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Switchgrass as a Dual-Purpose Grazing and Bioenergy Crop

By Bryan Nichols, Livestock Consultant,
James Rogers, Ph.D., Associate Professor,
Jon T. Biermacher, Ph.D., Center for Economic Information and Analysis Manager
and Jagadeesh Mosali, Ph.D.

Posted Jan. 11, 2013

The Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 set U.S. renewable fuel standards requiring the production of 16 billion gallons of ethanol from cellulosic biomass feedstocks by 2022. Switchgrass (Panicum virgatum L.), a native warm-season perennial grass, was evaluated by research funded through the United States Department of Energy as a primary cellulosic feedstock to achieve this goal. Switchgrass was identified because of its high biomass potential, perennial life-form and adaptability to marginal soils (McLaughlin and Kszos, 2005).

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