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The Center for Native Grasslands Management

Title: Establishment, production, and management needs of switchgrass for biomass feedstock in the Northeastern U. S. A
Year: 2002
Author(s): Sanderson, M. A., Adler, P., Skinner, R. H., Dell, C., Curran, B.
Source Title: Proceedings of the Third Eastern Native Grass Symposium
Source Type: Proceedings
pages: 92-97
Original Publication:  
Abstract: Switchgrass has been identified as a model herbaceous energy crop for the USA. The principal constraints to switchgrass production in the northeastern USA are reliable and economic establish techniques and efficient use of external nitrogen inputs. The economics of producing energy crops depend on biomass yield, conversion efficiency, and cost of fossil fuel. Higher costs of biofuels compared to fossil fuels may be offset by valuing environmental benefits such as reduced runoff and erosion and associated reduced losses of soil nutrients and organic matter, increased incorporation of soil C, and reduced use of agricultural chemicals. Use of warm-season perennial grasses may also mitigate increases in atmospheric CO2. A near zero net C exchange, depending on fertilizer and fossil fuel reduction by sequestration of C in soil organic matter. Biomass cropping systems may also be useful in recycling municipal sewage sludge and livestock manure and as buffer strips for protecting riparian zones. New research on biofuels at the USDA-ARS Pasture Systems and Watershed management research unit will focus on sustainable biofuels cropping systems.
Publisher: The North Carolina Botanical Garden, Chapel Hill, NC, October 1-3, 2002. Omnipress, Madison, WI
Editor(s): J. Randall