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  • Diversification and use of bioenergy to maintain future grasslands

    分类: 生物学 >> 植物学 >> 植物学研究、实验与植物演化、发展 提交时间: 2016-05-31

    摘要:Grassland agriculture is experiencing a number of threats including declining profitability and loss of area to other land uses including expansion of the built environment as well as from cropland and forestry. The use of grassland as a natural resource either in terms of existing vegetation and land cover or planting of new species for bioenergy and other nonfood applications presents an opportunity, and potential solution, to maintain the broader ecosystem services that perennial grasslands provide as well as to improve the options for grassland farmers and their communities. This paper brings together different grass or grassland-based studies and considers them as part of a continuum of strategies that, when also combined with improvements in grassland production systems,will improve the overall efficiency of grasslands as an important natural resource and enable a greater area to be managed, replanted or conserved. These diversification options relate to those most likely to be available to farmers and land owners in the marginally economic or uneconomic grasslands of middle to northern Europe and specifically in the UK. Grasslands represent the predominant global land use and so these strategies are likely to be relevant to other areas although the grass species used may vary. The options covered include the use of biomass derived from the management of grasses in the urban and semi urban environment, semi-natural grassland systems as part of ecosystem management, pasture in addition to livestock production, and the planting and cropping of dedicated energy grasses. The adoption of such approaches would not only increase income from economically marginal grasslands, but would also mitigate greenhouse gas emissions from livestock production and help fund conservation of these valuable grassland ecosystems and landscapes, which is increasingly becoming a challenge.

  • Genetic variation and bidirectional gene flow in the riparian plant Miscanthus lutarioriparius, across its endemic range: implications for adaptive potential

    分类: 生物学 >> 植物学 >> 植物细胞学与植物遗传学、植物形态学 提交时间: 2016-05-04

    摘要:

    Miscanthus lutarioriparius is an endemic species that grows along the middle and lower reaches of the Yangtze River and is a valuable source of germplasm for the development of second-generation energy crops. The plant that propagates via seeds, stem nodes, and rhizomes shows high phenotypic variation and strong local adaptation. Here, we examined the magnitude and spatial distribution of genetic variation in M. lutarioriparius across its entire distributional range and tested underlying factors that shaped its genetic variation. Population genetic analyses were conducted on 644 individuals from 25 populations using 16 microsatellite markers. M. lutarioriparius exhibited a high level of genetic variation (HE = 0.682–0.786; A= 4.74–8.06) and a low differentiation (FST = 0.063; Dest = 0.153). Of the total genetic variation, 10% was attributed to the differences among populations (df = 24, < 0.0001), whereas 90% was attributed to the differences among individuals (df = 619, ≤ 0.0001). Genetic diversity did not differ significantly across longitudes and did not increase in the populations growing downstream of the Yangtze River. However, significant associations were found between genetic differentiation and spatial distance. Six genetic discontinuities were identified, which mostly distributed among downstream populations. We conclude that anthropogenic factors and landscape features both contributed to shaping the pattern of gene flow in M. lutarioriparius, including long-distance bidirectional dispersal. Our results explain the genetic basis of the high degree of adaptability in M. lutarioriparius and identify potential sources of new germplasm for the domestication of this potential second-generation energy crop.

  • Environmental costs and benefits of growing Miscanthus for bioenergy in the UK

    分类: 生物学 >> 植物学 >> 植物生态学和植物地理学 提交时间: 2016-05-04

    摘要:

    Planting the perennial biomass crop Miscanthus in the UK could offset 2–13 Mt oil eq. yr−1, contributing up to 10% of current energy use. Policymakers need assurance that upscaling Miscanthus production can be performed sustainably without negatively impacting essential food production or the wider environment. This study reviews a large body of Miscanthus relevant literature into concise summary statements. Perennial Miscanthus has energy output/input ratios 10 times higher (47.3 ± 2.2) than annual crops used for energy (4.7 ± 0.2 to 5.5 ± 0.2), and the total carbon cost of energy production (1.12 g CO2-C eq. MJ−1) is 20–30 times lower than fossil fuels. Planting on former arable land generally increases soil organic carbon (SOC) with Miscanthus sequestering 0.7–2.2 Mg C4-C ha−1 yr−1. Cultivation on grassland can cause a disturbance loss of SOC which is likely to be recovered during the lifetime of the crop and is potentially mitigated by fossil fuel offset. N2O emissions can be five times lower under unfertilized Miscanthus than annual crops and up to 100 times lower than intensive pasture. Nitrogen fertilizer is generally unnecessary except in low fertility soils. Herbicide is essential during the establishment years after which natural weed suppression by shading is sufficient. Pesticides are unnecessary. Water-use efficiency is high (e.g. 5.5–9.2 g aerial DM (kg H2O)−1, but high biomass productivity means increased water demand compared to cereal crops. The perennial nature and belowground biomass improves soil structure, increases water-holding capacity (up by 100–150 mm), and reduces run-off and erosion. Overwinter ripening increases landscape structural resources for wildlife. Reduced management intensity promotes earthworm diversity and abundance although poor litter palatability may reduce individual biomass. Chemical leaching into field boundaries is lower than comparable agriculture, improving soil and water habitat quality.

