WorldWideScience

Sample records for biochar carbon mitigation

  1. Challenging the claims on the potential of biochar to mitigate climate change

    OpenAIRE

    Francischinelli Rittl, T.

    2015-01-01

    Summary In this PhD thesis I studied the influence of biochar discourses on the political practices in Brazil and the impact of biochar on soil organic carbon (SOC) stocks, thus contributing to the current debate on the potential of biochar to mitigate climate change. Biochar is the solid material obtained from the carbonization of biomass. The deliberate production and application to soil distinguishes biochar from other carbonized products, e.g. charcoal. Inspired by the aged charcoal found...

  2. Challenging the claims on the potential of biochar to mitigate climate change

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Francischinelli Rittl, T.

    2015-01-01

    Summary In this PhD thesis I studied the influence of biochar discourses on the political practices in Brazil and the impact of biochar on soil organic carbon (SOC) stocks, thus contributing to the current debate on the potential of biochar to mitigate climate change. Biochar is the solid material o

  3. Potentials to mitigate climate change using biochar - the Austrian perspective

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bruckman, Viktor J.; Klinglmüller, Michaela; Liu, Jay; Uzun, Basak B.; Varol, Esin A.

    2015-04-01

    Biomass utilization is seen as one of various promising strategies to reduce additional carbon emissions. A recent project on potentials of biochar to mitigate climate change (FOREBIOM) goes even a step further towards bioenergy in combination of CCS or "BECS" and tries to assess the current potentials, from sustainable biomass availability to biochar amendment in soils, including the identification of potential disadvantages and current research needs. The current report represents an outcome of the 1st FOREBIOM Workshop held in Vienna in April, 2013 and tries to characterize the Austrian perspective of biochar for climate change mitigation. The survey shows that for a widespread utilization of biochar in climate change mitigation strategies, still a number of obstacles have to be overcome. There are concerns regarding production and application costs, contamination and health issues for both producers and customers besides a fragmentary knowledge about biochar-soil interactions specifically in terms of long-term behavior, biochar stability and the effects on nutrient cycles. However, there are a number of positive examples showing that biochar indeed has the potential to sequester large amounts of carbon while improving soil properties and subsequently leading to a secondary carbon sink via rising soil productivity. Diversification, cascadic utilization and purpose designed biochar production are key strategies overcoming initial concerns, especially regarding economic aspects. A theoretical scenario calculation showed that relatively small amounts of biomass that is currently utilized for energy can reduce the gap between Austria's current GHG emissions and the Kyoto target by about 30% if biomass residues are pyrolized and biochar subsequently used as soil amendment. However, by using a more conservative approach that is representing the aims of the underlying FOREBIOM project (assuming that 10% of the annual biomass increment from forests is used for biochar

  4. Biochar Mitigates Salinity Stress in Potato

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Akhtar, S S; Andersen, Mathias Neumann; Liu, Fulai

    2015-01-01

    A pot experiment was conducted in a climate-controlled greenhouse to investigate the growth, physiology and yield of potato in response to salinity stress under biochar amendment. It was hypothesized that addition of biochar may improve plant growth and yield by mitigating the negative effect of...... with the respective non-biochar control. Decreased Na+, Na+/K+ ratio and increased K+ content in xylem with biochar amendment also indicated its ameliorative effects on potato plants in response to salinity stress. The results suggested that incorporation of biochar might be a promising approach for...

  5. Biochar production for carbon sequestration

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Thakkar, J.; Kumar, A. [Alberta Univ., Edmonton, AB (Canada). Dept. of Mechanical Engineering

    2010-07-01

    This study examined the use of agricultural biomass for biochar production and its storage in a landfill to sequester carbon. Capturing the energy from biomass that would otherwise decay, is among the many options available to mitigate the impact of the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions associated with fossil fuel consumption. Biochar is a solid fuel which can be produced from agricultural biomass such as wheat and barley straw. This organic solid can be produced by slow pyrolysis of straw. A conceptual techno-economic model based on actual data was used to estimate the cost of producing biochar from straw in a centralized plant. The objectives of the study were to estimate the overall delivered cost of straw to the charcoal production plant; estimate the transportation costs of charcoal to the landfill site; estimate the cost of landfill; and estimate the overall cost of carbon sequestration through a charcoal landfill. According to preliminary results, the cost of carbon sequestration through this pathway is greater than $50 per tonne of carbon dioxide.

  6. Soil biochar amendment as a climate change mitigation tool: Key parameters and mechanisms involved.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brassard, Patrick; Godbout, Stéphane; Raghavan, Vijaya

    2016-10-01

    Biochar, a solid porous material obtained from the carbonization of biomass under low or no oxygen conditions, has been proposed as a climate change mitigation tool because it is expected to sequester carbon (C) for centuries and to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from soils. This review aimed to identify key biochar properties and production parameters that have an effect on these specific applications of the biochar. Moreover, mechanisms involved in interactions between biochar and soils were highlighted. Following a compilation and comparison of the characteristics of 76 biochars from 40 research studies, biochars with a lower N content, and consequently a higher C/N ratio (>30), were found to be more suitable for mitigation of N2O emissions from soils. Moreover, biochars produced at a higher pyrolysis temperature, and with O/C ratio <0.2, H/Corg ratio <0.4 and volatile matter below 80% may have high C sequestration potential. Based on these observations, biochar production and application to the field can be used as a tool to mitigate climate change. However, it is important to determine the pyrolysis conditions and feedstock needed to produce a biochar with the desired properties for a specific application. More research studies are needed to identify the exact mechanisms involved following biochar amendment to soil. PMID:27420171

  7. Biochar mitigates negative effects of salt additions on two herbaceous plant species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas, Sean C; Frye, Susan; Gale, Nigel; Garmon, Matthew; Launchbury, Rebecca; Machado, Natasha; Melamed, Sarah; Murray, Jessica; Petroff, Alexandre; Winsborough, Carolyn

    2013-11-15

    Addition of pyrolyzed biomass ("biochar") to soils has commonly been shown to increase crop yields and alleviate plant stresses associated with drought and exposure to toxic materials. Here we investigate the ability of biochar (at two dosages: 5 and 50 t ha(-1)) to mitigate salt-induced stress, simulating road salt additions in a factorial glasshouse experiment involving the broadleaved herbaceous plants Abutilon theophrasti and Prunella vulgaris. Salt additions of 30 g m(-2) NaCl to unamended soils resulted in high mortality rates for both species. Biochar (Fagus grandifolia sawdust pyrolyzed at 378 °C), when applied at 50 t ha(-1) as a top dressing, completely alleviated salt-induced mortality in A. theophrasti and prolonged survival of P. vulgaris. Surviving A. theophrasti plants that received both 50 t ha(-1) biochar and salt addition treatments showed growth rates and physiological performance similar to plants without salt addition. Biochar treatments alone also substantially increased biomass of P. vulgaris, with a ∼50% increase relative to untreated controls at both biochar dosages. Biochar did not significantly affect photosynthetic carbon gain (Amax), water use efficiency, or chlorophyll fluorescence (Fv/Fm) in either species. Our results indicate that biochar can ameliorate salt stress effects on plants through salt sorption, suggesting novel applications of biochar to mitigate effects of salinization in agricultural, urban, and contaminated soils. PMID:23796889

  8. Albedo impact on the suitability of biochar systems to mitigate global warming.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meyer, Sebastian; Bright, Ryan M; Fischer, Daniel; Schulz, Hardy; Glaser, Bruno

    2012-11-20

    Biochar application to agricultural soils can change the surface albedo which could counteract the climate mitigation benefit of biochar systems. However, the size of this impact has not yet been quantified. Based on empirical albedo measurements and literature data of arable soils mixed with biochar, a model for annual vegetation cover development based on satellite data and an assessment of the annual development of surface humidity, an average mean annual albedo reduction of 0.05 has been calculated for applying 30-32 Mg ha(-1) biochar on a test field near Bayreuth, Germany. The impact of biochar production and application on the carbon cycle and on the soil albedo was integrated into the greenhouse gas (GHG) balance of a modeled pyrolysis based biochar system via the computation of global warming potential (GWP) characterization factors. The analysis resulted in a reduction of the overall climate mitigation benefit of biochar systems by 13-22% due to the albedo change as compared to an analysis which disregards the albedo effect. Comparing the use of the same quantity of biomass in a biochar system to a bioenergy district heating system which replaces natural gas combustion, bioenergy heating systems achieve 99-119% of the climate benefit of biochar systems according to the model calculation. PMID:23146092

  9. Carbon dioxide emissions from biochar in soil

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bruun, S; Clauson-Kaas, S; Bobul'ská, L;

    2014-01-01

    -sterilized soils. It emerged that carbonate may be concentrated or form during or after biochar production, resulting in significant carbonate contents. If CO2 released from carbonates in short-term experiments is misinterpreted as mineralization of biochar, the impact of this process may be significantly over...... evolution. Finally, we found that both production temperature and clay content affect biochar mineralization. As protective mechanisms hypothesized to prevent degradation of organic matter in soil usually implicate clay, we conclude that biochar is likely to be protected from mineralization during the early......The stability of biochar in soil is of importance if it is to be used for carbon sequestration and long-term improvement of soil properties. It is well known that a significant fraction of biochar is highly stable in soil, but carbon dioxide (CO2) is also released immediately after application...

  10. Biochar soil application to mitigate climate change

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bruun, Esben; Hauggaard-Nielsen, Henrik; Ambus, Per;

    2009-01-01

    Production of energy carriers (oil, gas) and biochar from pyrolysis of biomass is by many considered a promising technology for combined production of bioenergy and recalcitrant C suitable for sequestration in soil. The mechanism behind biochar-C sequestration is straightforward: Due to its...... recalcitrant characteristics the microbial decomposition of biochar is much slower in comparison to the mineralization of the original feedstock. Conversion of organic residues like household waste or cereal straw to biochar is hence proposed a way to withdraw CO2 from the atmosphere and sequester it on a long...... term basis in the soil. The experiments presented here illustrate the C sequestration potentials of biochar originating from fast pyrolysis of wheat straw. It is documented that after 47 days in soil 95 % of the added biochar-C is still present in the soil as compared to only 56 % if straw is applied...

