Populus, a genus of fast-growing trees, produces a significant amount of biomass in two years. Woody biomass can be converted to liquid fuels, such as ethanol.
“There has not been a market for it in the southeastern U.S., but there could be,” said Amy Brunner, associate professor of molecular genetics in the College of Natural Resources and Environment and an affiliate of the Fralin Life Science Institute. “It could also be a resource for power, pulp and paper.”
Read more about this project at http://www.vtnews.vt.edu/articles/2014/08/081914-cnre-brunnergrant.html