Challenges

Weed Control Duurzaamheid



Background

In order to keep traffic moving safely one of the duties of the province is removing weeds on and besides roads and waterways. In the past, chemicals like glyphosate (roundup) were regularly used to kill weeds. These herbicides eradicate the weeds completely, from leaves till the root system. Since the ban on governmental use of herbicides we have difficulty controlling weeds growing through asphalt cracks, and invasive species growing besides the road. Alternative weed control mainly exists of mechanical methods like mowing, burning or steaming. However, these methods often do not kill the plant completely and work poorly on invasive species. Hogweed and Japanese knotweed are able to grow back fast, with all sorts of negative consequences. Hogweed can cause life-threatening burns and the powerful roots of knotweed are able to penetrate concrete and asphalt. As a result, roads need to be maintained sooner, which in turn results in very high costs.

The challenge for startups:

Help us find a better way to control weeds along roads and in cracks in asphalt and
concrete.

Criteria

● Weeds are fully eradicated, above and below ground. Preventing the weeds to grow
at all is better than just removing them from time to time.
● The application will be developed and tested in the Northern Netherlands, but can
be used on a national scale.
● The startup isn’t afraid to think out of the box, but the solution needs to be
realistic and feasible.
● The solution can be safely applied along roads. We are familiar with animal weed
control (goats and pigs), but in this will create dangerous situations for busy roads.
● Solutions that can be used (among other species) to kill hogweed and knotweed are
preferred.
● The method of weed control has to work on both individual plants and groups of
plants.

Do you want to know when we have new challenges?

Fill in your email

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.