  • Evaluation of the ECOSSE model for simulating soil organic carbon under Miscanthus and short rotation coppice‐willow crops in Britain

    分类: 生物学 >> 植物学 >> 植物生态学和植物地理学 提交时间: 2016-05-04

    摘要:

    In this paper, we focus on the impact on soil organic carbon (SOC) of two dedicated energy crops: perennial grass Miscanthus x Giganteus (Miscanthus) and short rotation coppice (SRC)-willow. The amount of SOC sequestered in the soil is a function of site-specific factors including soil texture, management practices, initial SOC levels and climate; for these reasons, both losses and gains in SOC were observed in previous Miscanthus and SRC-willow studies. The ECOSSE model was developed to simulate soil C dynamics and greenhouse gas emissions in mineral and organic soils. The performance of ECOSSE has already been tested at site level to simulate the impacts of land-use change to short rotation forestry (SRF) on SOC. However, it has not been extensively evaluated under other bioenergy plantations, such as Miscanthus and SRC-willow. Twenty-nine locations in the United Kingdom, comprising 19 paired transitions to SRC-willow and 20 paired transitions to Miscanthus, were selected to evaluate the performance of ECOSSE in predicting SOC and SOC change from conventional systems (arable and grassland) to these selected bioenergy crops. The results of the present work revealed a strong correlation between modelled and measured SOC and SOC change after transition to Miscanthus and SRC-willow plantations, at two soil depths (0–30 and 0–100 cm), as well as the absence of significant bias in the model. Moreover, model error was within (i.e. not significantly larger than) the measurement error. The high degrees of association and coincidence with measured SOC under Miscanthus and SRC-willow plantations in the United Kingdom, provide confidence in using this process-based model for quantitatively predicting the impacts of future land use on SOC, at site level as well as at national level.

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  • Simulation of greenhouse gases following land‐use change to bioenergy crops using the ECOSSE model: a comparison between site measurements and model predictions

    分类: 生物学 >> 植物学 >> 植物生态学和植物地理学 提交时间: 2016-05-04

    摘要:

    This article evaluates the suitability of the ECOSSE model to estimate soil greenhouse gas (GHG) fluxes from short rotation coppice willow (SRC-Willow), short rotation forestry (SRF-Scots Pine) and Miscanthus after land-use change from conventional systems (grassland and arable). We simulate heterotrophic respiration (Rh), nitrous oxide (N2O) and methane (CH4) fluxes at four paired sites in the UK and compare them to estimates of Rh derived from the ecosystem respiration estimated from eddy covariance (EC) and Rh estimated from chamber (IRGA) measurements, as well as direct measurements of N2O and CH4 fluxes. Significant association between modelled and EC-derived Rh was found under Miscanthus, with correlation coefficient (r) ranging between 0.54 and 0.70. Association between IRGA-derived Rh and modelled outputs was statistically significant at the Aberystwyth site (= 0.64), but not significant at the Lincolnshire site (= 0.29). At all SRC-Willow sites, significant association was found between modelled and measurement-derived Rh (0.44 ≤  0.77); significant error was found only for the EC-derived Rh at the Lincolnshire site. Significant association and no significant error were also found for SRF-Scots Pine and perennial grass. For the arable fields, the modelled CO2 correlated well just with the IRGA-derived Rh at one site (= 0.75). No bias in the model was found at any site, regardless of the measurement type used for the model evaluation. Across all land uses, fluxes of CH4 and N2O were shown to represent a small proportion of the total GHG balance; these fluxes have been modelled adequately on a monthly time-step. This study provides confidence in using ECOSSE for predicting the impacts of future land use on GHG balance, at site level as well as at national level.