  11. Engineering Biochar Hydrophobicity to Mitigate Risk of Top-Soil Erosion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kinney, T. J.; Dean, M. R.; Hockaday, W. C.; Masiello, C. A.

    2009-12-01

    The pyrolysis of biomass is a net carbon negative method of sequestering atmospheric carbon as recalcitrant black carbon. The resulting solid product, called biochar, is likely to improve agricultural soils when used as a soil conditioner in sustainable land management practice. Biochar has been shown to improve crop yields, improve water-holding capacity in sandy soils, increase cation exchange capacity (CEC), and retain nutrients from fertilization longer than soils unamended with biochar. Biochar undoubtedly has high potential as both a carbon management tool and a tool to increase global food production. However, little is understood about possible side effects of biochar in agricultural soils such as ecosystem toxicity, interactions with biota, and modification of soil hydrologic properties, such as permeability. The hydrophobicity of a soil determines how easily precipitation can permeate soil pores. Water that fails to permeate is redirected as runoff, responsible for the detachment and transport of nutrient-rich topsoil particles. Mitigating top-soil erosion is an important aspect of sustainable land management. Biochar, primarily composed of condensed aromatic structures, is a hydrophobic material and incorporating it into agricultural soils may act to alter soil hydrology through multiple avenues. These include a likely increase in soil water-holding capacity (a positive outcome) and a potential increase in soil hydrophobicity (a negative outcome). In an effort to understand how to engineer reduced biochar hydrophobicity, we investigated the hydrophobicity of biochars as a function of biomass feedstock, pyrolysis temperatures, and post-pyrolysis chemical treatments. We used Water Drop Penetration Time (WDPT) and Molarity of an Ethanol Drop (MED) tests to measure hydrophobicity, and FTIR, CPMAS-NMR, and N2-BET to probe the surface chemistry, bulk chemistry, and surface area of various biochars, respectively. We used post-pyrolysis chemical treatments of

  12. Biochar mitigation of allelopathy induced yield loss in continuous maize

    Science.gov (United States)

    Continuous maize yields are limited by the release of phytotoxic compounds as the previous year’s maize residue decomposes. We tested the hypothesis that soil biochar applications could help mitigate maize autotoxicity and the associated yield depression. Eighteen small field plots (23.7 m2) were es...

  13. Application of Fast Pyrolysis Biochar to a Loamy soil - Effects on carbon and nitrogen dynamics and potential for carbon sequestration

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bruun, Esben

    and at the same time mitigate climate change by sequestering carbon in the soil. In general, the inherent physicochemical characteristics of biochars make these materials attractive agronomic soil conditioners. However, different pyrolysis technologies exist, i.e. slow pyrolysis, fast pyrolysis, and full......Thermal decomposition of biomass in an oxygen-free environment (pyrolysis) produces bio-oil, syngas, and char. All three products can be used to generate energy, but an emerging new use of the recalcitrant carbon-rich char (biochar) is to apply it to the soil in order to enhance soil fertility...... gasification systems, and each of these influence the biochar quality differently. As of yet, there is only limited knowledge on the effect of applying fast pyrolysis biochar (FP-biochar) to soil. This PhD project provides new insights into the short-term impacts of adding FP-biochar to soil on the greenhouse...

  14. Application of fast pyrolysis biochar to a loamy soil - Effects on carbon and nitrogen dynamics and potential for carbon sequestration

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bruun, E.W.

    2011-05-15

    Thermal decomposition of biomass in an oxygen-free environment (pyrolysis) produces bio-oil, syngas, and char. All three products can be used to generate energy, but an emerging new use of the recalcitrant carbon-rich char (biochar) is to apply it to the soil in order to enhance soil fertility and at the same time mitigate climate change by sequestering carbon in the soil. In general, the inherent physicochemical characteristics of biochars make these materials attractive agronomic soil conditioners. However, different pyrolysis technologies exist, i.e. slow pyrolysis, fast pyrolysis, and full gasification systems, and each of these influence the biochar quality differently. As of yet, there is only limited knowledge on the effect of applying fast pyrolysis biochar (FP-biochar) to soil. This PhD project provides new insights into the short-term impacts of adding FP-biochar to soil on the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and on soil carbon and nitrogen dynamics. The FP-biochars investigated in the thesis were generated at different reactor temperatures by fast pyrolysis of wheat straw employing a Pyrolysis Centrifuge Reactor (PCR). The carbohydrate content ranged from more than 35 % in FP-biochars made at a low reactor temperature (475 deg. C) down to 3 % in FP-biochars made at high temperatures (575 deg. C). The relative amount of carbohydrates in the FP-biochar was found to be correlated to the short-term degradation rates of the FP-biochars when applied to soil. Fast and slow pyrolysis of wheat straw resulted in two different biochar types with each their distinct physical structures and porosities, carbohydrate contents, particle sizes, pH values, BET surface areas, and elemental compositions. These different physicochemical properties obviously have different impacts on soil processes, which underscores that results obtained from soil studies using slow pyrolysis biochars (SP-biochar) are not necessarily applicable for FP-biochars. For example, the incorporation

  15. A systematic review of biochar research, with a focus on its stability in situ and its promise as a climate mitigation strategy.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Noel P Gurwick

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Claims about the environmental benefits of charring biomass and applying the resulting "biochar" to soil are impressive. If true, they could influence land management worldwide. Alleged benefits include increased crop yields, soil fertility, and water-holding capacity; the most widely discussed idea is that applying biochar to soil will mitigate climate change. This claim rests on the assumption that biochar persists for hundreds or thousands of years, thus storing carbon that would otherwise decompose. We conducted a systematic review to quantify research effort directed toward ten aspects of biochar and closely evaluated the literature concerning biochar's stability. FINDINGS: We identified 311 peer-reviewed research articles published through 2011. We found very few field studies that addressed biochar's influence on several ecosystem processes: one on soil nutrient loss, one on soil contaminants, six concerning non-CO2 greenhouse gas (GHG fluxes (some of which fail to support claims that biochar decreases non-CO2 GHG fluxes, and 16-19 on plants and soil properties. Of 74 studies related to biochar stability, transport or fate in soil, only seven estimated biochar decomposition rates in situ, with mean residence times ranging from 8 to almost 4,000 years. CONCLUSIONS: Our review shows there are not enough data to draw conclusions about how biochar production and application affect whole-system GHG budgets. Wide-ranging estimates of a key variable, biochar stability in situ, likely result from diverse environmental conditions, feedstocks, and study designs. There are even fewer data about the extent to which biochar stimulates decomposition of soil organic matter or affects non-CO2 GHG emissions. Identifying conditions where biochar amendments yield favorable GHG budgets requires a systematic field research program. Finally, evaluating biochar's suitability as a climate mitigation strategy requires comparing its effects with

  16. Characterization of Biochar from Switchgrass Carbonization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Samy Sadaka

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Switchgrass is a high yielding, low-input intensive, native perennial grass that has been promoted as a major second-generation bioenergy crop. Raw switchgrass is not a readily acceptable feedstock in existing power plants that were built to accommodate coal and peat. The objective of this research was to elucidate some of the characteristics of switchgrass biochar produced via carbonization and to explore its potential use as a solid fuel. Samples were carbonized in a batch reactor under reactor temperatures of 300, 350 and 400 °C for 1, 2 and 3 h residence times. Biochar mass yield and volatile solids decreased from 82.6% to 35.2% and from 72.1% to 43.9%, respectively, by increasing carbonization temperatures from 300 °C to 400 °C and residence times from 1 h to 3 h. Conversely, biochar heating value (HV and fixed carbon content increased from 17.6 MJ kg−1 to 21.9 MJ kg−1 and from 22.5% to 44.9%, respectively, under the same conditions. A biomass discoloration index (BDI was created to quantify changes in biochar colors as affected by the two tested parameters. The maximum BDI of 77% was achieved at a carbonization temperature of 400 °C and a residence time of 3 h. The use of this index could be expanded to quantify biochar characteristics as affected by thermochemical treatments. Carbonized biochar could be considered a high quality solid fuel based on its energy content.

  17. Carbon Abatement and Emissions Associated with the Gasification of Walnut Shells for Bioenergy and Biochar Production.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Engil Isadora Pujol Pereira

    Full Text Available By converting biomass residue to biochar, we could generate power cleanly and sequester carbon resulting in overall greenhouse gas emissions (GHG savings when compared to typical fossil fuel usage and waste disposal. We estimated the carbon dioxide (CO2 abatements and emissions associated to the concurrent production of bioenergy and biochar through biomass gasification in an organic walnut farm and processing facility in California, USA. We accounted for (i avoided-CO2 emissions from displaced grid electricity by bioenergy; (ii CO2 emissions from farm machinery used for soil amendment of biochar; (iii CO2 sequestered in the soil through stable biochar-C; and (iv direct CO2 and nitrous oxide (N2O emissions from soil. The objective of these assessments was to pinpoint where the largest C offsets can be expected in the bioenergy-biochar chain. We found that energy production from gasification resulted in 91.8% of total C offsets, followed by stable biochar-C (8.2% of total C sinks, offsetting a total of 107.7 kg CO2-C eq Mg-1 feedstock. At the field scale, we monitored gas fluxes from soils for 29 months (180 individual observations following field management and precipitation events in addition to weekly measurements within three growing seasons and two tree dormancy periods. We compared four treatments: control, biochar, compost, and biochar combined with compost. Biochar alone or in combination with compost did not alter total N2O and CO2 emissions from soils, indicating that under the conditions of this study, biochar-prompted C offsets may not be expected from the mitigation of direct soil GHG emissions. However, this study revealed a case where a large environmental benefit was given by the waste-to-bioenergy treatment, addressing farm level challenges such as waste management, renewable energy generation, and C sequestration.

