Jatropha, Challenges for a New Energy Crop
Jatropha curcas or Physic Nut is a small tree (bush plant) that produces fruits under tropical climate. The fruits contained seed that are ~40% oil rich. This oil is excellent for biodiesel. The bush is a now new coming crop because it may cope with harsh environmental conditions such as semi-aridity and poor land. It is considered as one alternative for climate mitigation that does not compete with arable land normally dedicated to food crop and can be used to regain degraded land or fight desertification. This bush has been considered seriously by the international community only recently (~2006-2008), but worldwide scientists did an outstanding job to drawn Jatropha out of its semi-wild status and bring it on the industrial scene. Problems remains, but we have now a comprehensive picture of this crop and almost every technological challenged were addressed. From now, the job will have to concentrate on breeding in order to domesticate this species. Therefore, it is the right time to sum up worldwide contributions in a comprehensive book with a breeding looking to improve the chance of this plant to stabilize as a crop and to fulfil with the expectations that humans invested in it. A book with this perspective will help international community to give a step on. The book will be a broad and comprehensive look on Jatropha until the details since the book is being contributed by international experts worldwide that have already published works in the international press of Science. Illustrations, tables geographic maps, GPS location, etc are added by each contributors according to the feeling they have concerning what they think their contribution should be. This book will benefit the scientific community immensely. Being aware of any challenges related to Jatropha, i.e. (i) its economy in Asia (India, China) and South America (Brazil), (ii) basics of biofuel technology, (iii) physiology, (iv) farming, (v) byproducts, (vi) biotechnology, (vii) genetic resource (germplasm) and their benefit for the crop by genetic transfer, (viii) genetic map, (ix) comparative genetics, (x) genomics. Breeders and technologist will have access to a complete digested view on Jatropha to decide where and how they should move on with their investigations.
The singular resource on this essential new crop for bioenergy productionIncludes international contributions for a better understanding of how to transform Jatropha curcas into a successful industrial crop and viable resource for productionThe book is an interdisciplinary compilation covering the economic importance of Jatropha, its genetic variability and domestication, germplasm resources, biology and physiology, biotechnology, farming, byproducts, and biofuels.