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    Candidate perennial bioenergy grasses have a higher albedo than annual row crops

    分类: 生物学 >> 植物学 >> 植物生态学和植物地理学 提交时间: 2016-05-04

    Jesse N. Miller Andy VanLoocke Nuria Gomez-Casanovas Carl J. Bernacchi

    摘要:

    The production of perennial cellulosic feedstocks for bioenergy presents the potential to diversify regional economies and the national energy supply, while also serving as climate ‘regulators’ due to a number of biogeochemical and biogeophysical differences relative to row crops. Numerous observational and model-based approaches have investigated biogeochemical trade-offs, such as increased carbon sequestration and increased water use, associated with growing cellulosic feedstocks. A less understood aspect is the biogeophysical changes associated with the difference in albedo (α), which could alter the local energy balance and cause local to regional cooling several times larger than that associated with offsetting carbon. Here, we established paired fields of Miscanthus × giganteus (miscanthus) and Panicum virgatum (switchgrass), two of the leading perennial cellulosic feedstock candidates, and traditional annual row crops in the highly productive ‘Corn-belt’. Our results show that miscanthus did and switchgrass did not have an overall higher α than current row crops, but a strong seasonal pattern existed. Both perennials had consistently higher growing season α than row crops and winter α did not differ. The lack of observed differences in winter α, however, masked an interaction between snow cover and species differences, with the perennial species, compared with the row crops, having a higher α when snow was absent and a much lower α when snow was present. Overall, these changes resulted in an average net reduction in annual absorbed energy of about 5 W m−2 for switchgrass and about 8 W m−2 for miscanthus relative to annual crops. Therefore, the conversion from annual row to perennial crops alters the radiative balance of the surface via changes in α and could lead to regional cooling.

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    Dedicated biomass crops can enhance biodiversity in the arable landscape

    分类: 生物学 >> 植物学 >> 植物生态学和植物地理学 提交时间: 2016-05-04

    Alison J. Haughton David A. Bohan Suzanne J. Clark Mark D. Mallott Victoria Mallott Rufus Sage Angela Karp

    摘要:

    Suggestions that novel, non-food, dedicated biomass crops used to produce bioenergy may provide opportunities to diversify and reinstate biodiversity in intensively managed farmland have not yet been fully tested at the landscape scale. Using two of the largest, currently available landscape-scale biodiversity data sets from arable and biomass bioenergy crops, we take a taxonomic and functional trait approach to quantify and contrast the consequences for biodiversity indicators of adopting dedicated biomass crops on land previously cultivated under annual, rotational arable cropping. The abundance and community compositions of biodiversity indicators in fields of break and cereal crops changed when planted with the dedicated biomass crops, miscanthus and short rotation coppiced (SRC) willow. Weed biomass was consistently greater in the two dedicated biomass crops than in cereals, and invertebrate abundance was similarly consistently higher than in break crops. Using canonical variates analysis, we identified distinct plant and invertebrate taxa and trait-based communities in miscanthus and SRC willows, whereas break and cereal crops tended to form a single, composite community. Seedbanks were shown to reflect the longer term effects of crop management. Our study suggests that miscanthus and SRC willows, and the management associated with perennial cropping, would support significant amounts of biodiversity when compared with annual arable crops. We recommend the strategic planting of these perennial, dedicated biomass crops in arable farmland to increase landscape heterogeneity and enhance ecosystem function, and simultaneously work towards striking a balance between energy and food security.

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    Hydrological responses of land use change from cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L.) to cellulosic bioenergy crops in the Southern High Plains of Texas, USA

    分类: 生物学 >> 植物学 >> 植物生态学和植物地理学 提交时间: 2016-05-04

    Yong Chen Srinivasulu Ale Nithya Rajan Cristine L. S. Morgan Jongyoon Park

    摘要:

    The Southern High Plains (SHP) region of Texas in the United States, where cotton is grown in a vast acreage, has the potential to grow cellulosic bioenergy crops such as perennial grasses and biomass sorghum (Sorghum bicolor). Evaluation of hydrological responses and biofuel production potential of hypothetical land use change from cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L.) to cellulosic bioenergy crops enables better understanding of the associated key agroecosystem processes and provides for the feasibility assessment of the targeted land use change in the SHP. The Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) was used to assess the impacts of replacing cotton with perennial Alamo switchgrass (Panicum virgatum L.), Miscanthus × giganteus (Miscanthus sinensis Anderss. [Poaceae]), big bluestem (Andropogon gerardii) and annual biomass sorghum on water balances, water use efficiency and biofuel production potential in the Double Mountain Fork Brazos watershed. Under perennial grass scenarios, the average (1994–2009) annual surface runoff from the entire watershed decreased by 6–8% relative to the baseline cotton scenario. In contrast, surface runoff increased by about 5% under the biomass sorghum scenario. Perennial grass land use change scenarios suggested an increase in average annual percolation within a range of 3–22% and maintenance of a higher soil water content during August to April compared to the baseline cotton scenario. About 19.1, 11.1, 3.2 and 8.8 Mg ha−1 of biomass could potentially be produced if cotton area in the watershed would hypothetically be replaced by Miscanthus, switchgrass, big bluestem and biomass sorghum, respectively. Finally, Miscanthus and switchgrass were found to be ideal bioenergy crops for the dryland and irrigated systems, respectively, in the study watershed due to their higher water use efficiency, better water conservation effects, greater biomass and biofuel production potential, and minimum crop management requirements.