  18. Carbon Abatement and Emissions Associated with the Gasification of Walnut Shells for Bioenergy and Biochar Production.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pujol Pereira, Engil Isadora; Suddick, Emma C; Six, Johan

    2016-01-01

    By converting biomass residue to biochar, we could generate power cleanly and sequester carbon resulting in overall greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) savings when compared to typical fossil fuel usage and waste disposal. We estimated the carbon dioxide (CO2) abatements and emissions associated to the concurrent production of bioenergy and biochar through biomass gasification in an organic walnut farm and processing facility in California, USA. We accounted for (i) avoided-CO2 emissions from displaced grid electricity by bioenergy; (ii) CO2 emissions from farm machinery used for soil amendment of biochar; (iii) CO2 sequestered in the soil through stable biochar-C; and (iv) direct CO2 and nitrous oxide (N2O) emissions from soil. The objective of these assessments was to pinpoint where the largest C offsets can be expected in the bioenergy-biochar chain. We found that energy production from gasification resulted in 91.8% of total C offsets, followed by stable biochar-C (8.2% of total C sinks), offsetting a total of 107.7 kg CO2-C eq Mg-1 feedstock. At the field scale, we monitored gas fluxes from soils for 29 months (180 individual observations) following field management and precipitation events in addition to weekly measurements within three growing seasons and two tree dormancy periods. We compared four treatments: control, biochar, compost, and biochar combined with compost. Biochar alone or in combination with compost did not alter total N2O and CO2 emissions from soils, indicating that under the conditions of this study, biochar-prompted C offsets may not be expected from the mitigation of direct soil GHG emissions. However, this study revealed a case where a large environmental benefit was given by the waste-to-bioenergy treatment, addressing farm level challenges such as waste management, renewable energy generation, and C sequestration. PMID:26963623

  19. Carbon Abatement and Emissions Associated with the Gasification of Walnut Shells for Bioenergy and Biochar Production

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pujol Pereira, Engil Isadora; Suddick, Emma C.; Six, Johan

    2016-01-01

    By converting biomass residue to biochar, we could generate power cleanly and sequester carbon resulting in overall greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) savings when compared to typical fossil fuel usage and waste disposal. We estimated the carbon dioxide (CO2) abatements and emissions associated to the concurrent production of bioenergy and biochar through biomass gasification in an organic walnut farm and processing facility in California, USA. We accounted for (i) avoided-CO2 emissions from displaced grid electricity by bioenergy; (ii) CO2 emissions from farm machinery used for soil amendment of biochar; (iii) CO2 sequestered in the soil through stable biochar-C; and (iv) direct CO2 and nitrous oxide (N2O) emissions from soil. The objective of these assessments was to pinpoint where the largest C offsets can be expected in the bioenergy-biochar chain. We found that energy production from gasification resulted in 91.8% of total C offsets, followed by stable biochar-C (8.2% of total C sinks), offsetting a total of 107.7 kg CO2-C eq Mg-1 feedstock. At the field scale, we monitored gas fluxes from soils for 29 months (180 individual observations) following field management and precipitation events in addition to weekly measurements within three growing seasons and two tree dormancy periods. We compared four treatments: control, biochar, compost, and biochar combined with compost. Biochar alone or in combination with compost did not alter total N2O and CO2 emissions from soils, indicating that under the conditions of this study, biochar-prompted C offsets may not be expected from the mitigation of direct soil GHG emissions. However, this study revealed a case where a large environmental benefit was given by the waste-to-bioenergy treatment, addressing farm level challenges such as waste management, renewable energy generation, and C sequestration. PMID:26963623

  20. Biochar: a synthesis of its agronomic impact beyond carbon sequestration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spokas, Kurt A; Cantrell, Keri B; Novak, Jeffrey M; Archer, David W; Ippolito, James A; Collins, Harold P; Boateng, Akwasi A; Lima, Isabel M; Lamb, Marshall C; McAloon, Andrew J; Lentz, Rodrick D; Nichols, Kristine A

    2012-01-01

    Biochar has been heralded as an amendment to revitalize degraded soils, improve soil carbon sequestration, increase agronomic productivity, and enter into future carbon trading markets. However, scientific and economic technicalties may limit the ability of biochar to consistently deliver on these expectations. Past research has demonstrated that biochar is part of the black carbon continuum with variable properties due to the net result of production (e.g., feedstock and pyrolysis conditions) and postproduction factors (storage or activation). Therefore, biochar is not a single entity but rather spans a wide range of black carbon forms. Biochar is black carbon, but not all black carbon is biochar. Agronomic benefits arising from biochar additions to degraded soils have been emphasized, but negligible and negative agronomic effects have also been reported. Fifty percent of the reviewed studies reported yield increases after black carbon or biochar additions, with the remainder of the studies reporting alarming decreases to no significant differences. Hardwood biochar (black carbon) produced by traditional methods (kilns or soil pits) possessed the most consistent yield increases when added to soils. The universality of this conclusion requires further evaluation due to the highly skewed feedstock preferences within existing studies. With global population expanding while the amount of arable land remains limited, restoring soil quality to nonproductive soils could be key to meeting future global food production, food security, and energy supplies; biochar may play a role in this endeavor. Biochar economics are often marginally viable and are tightly tied to the assumed duration of agronomic benefits. Further research is needed to determine the conditions under which biochar can provide economic and agronomic benefits and to elucidate the fundamental mechanisms responsible for these benefits. PMID:22751040

  1. Impact of Biochar on Organic Contaminants in Soil: A Tool for Mitigating Risk?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kirk T. Semple

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available The presence of biochar in soils through natural processes (forest fires, bush burning or through application to soil (agriculture, carbon storage, remediation, waste management has received a significant amount of scientific and regulatory attention. Biochar alters soil properties, encourages microbial activity and enhances sorption of inorganic and organic compounds, but this strongly depends on the feedstock and production process of biochar. This review considers biochar sources, the production process and result of pyrolysis, interactions of biochar with soil, and associated biota. Furthermore, the paper focuses on the interactions between biochar and common anthropogenic organic contaminants, such as polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs, pesticides, and dioxins, which are often deposited in the soil environment. It then considers the feasibility of applying biochar in remediation technologies in addition to other perspective areas yet to be explored.

  2. Influence of fast pyrolysis temperature on biochar labile fraction and short-term carbon loss in a loamy soil

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Production of bio-oil, gas and biochar from pyrolysis of biomass is considered a promising technology for combined production of bioenergy and recalcitrant carbon (C) suitable for sequestration in soil. Using a fast pyrolysis centrifuge reactor (PCR) the present study investigated the relation between fast pyrolysis of wheat straw at different reactor temperatures and the short-term degradability of biochar in soil. After 115 days incubation 3-12% of the added biochar-C had been emitted as CO2. On average, 90% of the total biochar-C loss occurred within the first 20 days of the experiment, emphasizing the importance of knowing the biochar labile fraction when evaluating a specific biochars C sequestration potential. The pyrolysis temperature influenced the outputs of biochar, bio-oil and syngas significantly, as well as the stability of the biochar produced. Contrary to slow pyrolysis a fast pyrolysis process may result in incomplete conversion of biomass due to limitations to heat transfer and kinetics. In our case chemical analysis of the biochars revealed unconverted cellulosic and hemicellulosic fractions, which in turn were found to be proportional with the short-term biochar degradation in soil. As these labile carbohydrates are rapidly mineralized, their presence lowers the biochar-C sequestration potential. By raising the pyrolysis temperature, biochar with none or low contents of these fractions can be produced, but this will be on the expense of the biochar quantity. The yield of CO2 neutral bio-oil is the other factor to optimize when adjusting the pyrolysis temperature settings to give the overall greatest climate change mitigation effect.

  3. The Effect of Gasification Biochar on Soil Carbon Sequestration, Soil Quality and Crop Growth

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansen, Veronika

    New synergies between agriculture and the energy sector making use of agricultural residues for bioenergy production and recycling recalcitrant residuals to soil may offer climate change mitigation potential through the substitution of fossil fuels and soil carbon sequestration. However, concerns...... and pot and field experiments was used to study the effect of straw and wood biochar on carbon sequestration, soil quality and crop growth. Overall, the biochar amendment improved soil chemical and physical properties and plant growth and showed a potential for soil carbon sequestration without having...... have been raised about the potential negative impacts of incorporating bioenergy residuals (biochar) in soil and increasing the removal of crop residues such as straw, possibly reducing important soil functions and services for maintaining soil quality. Therefore, a combination of incubation studies...

  4. Migration of dissolved organic carbon in biochars and biochar-mineral complexes

    OpenAIRE

    Yun Lin; Paul Munroe; Stephen Joseph; Rita Henderson

    2012-01-01

    The objective of this work was to determine the contribution of dissolved organic carbon (DOC) from a biochar mineral complex (BMC), so as to better understand the interactions between DOC, biochar, clay, and minerals during thermal treatment, and the effects of BMC on amended soils. The BMC was prepared by heating a mixture of a H3PO4-treated saligna biochar from Acacia saligna, clays, other minerals, and chicken manure. The BMC was applied to a sandy loam soil in Western Australia, where wh...

