December 2013

Ethanol production, environmental sustainability and soil biodiversity in Brazil

Brazil has become a reference in the production and marketing of renewable energy through the strengthening of the ethanol productive chain from sugarcane, recognized as the most efficient in the agroenergy industry. However many questions remain regarding the environmental sustainability and land use effects of ethanol production, espcially with regard to soil biodiversity. Here Carlos Cerri and André Franco of the University of Sāo Paulo discuss their research project in the Cerrado where they are examining land use change enfects on soil fauna. 


Root herbivores: More than meets the eye

In this post, Carly Benefer makes a case for root herbivores with a bad reputation.  As key members of below-ground biodiversity, these destructive pests have important ecosystem functions just as any other species, but their positive side is often overlooked.