Monthly Archives: November 2016


Sustainable agricultural practices based on biochar

More and more people are looking for sustainable solutions and processes in their lives.  We have spent a number of decades using science to develop synthetic solutions and now a chunk of humanity is determining that might not be the best, most healthy course for mankind.  A major area that has some concerned is our agriculture.  While people are looking for foods without chemicals sprayed on them we are also growing in numbers, meaning we need to produce more food than ever before to feed everyone.  We also need to do it in such a way that the next generation can feed themselves too.

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The potential of green charcoal

About 2 billion people face problems with where there energy will come from.  Many of them don’t have access to alternative energy sources as of yet and so depend on finding and burning wood for their energy needs. All across Africa, Asia and Latin America that wood is becoming harder and harder to find.  The need for energy leads to deforestation, deforestation then highlights drought problems.  It can also lead to desertification of the landscape.  And burning of all of that lumber releases all of that CO2 into the atmosphere and adds to global climate change.

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Biochar then and now

What if there was a way to make poor soils more fertile.  Well of course today we have plenty of fertilizers, some natural some not so much.  But what if we added in the thought that we wanted our solution to use extra natural materials or bio-waste to produce this product.  Then you would have biochar.  At a basic level if you burn biomass and bio-waste with limited air you’ll produce a charcoal and if you put that into the ground it will improve the soil quality.  This is a naturally occurring process, as it can happen during forest fires for instance.  But mankind has employed this method of soil preparation as well.

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