  5. Biochar, Tool for Climate Change Mitigation and Soil Management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shackley, Simon; Sohi, Saran; Ibarrola, Rodrigo; Hammond, Jim; Mašek, Ondřej; Brownsort, Peter; Cross, Andrew; Prendergast-Miller, Miranda; Haszeldine, Stuart

    Biochar is the solid remains of any organic material that has been heated to at least 350oC in a zero-oxygen or oxygen-limited environment, which is intended to be mixed with soils. If the solid remains are not suitable for addition to soils, or will be burned as a fuel or used as an aggregate in construction, it is defined as char not biochar. There is a very wide range of potential biochar feedstocks, e.g., wood waste, timber, agricultural residues and wastes (straws, bagasse, manure, husks, shells, fibers, etc.), leaves, food wastes, paper and sewage sludge, green waste, distiller's grain, and many others. Pyrolysis is usually the technology of choice for producing biochar, though biomass gasification also produces smaller char yields. Syngas and pyrolytic bio-liquids, which have a potential use as energy carriers, are produced alongside biochar.

  6. Short-term dynamics of carbon and nitrogen using compost, compost-biochar mixture and organo-mineral biochar.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Darby, Ian; Xu, Cheng-Yuan; Wallace, Helen M; Joseph, Stephen; Pace, Ben; Bai, Shahla Hosseini

    2016-06-01

    This study aims to examine the effects of different organic treatments including compost (generated from cattle hide waste and plant material), compost mixed with biochar (compost + biochar) and a new formulation of organo-mineral biochar (produced by mixing biochar with clay, minerals and chicken manure) on carbon (C) nitrogen (N) cycling. We used compost at the rate of 20 t ha(-1), compost 20 t ha(-1) mixed with 10 t ha(-1) biochar (compost + biochar) and organo-mineral biochar which also contained 10 t ha(-1) biochar. Control samples received neither of the treatments. Compost and compost + biochar increased NH4 (+) -N concentrations for a short time, mainly due to the release of their NH4 (+) -N content. Compost + biochar did not alter N cycling of the compost significantly but did significantly increase CO2 emission compared to control. Compost significantly increased N2O emission compared to control. Compost + biochar did not significantly change N supply and also did not decrease CO2 and N2O emissions compared to compost, suggesting probably higher rates of biochar may be required to be added to the compost to significantly affect compost-induced C and N alteration. The organo-mineral biochar had no effect on N cycling and did not stimulate CO2 and N2O emission compared to the control. However, organo-mineral biochar maintained significantly higher dissolved organic carbon (DOC) than compost and compost + biochar from after day 14 to the end of the incubation. Biochar used in organo-mineral biochar had increased organic C adsorption which may become available eventually. However, increased DOC in organo-mineral biochar probably originated from both biochar and chicken manure which was not differentiated in this experiment. Hence, in our experiment, compost, compost + biochar and organo-mineral biochar affected C and N cycling differently mainly due to their different content. PMID:26924699

  7. Biochar Basics

    OpenAIRE

    Shearer, David F.

    2011-01-01

    Society is faced with the significant challenge of meeting growing demands for food and energy while adapting to the impacts of climate change, loss of agricultural land, degraded soil quality and limited water supplies. Biochar is a critical path technology that addresses pressing food/water security needs while simultaneously mitigating the climate crisis by transferring existing atmospheric carbon stocks to a new soil carbon sink capable of gigaton scale carbon storage. Discovered i...

  8. Migration of dissolved organic carbon in biochars and biochar-mineral complexes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yun Lin

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available The objective of this work was to determine the contribution of dissolved organic carbon (DOC from a biochar mineral complex (BMC, so as to better understand the interactions between DOC, biochar, clay, and minerals during thermal treatment, and the effects of BMC on amended soils. The BMC was prepared by heating a mixture of a H3PO4-treated saligna biochar from Acacia saligna, clays, other minerals, and chicken manure. The BMC was applied to a sandy loam soil in Western Australia, where wheat was grown. Liquid chromatography-organic carbon detection (LC-OCD tests were carried out on water extracts from the untreated biochar, the BMC, the BMC-amended soil, and on a control soil to measure the DOC concentration. LC-OCD tests provide a fingerprint of the DOC, which allows the fractions of DOC to be determined. Thermal processing enhanced the reaction of the A. saligna biochar with manure, clays and minerals, and affected the distribution of the DOC fractions. Notably, the process leads to immobilization of hydrophobic DOC and to an increase in the concentration of low-molecular-weight neutrals in the BMC. The application of the BMC to soil increases the DOC in the amended soil, especially the biopolymer fraction.

  9. Mitigating methane emission from paddy soil with rice-straw biochar amendment under projected climate change

    OpenAIRE

    Xingguo Han; Xue Sun; Cheng Wang; Mengxiong Wu; Da Dong; Ting Zhong; Thies, Janice E.; Weixiang Wu

    2016-01-01

    Elevated global temperatures and increased concentrations of carbon dioxide (CO2) in the atmosphere associated with climate change will exert profound effects on rice cropping systems, particularly on their greenhouse gas emitting potential. Incorporating biochar into paddy soil has been shown previously to reduce methane (CH4) emission from paddy rice under ambient temperature and CO2. We examined the ability of rice straw-derived biochar to reduce CH4 emission from paddy soil under elevated...

  10. Soil carbon sequestration and biochar as negative emission technologies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Pete

    2016-03-01

    Despite 20 years of effort to curb emissions, greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions grew faster during the 2000s than in the 1990s, which presents a major challenge for meeting the international goal of limiting warming to capture, enhanced weathering, bioenergy with carbon capture and storage and afforestation/deforestation, showed that all NETs have significant limits to implementation, including economic cost, energy requirements, land use, and water use. In this paper, I assess the potential for negative emissions from soil carbon sequestration and biochar addition to land, and also the potential global impacts on land use, water, nutrients, albedo, energy and cost. Results indicate that soil carbon sequestration and biochar have useful negative emission potential (each 0.7 GtCeq. yr(-1) ) and that they potentially have lower impact on land, water use, nutrients, albedo, energy requirement and cost, so have fewer disadvantages than many NETs. Limitations of soil carbon sequestration as a NET centre around issues of sink saturation and reversibility. Biochar could be implemented in combination with bioenergy with carbon capture and storage. Current integrated assessment models do not represent soil carbon sequestration or biochar. Given the negative emission potential of SCS and biochar and their potential advantages compared to other NETs, efforts should be made to include these options within IAMs, so that their potential can be explored further in comparison with other NETs for climate stabilization. PMID:26732128

  11. Biochar and biological carbon cycling in temperate soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCormack, S. A.; Vanbergen, A. J.; Bardgett, R. D.; Hopkins, D. W.; Ostle, N.

    2012-04-01

    Production of biochar, the recalcitrant residue formed by pyrolysis of plant matter, is suggested as a means of increasing storage of stable carbon (C) in the soil (1). Biochar has also been shown to act as a soil conditioner, increasing the productivity of certain crops by reducing nutrient leaching and improving soil water-holding capacity. However, the response of soil carbon pools to biochar addition is not yet well understood. Studies have shown that biochar has highly variable effects on microbial C cycling and thus on soil C storage (2,3,4). This discrepancy may be partially explained by the response of soil invertebrates, which occupy higher trophic levels and regulate microbial activity. This research aims to understand the role of soil invertebrates (i.e. Collembola and nematode worms) in biochar-mediated changes to soil C dynamics across a range of plant-soil communities. An open-air, pot-based mesocosm experiment was established in May, 2011 at the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology, Edinburgh. Three treatments were included in a fully-factorial design: biochar (presence [2 % w/w] or absence), soil type (arable sandy, arable sandy loam, grassland sandy loam), and vegetation type (Hordeum vulgare, Lolium perenne, unvegetated). Monitored parameters include: invertebrate and microbial species composition, soil C fluxes (CO2 and trace gas evolution, leachate C content, primary productivity and soil C content), and soil conditions (pH, moisture content and water-holding capacity). Preliminary results indicate that biochar-induced changes to soil invertebrate communities and processes are affected by pre-existing soil characteristics, and that soil texture in particular may be an important determinant of soil response to biochar addition. 1. Lehmann, 2007. A handful of carbon. Nature 447, 143-144. 2. Liang et al., 2010. Black carbon affects the cycling of non-black carbon in soil. Organic Geochemistry 41, 206-213. 3. Van Zwieten et al., 2010. Influence of

  12. Sorption of mercury (II) and atrazine by biochar, modified biochars and biochar based activated carbon in aqueous solution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tan, Guangcai; Sun, Weiling; Xu, Yaru; Wang, Hongyuan; Xu, Nan

    2016-07-01

    Corn straw biochar (BC) was used as a precursor to produce Na2S modified biochar (BS), KOH modified biochar (BK) and activated carbon (AC). Experiments were conducted to compare the sorption capacity of these sorbents for aqueous Hg (II) and atrazine existed alone or as a mixture. In comparison to BC, the sorption capacity of BS, BK and AC for single Hg (II) increased by 76.95%, 32.12% and 41.72%, while that for atrazine increased by 38.66%, 46.39% and 47 times, respectively. When Hg (II) and atrazine coexisted in an aqueous solution, competitive sorption was observed on all these sorbents. Sulfur impregnation was an efficient way to enhance the Hg (II) removal due to the formation of HgS precipitate, and oxygen-containing functional groups on the sorbents also contributed to Hg (II) sorption. Activated carbon was the best sorbent for atrazine removal because of its extremely high specific surface area. PMID:27061260

  13. Effects of Biochar Amendment on Soil Properties and Soil Carbon Sequestration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, R.; Zhu, S.

