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The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) will soon explore the feasibility of offering crop insurance to producers of biofuel feedstocks ranging from straw to corn stover to woody biomass. This feasibility evaluation, to be funded by the Risk Management Agency, builds upon the USDA's ongoing effort to insure growers of switchgrass, energy cane and camelina.

Mark Schaff has an idea. He thinks that the interstate in his home of Etna Township in Licking County, OH should not be lined with grass that grows there wildly now. Instead, he wants something more useful. Schaff has urged state transportation officials to rip out the green stretches of turf that line the medians and plant biofuel crops like safflower, dwarf sunflower and canola instead. In addition to saving the state money on mowing expenses, Schaff points out that the crops could be sold to