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Cactus pear as drought-tolerant crop for sustainable fuel and food

ScienceDaily (March 5, 2021 )

Titre : Cactus pear as drought-tolerant crop for sustainable fuel and food

Cactus crops remove carbon from the atmosphere, provide biofuel, food and livestock feed

ScienceDaily (March 5, 2021 )

Résumé
Could cactus pear become a major crop like soybeans and corn in the near future, and help provide a biofuel source, as well as a sustainable food and forage crop ? Researchers believe the plant, with its high heat tolerance and low water use, may be able to provide fuel and food in places that previously haven’t been able to grow sustainable crops

Descriptif
As part of the College’s Experiment Station unit, Cushman and his team recently published the results of a five-year study on the use of spineless cactus pear as a high-temperature, low-water commercial crop. The study, funded by the Experiment Station and the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture, was the first long-term field trial of Opuntia species in the U.S. as a scalable bioenergy feedstock to replace fossil fuel.

Results of the study, which took place at the Experiment Station’s Southern Nevada Field Lab in Logandale, Nevada, showed that Opuntia ficus-indica had the highest fruit production while using up to 80% less water than some traditional crops.

Cactus pear works well as a bioenergy crop because it is a versatile perennial crop. When it’s not being harvested for biofuel, then it works as a land-based carbon sink, removing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and storing it in a sustainable manner. One of the other goals of the project is to learn more about Opuntia stunting disease, which causes cactuses to grow smaller pads and fruit.

Story Source  : University of Nevada, Reno

Annonce (ScienceDaily)

Page publiée le 27 juin 2021