Switchgrass is often cited as one of the most promising crops that could be grown in the U.S. for a variety of biomass processes, particularly directed combustion or as a feedstock for a cellulosic-ethanol processing project. For all its hype, there are few actual examples of its use. This week, however, brought news of a successful and promising application of switchgrass crops co-fired with coal.

Environmental Resource Trust's EcoPower program certifies the amount of power generated during the test burn that resulted from a renewable energy source, and allows the project team to market the RECs to companies, government organizations, and/or residential consumers who are willing to pay a small premium to ensure that a portion of their energy purchases go to a renewable power generator.