. The problem is that they need sufficient investments to purchase a biofilter and worm container. The large amount of organic waste of restaurants and households can be distributed for free to the farmers as well. The problem with this is that you need transport to deliver the waste to different farmers, while with Ecomare there is one central point the waste can be distributed to.

In this case, the waste of the farmer, becomes a resource for the farmer himself. Since there is a direct benefit it is more likely that the farmer will be engaged. The farmer will need more knowledge about nutrients of worms and needs to add this extra activity to his/her schedule in return of free compost. The environmental impact is huge, since compost fertilizers their own land again. Since farmers are more connected with their land and cattle, the worm farming can go along with emotions since the worm farming allows the farmer to become more self-sufficient and be more in balance with nature.

Figure 5.6 YUPTA of the Farmers regarding worm farming

Identified Needs:

  • A first investment is needed in order to set up small or large worm farming facilities. Since worm farming gives direct benefits to the owner, and the investment is rather low, it is expected that the owner (farmer or Ecomare) can pay for the investment themselves.


  • Estimate available organic waste (GFT) for worm farming:


In 2012 there was 1983 tons of GFT waste (Gemeente Texel, 2012). Compost worms can eat half of their body weight (Food know how, 2014). A 1000 worms weigh 1lb, which is 0.45kg. This is 0,45g per worm, meaning a worm can digest 0,225g of waste a day. This is 82g a year for which you need 24.182.927 worms. This seems a lot, but red worms reproduce when they reach maturity after 90 days. After that they produce 20 juvenile worms each week in ideal conditions (Batchelder, Unknown). Quickly calculated this means you can have 1000*20*20*20*20= 160.000.000 worms in one year, which is sufficient and also gives room to use the fattened worms as feeding for fish or birds.

5.3.3 Mushroom cultivation center

Technology for mushroom cultivation center:

In order to grow mushrooms on coffee waste you need certain circumstances. In traditional cultivation methods you need bacterial control at high costs, but since the coffee ground is exposed to hot water, bacteria are already reduced to a minimum. Farming mushrooms on coffee spent is 80% more energy efficient than preparing substrates to grow mushrooms on, since it uses free energy needed to prepare the coffee (Pauli, 2010).

Although there are companies that grow mushrooms on coffee, the ideal circumstances are often kept secret from public. Rotterzwam offers an internship of 1 week for 750 euro’s to learn about cultivation methods and growth conditions to prevent other entrepreneurs to make the mistakes they made in the past. It took Rotterzwam 8 months to figure out the ideal conditions through trial and error (Rotterzwam, 2014).

Figure 5.7 Different types of coffee residues

There are different types of coffee residues, which each have their own nutrition and harmful substances. Coffee husk and pulp contain large amounts caffeine and tannins which are harmful for mushroom and inhibit growth of mycelium. Spent coffee grounds are therefore the best type of residue and do not require caffeine removal.

Table 5.2 Growing conditions for oyster mushrooms

Growing conditions for oyster mushrooms:

According to you need 500g of oyster mushroom spawn to each 2.5kg of spent coffee ground. At every growing state different circumstance are needed. To prevent mold spores from getting in, which can damage the harvest, fresh coffee ground needs to be used. In the first stage the mushroom spawn with coffee ground needs to be placed in a dark room with 18C-25C degrees. After three weeks the coffee and spawn mixture has become white. If it has become green, molds have been able to grow and the mixture should be thrown away. When the mixture is completely white, it must be placed on a place with fresh air and little light, like a worktop. Twice a day, the area needs to be sprayed with water to prevent the oyster mushrooms from drying out. Damp and humid conditions stimulate growth off mushroom. Therefore often swimming pools or saunas are used for growing mushrooms, like Rotterzwam uses the tenantless swimming pool Tropicana in Rotterdam. A week later, little mushrooms will arise which will double in size every week (Sayner, 2012).


Growing conditions for shiitake mushrooms:

To grow shiitake mushrooms, coffee residues are often mixed with additional cellulosic substrates such as sawdust and rice or wheat to create a desirable texture. Mixture formulas can be found in the figure below. For shiitake 0.3 kg to 0.5 kg can be harvested from 1kg dried substrate.  The containers with the mixture should be sterilized at 95 degrees for 9 to 10 hours. Once the spawn is added, the containers/bags with the mixture and spawn should be carried to the fruiting house once the white mycelium covers the full surface. Here the shiitake mushroom can grow and can be watered directly once the bodies have grown 2 cm in diameter (Fan, 2005).

Table 5.3 Growing conditions for Shiitake mushrooms

Technology needed for controlling the environment:

To start a batch you need fresh coffee residual to prevent molds from coming in. Temperature and light control is needed to adapt circumstances to each growing phase. Humidity control and an irrigation system are needed to water the mushrooms, once they have grown. This makes old swimming pools are sauna’s the ideal place to start. Since all technology for cultivation of mushrooms on coffee waste already exists, this part of the design can already be implemented in 2020.

Actors related to mushroom cultivation center:

Two actors are described below: The Texelse Paddelstoelenkwekerij and the hospitality industry:

Texelse Paddenstoelenkwekerij

The ‘Texelse Paddestoelenkwekerij’ offers daily tours at 16.30 pm. Here shiitake mushrooms are cultivated through craftsmanship in a cultivation barn on Texel’s countryside with manual cultivation. Maarten Dijker founded the company in 2008 and cultivates shiitake mushrooms throughout the whole year (VVV, 2014). Currently he uses sawdust, Oakwood, water and spores in order to grow shiitake mushrooms. The mushrooms are cultivated in a closed room, which is kept at a constant temperature. Oakwood is sterilized, spawn is added, and the mixture is put in plastic bags for 8 weeks. After 15 weeks the full grown mushrooms can be harvested (VVV, 2014).

