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Biomass-Bioenergy Crops in the United States: A Changing Paradigm
- The world energy paradigm is changing from one based on petroleum to one based on a mixture of energy platforms. This change is precipitated by a finite petroleum supply, an expanding global demand, and political instability in areas with major petroleum reserves. The mixed energy platform will include an array of renewable energy sources. The agricultural and forestry sectors have the potential to provide several plant-based products. Corn (Zea mays L.) grain for ethanol has long been utilized at least in some locations. Soydiesel is an expanding market. Technology is rapidly advancing to utilizing crop biomass, perennial grasses, woody perennials and forest products for the production of ethanol via a cellulosic platform and/or utilizing pyrolysis to generate syngas and other products/co-products. Emerging specialty crops have potential to supply feedstock as well. Altering fundamental aspects of plant growth, development, and responses to biotic and abiotic stresses and the opportunities to increase productivity and conversion-process efficiencies are strategies to expand biomass availability and usage. As this new platform emerges, cellulosic ethanol production brings new concerns: competing uses for crop or crop products, co-products, competition for land base, and management strategies to protect soil, water, and climate resources. As the energy paradigm shifts, the balance among competing needs will be critical to achieve sustainable food, fiber, and energy while protecting the soil resource and the environment. This emphasizes avoiding potential negative environment consequences of new bioenergy technologies and presents strategies on how this may be achieved.
Johnson, Jane M.F. , Coleman, Mark D. , Gesch, Russ , Jaradat, Abdullah , Mitchell, Rob , Reicosky, Don , Wilhelm, W.W.
biomass , bioenergy , crops , Zea mays , corn , ethanol , soybeans , grasses , perennials , forest products , cellulose , sustainable agriculture , crop yield , biodiesel , woody plants , hardwood , biodiversity
- Includes references
- Americas Journal of Plant Science and Biotechnology 2007, v. 1, no. 1
Journal Articles, USDA Authors, Peer-Reviewed
- Works produced by employees of the U.S. Government as part of their official duties are not copyrighted within the U.S. The content of this document is not copyrighted.