[NAFEX] OT carbon & charcoal

Jwlehman at aol.com Jwlehman at aol.com
Sun Dec 7 09:45:52 EST 2008

There is a very interesting short report in the Dec. issue of Avant Gardner 
on the use of charcoal added to soils to absorb carbon dioxide. 

In the article are these statements:  

It could be the most important development in agriculture and horticulture of 
this century. Adding charcoal - charred organic material, not ashes - to soil 
remarkably improves both its productive capacity and it's ability to trap the 
greenhouse gases which are the cause of global warming. 

A British scientist says that adding biochar to all the world's arable soils 
could theoretically enable them to hold carbon equivalent to all the carbon 
dioxide in the atmosphere today. 

"Biochar" is so promising that an International Biochar Initiative was 
established in England in September (www.biochar-international.org), and a [US] 
Senate amendment to the 2008 Farm Bill promotes extensive research on biochar's 
"value for soil enhancement and carbon sequestration."    

Jean English reports in MAINE ORGANIC FARMER AND GARDENER (Box 170, Unity, ME 
04988), Sustainable Harvest International has demonstrated that "biochar can 
be made simply by piling any organic material, setting it on fire and covering 
it with soil to exclude air." 

Due to copyright laws I'll not reprint the entire article here. The Avant 
Gardner is published by Hort. Data Processors, Bx. 489, New York, NY 10028. 


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