The ‘Texelse Paddestoelenkwekerij’ already has a fixed network of restaurants that make dishes of shiitake mushrooms, which are spread on the island as the map suggests (Texelse Paddestoelenkwekerij, 2011). Maarten Dijker is known on Texel as a local food producer who receives attention at culinary cooking fairs and tourist attractions. Shiitake mushrooms can be baked with olive oil, used in soup or sauces, baked with fish, lam, beef and hearty cake, which is seen as local Texel cooking (Texelvakantietv, 2011). Maarten Dijker sells the mushrooms to renowned restaurants on and off Texel. Shiitake mushrooms are healthy since they lower cholesterol and blood pressure. It is rich of vitamin B12, which makes it an ideal substitute for meat (Texelse Paddestoelenkwekerij, 2011). Shiitake mushrooms can be kept in the refrigerator for one to two weeks.

Since Maarten Dijker has not been interviewed yet, it is hard to estimate what drives him to convince him to join the project. However based on background information some assumptions can be made on what might be attractive for Texelse Paddenstoelenkwekerij. For example it can be assumed that Maarten Dijker is interested in energy effective solutions. An article indicates that Maarten Dijker has bought an energy sufficient refrigerator, since he believes it is an investment that saves costs in energy on the long term. In this article Maarten Dijker tells that he had visited a meeting by Stichting Duurzaam Texel, indicating he is interested in sustainable cultivation (SenterNovem, unknown).

Figure 5.8 YUPTA of the Texelse Paddenstoelenkwekerij regarding mushroom cultivation on coffee waste

The role of Maarten Dijker in the system for using coffee waste is quite important, however since Maarten Dijker already supplies shiitake mushrooms with a more traditional method. Since Maarten Dijker is often mentioned in culinary fairs for local food production and offers tours as a tourist attraction, reputation seems to be very important for Maarten Dijker to sell shiitake mushrooms.

The first notification of the typical Texel last name ‘Dijker’ comes from a source of 1609 (Miriam, 2001). It could be possible that Maarten Dijker descends from a family which has a long history on the island of Texel. This could mean that Maarten Dijker attaches a lot of value to Texel culture and wants Texel to become self-supportive. However since in an article Maarten Dijker mentions costs savings as the main reason for buying energy sufficient refrigerators, a self-supportive Texel might have a lower priority than cost savings. Since growing mushrooms requires not much action during cultivation, engagement is not estimated high.

Synchronizing performance with the hospitality industry and integrating rhythm however is important. Texelse Paddenstoelenkwekerij needs fresh spent coffee, while the hospitality industry needs the shiitake mushrooms to prepare the dishes for the day. The exchange of resources could happen in the morning.

The environmental impact is very important to Maarten Dijker, since creating the right environment is vital for the mushrooms to grow. The quality of how Maarten Dijker creates the environment, determines the quality of the mushroom harvest. Since Maarten Dijker lives from cultivating mushrooms, respiratory is estimated high. Tuning is important to build a relationship with restaurants to make sure both stakeholders can rely on each other to deliver a constant resource stream for production.

Hospitality industry

 The role of the restaurants is important, since they have to deliver the coffee residual. Since reputation is important, restaurants can attract visitors by promoting it uses biological produced shiitake mushrooms cultivated on waste. Restaurants have to be engaged to create a more self-supportive sustainable Texel by closing bio-cycles. The values of the YUPTA cycle concering time are the same for the restaurant as Maarten Dijker, since both are dependent on each other.

 Although the restaurants have to give the coffee waste to Maarten Dijker, they do not transform the coffee waste into a valuable resource. Therefore environmental impact is estimated lower. The quality of deeds however is important, since the fresh coffee spent has to have little contamination of molds. It is therefore important that restaurants handle the coffee waste hygienically. The more hygienic they handle the coffee waste, the larger the shiitake mushroom harvest.


Figure 5.9 YUPTA of the hospitality industry with regards to mushroom cultivation on coffee waste.

Identified Needs:

 Estimation available coffee waste

 According to Gro Holland 80000 ton coffee residual is wasted every year in the Netherlands (Gro Holland, 2014). On 14 December 2014 the Netherlands counted 16910968 inhabitants. This means that yearly 4.73 kg of coffee waste is generated per habitant. On 1 November 2014 there were 13597 inhabitants on Texel, meaning they generate 64313 kg of coffee waste a year.This results in 13g of coffee waste a day. Yearly 800.000 visitors visit Texel (Ecomare, 2014). Assuming they visit Texel for one day, this leads to an additional 1040 kg of coffee waste. This leads to a total amount of 65353 kg coffee waste a year. Since some visitors may visit Texel for more days, this amount is likely to be larger.

