Bio-Oil and Biochar May be Future of Corn Stover
Researchers around the world are trying to economically convert cellulosic biomass such as corn stover into "cellulosic ethanol." But Agricultural Research Service scientists have found that it might be more cost-effective, energy-efficient and environmentally sustainable to use corn stover for generating an energy-rich oil called bio-oil and for ...
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#1 Dec 4, 2009
All political persuasions agree, building soil carbon is GOOD.
To Hard bitten Farmers, wary of carbon regulations that only increase their costs, Building soil carbon is a savory bone, to do well while doing good.
Biochar provides the tool powerful enough to cover Farming's carbon foot print while lowering cost simultaneously.
Another significant aspect of bichar is removal of BC aerosols by low cost ($3) Biomass cook stoves that produce char but no respiratory disease emissions. At Scale, replacing "Three Stone" stoves the health benefits would equal eradication of Malaria.
http://terrapretapot.org/ and village level systems http://biocharfund.org/
The Congo Basin Forest Fund (CBFF).recently funded The Biochar Fund $300K for these systems citing these priorities;
(1) Hunger amongst the world's poorest people, the subsistence farmers of Sub-Saharan Africa,
(2) Deforestation resulting from a reliance on slash-and-burn farming,
(3) Energy poverty and a lack of access to clean, renewable energy, and
(4) Climate change.
The Biochar Fund :
Exceptional results from biochar experiment in Cameroon
The broad smiles of 1500 subsistence farmers say it all ( that , and the size of the Biochar corn root balls )
This authoritative PNAS article should cause the recent Royal Society Report to rethink their criticism of Biochar systems of Soil carbon sequestration;
Reducing abrupt climate change risk using
the Montreal Protocol and other regulatory
actions to complement cuts in CO2 emissions
There are dozens soil researchers on the subject now at USDA-ARS.
and many studies at The up coming ASA-CSSA-SSSA joint meeting;
Congressional Research Service report (by analyst Kelsi Bracmort) is the best short summary I have seen so far - both technical and policy oriented.
Al Gore got the CO2 absorption thing wrong,( at NABC Vilsack did same), but his focus on Soil Carbon is right on;
The future of biochar - Project Rainbow Bee Eater
Japan Biochar Association ;
UK Biochar Research Centre
Carbon to the Soil, the only ubiquitous and economic place to put it.
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