    2015-12-01

    Biochar addition to soils potentially affects various soil properties and soil carbon sequestration, and these effects are dependent on biochars derived from different feedstock materials and pyrolysis processes. The objective of this study was to investigate the effects of amendment of different biochars on soil physical and biological properties as well as soil carbon sequestration. Biochars were produced with dairy manure and woodchip at temperatures of 300, 500, and 700°C, respectively. Each biochar was mixed at 5% (w/w) with a forest soil and the mixture was incubated for 180 days, during which soil physical and biological properties, and soil respiration rates were measured. Results showed that the biochar addition significantly enhanced the formation of soil macroaggregates at the early incubation time. The biochar application significantly reduced soil bulk density, increased the amount of soil organic matter, and stimulated microbial activity and soil respiration rates at the early incubation stage. Biochar applications improved water retention capacity, with stronger effects by biochars produced at higher pyrolysis temperatures. At the same suction, the soil with woodchip biochars possessed higher water content than with the dairy manure biochars. Biochar addition significantly affected the soil physical and biological properties, which resulted in different soil carbon mineralization rates and the amount of soil carbon storage.

  14. Carbon Mineralization in Two Ultisols Amended with Different Sources and Particle Sizes of Pyrolyzed Biochar

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biochar produced during pyrolysis has the potential to enhance soil fertility and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The influence of biochar properties (e.g., particle size) on both short- and long-term carbon (C) mineralization of biochar remains unclear. There is minimal informa...

  15. Mitigating heavy metal accumulation into rice (Oryza sativa L.) using biochar amendment--a field experiment in Hunan, China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zheng, Ruilun; Chen, Zheng; Cai, Chao; Tie, Baiqing; Liu, Xiaoli; Reid, Brian J; Huang, Qing; Lei, Ming; Sun, Guoxin; Baltrėnaitė, Edita

    2015-07-01

    A field experiment was conducted to investigate the effect of bean stalk (BBC) and rice straw (RBC) biochars on the bioavailability of metal(loid)s in soil and their accumulation into rice plants. Phytoavailability of Cd was most dramatically influenced by biochars addition. Both biochars significantly decreased Cd concentrations in iron plaque (35-81 %), roots (30-75 %), shoots (43-79 %) and rice grain (26-71 %). Following biochars addition, Zinc concentrations in roots and shoots decreased by 25.0-44.1 and 19.9-44.2 %, respectively, although no significant decreases were observed in iron plaque and rice grain. Only RBC significantly reduced Pb concentrations in iron plaque (65.0 %) and roots (40.7 %). However, neither biochar significantly changed Pb concentrations in rice shoots and grain. Arsenic phytoavailability was not significantly altered by biochars addition. Calculation of hazard quotients (HQ) associated with rice consumption revealed RBC to represent a promising candidate to mitigate hazards associated with metal(loid) bioaccumulation. RBC reduced Cd HQ from a 5.5 to 1.6. A dynamic factor's way was also used to evaluate the changes in metal(loid) plant uptake process after the soil amendment with two types of biochar. In conclusion, these results highlight the potential for biochar to mitigate the phytoaccumulation of metal(loid)s and to thereby reduce metal(loid) exposure associated with rice consumption. PMID:25794575

  16. BIOCHAR: PYROGENIC CARBON FOR AGRICULTURAL USE - A CRITICAL REVIEW

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Etelvino Henrique Novotny

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Biochar (carbonized biomass for agricultural use has been used worldwide as soil amendment and is a technology of particular interest for Brazil, since its "inspiration" is from the historical Terra Preta de Índios(Amazon Dark Earth, and also because Brazil is the world's largest charcoal producer, generating enormous residue quantities in form of fine charcoal and due to the availability of different residual biomasses, mainly from agroindustry (e.g., sugar-cane bagasse; wood and paper-mill wastes; residues from biofuel industries; sewage sludge etc, that can be used for biochar production, making Brazil a key actor in the international scenario in terms of biochar research and utilization. In the last decade, numerous studies on biochar have been carried out and now a vast literature, and excellent reviews, are available. The objective of this paper is therefore to deliver a critical review with some highlights on biochar research, rather than an exhaustive bibliographic review. To this end, some key points considered critical and relevant were selected and the pertinent literature "condensed", with a view to guide future research, rather than analyze trends of the past.

  17. Phosphorus-assisted biomass thermal conversion: reducing carbon loss and improving biochar stability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Ling; Cao, Xinde; Zheng, Wei; Kan, Yue

    2014-01-01

    There is often over 50% carbon loss during the thermal conversion of biomass into biochar, leading to it controversy for the biochar formation as a carbon sequestration strategy. Sometimes the biochar also seems not to be stable enough due to physical, chemical, and biological reactions in soils. In this study, three phosphorus-bearing materials, H3PO4, phosphate rock tailing (PRT), and triple superphosphate (TSP), were used as additives to wheat straw with a ratio of 1: 0.4-0.8 for biochar production at 500°C, aiming to alleviate carbon loss during pyrolysis and to increase biochar-C stabilization. All these additives remarkably increased the biochar yield from 31.7% (unmodified biochar) to 46.9%-56.9% (modified biochars). Carbon loss during pyrolysis was reduced from 51.7% to 35.5%-47.7%. Thermogravimetric analysis curves showed that the additives had no effect on thermal stability of biochar but did enhance its oxidative stability. Microbial mineralization was obviously reduced in the modified biochar, especially in the TSP-BC, in which the total CO2 emission during 60-d incubation was reduced by 67.8%, compared to the unmodified biochar. Enhancement of carbon retention and biochar stability was probably due to the formation of meta-phosphate or C-O-PO3, which could either form a physical layer to hinder the contact of C with O2 and bacteria, or occupy the active sites of the C band. Our results indicate that pre-treating biomass with phosphors-bearing materials is effective for reducing carbon loss during pyrolysis and for increasing biochar stabilization, which provides a novel method by which biochar can be designed to improve the carbon sequestration capacity. PMID:25531111

  18. Successful implementation of biochar carbon sequestration in European soils requires additional benefits and close collaboration with the bioenergy sector

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hauggaard-Nielsen, Henrik; Müller-Stöver, Dorette; Bruun, Esben W.; Petersen, Carsten T.

    2014-05-01

    Biochar soil application has been proposed as a measure to mitigate climate change and on the same time improve soil fertility by increased soil carbon sequestration. However, while on tropical soils the beneficial effects of biochar application on crop growth often become immediately apparent, it has been shown to be more difficult to demonstrate these effects on the more fertile soils in temperate regions. Therefore and because of the lack of carbon credits for farmers, it is necessary to link biochar application to additional benefits, both related to agricultural as well as to bioenergy production. Thermal gasification of biomass is an efficient (95% energy efficiency) and flexible way (able to cope with many different and otherwise difficult-to-handle biomass fuels) to generate bioenergy, while producing a valuable by-product - gasification biochar, containing recalcitrant carbon and essential crop nutrients. The use of the residual char product in agricultural soils will add value to the technology as well as result in additional soil benefits such as providing plant nutrients and improving soil water-holding capacity while reducing leaching risks. From a soil column (30 x 130 cm) experiment with gasification straw biochar amendment to coarse sandy subsoil increased root density of barley at critical depths in the soil profile reducing the mechanical resistance was shown, increasing yields, and the soil's capacity to store plant available water. Incorporation of residuals from a bioenergy technology like gasification show great potentials to reduce subsoil constraints increasing yield potentials on poor soils. Another advantage currently not appropriately utilized is recovery of phosphorus (P). In a recent pot experiments char products originating from low-temperature gasification of various biofuels were evaluated for their suitability as P fertilizers. Wheat straw gasification biochar generally had a low P content but a high P plant availability. To improve

  19. Cross-scale modelling of the climate-change mitigation potential of biochar systems: Global implications of nano-scale processes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woolf, Dominic; Lehmann, Johannes

    2014-05-01

    With CO2 emissions still tracking the upper bounds of projected emissions scenarios, it is becoming increasingly urgent to reduce net greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, and increasingly likely that restricting future atmospheric GHG concentrations to within safe limits will require an eventual transition towards net negative GHG emissions. Few measures capable of providing negative emissions at a globally-significant scale are currently known. Two that are most often considered include carbon sequestration in biomass and soil, and biomass energy with carbon capture and storage (BECCS). In common with these two approaches, biochar also relies on the use of photosynthetically-bound carbon in biomass. But, because biomass and land are limited, it is critical that these resources are efficiently allocated between biomass/soil sequestration, bioenergy, BECCS, biochar, and other competing uses such as food, fiber and biodiversity. In many situations, biochar can offer advantages that may make it the preferred use of a limited biomass supply. These advantages include that: 1) Biochar can provide valuable benefits to agriculture by improving soil fertility and crop production, and reducing fertlizer and irrigation requirements. 2) Biochar is significantly more stable than biomass or other forms of soil carbon, thus lowering the risk of future losses compared to sequestration in biomass or soil organic carbon. 3) Gases and volatiles produced by pyrolysis can be combusted for energy (which may offset fossil fuel emissions). 4) Biochar can further lower GHG emissions by reducing nitrous oxide emissions from soil and by enhancing net primary production. Determining the optimal use of biomass requires that we are able to model not only the climate-change mitigation impact of each option, but also their economic and wider environmental impacts. Thus, what is required is a systems modelling approach that integrates components representing soil biogeochemistry, hydrology, crop

  20. Production of Biochar for Soil Application

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mia, Shamim; Uddin, Nijam; Mamun Hossain, Al Shaikh Abdullah; Amin, Ruhul; Mete, Fatima Z.; Hiemstra, Tjisse

    2015-01-01

    Biochar has potentials for soil fertility improvement, climate change mitigation and environmental reclamation, and charred biomass can be deliberately incorporated into soil for long-term carbon stabilization and soil amendment. Many different methods have been used for biochar production rangin

  1. Biochar as a Soil Amendment: A Review of the Environmental Implications

    OpenAIRE

    Woolf, Dominic

    2008-01-01

    The term 'biochar' refers to black carbon formed by the pyrolysis of biomass i.e. by heating biomass in an oxygen-free or low oxygen environment such that it does not (or only partially) combusts. Traditional charcoal is one example of biochar produced from wood. The term 'biochar' is much broader than this however, encompassing black carbon produced from any biomass feedstock. The use of biochar as a soil additive has been proposed as a means to simultaneously mitigate anthro...