Assuming you use the coffee waste for shiitake mushrooms (ratio 0.3 to 0.5 per 1kg coffee waste), it means you can deliver 19606 kg to 32676 kg of shiitake mushrooms a year. Currently the Texelse Paddestoelenkwekerij delivers to 13 restaurants, resulting in 1508 kg to 2513 kg which can be sold to each of them yearly. Daily this means there is 4.1 kg to 6.9 kg available for each restaurant. If you need 150 gr of shiitake mushrooms for each menu you can serve 27 to 46 dishes a day. In case this is not sufficient the traditional method of cultivation by Texelse Paddenstoelenkwekerij can be used as well. Shiitake mushrooms that become wasted can be composted again. The advantage for the Texelse Paddenstoelenkwekerij is that cultivation on coffee waste is cheaper since sterilization is not necessary when you use fresh coffee spent. The cultivation on coffee spent can attract more tourists for the tours Maarten Dijker organizes in his company, which results in higher income.

Actions needed by stakeholders

 In this scenario both actors become depended on each other, since waste of the hospitality industry becomes a resource for the hospitality industry again through the Texelse Paddenstoelenkwekerij as an intermediary. Since the hospitality industry benefits from shiitake cultivation and the coffee waste is wasted anyway, the hospitality industry can give the coffee waste to Texelse Paddenstoelenkwekerij for free. This could make the deal interesting for Maarten Dijker, since production cost are lowered since the sterilization process is not necessary when using the free coffee spent.

 Maarten Dijker already supplies the hospitality industry with shiitake mushrooms, meaning there is already transport available. To collect the coffee waste it is the easiest to use the existing delivery moments of the shiitake mushrooms. Through this method Maarten Dijker and the hospitality industry are able to increase shiitake mushroom production on a costs effective sustainable manner.

5.3.4 Biodigester

Technology of the biodigester:

Anaerobic digestion in a biodigester is a process by which microorganisms break down biodegradable materials without the presence of oxygen. The purpose of this process is twofold: to manage waste and/or to produce fuels (Climate Gate, 2012).

A biodigester gives two products as output: biogas and fertilizer. The biogas can be used as an energy source in different industries. The fertilizer can be used in for instance the aquaculture and it can go back to the farms. The input of bio-digester consists of biomass. This is often mainly manure, but can also be other organic products such as vegetable and fruit waste. The products that may be used in Dutch biodigesters are listed in the ‘white list’ (which is defined by the government).

Biodigesters vary from very small systems in private gardens to very large installations on plants. The figure below shows the main components of the system.

Figure 5.10 A biodigester and its simplified processes

Biodigesters in the Netherlands

In 2012, 232 bio-digesters were located in the Netherlands (see figure 5.11). These installations need huge amounts of biomass, thus manure and co-products. The supply to the Dutch biodigesters is decreasing since a lot of it is transported to Germany. In Germany over 5000 biodigesters are located that together have a huge demand of biomass. Because of the German and France competitors, the price of Dutch biomass is high and this makes it hard for Dutch biodigesters to stay affordable (Ypma, 2011). As the picture below shows, on Texel there is no biodigester located yet.

Figure 5.11 Biodigesters in the Netherlands

Actor analysis:

The key players needed to set up a biodigester company are of course the suppliers of biomass and the operator of the biodigester. However, it would be shortsighted to only look at these two actors. Building a biodigester would have a large impact on the island and its residents. It would influence the landscape and people might be afraid of the reek it might bring. The rules and regulations that concern the biodigester are made on a national level. Therefore the actor analysis below includes the biodigester company, the suppliers, the municipality, the residents and the national government.

The biodigester company

Biodigesters can be owned by a private company (link), but often it is exploited by a group of farmers (for instance:link) . Together they can share the financial risks and produce a lot of manure and co-products. Owning a biodigester has two main advantages for farmers: it is a way to manage their manure and they can use the output (fertilizer) for their fields. Also, they can use the energy (biogas) for their greenhouses for example.

Farmers are definitely present on Texel: agriculture is dominating the landscape. Half of the island is in use for crops, cattle farms and horticulture farms. 15% of the working population on Texel works in these industries. About 175 farms are located on the island. They own about 4500 ha grassland, 4000 ha of crops and 500 ha horticulture (Boerenklasse). The cattle farms are often small and extensive. The farms have cows (for milk production and/or meat production) and almost 14,000 sheep.

A collective of farmers that together exploit the biodigester seems the best solution. The illustration below shows the needs of such a collective. In such a collective negotiation and tuning is very important. The farmers have to trust each other and communicate with each other often. Therefore are also engagement and communion important. Time is the most dominant aspect of the needs of the collective. It is important that the farmers integrate the bio-digester into the rhythm and see it is a durable engagement.

Figure 5.12 YUPTA Analysis of an biodigester that is exploited by a group of farmers

Suppliers of biomass

The most important suppliers for the biodigester are ofcourse the farmers. The biomass will come from agriculture, cattle breedings and mushroom cultivation. The interrelations are displayed in the illustration of the future design. The operator of the biodigister will pay the suppliers for the biomass (unless the operator is the supplier ofcouse). It is important that the supplied biomass is purely organic and biodagrable and that the materials are on the ‘white list’.

Dutch government

Currently, biodigesters in the Netherlands cannot exist without subsidies.

Biodigester installations qualify for the Milieukwaliteit Electriciteit Productie (MEP) subsidy and the Energie-investeringsaftrek (EIA) which can save coorporation tax (in Dutch: vennootschapbelasting).