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    Bioethanol potential from miscanthus with low ILUC risk in the province of Lublin, Poland

    分类: 生物学 >> 植物学 >> 植物生态学和植物地理学 提交时间: 2016-05-04

    Sarah J. Gerssen-Gondelach Birka Wicke Magdalena Borz?cka-Walker Rafa? Pude?ko Andre P. C. Faaij

    摘要:

    Increasing production of biofuels has led to concerns about indirect land-use change (ILUC). So far, significant efforts have been made to assess potential ILUC effects. But limited attention has been paid to strategies for reducing the extent of ILUC and controlling the type of LUC. This case study assesses five key ILUC mitigation measures to quantify the low-ILUC-risk production potential of miscanthus-based bioethanol in Lublin province (Poland) in 2020. In 2020, a total area of 196 to 818 thousand hectare of agricultural land could be made available for biomass production by realizing above-baseline yield developments (95–413 thousand ha), increased food chain efficiencies (9–30 thousand ha) and biofuel feedstock production on underutilized lands (92–375 thousand ha). However, a maximum 203–269 thousand hectare is considered legally available (not protected) and biophysically suitable for miscanthus production. The resulting low-ILUC-risk bioethanol production potential ranges from 12 to 35 PJ per year. The potential from this region alone is higher than the national Polish target for second-generation bioethanol consumption of 9 PJ in 2020. Although the sustainable implementation potential may be lower, the province of Lublin could play a key role in achieving this target. This study shows that the mitigation or prevention of ILUC from bioenergy is only possible when an integrated perspective is adopted on the agricultural and bioenergy sectors. Governance and policies on planning and implementing ILUC mitigation are considered vital for realizing a significant bioenergy potential with low ILUC risk. One important aspect in this regard is monitoring the risk of ILUC and the implementation of ILUC mitigation measures. Key parameters for monitoring are land use, land cover and crop yields.

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    Initial soil C and land‐use history determine soil C sequestration under perennial bioenergy crops

    分类: 生物学 >> 植物学 >> 植物生态学和植物地理学 提交时间: 2016-05-04

    Rebecca L. Rowe Aidan M. Keith Dafydd Elias Marta Dondini Pete Smith Jonathan Oxley Niall P. McNamara

    摘要:

    In the UK and other temperate regions, short rotation coppice (SRC) and Miscanthus x giganteus (Miscanthus) are two of the leading ‘second-generation’ bioenergy crops. Grown specifically as a low-carbon (C) fossil fuel replacement, calculations of the climate mitigation provided by these bioenergy crops rely on accurate data. There are concerns that uncertainty about impacts on soil C stocks of transitions from current agricultural land use to these bioenergy crops could lead to either an under- or overestimate of their climate mitigation potential. Here, for locations across mainland Great Britain (GB), a paired-site approach and a combination of 30-cm- and 1-m-deep soil sampling were used to quantify impacts of bioenergy land-use transitions on soil C stocks in 41 commercial land-use transitions; 12 arable to SRC, 9 grasslands to SRC, 11 arable to Miscanthus and 9 grasslands to Miscanthus. Mean soil C stocks were lower under both bioenergy crops than under the grassland controls but only significant at 0–30 cm. Mean soil C stocks at 0–30 cm were 33.55 ± 7.52 Mg C ha−1 and 26.83 ± 8.08 Mg C ha−1 lower under SRC (P = 0.004) and Miscanthus plantations (P = 0.001), respectively. Differences between bioenergy crops and arable controls were not significant in either the 30-cm or 1-m soil cores and smaller than for transitions from grassland. No correlation was detected between change in soil C stock and bioenergy crop age (time since establishment) or soil texture. Change in soil C stock was, however, negatively correlated with the soil C stock in the original land use. We suggest, therefore, that selection of sites for bioenergy crop establishment with lower soil C stocks, most often under arable land use, is the most likely to result in increased soil C stocks.

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    Tissue chemistry and morphology affect root decomposition of perennial bioenergy grasses on sandy soil in a sub‐tropical environment

    分类: 生物学 >> 植物学 >> 植物生态学和植物地理学 提交时间: 2016-05-04

    Xi Liang John E. Erickson Maria L. Silveira Lynn E. Sollenberger Diane L. Rowland

    摘要:

    Second-generation biofuels and bio-based products derived from lignocellulosic biomass are likely to replace current fuels derived from simple sugars and starch because of greater yield potential and less competition with food production. Besides the high aboveground biomass production, these bioenergy grasses also exhibit extensive root systems. The decomposition of root biomass greatly influences nutrient cycling and microbial activity and subsequent accumulation of carbon (C) in the soil. The objective of this research was thus to characterize root morphological and chemical differences in six perennial grass species in order to better understand root decomposition and belowground C cycling of these bioenergy cropping systems. Giant reed (Arundo donax), elephantgrass (Pennisetum purpureum), energycane (Saccharum spp.), sugarcane (Saccharum spp.), sweetcane (Saccharum arundinaceum), and giant miscanthus (Miscanthus × giganteus) were established in Fall 2008 in research plots near Gainesville, Florida. Root decomposition rates were measured in situ from root decomposition bags over 12 months along with initial and final root tissue composition. Root potential decomposition rate constant (K) was higher in elephantgrass (3.64 g kg−1 day−1) and sweetcane (2.77 g kg−1 day−1) than in sugarcane (1.62 g kg−1 day−1) and energycane (1.48 g kg−1 day−1). Notably, K was positively related to initial root tissue total C (Total C), total fiber glucose (TFG), total fiber xylose (TFX), and total fiber carbohydrate (TFC) concentrations, but negatively related to total fiber arabinose (TFA) and lignin (TL) concentrations and specific root volume (SRV). Among the six species, elephantgrass exhibited root traits most favorable for fast decomposition: high TFG, high TFX, high TFC, high specific root length (SRL), and a low SRV, whereas giant reed, sugarcane, and energycane exhibited slow decomposition rates and the corresponding root traits. Thus, despite similar aboveground biomass yields in many cases, these species are likely to differentially affect soil C accumulation.

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    Watershed‐scale impacts of bioenergy crops on hydrology and water quality using improved SWAT model

    分类: 生物学 >> 植物学 >> 植物生态学和植物地理学 提交时间: 2016-05-04

    Raj Cibin Elizabeth Trybula Indrajeet Chaubey Sylvie M. Brouder Jeffrey J. Volenec

    摘要:

    Cellulosic bioenergy feedstock such as perennial grasses and crop residues are expected to play a significant role in meeting US biofuel production targets. We used an improved version of the Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) to forecast impacts on watershed hydrology and water quality by implementing an array of plausible land-use changes associated with commercial bioenergy crop production for two watersheds in the Midwest USA. Watershed-scale impacts were estimated for 13 bioenergy crop production scenarios, including: production of Miscanthus × giganteus and upland Shawnee switchgrass on highly erodible landscape positions, agricultural marginal land areas and pastures, removal of corn stover and combinations of these options. Water quality, measured as erosion and sediment loading, was forecasted to improve compared to baseline when perennial grasses were used for bioenergy production, but not with stover removal scenarios. Erosion reduction with perennial energy crop production scenarios ranged between 0.2% and 59%. Stream flow at the watershed outlet was reduced between 0 and 8% across these bioenergy crop production scenarios compared to baseline across the study watersheds. Results indicate that bioenergy production scenarios that incorporate perennial grasses reduced the nonpoint source pollutant load at the watershed outlet compared to the baseline conditions (0–20% for nitrate-nitrogen and 3–56% for mineral phosphorus); however, the reduction rates were specific to site characteristics and management practices.

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    Radiation capture and conversion efficiencies of Miscanthus sacchariflorus, M. sinensis and their naturally occurring hybrid M. × giganteus

    分类: 生物学 >> 植物学 >> 植物生态学和植物地理学 提交时间: 2016-05-04

    Christopher Lyndon Davey Laurence Edmund Jones Michael Squance Sarah Jane Purdy Anne Louise Maddison Jennifer Cunniff Iain Donnison John Clifton-Brown

    摘要:

    Miscanthus is a rhizomatous C4 grass of great interest as a biofuel crop because it has the potential to produce high yields over a wide geographical area with low agricultural inputs on marginal land less suitable for food production. At the moment, a clonal interspecific hybrid Miscanthus × giganteus is the most widely cultivated and studied in Europe and the United States, but breeding programmes are developing newer more productive varieties. Here, we quantified the physiological processes relating to whole season yield in a replicated plot trial in Wales, UK. Light capture and conversion efficiency were parameterized for four carefully selected genotypes (M. sinensis, M. sacchariflorus and Miscanthus × giganteus). Differences in the canopy architecture in mature stands as measured by the extinction coefficient (k) were small (0.55–0.65). Sensitivity analysis on a mathematical model of Miscanthus was performed to quantify the accumulative intercepted photosynthetically active radiation (iPAR) in the growing season using (i) k, (ii) variation in the thermal responses of leaf expansion rate, (iii) base temperature for degree days and (iv) date start of canopy expansion. A 10% increase in k or leaf area per degree day both had a minimal effect on iPAR (3%). Decreasing base temperature from 10 to 9 °C gave an 8% increase in iPAR. If the starting date for canopy expansion was the same as shoot emergence date, then the iPAR increases by 12.5%. In M. × giganteus, the whole season above ground and total (including below ground) radiation-use efficiency (RUE) ranged from 45% to 37% higher than the noninterspecific hybrid genotypes. The greater yields in the interspecific hybrid M. × giganteus are explained by the higher RUE and not by differences in iPAR or partitioning effects. Studying the mechanisms underlying this complex trait could have wide benefits for both fuel and food production.

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    Impacts of willow and miscanthus bioenergy buffers on biogeochemical N removal processes along the soil–groundwater continuum

    分类: 生物学 >> 植物学 >> 植物生态学和植物地理学 提交时间: 2016-05-04

    Andrea Ferrarini Flavio Fornasier Paolo Serra Federico Ferrari Marco Trevisan Stefano Amaducci

    摘要:

    In this article, the belowground and aboveground biomass production in bioenergy buffers and biogeochemical N removal processes along the soil–groundwater continuum was assessed. In a sandy loam soil with shallow groundwater, bioenergy buffers of miscanthus and willow (5 and 10 m wide) were planted along a ditch of an agricultural field (AF) located in the Po valley (Italy). Mineral N forms and dissolved organic C (DOC) were monitored monthly over an 18-month period in groundwater before and after the bioenergy buffers. Soil samples were measured for inorganic N, DOC, microbial biomass C (MBC) and N (MBN), and potential nitrate reductase activity (NRA). The results indicated that bioenergy buffers are able to efficiently remove from groundwater the incoming NO3-N (62% – 5 m and 80% – 10 m). NO3-N removal rate was higher when nitrate input from AF increased due to N fertilization. Willow performed better than miscanthus in terms of biomass production (17 Mg DM ha−1 yr−1), fine root biomass (5.3 Mg ha−1) and N removal via harvesting (73 kg N ha−1). The negative nonlinear relationship found between NO3-N and DOC along the soil–groundwater continuum from AF to bioenergy buffers indicates that DOC:NO3-N ratio is an important controlling factor for promoting denitrification in bioenergy buffers. Bioenergy buffers promoted soil microbial functioning as they stimulated plant–microbial linkages by increasing the easily available C sources for microorganisms (as DOC). First, willow and miscanthus promoted high rates of biological removal of nitrate (NRA) along the soil profile. Second, rhizosphere processes activated the soil microbial community leading to significant increases in MBC and microbial N immobilization. Herbaceous and woody bioenergy crops have been confirmed as providing good environmental performances when cultivated as bioenergy buffers by mitigating the disservices of agricultural activities such as groundwater N pollution.

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    Biomass production and energy balance of herbaceous and woody crops on marginal soils in the Po Valley

    分类: 生物学 >> 植物学 >> 植物生态学和植物地理学 提交时间: 2016-05-04

    Stefano Amaducci Gianni Facciotto Sara Bergante Alessia Perego Paolo Serra Andrea Ferrarini Carlo Chimento

    摘要:

    A wealth of data and information on the cultivation of perennial biomass crops has been collected, but direct comparisons between herbaceous and woody crops are rare. The main objective of this research was to compare the biomass yield, the energy balance and the biomass quality of six perennial bioenergy crops: Populus spp., Robinia pseudoacacia, Salix spp., Arundo donax, Miscanthus × giganteus, and Panicum virgatum, grown in two marginal environments. For giant reed and switchgrass, two levels of nitrogen fertilization were applied annually (0–100 kg ha−1). Nitrogen fertilization did not affect biomass or energy production of giant reed; thus, it significantly reduced the energy return on investment (EROI) (from 73 to 27). In switchgrass, nitrogen fertilization significantly increased biomass production and the capacity of this crop to respond to water availability, making it a favorable option when only biomass production is a target. Net energy gain (NEG) was higher for herbaceous crops than for woody crops. In Casale, EROI calculated for poplar and willow (7, on average) was significantly lower than that of the other crops (14, on average). In Gariga, the highest EROI was calculated for miscanthus (98), followed by nonfertilized giant reed and switchgrass (82 and 73, respectively). Growing degree days10 during the cropping season had no effect on biomass production in any of the studied species, although water availability from May to August was a major factor affecting biomass yield in herbaceous crops. Overall, herbaceous crops had the highest ranking for bioenergy production due to their high biomass yield, high net energy gain (NEG), and biomass quality that renders them suitable to both biochemical and thermochemical conversion. Miscanthus in particular had the highest EROI in both locations (16 and 98, in Casale and Gariga), while giant reed had the highest NEG on the silty-loam soil of Gariga.

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    An interyear comparison of CO2 flux and carbon budget at a commercial‐scale land‐use transition from semi‐improved grassland to Miscanthus x giganteus

    分类: 生物学 >> 植物学 >> 植物生态学和植物地理学 提交时间: 2016-05-04

    Jon P. McCalmont Niall P. McNamara Iain S. Donnison Kerrie Farrar John C. Clifton-Brown

    摘要:

    A 6-ha field at Aberystwyth, UK, was converted in 2012 from semi-improved grassland to Miscanthus x giganteus for biomass production; results from transition to the end of the first 3 years are presented here. An eddy covariance sensor mast was established from year one with a second mast added from year two, improving coverage and providing replicated measurements of CO2 exchange between the ecosystem and atmosphere. Using a simple mass balance approach, above-ground and below-ground biomass production are combined with partitioned CO2 fluxes to estimate short-term carbon deltas across individual years. Years one and two both ended with the site as a net source of carbon following cultivation disturbances, cumulative NEE by the end of year two was 138.57 ± 16.91 g C m−2. The site became a cumulative net sink for carbon by the end of June in the third growing season and remained so for the rest of that year; NEE by the end of year three was −616.52 ± 39.39 g C m−2. Carbon gains were primarily found in biomass pools, and SOC losses were limited to years one (−1.43 Mg C ha−1 yr−1) and two (−3.75 Mg C ha−1 yr−1). Year three saw recoupment of soil carbon at 0.74 Mg C ha−1 yr−1 with a further estimate of 0.78 Mg C ha−1 incorporated through litter inputs over the 3 years, suggesting a net loss of SOC at 3.7 Mg ha−1 from a 0- to 30-cm baseline of 78.61 ± 3.28 Mg ha−1, down 4.7%. Assuming this sequestration rate as a minimum would suggest replacement of cultivation losses of SOC by year 8 of a potential 15- to 20-year crop. Potential coal replacement per hectare of harvest over the three-year study would offset 6–8 Mg of carbon emission, more than double the SOC losses.

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    Influence of spatially dependent, modeled soil carbon emission factors on life‐cycle greenhouse gas emissions of corn and cellulosic ethanol

    分类: 生物学 >> 植物学 >> 植物生态学和植物地理学 提交时间: 2016-05-04

    Zhangcai Qin Jennifer B. Dunn Hoyoung Kwon Steffen Mueller Michelle M. Wander

    摘要:

    Converting land to biofuel feedstock production incurs changes in soil organic carbon (SOC) that can influence biofuel life-cycle greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Estimates of these land use change (LUC) and life-cycle GHG emissions affect biofuels' attractiveness and eligibility under a number of renewable fuel policies in the USA and abroad. Modeling was used to refine the spatial resolution and depth extent of domestic estimates of SOC change for land (cropland, cropland pasture, grassland, and forest) conversion scenarios to biofuel crops (corn, corn stover, switchgrass, Miscanthus, poplar, and willow) at the county level in the USA. Results show that in most regions, conversions from cropland and cropland pasture to biofuel crops led to neutral or small levels of SOC sequestration, while conversion of grassland and forest generally caused net SOC loss. SOC change results were incorporated into the Greenhouse Gases, Regulated Emissions, and Energy use in Transportation (GREET) model to assess their influence on life-cycle GHG emissions of corn and cellulosic ethanol. Total LUC GHG emissions (g CO2eq MJ−1) were 2.1–9.3 for corn-, −0.7 for corn stover-, −3.4 to 12.9 for switchgrass-, and −20.1 to −6.2 for Miscanthus ethanol; these varied with SOC modeling assumptions applied. Extending the soil depth from 30 to 100 cm affected spatially explicit SOC change and overall LUC GHG emissions; however, the influence on LUC GHG emission estimates was less significant in corn and corn stover than cellulosic feedstocks. Total life-cycle GHG emissions (g CO2eq MJ−1, 100 cm) were estimated to be 59–66 for corn ethanol, 14 for stover ethanol, 18–26 for switchgrass ethanol, and −7 to −0.6 for Miscanthus ethanol. The LUC GHG emissions associated with poplar- and willow-derived ethanol may be higher than that for switchgrass ethanol due to lower biomass yield.

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    Evaluation of Miscanthus sinensis biomass quality as feedstock for conversion into different bioenergy products

    分类: 生物学 >> 植物学 >> 植物生态学和植物地理学 提交时间: 2016-05-04

    Tim van der Weijde Andreas Kiesel Yasir Iqbal Hilde Muylle Oene Dolstra Richard G. F. Visser Iris Lewandowski Luisa M. Trindade

    摘要:

