Biochar is essentially charcoal made under carefully controlled conditions. By burning carbon-rich compounds in the absence of air (pyrolysis), the volatile and non-carbon components are burnt off, leaving much of the carbon behind as a solid ‘char’.
This has particular properties that make it valuable as a means of storing carbon, especially in the soil. It has been found in stable condition after thousands of years, making biochar a potentially useful tool in carbon sequestration and storage.
Biochar can be made from any readily available carbon source, e.g. wood and agricultural residues such as rice husks, nut shells and beet tops, and the quality of this source material (feedstock) partly determines the properties of the biochar. For example, if the feedstock is nutrient-rich, so will be the char. By-products of pyrolysis include a biogas and a tar, both of which have useful applications.
Transition Malvern Hills (TMHills) continues to promote and support sustainable projects and initiatives in Malvern and the surrounding area. We are organising regular meet ups, (under the title of TMHills Eco-Chat, Thoughts and Action), for individuals and groups to discuss how Malvern is making the positive changes needed to reduce our environmental impact.
Due to the Virus Crisis these meeting are now being held online using Zoom. For information on how to use Zoom see here.
The Centre for Alternative Technology(CAT) has release a new Zero Carbon Report. This major 200 page report shows how Britain become carbon neutral. A modern, zero-emissions society is possible using technology available today.