In Indiana, the US Department of Energy awarded Purdue University a $1.59 million grant to conduct a sustainability assessment of energy crops for biofuels. The award is part of a $16.5 million renewable fuel initiative by the DOE to provide high-quality biomass while increasing economic viability for producers and improving the environment.
Researchers at Purdue will develop strategies to meet the demand for biofuel crops while promoting environmental quality and ecosystem health. The study includes a watershed-scale sustainability assessment of multiple energy crops such as miscanthus, switchgrass and hybrid poplar. They will evaluate sustainability in relation to soil erosion, water quality and quantity, biomass yield, profitability and aquatic biodiversity.
More background on the story from the Digest