However, these subsidies are often too low and uncertain for entrepreneurs to take the risk of building a biodigester. Besides, the white list (that says which products may be used in the biodigester) is too limited. Products such as coffee waste are seen as garbage and are not aloud as input for a biodigester. Most Dutch biodigesters are not profitable due to these causes. Biodigesters in surrounding countries such as France and Germany have a longer white list and therefore outcompete Dutch biodigesters. It is important for the implementation of a biodigester on Texel that the white list is extended and that the subsidies give certainty to the future operator of the biodigester.

The municipality of Texel

To build a biodigester, several licenses are required. The municipality claims that they want a sustainable and energy independent island. Since a biodigester would contribute to that ideal, the municipality has to support the implementation and should give the right licenses. It would also be the task of the municipality to inform local residents.

Local residents

It happened before that local residents stopped the construction of a biodigester by protesting against it (see Neighbors can be concerned about the environmental impact of the biodigester without knowing that the particulates of a highway are much more dangerous for health and that biodigesters decrease the emissions of the manure. It is the task of the municipality to inform the local residents about the advantages and it is the task of the operators of biodigesters to be transparant.


Identified Needs:

To successfully implement a bio-digester on Texel, several actions need to be taken first. Farmers should form a collective that wants to exploit the biodigester. The size of the collective can vary between 5 and 40 farmers. The collective has collect enough money (also with subsidies) to build a biodigester. It is also important that they have good contacts and contract with other biomass suppliers (for example with Maarten Dijker of the mushroom cultivation). The municipality has to give the right permissions for the construction of the biodigester. Besides, the municipality has the task to inform local residents and in this way try to prevent protests. On the higher governmental level it is important that the white list gets extended with the types of biomass present on the island. In that way, also suppliers of for example coffee waste can join.

5.3.5 New Transport system


To become a sustainable island, Texel needs to change its current sub-system of Materials and waste. In the proposed design there will be the need of moving waste streams within its new neurons-like network. Waste will not be considered anymore as waste, but as food, to be fed into another part of this sustainable chain. One of the new technologies to be introduced on the island is the transportation of these waste streams.

The exchange of waste and food will be needed in a daily schedule and the transport of waste and food will take place everyday.

For a sustainable island, also the transport is expected to be sustainable and economically feasible. Normal transport systems have bad fuel efficiency and high co2 emissions, due to the use of fossil fuel to power vehicles. A sustainable transport system has positive effects on environmental, societal and economic sustainability of the communities they serve.

The technology proposed is a biofuel-powered transport system. If we consider the expectations of biofuel production of the bio-digester that is embedded in the new sub-system, it is wise to consider the use of part of the biofuel to power the waste and food transport system within the island.

Part of the biofuel produced by the bio-digester will be moved to a transport facility center (HVC). Biofuels such as ethanol and bio-diesel have the potential of decreasing the greenhouse gas emissions that would take place if normal fossil fuels will be used to power the new transport system. (Hunt, 2006)

Actor analysis:

Two key actors are relevant for this subsystem: HVC and the municipality. These are described below.


As already explained before, HVC is the company working on the island for the management and transport of waste for landfill, recycling and incineration. The company will be cooperating with the municipality to provide the actors involved in the new sub-system with the waste streams and food needed. Schedules for the food and waste transport will be studied together with all the other actors involved, in order to find a balance in the synchronization of performances, which is vital for the new transport system to work.

Figure 5.13 YUPTA analysis of HVC with regard to a new transport system


The Municipality of Texel will have a central role in the organization of this new transport system. It will move investments and efforts to achieve a sustainable way of transporting the waste streams, together with HVC. Well-organized schedules will be embedded and will serve as a frame for HVC to move within the network.

Figure 5.14 YUPTA analysis of the Municipality with regards to the new transport system.

Identified Needs:

This part of the subsystem requires many interventions and high investments. New equipment (trucks) are needed which is expensive. Besides, the current system (in terms of schedules, rules and laws) needs to be adapted in order to fulfill the future needs in the subsystem.


Expand selection Contract selection

5.4 Rules and Regulations

The aim of the rules and regulations would be to ensure the running of a smooth society. As noted in previous sections, this can’t be achieved only by formal rules. It seems therefore essential to first outline the general aims of the rules and regulations and then evaluate by which type of rules these goals can be reached.                                                                                Lenzen (2006) notes that there are regulatory, legal and institutional barriers among the obstacles that prevent new energy and waste technologies to be implemented on (remote) islands (Lenzen, 2006). The first aim of the designed rules and regulations should be to prevent barriers for the model to develop in Texel. Although Lenzen does not reflect upon barriers in waste policy in his paper, an example from current waste policy in Texel could be an alteration in the price for the disposal of unsorted company waste. Currently this type of waste has the lowest disposal rate (Decentrale Regelgeving Overheid, 2013), which removes the incentive for separating waste by companies.

Throughout section 3.1-3.5 we have given several examples of actions that have to be taken by citizens and companies and separating waste will be one of the most important practices that have to become the norm in Texel society. This will be a major goal of the proposed regulations. This and other goals that can be derived from the analysis in the previous sections are listed below:

  • Stimulate separation of specific valuable waste streams
  • Creating an attractive environment to turn the blue economy practices in Texel into a touristic hotspot.
  • Being attractive for research towards new blue economy projects.

Now that we have these needs defined, we can argue which of these needs should be regulated by formal laws, and which of them have a better fit with normative and cognitive rules. We explained these concepts in section 2.3.3. Ultimately, the blue economy should become part of the cognitive set of rules on Texel, but it becomes obvious that there is still a long way to go.


