Cellulosic Feedstock Production and Environmental Benefits from Agroforest Systems Established on Marginal Lands

The expected outcomes from this project include having reliable biomass productivity estimates from agroforest systems on marginal soils in the Lower Mississippi Alluvial Valley (LMAV). Along with biomass production, the project team expects to understand the costs per ton of production and the energy balance of agroforest systems using cottonwood and switchgrass in combination. The project team will be able to compare financial returns and energy balances, and shifting of production inputs from agronomic production on low quality sites to biomass production. The results will be applicable to the LMAV and allow us to determine the potential shifts in the region's production from crops to biomass using agroforests on marginal lands. Because both switchgrass and trees have increasing production in the first years of development, the major project outcomes will not be realized until the third year. The project team expects to produce a variety of outputs, refereed journal articles, presentations at professional meetings, and through the Southern Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) grant, significant extension products, including landowner workshops, fact sheets, and a project website. The major pitfall for this project is that long-term biomass production estimates from agroforest systems, will, rely on growth projections of the trees, and assume that year 3 switchgrass production figures are sustainable. Validation and adjustment of these estimates will come from continued monitoring and data collection of the agroforest sites beyond this project's requested funding period.

  • Supplemental Notes:
    • Program Information: Advanced Research, Biobased Research


  • English


  • Status: Completed
  • Funding: $350000.00
  • Sponsor Organizations:

    Research and Innovative Technology Administration

    Department of Transportation
    1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
    Washington, DC  United States  20590
  • Project Managers:

    Johnson, Shawn

  • Performing Organizations:

    University of Arkansas, Monticello

    Monticello, AR   
  • Principal Investigators:

    Pelkki, Matthew

  • Start Date: 20090701
  • Expected Completion Date: 0
  • Actual Completion Date: 20130630
  • Source Data: RiP Project 31385

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01572199
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: Department of Transportation
  • Files: RIP
  • Created Date: Aug 4 2015 1:00AM