Carbon Cycling

APPLICATIONS FOR CARBON SEQUESTRATION

TOPICS:Biochar application research | Biochar land application study


PYROLYSIS CHAR LAND APPLICATION STUDY
 

UN CLIMATE CHANGE CONFERENCE, COPENHAGEN, 2009

Christoph Steiner, Ph.D., member of the Biorefining and Carbon Cycling Program, presented the following presentation:
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Researchers: Julia Gaskin & Larry Morris

UGA researchers are studying the effects in the soil of char produced from two biomass feedstocks.

Char produced from the pyrolysis of peanut hulls and pine chips was applied to soil at 5 and 10 ton per acre quantities in order to study the effects on plant growth.

Land application of pyrolysis char in small test plots, March 2006
There is evidence that biochar produced from the pyroloysis of biomass for energy production may function to enhance plant growth and sequester carbon in the soil. The University of Georgia's College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, Biological and Agricultural Engineering Department and Crop and Soil Sciences Department, along with the Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources, are conducting research to evaluate how biochar affects soil processes in the southeastern United States. Research indicates

UNCCD SUPPORT OF BIOCHAR: Dec. 2008

In December 2008, the UNCCD proposed to include biochar as a method of carbon sequestration. The following document describes biochar and its value in carbon sequestration.
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UN CLIMATE CHANGE CONFERENCE, BALI, DECEMBER, 2007

Christoph Steiner, Ph.D., member of the Biorefining and Carbon Cycling Program, was invited by the UNCCD to present research
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that biochar is a relatively stable form of carbon and that its incorporation into the soil could help provide a needed carbon sink to offset carbon dioxide emissions. A better understanding of how biochar may affect nutrient cycling and crop growth is needed to develop recommended rates for use.

In 2006, the University of Georgia began the first field trial of biochar in the United States at Tifton to evaluate how peanut hull and pinechip biochar would affect corn growth and the potential to sequester carbon. Char is being applied at 5 tons per acre and 10 tons per acre. Researchers will be evaluating differences in the amount of soil nutrients and carbon fractions in the soil along with changes in carbon dioxide efflux, plant growth, yields, and plant nutrient status. Preliminary results from the Tifton field trial indicate peanut hull biochar can supply potassium that is available for crops. Other research includes greenhouse studies with pine seedlings to evaluate the potential for biochar to increase water-holding capacity and its effect on pine growth in three benchmark soils.

"Effect of Feedstock and Production Method on Pyrolysis Char Use As an Agricultural Soil Amendment" Keith Harris, Julia Gaskin, Brian Bibens, Roger Hilten, and K.C. Das.View PDF