  2. Mitigating methane emission from paddy soil with rice-straw biochar amendment under projected climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Han, Xingguo; Sun, Xue; Wang, Cheng; Wu, Mengxiong; Dong, Da; Zhong, Ting; Thies, Janice E.; Wu, Weixiang

    2016-04-01

    Elevated global temperatures and increased concentrations of carbon dioxide (CO2) in the atmosphere associated with climate change will exert profound effects on rice cropping systems, particularly on their greenhouse gas emitting potential. Incorporating biochar into paddy soil has been shown previously to reduce methane (CH4) emission from paddy rice under ambient temperature and CO2. We examined the ability of rice straw-derived biochar to reduce CH4 emission from paddy soil under elevated temperature and CO2 concentrations expected in the future. Adding biochar to paddy soil reduced CH4 emission under ambient conditions and significantly reduced emissions by 39.5% (ranging from 185.4 mg kg‑1 dry weight soil, dws season‑1 to 112.2 mg kg‑1 dws season‑1) under simultaneously elevated temperature and CO2. Reduced CH4 release was mainly attributable to the decreased activity of methanogens along with the increased CH4 oxidation activity and pmoA gene abundance of methanotrophs. Our findings highlight the valuable services of biochar amendment for CH4 control from paddy soil in a future that will be shaped by climate change.

  3. Mitigating methane emission from paddy soil with rice-straw biochar amendment under projected climate change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Han, Xingguo; Sun, Xue; Wang, Cheng; Wu, Mengxiong; Dong, Da; Zhong, Ting; Thies, Janice E; Wu, Weixiang

    2016-01-01

    Elevated global temperatures and increased concentrations of carbon dioxide (CO2) in the atmosphere associated with climate change will exert profound effects on rice cropping systems, particularly on their greenhouse gas emitting potential. Incorporating biochar into paddy soil has been shown previously to reduce methane (CH4) emission from paddy rice under ambient temperature and CO2. We examined the ability of rice straw-derived biochar to reduce CH4 emission from paddy soil under elevated temperature and CO2 concentrations expected in the future. Adding biochar to paddy soil reduced CH4 emission under ambient conditions and significantly reduced emissions by 39.5% (ranging from 185.4 mg kg(-1) dry weight soil, dws season(-1) to 112.2 mg kg(-1) dws season(-1)) under simultaneously elevated temperature and CO2. Reduced CH4 release was mainly attributable to the decreased activity of methanogens along with the increased CH4 oxidation activity and pmoA gene abundance of methanotrophs. Our findings highlight the valuable services of biochar amendment for CH4 control from paddy soil in a future that will be shaped by climate change. PMID:27090814

  4. Gasification biochar as soil amendment for carbon sequestration and soil quality

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansen, Veronika

    2014-01-01

    Thermal gasification of biomass is an efficient and flexible way to generate energy. Besides the energy, avaluable by-product, biochar, is produced. Biochar contains a considerable amount of recalcitrant carbon thathas potential for soil carbon sequestration and soil quality improvement if recycled...... back to agriculture soils. To determine the effect of gasification biochar on soil processes and crop yield, a short-term incubation study was conducted and a field trial has been established....

  5. BIOCHAR: PYROGENIC CARBON FOR AGRICULTURAL USE - A CRITICAL REVIEW

    OpenAIRE

    Etelvino Henrique Novotny; Claudia Maria Branco de Freitas Maia; Márcia Thaís de Melo Carvalho; Beáta Emöke Madari

    2015-01-01

    Biochar (carbonized biomass for agricultural use) has been used worldwide as soil amendment and is a technology of particular interest for Brazil, since its "inspiration" is from the historical Terra Preta de Índios(Amazon Dark Earth), and also because Brazil is the world's largest charcoal producer, generating enormous residue quantities in form of fine charcoal and due to the availability of different residual biomasses, mainly from agroindustry (e.g., sugar-cane bagasse; wood and paper-mil...

  6. Environment Friendly Agricultural Brand “Cool Vege” Through Carbon Sequestration by Biochar for Sustainable Management of Food and Water = Cool The Earth from The Dining Table with COOL Vege =

    OpenAIRE

    Akira Shibata; Hidehiko Kanagae

    2013-01-01

    The reduction of of greenhouse gas to mitigate or adapt to drastic climate change are one of the most important issues for human beings. On the other hand, rural development is also important issue for sustainable rural natural resources to secure food and water. Then, we propose the new socio-economic scheme to solve these issues at the same time through biochar carbon capture and sequestration. This scheme contains 4 measure factors that 1) Carbon Capture & Storage(CCS) via biochar, 2) ...

  7. Effect of biochar on leaching of organic carbon, nitrogen, and phosphorus from compost in bioretention systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iqbal, Hamid; Garcia-Perez, Manuel; Flury, Markus

    2015-07-15

    Compost is used in bioretention systems to improve soil quality, water infiltration, and retention of contaminants. However, compost contains dissolved organic matter, nitrate, and phosphorus, all of which can leach out and potentially contaminate ground and surface waters. To reduce the leaching of nutrients and dissolved organic matter from compost, biochar may be mixed into the bioretention systems. Our objective was to test whether biochar and co-composted biochar mixed into mature compost can reduce the leaching of organic carbon, nitrogen, and phosphorus. There was no significant difference between the effects of biochar and co-composted biochar amendments on nutrient leaching. Further, biochar amendments did not significantly reduce the leaching of dissolved organic carbon, nitrate, and phosphorus as compared to the compost only treatment. The compost-sand mix was the most effective in reducing nitrate and phosphorus leaching among the media. PMID:25828410

  8. Composting, anaerobic digestion and biochar production in Ghana. Environmental-economic assessment in the context of voluntary carbon markets.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Galgani, Pietro; van der Voet, Ester; Korevaar, Gijsbert

    2014-12-01

    In some areas of Sub-Saharan Africa appropriate organic waste management technology could address development issues such as soil degradation, unemployment and energy scarcity, while at the same time reducing emissions of greenhouse gases. This paper investigates the role that carbon markets could have in facilitating the implementation of composting, anaerobic digestion and biochar production, in the city of Tamale, in the North of Ghana. Through a life cycle assessment of implementation scenarios for low-tech, small scale variants of the above mentioned three technologies, the potential contribution they could give to climate change mitigation was assessed. Furthermore an economic assessment was carried out to study their viability and the impact thereon of accessing carbon markets. It was found that substantial climate benefits can be achieved by avoiding landfilling of organic waste, producing electricity and substituting the use of chemical fertilizer. Biochar production could result in a net carbon sequestration. These technologies were however found not to be economically viable without external subsidies, and access to carbon markets at the considered carbon price of 7 EUR/ton of carbon would not change the situation significantly. Carbon markets could help the realization of the considered composting and anaerobic digestion systems only if the carbon price will rise above 75-84 EUR/t of carbon (respectively for anaerobic digestion and composting). Biochar production could achieve large climate benefits and, if approved as a land based climate mitigation mechanism in carbon markets, it would become economically viable at the lower carbon price of 30 EUR/t of carbon. PMID:25204615

  9. Carbon sequestration in temperate grassland soil : risks and opportunities of biochar and hydrochar application

    OpenAIRE

    Schimmelpfennig, Sonja

    2015-01-01

    The discovery of Terra Preta soils and the identification of charcoal as an essential component therein initiated an ever-growing research field. Since then, many experiments on the production and application of carbonized plant material (biochar or hydrochar) to soil have been carried out. However, the integration of biochar/hydrochar into soil management systems requires comprehensive analyses to identify and evaluate possible risks and opportunities involved with biochar/hydrochar applicat...

  10. Prospective life cycle carbon abatement for pyrolysis biochar systems in the UK

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Life cycle assessment (LCA) of slow pyrolysis biochar systems (PBS) in the UK for small, medium and large scale process chains and ten feedstocks was performed, assessing carbon abatement and electricity production. Pyrolysis biochar systems appear to offer greater carbon abatement than other bioenergy systems. Carbon abatement of 0.7-1.3 t CO2 equivalent per oven dry tonne of feedstock processed was found. In terms of delivered energy, medium to large scale PBS abates 1.4-1.9 t CO2e/MWh, which compares to average carbon emissions of 0.05-0.30 t CO2e/MWh for other bioenergy systems. The largest contribution to PBS carbon abatement is from the feedstock carbon stabilised in biochar (40-50%), followed by the less certain indirect effects of biochar in the soil (25-40%)-mainly due to increase in soil organic carbon levels. Change in soil organic carbon levels was found to be a key sensitivity. Electricity production off-setting emissions from fossil fuels accounted for 10-25% of carbon abatement. The LCA suggests that provided 43% of the carbon in the biochar remains stable, PBS will out-perform direct combustion of biomass at 33% efficiency in terms of carbon abatement, even if there is no beneficial effect upon soil organic carbon levels from biochar application. - Research highlights: → Biochar systems offer greater carbon abatement than combustion or gasification. → Carbon abatement of 0.7-1.4t CO2e/dry tonne of feedstock processed was found. → Change in soil organic carbon stocks induced by biochar is the key sensitivity. → Biochar systems produce less electricity then combustion or gasification.

