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A Roadmap for Poplar and Willow to Provide Environmental Services and to Build the Bioeconomy

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The Advanced Hardwood Biofuels Northwest project of the US has announced the release of a new paper describing how poplar and willow grown in environmental applications could be used for the production of renewable fuels and bio-based chemicals.

Written by a coalition of poplar and willow researchers from across the United States, 'A Roadmap for Poplar and Willow to Provide Environmental Services and to Build the Bioeconomy' outlines how woody energy crops can be grown in environmental applications for renewable energy markets.  The paper provides a summary of information and recommendations including:

  • benefits, both environmental and otherwise, of growing poplar and willow and opportunities for using the biomass from these plantings;
  • barriers to this new endeavour'
  • solutions to link biomass from poplar and willow grown for environmental applications to bioenergy markets.

The Roadmap is complemented by six discussion papers that provide examples of poplar and willow grown in environmental applications.  Links to these papers are provided below:

  1. Poplar for wastewater and biosolids management: an environmental application of the biocycle farm
  2. Potential for a hybrid poplar industry using recycled water: an environmental application of poplar in Idaho
  3. Willow buffers in agricultural systems: linking bioenergy production and ecosystem services
  4. Developing a vegetative cover using shrub willow (Salix spp.) in New York State
  5. Shrub willows: an ideal plant choice for living snow fences with multiple benefits
  6. Short-rotation coppice systems: environmental applications from Northern and Republic of Ireland

The Roadmap and the complementing discussion papers are published by Washington State University (WSU) Extension, 915 N. Broadway. Everett, WA, USA 98201-1409