Stimulating separation

Arguably this is the most important goal of the three mentioned goals. If the waste streams do not become separated better, the blue economy concept cannot become viable. The important part is the outcome, not the process. For this reason, there are several ways to think about this problem. On a regulatory level one could think about lowering waste taxes for people and companies who participate in separating waste (and perform very well in doing so). It should become attractive to engage in this behavior. On a normative level, these should become the practices that are socially expected from the community. For instance by organizing community events and challenges in waste separation. Zhuang reports that involvement of community residential committee and real estate companies increases public awareness and participation rate (in China) (Zhuang, Wu, Wang, Wu, & Chen, 2008). On a cognitive level, the importance of waste separation could be taught to kids at primary schools. Kids are often particularly influential on their parents regarding such kind of behavior.

Touristic hotspot, attractive research projects

It seems unfair competition towards other actors in the hospitality and research industry to subsidize these initiatives from the government. We argue so because we are not to judge what the hospitality industry and research industry should be doing. That is their business. All we can do is look to stimulate the formulation of normative and cognitive rules about sustainable business and hope that these industries will also alter their business towards a more sustainable business. The formal regulations should therefore mainly focus on enabling the blue economy to flourish by removing old laws from the “old” economy that could hinder a transition towards the blue economy. The VANG program that was mentioned earlier is working on removing these kind of 'old' rules.

Expand selection Contract selection

5.5 Relations within the subsystem

Schermafbeelding 2015-01-09 om 21.59.11.png

The parts of the subsystem that are described apart from each other in chapter 6.3, have to be considered as one system with different elements interrelating each other. This subchapter will point out the relations between the different elements.

The table shows what the elements on the left row need of the elements on the upper row. This can be an overlap (+) or a conflict (-).

Table 5.3 Interrelations with other subsystems

Expand selection Contract selection

6. Transition from 2020 to 2065

In this section the roadmap for change is discussed by discussing the agenda of change for each sub-system within the system. Figure 6.1 gives an overview of the required actions to implement the system and their timeline.

In this section the roadmap for change is discussed by discussing the agenda of change for each sub-system within the system. Figure 6.1 gives an overview of the required actions to implement the system and their timeline.

Schermafbeelding 2015-01-09 om 22.02.20.png


Figure 6.1 Timeline for the transition. 

Expand selection Contract selection

6.1 Supervising stakeholder


The roadmap of change exists out of a lot of different parties that all need to collaborate and take action to successfully implement the system. To make this happen, there should be one organization that maintains overview and connects all these stakeholders. A new organization could be established which focusses on implementing a blue economy on Texel. However, this could also be done by the existing organization that is trying to stimulate blue economy principles: ZERI.

 ZERI stands for the ‘zero emissions research and initiatives’. They state that their members take on challenges, other will consider impossible or too complex. Through a common vision they seek for sustainable solutions for society, which are inspired by nature’s design principles and are locallt available. They believe in working with many problems simultaneously and facilitate inter-departmental operations. Their projects vary from pure industrial projects to community based initiatives, to business related enterprises, to government and bilateral and UN aided co-operation. This makes them a good organization to maintain overview on all involved stakeholders and execute the action plan (ZERI,2013).

 Separation of waste

An increased separation rate at Texel is essential, since waste becomes a resource. An interview with Ms. Saanen confirmed that inhabitants of Texel cannot be obliged to separate waste. As discussed in chapter 6 increasing the consumer waste separation rate stands on the following four pillars (Saanen, 2014):

  1. Consumer waste separation must be easy and attractive for inhabitants
  2. Importance of separation must be transparent
  3. Subsidies must be provided to stimulate waste separation.
  4. A proper collection bin for individuals or neighborhood

These pillars form the basis of the agenda of change.

2015 - 2020 Find stakeholders for the project

In order to start implementation in 2020, stakeholders have to be found to execute all the subsystems. To increase success of implementation action plans need to be made in collaboration with involved stakeholders as literature in this course suggests. HVC and the Texel municipality will have to decide on how the profit is divided. Usually the waste processor receives the money for processing the waste, however in this case waste is not always processed by HVC since waste is used as a resource. Therefore part of the profit needs to go to the municipality, so they can invest this back into the community.

2018- 2020 Design of a proper collection bin for blue economy

A proper collection bin is essential to stimulate waste separation to implement the blue economy principle. To increase the involvement of the Texel inhabitants, this collection bin could be designed by an artist from Texel, using locally sourced materials. This must happen in cooperation with HCV, since they are responsible for waste collection.

2018- 2020 Design application and data entry system that creates transparency

Ms. Saanen indicated that it is impossible to cut waste taxes for those who are separating, since this is regulated on a higher level. To increase citizen participation transparency on what happens with the waste after it has been collected is important. An app, which citizen can consult, could give more information by for example releasing movies on the growth of shiitakes with coffee waste of the neighborhoods. QR tags on shiitakes packaging or coffee packaging can be added to refer to this app.

The app can also give statistics to show progress in the separation rate. It should be transparent how much waste (the quantity) is collected per neighborhood, the quality of the separated waste (whether it is truly separated from other waste) and the profits that the HVC and the municipality has made by selling the waste. Ideally inhabitants can influence how these profits are spent and can get insight where the profits have gone to. For example, inhabitants can vote if the profit goes to a local soccer club, plant three in the neighborhood or improve current playing ground of the kids. In this manner, separating waste is beneficial to the community, which could increase waste separation.

