Sustainable fertilizer production - a holistic approach to a circular economy

Project title: Sustainable fertilizer production - a holistic approach to a circular economy

Partners: Atmonia, Agricultural University of Iceland, Marine Research Institute, Landgræðslan and Landsvirkjun

Research Fund: Rannís marketing plan

Initial year: 2021


Jónas Baldursson

Project Manager

The use of fertilizers in agriculture increases yields and lays the foundation for food security, locally and globally. Fertilizer production, however, is not sustainable. It emits greenhouse gases and is on the verge of depleting various limited resources.

The mapping and development of a cycle-economy process for the sustainable production of fertilizers, utilizing incidental by-products from various industries, is therefore a necessary step towards sustainability and food security. In this project, a group of Icelandic companies, institutions and other parties will seek the best ways to utilize Icelandic resources, by-products from various industries and sustainable production processes to produce sustainable fertilizers for Icelandic agriculture and land reclamation. The main emphasis will be on the main nutrients N, P, K and S. Fertilizer, slag, aquaculture sludge, compost, sludge and sediment S from Krafla Power Plant, in addition to ammonia from the Atmonia process will be used in the research.

Utilization of the results of the project can have a significant effect on reducing the country's carbon footprint and increasing food security. Recycling of raw materials and the use of waste will significantly reduce farmers' operating costs, build new jobs in Iceland and reduce the import and spending of foreign currency.

Here you can read the news and view photos from the experimental work in the project: Utilize aquaculture manure, human sludge, compost, sulfur and more

The report can be accessed here: Analysis of the amount of organic fertilizers in Iceland and opportunities for increased utilization.

A podcast about the project can be accessed here: