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ARS Home » Southeast Area » Auburn, Alabama » Soil Dynamics Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #202385

Title: The Potential Use of Kudzu as a Biofuel

item Ziska, Lewis
item Runion, George
item Prior, Stephen - Steve
item Torbert, Henry - Allen
item Rogers Jr, Hugo

Submitted to: Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 10/24/2006
Publication Date: 10/24/2006
Citation: Gjerstad, D.H., Ziska, L.H., Runion, G.B., Prior, S.A., Torbert III, H.A., Rogers Jr, H.H. 2006. The Potential Use of Kudzu as a Biofuel [Abstract]. Alternative Energy Solutions from Alabama's Natural Resources Conference. CDROM

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: Recently, tremendous effort has been put forth to identify plants with potential to be used as biofuels. Kudzu (Pueraria lobata [Willd.] Ohwi), while native to the Orient, has proliferated as an invasive weed throughout the Southern U.S. It is currently at or near the top of invasive species lists for virtually every southern state. Kudzu, as a member of the Fabaceae family, is a natural nitrogen fixer and, thus, grows rapidly across the landscape with no inputs (e.g., fertilizers). Given its perennial growth habit, its rapid growth rate, and the fact that kudzu has a high starch content (particularly its root system), its potential as a biofuel could be tremendous. However, to date, this potential has gone unstudied. We propose to initiate an investigation into this potential by quantifying above- and belowground kudzu biomass production, and associated starch and nutrient content. This initial work will lead to more in-depth studies of potential kudzu production systems, harvesting techniques, and cost/benefit analyses.