Eat Drink Better biochar

Published on April 20th, 2010 | by Rachel Shulman

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Biochar: Improve Soil and Reduce Global Warming

[social_buttons] In addition to supplementing the soil with sea minerals, Claverach Farm and Vineyard also adds biochar. Biochar is basically charcoal, but instead of being used for fuel, it’s used for capturing and storing carbon in the soil.

Because biochar can sequester carbon in the soil for thousands of years, it might be able to slow global warming and mitigate the environmental impact of agriculture.

Researchers predict that billions of tons of carbon from agriculture and forestry waste could potentially be stored in the world’s soils.

Biochar enhances plant growth by attracting specialized microbes and preventing nutrients and water from leaching out of the soil. By making nutrients more accessible to plants, biochar reduces the amount of fertilizer required.

Biochar techniques have shown potential to increase soil fertility and decrease deforestation in the Amazon. You can also make your own biochar at home to improve the soil quality of your garden.

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Image courtesy of visionshare via a Creative Commons license.






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About the Author

I'm an ecologist turned journalist turned farmer-in-training. I'm currently working on an organic farm and creamery in Illinois. Follow me on twitter (http://twitter.com/rachelshulman), friend me on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/#!/profile.php?id=3105709), or follow me on StumbleUpon (http://www.stumbleupon.com/stumbler/RachelShulman/).



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