Preventing the Next Kudzu: A Life-cycle Approach to Low Invasion-potential Bioenergy Production

February 22, 2016 2:30 pm — 3:30 pm

Co-sponsored by the Council for Agricultural Science and Technology

Bioenergy is being pursued globally to decrease greenhouse gas emissions and provide a reliable energy source. To lessen conflicts with existing food/feed production, bioenergy crops are bred to grow on marginal lands with minimal inputs. Many are concerned that new invasive species may be introduced as bioenergy crops.

This seminar will present the findings of a new commentary showing that the risk of invasion can most effectively be prevented through a life-cycle approach that adopts appropriate scientific and policy tools at each step in the production process, from crop selection to field production, feedstock transport and storage, and decommissioning—thus avoiding the "kudzu effect." This paper provides a clear, comprehensive framework to guide regulatory agencies in the selection and permitting of biofuel feedstocks. Expert commenters will provide an independent review following a presentation by the authors of the commentary.



  • Aviva Glaser, National Wildlife Federation
  • Anthony Koop, USDA-APHIS Plant Epidemiology and Risk Analysis Laboratory
  • Jonathan Jones, USDA-APHIS Plant Protection and Quarantine


  • Kurt Schescke, Executive Vice President, Council on Agricultural Science and Technology