To create this kind of transparency an application should be developed in collaboration with HVC and the municipality, since they have to provide this kind of data. This application should be supported with an data entry system HVC and the municipality can access to enter their data to communicate this to inhabitants.

2020 Distribute the collection bin for free to all inhabitants by obtaining a subsidy

To increase the separation rate, the collection bin should be distributed for free. The municipality of Texel could obtain a subsidy for this, to produce the collection bins. In 2014 a subsidy was provided to ‘Preijde Plant Marketing’ that stimulates the transition of food towards local ‘Wadden-products’ (Waddenfonds, 2014). Our designed system stimulates local food production by using waste as a resource. It is therefore likely that a collection bin to make this happen, could receive a subsidy as well. In case it is not possible, the municipality could also make an investment themselves. A higher separation rate, leads to more profit since the municipality can sell more waste. Distributing free collection bins that makes this happen, is therefore an investment.

2020-2025 Education on waste separation

Once the collection bins are distributed, education on how to dispose waste and on how to use this bin is necessary. Cognitive ergonomics is important in the design of the collection bin to increase the separation rate. The collection bin can be distributed with a folder, which briefly explains how to dispose waste and gives an introduction on the application. This folder should communicate that by separating waste, inhabitants have influence on how profit is spend by the municipality. The application can be consulted to gain transparency, vote on how profit is spend and questions on waste disposal.

2020-2065 Promote Localized products

Local products, which make use of waste separation such as Shiitakes, can be labeled as products of the “Texel Blue Economy”.Texelaars could feel proud they have contributed to this, which could make these products more attractive to buy. The possibilities of this idea have been explained in the interview with Ms. Saanen and refer to the ‘Buy Irish’-case.

2020-2025 Prepare program for primary school on waste separation

Since children are the future, educating them on waste separation can make a huge difference. Together with involved stakeholders, teachers and parents of children who go to primary a school a program can be developed that highlights the importance of separating waste and explain how waste separation is done in an optimal way and what happens with the separated waste afterwards. Goals of this campaign would be to show the efforts of the government to protect the environment of Texel and awareness of the state of the environment on Texel. This program can be supported with excursions to the facilities of involved stakeholders.

2020-2065 Update the app

The app needs to be updated with new information and data on waste separation. Since the municipality and HVC will obtain profit from it, it makes sense that HVC and the municipality are responsible for updating this application to stimulate a higher waste separation rate.

2025-2030 Find new stakeholders

Once the program has run for five years, new stakeholders can be attracted with the success of the program. Additional promotion can lead to an expanded network of stakeholders to create a self-supportive Texel.

2025-2065 Program in primary school on waste separation

 The program on primary school can be initiated. Excursions will get children in contact with waste separation and the importance of it for the environment of Texel. When they come home they will tell their parents about it, which can stimulate waste separation in their home. Assuming that children will remain in primary school for 8 years a time span of 40 years leads to 5 generations, which are familiar with the concept of waste separation. Children who participated in 2025 are grown up adults in 2065. It can therefore be assumed that in 2065 waste separation is fully integrated in the daily life.


Expand selection Contract selection

6.2 Biodigester & transport system

For transport biofuel produced by the bio-digester will be used. Biofuels such as ethanol and bio-diesel have the potential of decreasing the greenhouse gas emissions that would take place if normal fossil fuels will be used to power the new transport system (Hunt, 2006). This part therefore focusses on the implementation of the bio-digester.

2015-2018 Obtain support from farmers that want to exploit the biodigester

Farmers should form a collective that wants to exploit the biodigester. The size of the collective can vary between 5 and 40 farmers. The collective has to collect enough money (also with subsidies) to build a biodigester. It is also important that they have good contacts and contracts with other biomass suppliers (for example with Maarten Dijker of the mushroom cultivation).

2015-2018 Inform inhabitants on implementation of the biodigester

The municipality has the task to inform local residents and in this way try to prevent protests. They must communicate that the biodigester allows them to become more self-supportive and more sustainable.

2015-2018 Obtain permission to build the biodigester

The municipality has to give the right permissions for the construction of the bio digester. On the higher governmental level it is important that the white list gets extended with the types of biomass present on the island. In that way, also suppliers of for example coffee waste can join.

2015-2020 Find subsidies

In 2020 the collection bins will be distributed, meaning that before this time the funds need to be found to embed the new technology to produce biofuel. The Municipality is expected to set long-term goals and to set rules and laws for the achievement of such goals. A good way of starting the shift towards a new sustainable way of moving waste and food would be cooperating directly with the actor (HVC) in order to find funds and to set schedules. A complicated issue to solve at the first steps will be the making the all parts of the new network cooperating with each other and to balance the waste and food streams. Schedules for the synchronization of the different parts will be needed before 2020, while considering the possibility that not all the components of the new bio-cycle will be built yet.

2018-2020 Build biodigester

Since in 2012 there were already 232 biodigesters located in the Netherlands, it is assumable that building a bio digester on Texel will not give any problems once permission is granted.  

2020 Start transportation which is partly based on biofuel

It is possible that the biodigester does not receive enough material in the beginning to produce enough biofuel for transportation. Continuous research on how to improve biofuel production and taken actions to increase this is necessary. Although importing biofuel may not be sustainable since it involves transport, it could be interesting to analyze if it is more sustainable to run on important biofuel in the starting phase than to run on fossil fuels. This research has to be conducted between 2015 and 2020.