  11. Effects of three different biochars on aggregate stability, organic carbon mobility and micronutrient bioavailability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hartley, William; Riby, Philip; Waterson, James

    2016-10-01

    Previous studies have demonstrated both beneficial and detrimental effects on soil properties from biochar incorporation. Several biochars, with different feedstock origins, were evaluated for their effectiveness at improving soil quality of a sandy agricultural soil. A pot trial was used to investigate aggregate stability and microbial activity, pore water trace element mobility and micronutrient concentrations in grain of spring wheat after incorporation of three biochars. The feedstocks for biochar production were selected because they were established UK waste products, namely oversize woody material from green waste composting facilities, and rhododendron and soft wood material from forest clearance operations. Biochars were incorporated into the soil at a rate of 5% v/v. Aggregate stability was improved following addition of oversize biochar whilst microbial activity increased in all treatments. Dissolved organic carbon (DOC) concentrations in soil pore water from biochar-treated soils were raised, whilst micronutrient concentrations in wheat grain grown in the treated soils were significantly reduced. It was concluded that incorporation of biochar to temperate agricultural soils requires caution as it may result in reductions of essential grain micronutrients required for human health, whilst the effect on aggregate stability may be linked to organic carbon functional groups on biochar surfaces and labile carbon released from the char into the soil system. PMID:27444723

  12. A Review of Biochar and Soil Nitrogen Dynamics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christoph Müller

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available Interest in biochar stems from its potential agronomic benefits and carbon sequestration ability. Biochar application alters soil nitrogen (N dynamics. This review establishes emerging trends and gaps in biochar-N research. Biochar adsorption of NO3−, up to 0.6 mg g−1 biochar, occurs at pyrolysis temperatures >600 °C with amounts adsorbed dependent on feedstock and NO3− concentration. Biochar NH4+ adsorption depends on feedstock, but no pyrolysis temperature trend is apparent. Long-term practical effectiveness of inorganic-N adsorption, as a NO3− leaching mitigation option, requires further study. Biochar adsorption of ammonia (NH3 decreases NH3 and NO3− losses during composting and after manure applications, and offers a mechanism for developing slow release fertilisers. Reductions in NH3 loss vary with N source and biochar characteristics. Manure derived biochars have a role as N fertilizers. Increasing pyrolysis temperatures, during biochar manufacture from manures and biosolids, results in biochars with decreasing hydrolysable organic N and increasing aromatic and heterocyclic structures. The short- and long-term implications of biochar on N immobilisation and mineralization are specific to individual soil-biochar combinations and further systematic studies are required to predict agronomic and N cycling responses. Most nitrous oxide (N2O studies measuring nitrous oxide (N2O were short-term in nature and found emission reductions, but long-term studies are lacking, as is mechanistic understanding of reductions. Stable N isotopes have a role in elucidating biochar-N-soil dynamics. There remains a dearth of information regarding effects of biochar and soil biota on N cycling. Biochar has potential within agroecosystems to be an N input, and a mitigation agent for environmentally detrimental N losses. Future research needs to systematically understand biochar-N interactions over the long term.

  13. Biochar & Carbon Sequestration [Biocarvão (Biochar e Sequestro de Carbono

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Antonio S. Mangrich

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available The traditional answer to the question of controlling the growth of global warming involves reducing emissions of greenhouse gases like CO2. However, developed and developing countries have difficulty in adopting measures to reduce use of fossil fuels in the short or medium term. The world is currently exceeding the rate of greenhouse gas emissions. Consequently, it is urgently necessary to remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. Extensive research efforts in science and technology are underway to develop approaches to capture and sequester carbon. In this work we deal with the different processes proposed, but with great emphasis on the process of biochar production by pyrolysis of biomass which copies the methodology of Terra Preta de Índios da Amazonia.

  14. Carbon dynamics in different soil types amended with pig slurry, pig manure and its biochar

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yanardag, Ibrahim H.; Zornoza, Raúl; Faz, Ángel; Büyükkiliç-Yanardaǧ, Asuman; Mermut, Ahmet R.

    2014-05-01

    Determining the structure and components of soil and soil organic matter is very important in terms of sustainable agriculture and forestry and greenhouse gases emissions. Organic management can increase labile C and N in the short-term, and total soil C and N in the long-term, but less is known about how management practices may affect soil organic C (SOC)quality and stability. Methods to improve the management of livestock slurries to reduce the environmental impact and carbon losses are gaining importance. There is a need to find the best wastes treatment which enhances soil fertility but also carbon sequestration, to mitigate the effects of global warming. The objective of this study was to assess the short-term changes in SOC pools, using raw pig slurry, the solid phase of pig slurry, and its biochar as amendment in different soil types (Regosol, Luvisol and Kastanozem). The three different amendments were applied at 5 g C kg-1 soil. An unamended soil for each type was used as control. Soils were incubated in triplicate for 60 days at 25ºC and at 55% of their water holding capacity. Samples were sampled to monitor the evolution of soil organic and inorganic carbon, recalcitrant carbon, soluble carbon, carbon mineralization, SOC thermal distribution (thermogravimetric analysis - differential scanning calorimetry - quadrupole mass spectrometry), and characterization of functional groups (Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR)). Results showed that soils amended with raw pig slurry and the solid phase of the slurry showed higher values of soluble carbon, and higher carbon mineralization rates compared to biochar application, which showed values similar to controls. SOC increased at the end of incubation with biochar and the solid phase of the slurry applications in Kastanozem and Regosol. Thermogravimetric results showed an increased weight loss of the Regosol compared to Luvisol and Kastanozem, owing to the higher content of soil carbonates. Luvisol and

  15. Gasification biochar as a valuable by-product for carbon sequestration and soil amendment

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansen, Veronika; Müller-Stöver, Dorette Sophie; Ahrenfeldt, Jesper;

    2015-01-01

    Thermal gasification of various biomass residues is a promising technology for combining bioenergy production with soil fertility management through the application of the resulting biochar as soil amendment. In this study, we investigated gasification biochar (GB) materials originating from two...... major global biomass fuels: straw gasification biochar (SGB) and wood gasification biochar (WGB), produced by a Low Temperature Circulating Fluidized Bed gasifier (LT-CFB) and a TwoStage gasifier, respectively, optimized for energy conversion. Stability of carbon in GB against microbial degradation was...

  16. Field-scale fluorescence fingerprinting of biochar-borne dissolved organic carbon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biochar continues to receive worldwide enthusiasm as means of augmenting recalcitrant organic carbon in agricultural soils. Realistic biochar amendment rate (typically less than 1 wt%) in the field scale, and loss by sizing, rain, and other transport events demand reliable methods to quantify the r...

  17. Turnover of soil carbon pools following addition of switchgrass-derived biochar to four soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    The amendment of soils with biochar may improve plant growth and sequester carbon, especially in marginal soils not suitable for the majority of commodity production. While biochar can persist in soils, it is not clear whether its persistence is affected by soil type. Moreover, we know little of how...

  18. Utilization of low-ash biochar to partially replace carbon black in SBR composites

    Science.gov (United States)

    A biochar made from woody waste feedstock with low ash content was blended with carbon black as filler for styrene-butadiene rubber. At 10% total filler concentration (w/w), composites made from 25 or 50% biochar showed improved tensile strength, elongation, and toughness compared to similar composi...

  19. Effects of Rice Straw and Its Biochar Addition on Soil Labile Carbon and Soil Organic Carbon

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    YIN Yun-feng; HE Xin-hua; GAO Ren; MA Hong-liang; YANG Yu-sheng

    2014-01-01

    Whether the biochar amendment could affect soil organic matter (SOM) turnover and hence soil carbon (C) stock remains poorly understood. Effects of the addition of 13C-labelled rice straw or its pyrolysed biochar at 250 or 350°C to a sugarcane soil (Ferrosol) on soil labile C (dissolved organic C, DOC;microbial biomass C, MBC;and mineralizable C, MC) and soil organic C (SOC) were investigated after 112 d of laboratory incubation at 25°C. Four treatments were examined as (1) the control soil without amendment (Soil);(2) soil plus 13C-labelled rice straw (Soil+Straw);(3) soil plus 250°C biochar (Soil+B250) and (4) soil plus 350°C biochar (Soil+B350). Compared to un-pyrolysed straw, biochars generally had an increased aryl C, carboxyl C, C and nitrogen concentrations, a decreased O-alkyl C and C:N ratio, but similar alkyl C and d13C (1 742-1 877‰). Among treatments, signiifcant higher DOC, MBC and MC derived from the new C (straw or biochar) ranked as Soil+Straw>Soil+B250>Soil+B350, whilst signiifcant higher SOC from the new C as Soil+B250>Soil+Straw≈Soil+B350. Compared to Soil, DOC and MBC derived from the native soil were decreased under straw or biochar addition, whilst MC from the native soil was increased under straw addition but decreased under biochar addition. Meanwhile, native SOC was similar among the treatments, irrespective of the straw or biochar addition. Compared to Soil, signiifcant higher total DOC and total MBC were under Soil+Straw, but not under Soil+B250 and Soil+B350, whilst signiifcant higher total MC and total SOC were under straw or biochar addition, except for MC under Soil+B350. Our results demonstrated that the application of biochar to soil may be an appropriate management practice for increasing soil C storage.