    Miscanthus is a promising fiber crop with high potential for sustainable biomass production for a biobased economy. The effect of biomass composition on the processing efficiency of miscanthus biomass for different biorefinery value chains was evaluated, including combustion, anaerobic digestion and enzymatic saccharification for the production of bioethanol. Biomass quality and composition was analyzed in detail using stem and leaf fractions of summer (July) and winter (March) harvested biomass of eight compositionally diverse Miscanthus sinensis genotypes. Genotype performance in tests for enzymatic saccharification, anaerobic digestion and combustion differed extensively. The variation between the best and the worst performing genotype was 18% for biogas yield (ml g−1 dm) and 42% for saccharification efficiency (glucose release as %dm). The ash content of the best performing genotype was 62% lower than that of the genotype with the highest ash content and showed a considerably high ash melting temperature during combustion. Variation between genotypes in biomass quality for the different thermochemical bioconversion processes was shown to be strongly correlated to differences in biomass composition. The most important traits that contributed favorably to biogas yields and saccharification efficiency were a high content of trans-ferulic acid, a high ratio of para-coumaric acid to lignin and a low lignin content. Additionally, a high content of hemicellulosic polysaccharides positively affected saccharification efficiency. Low contents of ash and inorganic elements positively affect biomass quality for combustion and low potassium and chloride contents contributed to a higher ash melting temperature. These results demonstrate the potential for optimizing and exploiting M. sinensis as a multipurpose lignocellulosic feedstock, particularly for bioenergy applications.

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    High‐resolution spatial modelling of greenhouse gas emissions from land‐use change to energy crops in the United Kingdom

    分类: 生物学 >> 植物学 >> 植物生态学和植物地理学 提交时间: 2016-05-04

    Mark Richards Mark Pogson Marta Dondini Edward O. Jones Astley Hastings Dagmar N. Henner Matthew J. Tallis Eric Casella Robert W. Matthews Paul A. Henshall Suzanne Milner Gail Taylor Niall P. McNamara Jo U. Smith Pete Smith

    摘要:

    We implemented a spatial application of a previously evaluated model of soil GHG emissions, ECOSSE, in the United Kingdom to examine the impacts to 2050 of land-use transitions from existing land use, rotational cropland, permanent grassland or woodland, to six bioenergy crops; three ‘first-generation’ energy crops: oilseed rape, wheat and sugar beet, and three ‘second-generation’ energy crops: Miscanthus, short rotation coppice willow (SRC) and short rotation forestry poplar (SRF). Conversion of rotational crops to Miscanthus, SRC and SRF and conversion of permanent grass to SRF show beneficial changes in soil GHG balance over a significant area. Conversion of permanent grass to Miscanthus, permanent grass to SRF and forest to SRF shows detrimental changes in soil GHG balance over a significant area. Conversion of permanent grass to wheat, oilseed rape, sugar beet and SRC and all conversions from forest show large detrimental changes in soil GHG balance over most of the United Kingdom, largely due to moving from uncultivated soil to regular cultivation. Differences in net GHG emissions between climate scenarios to 2050 were not significant. Overall, SRF offers the greatest beneficial impact on soil GHG balance. These results provide one criterion for selection of bioenergy crops and do not consider GHG emission increases/decreases resulting from displaced food production, bio-physical factors (e.g. the energy density of the crop) and socio-economic factors (e.g. expenditure on harvesting equipment). Given that the soil GHG balance is dominated by change in soil organic carbon (SOC) with the difference among Miscanthus, SRC and SRF largely determined by yield, a target for management of perennial energy crops is to achieve the best possible yield using the most appropriate energy crop and cultivar for the local situation.

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    The impact of soil salinity on the yield, composition and physiology of the bioenergy grass Miscanthus × giganteus

    分类: 生物学 >> 植物学 >> 植物生态学和植物地理学 提交时间: 2016-05-04

    Evangelia Stavridou Astley Hastings Richard J. Webster Paul R. H. Robson

    摘要:

    High salinity land may provide an alternative resource for the cultivation of dedicated biomass crops for renewable energy and chemicals, thus avoiding competition for land use with food crops. The commercial perennial grass Miscanthus × giganteus is a leading biomass crop; however, its response to salt stress is largely unknown. Miscanthus × giganteus was grown in pots irrigated with nine different NaCl concentrations (0, 2.86, 5.44, 7.96, 10.65, 14.68, 17.5, 19.97 and 22.4 dS m−1). Biomass yield was reduced by 50% at 10.65 dS m−1 NaCl. Root dry matter inhibition occurred at the highest salt concentration tested, while rhizome dry weight and the ratios of root/rhizome and below-/above-ground dry matter were not affected by elevated salinity. The accumulative effect of increasing salinity reduced stem height and elongation, while photosynthesis was reduced to a smaller extent. The duration and strength of salinity exacerbated the reduction. Water use efficiency (WUE) was maintained except at the highest salinity and plants maintained stomatal conductance (gs) and leaf water content at low to moderate salinity. Miscanthus × giganteus showed strong induction of the osmoprotectant, proline and no significant increase in malondialdehyde content under increasing salinity. The ash content in leaves, increased, reducing the biomass quality at high salinity concentrations. The effects of salinity on the yield and the availability of land area in European geographical area for agriculture were investigated. Understanding the potential for growth of the C4 biomass crop Miscanthus on underutilized or abandoned land may offer a new range of targets for improved economics, crop management and breeding.

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