2020-2025 Continues research to new technologies to improve the bio-digester and to increase material supply for the biodigester

The biodigesters need huge amounts of biomass, thus manure and co-products. In this period of time, the collection from manure from farms and coproducts through waste separation needs to be increased. The more materials for the biodigester can be collected, the more biofuel can be produced.

2025-2030 optimize the schedule for material exchange.

Once research is performed on how to increase material supply for the biodigester and waste separation has already been implemented for a while, more attention can be paid to the moment of exchanging waste.  In this period of time it is important to optimize the schedule since the program has run for a while now and is becoming more stable.

Expand selection Contract selection

6.3 Mushroom cultivation

Mushroom cultivation on coffee waste is already done in the Netherlands, but not yet on Texel. However since there are companies that already have implemented this method and these companies are willing to share their knowledge, it is likely that implementation of mushroom cultivation farming on coffee waste can happen within 10 years. Besides this de Texelse Paddenstoelenkwekerij already has a network to distribute shiitake mushrooms.

2015-2020 Pilot for cultivating on coffee waste

Before implementing the system a pilot can be initiated by using coffee waste of current restaurants that buy shiitake mushrooms from Texelse Paddenstoelenkwekerij. A workshop at Rotterzwam can be followed to learn more on shiitake cultivation on coffee waste. Since the hospitality industry benefits from shiitake cultivation and the coffee waste is wasted anyway, the hospitality industry can give the coffee waste to Texelse Paddenstoelenkwekerij for free. To collect the coffee waste it is the easiest to use the existing delivery moments of the shiitake mushrooms. This could make the deal interesting for Maarten Dijker, since production cost are lowered since the sterilization process is not necessary when using the free coffee spent. This makes the pilot attractive. Through this method Maarten Dijker and the hospitality industry are able to increase shiitake mushroom production on a costs effective sustainable manner.

2015-2020 Create relationships between Texelse Paddenstoelenkwekerij, municipality and HVC

To be able to bring the coffee waste of households to the Texelse Paddenstoelenkwekerij, households will need to separate coffee waste. A separate division in the collection bin for coffee waste can be made. De Texelse Paddenstoelenkwekerij, municipality and HVC have to agree on a contract and price for receiving coffee waste. The price can be based on the pilot, which gives more insights in costs for producing shiitakes mushrooms on coffee waste.

2020 Start to collect coffee waste from households

Once everyone has receive the collection bin, coffee waste collection can be initiated and distributed to Texelse Paddenstoelenkwekerij.

2020-2025 Expand Texelse Paddenstoelenkwekerij

With an increasing supply of coffee waste, the Texelse paddenstoelenkwekerij will have to expand its facility to produce more shiitake mushrooms. Calculations in chapter 6 indicate that at a certain point there is enough shiitake production so restaurants can include shiitakes in their menus.

2025-2030 Promote local used shiitake mushrooms at restaurants

Once production of shiitake mushrooms is high enough, the usage of local shiitake mushrooms cultivated on coffee waste can be promoted and labeled with ‘Texelse Blue Economy’. This may attract more customers who are interested in locally sourced sustainable food.

Expand selection Contract selection

6.4 Worm Farming facility

The worming facility can only run once there is enough food for the worms, meaning waste separation must already take place. Although it is not clear yet which actor will be responsible for the worm farming facility, implementation steps will be discussed in this section.

2018-2020 Prepare worming farming facility

Worm farming bins and ingredients need to be bought to start implementation in 2020. Further research is necessary to find optimal conditions.

2020-2025 Expand worming farming facility

When the collection bin is distributed, it is likely that the separation rate will increase and with that the worm feeding. When the amount of worms rises, the facility needs to grow. Once there are enough worms, worms can be used as feeding for fish and birds.

2022 Start to supply worms as feeding

Within two years it is likely that there are enough worms for reproduction, while worms are also used as feeding for fish and birds.

2025-2030 Research to the worm bio filter

Once enough experience is gained in worm production, research can be done on creating a bio-filter of worms. Since the idea already exists, it is likely that in 2025 more information on this is available and technology has become cheaper.

2025-2030 Prepare license and build infrastructure

At the same time a license is needed to implement the bio-filter and to build an infrastructure to filter water through a bio-filter.

2030-2032 Implement the bio filter

In 2030 the bio-filter can be implemented to filter the water, which can be used for irrigation or drink water for animals, depending on the quality of the water.

2032-2065 Expand bio filter facility

Once there are more worms and there is a constant reproduction, more filters can be placed to filter water for irrigation or water for feedstock.

Expand selection Contract selection

6.5 Aquaculture

Research for creating optimal conditions for aquaponics is still on-ongoing. This also makes it hard to estimate how much fish and nutrition is needed to keep the eco-system in balance. It also depends on the types of fish and types of plants. Therefore it is hard to make a technology roadmap from 2020 to 2065.

It is likely that implementation of the aquaculture system will take longer. However this will not have a big influence on the total system since the aquaculture system only provides grass and plants for feedstock, which in the beginning can also be replaced by imported feeding. The earlier this sub-system is implemented, the earlier Texel can become self-supportive.

2015-2020 Find stakeholders for aquaponics

In case Ecomare and NIOZ are interested in aquaponics research, stakeholders have to be found that want to join as well to get enough investments to perform research. Since aquaponics can contribute to sustainable food production for a rising global population, international partners can be involved as well.

