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Sustainable grain, pasture, and bioenergy systems (land use design)

We have research projects in several aspects of sustainability of production systems management and landscape design.

Through NEWBio, two Sungrant projects, and a Department of Energy project, we study the sustainability of bioenergy production systems in the NE and Midwest of the United States. In addition, we have an active role in the GSB-LACAF partnership which focuses on developing global sustainable bioenergy systems.

Virginia Pravia’s research focuses on the sustainability of crop-pastures rotations, particularly in no-till crop-pasture rotations in Uruguay. Crops include soybean, sorghum and other annual crops and the pastures are typically composed of fescue, white and red clover, and birdsfoot trefoil.

We also collaborate with colleagues at University of Sassari (Italy) studying carbon and nitrogen cycling in (1) a silvo-arable-pastoral system that includes annual Mediterranean pastures, cork oak woodlands, and vineyards in a mosaic ecosystem in the Berchidda Long Term Observatory (NE of Sardinia), and (2) intensively managed dairy systems in Arborea (W of Sardinia), an area of formerly sandy marshes that were reclaimed from the Mediterranean Sea in the first half of the 20th century.