Willow Short Rotation Coppice to have environmental benefits regarding water and soil.
Land use is all. For sure, we see that every day new articles come up suggesting that abandoned lands, low competitive areas with marginal cereals (subsidized and dependent on government aids) have much more benefits considering the energy perspective and their reduced impacts. Here some good results:
Short rotation coppice (SRC) with willow has been grown in Sweden from the late 1980s to produce biomass for energy on agricultural land. This study evaluated the effects of SRC on water quality by determining differences in leaching of nitrogen and phosphorus to groundwater of a number of commercial “old” SRC willow stands in Sweden compared to adjacent arable fields grown with “ordinary” crops. The study was conducted in 16 locations under three vegetation seasons. NO3–N leaching from willow SRC fields was significantly lower than that from reference fields with cereals. The opposite was observed for PO4–P; concentrations in the groundwater of SRC were higher compared to reference fields. Sewage sludge applications were not responsible for the elevated PO4–P leaching under SRC compared to reference crops.
Keywords: Bioenergy – Biomass – Energy forest – Nitrate leaching – Phosphorus leaching – Salix