2020-2025 Research towards aquaponics on Texel

Once there is enough funding, research can be performed to the optimal conditions for aquaponics on Texel. General research on optimizing this ecosystem can be performed as well.

2025-2030 Aquaponics pilot

Once research is performed, the first pilots can be initiated. In these pilots the fertilizer of the biodigester can be added to the algae tank and worms of the worm farming can be added as fish feeding. Grass and plants that grow as a result, can be given to feedstock at farms.

2030-2040 Optimize organization

Once the pilot is successful organization of resource exchange can be optimized. Fertilizers and worms can be added at the right time. Since grass and plant production can be more stabilized once optimal conditions have been achieved, a continuous stream of grass and plants can be delivered to farms. The aquaponics facility center can also expand to support more farms in animal feeding production.

Expand selection Contract selection

7. Linkages with other subsystems

Our design proposal is strictly connected with other sub-systems. The new self-supportive nature of the system of material and waste will have different interactions with: Food and more, Health and happiness, Leisure and knowledge and Texel as host.


Food and more

The design is focused on a bio-cycle system of the organic materials produced and shipped on the island. The basic idea is to consider the food and organic waste as good lymph to be returned to the production of food, or to be turned into something else useful to the community.

Since the focus of our design is the potential of the extensive exchange of biological materials on the island, food plays an important role. Restaurants, cattle breeders, farmers and supermarkets are the main actors involved. The main involvement will be dealing with their waste and food supply. For example the scrap food from restaurants will be collected and used to feed animals, while the scrap vegetables and other organic material coming from the crop farming will be used by the bio-digester to become biofuel and so on. No food will become waste, either landfilled or incinerated.


Health and happiness

The design strives for the making of a balanced system in which all the actors involved have benefits. The more scrap food, organic waste and other materials are recycled or turned into fuel the more sustainable the island gets. If you consider that the sustainability goals will become part of the status of the island in the near future, Texel people will become more happy about being self-supportive also in terms of materials and waste while being an important part of the whole system. Health will benefit from the less production of waste and a better handling of it, which will eventually reduce the pollution of the sea and beaches and less pollutant that could be found in the food production.


Texel as host

The tourism sector will be involved because the whole chain of food production and reuse of waste will become attractive for tourists. The idea is to connect the technologies belonging to the new bio-cycle network also in a tourist-oriented way. When Texel will have gained the fame of self-supportive island, part of the tourists will be also coming to see how the municipality made it. The tourism sector will be involved by making the new technologies places of interest. They will be advertised and tours will be organized by a proper association. In this way the tourism sector will increase and also the popularity of Texel in the Netherlands and the rest of Europe.


Expand selection Contract selection

8. Conclusion

Collaboration and involvement of stakeholders is essential to implement this system successfully. This system exists out of a lot of sub-system and many different required involved stakeholders. These stakeholders are all dependent of each other, since waste of one stakeholder, becomes a resource for the other.

Although it will remain a challenge to implement this system, Texelaars are known as a strong community. Striving towards the same goal ‘Creating a self-supportive sustainable Texel’ can connect them even more and operate as an unit.

In the Texel week one subsystem of the blue economy system is validated through interviews with stakeholders. Through an interview with Maarten Dijker of the Texelse Paddestoelen Kwekerij and interviews with restaurants that use shiitakes mushrooms in their menu, feasibility of implementation of mushroom cultivation on coffee waste is tested. Through collaboration adaptations can be made to increase chance of success. In the future stakeholders of other sub-systems need to be interviewed as well, to involve them in the design process and increase the chance that the project will be executed successfully. 


N.B. This section will be finalized on Texel.

Expand selection Contract selection

9. Arrival on Texel

With the previous eight chapters as preparation, the team left for the project week on Texel. In this week we visited many companies on Texel (the Teso, Texelse Paddestoelenkwekerij, NIOZ and more) spoke to many local people and collected new information. All this gave us new insights and required adjustments of the design we proposed earlier. We discovered that it is very difficult for people from outside to give advice on how waste streams have to be connected to each since we don’t know the exact streams. Besides, we don’t know exactly the needs and desired of the actors on Texel. Also, we are not able to map all potential actors on the island. For example: when we visited Maarten Dijker of the Texelse Paddestoelenkwekerij, we discovered that his existing products streams are already quite sustainable (he uses woodwaste). Our proposal (use coffee waste) was not a good option for him since the demand of his customers is very fluctuating due to the tourism industry. Since wood requires shorter preparation time than coffee waste, the coffee waste is not flexible enough for the small business of Maarten.  

The week gave us the insight that we cannot tell the local people how to change their streams or techniques with a top-down appraoch, but we identify barriers in their growth process and give ideas to overcome these barriers. In this case, the solution seemed to help them to connect to each other. Currently, it was not transparent where waste is for sale (and companies sometimes do not know that their waste is valuable for others) and this can be improved according us.

The chapter materials and waste in the book describes the new proposal of the sub-system Material & Waste  is presented. In the overall Jutter 2030 proposal, we have suggested the improvements to the website 'De Uitdaging' which is described in our chapter in the book. The general idea follows from the aforementioned; we want to stimulate the blue economy way of thinking in Texel by making the valuable waste streams on Texel more visible. We trust on the Texelaars to be innovative enough to create new opportunities with this information.

Expand selection Contract selection