  20. Molecular Structures and Sorption Mechanisms of Biochars as Heterogeneous Carbon Materials

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Baoliang; Chen, Zaiming; Xiao, Xin; Fang, Qile

    2015-04-01

    Surface functional groups such as carboxyl play a vital role in the environmental applications of biochar as a soil amendment. However, the quantification of oxygen-containing groups on a biochar surface still lacks systematical investigation. An integrated method combining chemical and spectroscopic techniques was established to quantitatively identify the chemical states, dissociation constants (pKa), and contents of oxygen-containing groups on dairy manure-derived biochars prepared at 100-700 °C. The dissociation pH of carboxyl groups on the biochar surface covered a wide range of pH values (pH 2-11), due to the varied structural micro-environments and chemical states. For low temperature biochars (≤350 °C), carboxyl existed not only as hydrogen-bonded carboxyl and unbonded carboxyl groups but also formed esters at the surface of biochars. The esters consumed OH‒ via saponification in the alkaline pH region and enhanced the dissolution of organic matter from biochars. For high temperature biochars (≥500 °C), esters came from carboxyl were almost eliminated via carbonization (ester pyrolysis), while lactones were developed. The surface density of carboxyl groups on biochars decreased sharply with the increase of the biochar-producing temperature, but the total contents of the surface carboxyls for different biochars were comparable (with a difference regulate biochars in nutrient retention, sorption/immobilization of hazardous pollutants and biochar particle dispersing properties. Meanwhile, dissociation of acid/base groups affects carbon and silica biogeochemical cycling by regulating the release of organic matter from the cleavage of esters and dissolution of the Si-containing minerals. For high temperature biochars (i.e., DM500 and DM700), the effect of acid/base dissociation on organic matter dissolution is eliminated, but other functions are similar. CGs are the major acid/base groups on biochar surfaces. In field applications, such abundant CGs are

  1. Biochar affects carbon composition and stability in soil: a combined spectroscopy-microscopy study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hernandez-Soriano, Maria C.; Kerré, Bart; Kopittke, Peter M.; Horemans, Benjamin; Smolders, Erik

    2016-01-01

    The use of biochar can contribute to carbon (C) storage in soil. Upon addition of biochar, there is a spatial reorganization of C within soil particles, but the mechanisms remain unclear. Here, we used Fourier transformed infrared-microscopy and confocal laser scanning microscopy to examine this reorganization. A silty-loam soil was amended with three different organic residues and with the biochar produced from these residues and incubated for 237 d. Soil respiration was lower in biochar-amended soils than in residue-amended soils. Fluorescence analysis of the dissolved organic matter revealed that biochar application increased a humic-like fluorescent component, likely associated with biochar-C in solution. The combined spectroscopy-microscopy approach revealed the accumulation of aromatic-C in discrete spots in the solid-phase of microaggregates and its co-localization with clay minerals for soil amended with raw residue or biochar.The co-localization of aromatic-C:polysaccharides-C was consistently reduced upon biochar application. We conclude that reduced C metabolism is an important mechanism for C stabilization in biochar-amended soils. PMID:27113269

  2. Composting, anaerobic digestion and biochar production in Ghana. Environmental–economic assessment in the context of voluntary carbon markets

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Galgani, Pietro, E-mail: p.galgani@hotmail.com [Department of Industrial Ecology, Institute of Environmental Sciences, Leiden University, Van Steenis gebouw, Einsteinweg 2, 2333CC Leiden (Netherlands); Voet, Ester van der [Department of Industrial Ecology, Institute of Environmental Sciences, Leiden University, Van Steenis gebouw, Einsteinweg 2, 2333CC Leiden (Netherlands); Korevaar, Gijsbert [Department of Energy and Industry, Faculty of Technology, Policy, and Management, Delft University of Technology, Jaffalaan 5, 2628 BX Delft (Netherlands)

    2014-12-15

    Highlights: • Economic–environmental assessment of combining composting with biogas and biochar in Ghana. • These technologies can save greenhouse gas emissions for up to 0.57 t CO{sub 2} eq/t of waste treated. • Labor intensive, small-scale organic waste management is not viable without financial support. • Carbon markets would make these technologies viable with carbon prices in the range of 30–84 EUR/t. - Abstract: In some areas of Sub-Saharan Africa appropriate organic waste management technology could address development issues such as soil degradation, unemployment and energy scarcity, while at the same time reducing emissions of greenhouse gases. This paper investigates the role that carbon markets could have in facilitating the implementation of composting, anaerobic digestion and biochar production, in the city of Tamale, in the North of Ghana. Through a life cycle assessment of implementation scenarios for low-tech, small scale variants of the above mentioned three technologies, the potential contribution they could give to climate change mitigation was assessed. Furthermore an economic assessment was carried out to study their viability and the impact thereon of accessing carbon markets. It was found that substantial climate benefits can be achieved by avoiding landfilling of organic waste, producing electricity and substituting the use of chemical fertilizer. Biochar production could result in a net carbon sequestration. These technologies were however found not to be economically viable without external subsidies, and access to carbon markets at the considered carbon price of 7 EUR/ton of carbon would not change the situation significantly. Carbon markets could help the realization of the considered composting and anaerobic digestion systems only if the carbon price will rise above 75–84 EUR/t of carbon (respectively for anaerobic digestion and composting). Biochar production could achieve large climate benefits and, if approved as a land

  3. Composting, anaerobic digestion and biochar production in Ghana. Environmental–economic assessment in the context of voluntary carbon markets

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Highlights: • Economic–environmental assessment of combining composting with biogas and biochar in Ghana. • These technologies can save greenhouse gas emissions for up to 0.57 t CO2 eq/t of waste treated. • Labor intensive, small-scale organic waste management is not viable without financial support. • Carbon markets would make these technologies viable with carbon prices in the range of 30–84 EUR/t. - Abstract: In some areas of Sub-Saharan Africa appropriate organic waste management technology could address development issues such as soil degradation, unemployment and energy scarcity, while at the same time reducing emissions of greenhouse gases. This paper investigates the role that carbon markets could have in facilitating the implementation of composting, anaerobic digestion and biochar production, in the city of Tamale, in the North of Ghana. Through a life cycle assessment of implementation scenarios for low-tech, small scale variants of the above mentioned three technologies, the potential contribution they could give to climate change mitigation was assessed. Furthermore an economic assessment was carried out to study their viability and the impact thereon of accessing carbon markets. It was found that substantial climate benefits can be achieved by avoiding landfilling of organic waste, producing electricity and substituting the use of chemical fertilizer. Biochar production could result in a net carbon sequestration. These technologies were however found not to be economically viable without external subsidies, and access to carbon markets at the considered carbon price of 7 EUR/ton of carbon would not change the situation significantly. Carbon markets could help the realization of the considered composting and anaerobic digestion systems only if the carbon price will rise above 75–84 EUR/t of carbon (respectively for anaerobic digestion and composting). Biochar production could achieve large climate benefits and, if approved as a land based

  4. Does thermal carbonization (Biochar) of organic material increase more merits for their amendments of sandy soil?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Y.; Xu, G.; Sun, J. N.; Shao, H. B.

    2014-02-01

    Organic materials (e.g. furfural residue) are generally believed to improve the physical and chemical properties of the soils with low fertility. Recently, biochar have been received more attention as a possible measure to improve the carbon balance and improve soil quality in some degraded soils. However, little is known about their different amelioration of a sandy saline soil. In this study, 56d incubation experiment was conducted to evaluate the influence of furfural and its biochar on the properties of saline soil. The results showed that both furfural and biochar greatly reduced pH, increased soil organic carbon (SOC) content and cation exchange capacity (CEC), and enhanced the available phosphorus (P) in the soil. Furfural is more efficient than biochar in reducing pH: 5% furfural lowered the soil pH by 0.5-0.8 (soil pH: 8.3-8.6), while 5% biochar decreased by 0.25-0.4 due to the loss of acidity in pyrolysis process. With respect to available P, 5% of the furfural addition increased available P content by 4-6 times in comparison to 2-5 times with biochar application. In reducing soil exchangeable sodium percentage (ESP), biochar is slightly superior to furfural because soil ESP reduced by 51% and 43% with 5% furfural and 5% biochar addition at the end of incubation. In addition, no significant differences were observed between furfural and biochar about their capacity to retain N, P in leaching solution and to increase CEC in soil. These facts may be caused by the relatively short incubation time. In general, furfural and biochar have different amendments depending on soil properties: furfural was more effectively to decrease pH and to increase available P, whereas biochar played a more important role in increasing SOC and reducing ESP of saline soil.

  5. Field-scale fluorescence fingerprinting of biochar-borne dissolved organic carbon.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Uchimiya, Minori; Liu, Zhongzhen; Sistani, Karamat

    2016-03-15

    Biochar continues to receive worldwide enthusiasm as means of augmenting recalcitrant organic carbon in agricultural soils. Realistic biochar amendment rate (typically less than 1 wt%) in the field scale, and subsequent loss by sizing, rain, and other transport events demand reliable methods to quantify the remaining portions of amended biochar. This study employed fluorescence excitation-emission (EEM) spectrophotometry and parallel factor analysis (PARAFAC) to specifically target pyrogenic dissolved organic carbon (DOC) released by amended biochar during the course of a field trial at Bowling Green, KY experimental site. Toluene/methanol (1:6 v/v) extracts of surface (0-15 cm) soils amended with 21.28 t ha(-1) fast pyrolysis biochar afforded PARAFAC fingerprints representing different degrees of aromaticity. Compared to the control without treatments, biochar treatment (with and without poultry manure or chemical fertilizer) increased the relative contribution of PARAFAC fingerprint attributable to labile polyaromatic DOC structures. Poultry manure or chemical fertilizer alone (without biochar) did not influence the amounts of polyaromatic DOC structures. Existence of biochar could be further validated by the changes in %DOC (relative to the total carbon), fixed C content, and UV absorbance (360 nm), whereas FTIR, %O, and sorption of model agrochemical (deisopropylatrazine) did not reflect the presence of biochar in the soil samples. Developed toluene/methanol-based EEM-PARAFAC technique will provide a sensitive, rapid, and cost-competitive method to validate the long-term carbon sequestration by the biochar soil amendment. PMID:26751812

  6. Factors driving carbon mineralization priming effect in a soil amended with different types of biochar

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cely, P.; Tarquis, A. M.; Paz-Ferreiro, J.; Méndez, A.; Gascó, G.

    2014-03-01

    The effect of biochar on soil carbon mineralization priming effect depends on the characteristics of the raw materials, production method and pyrolysis conditions. The goal of the present study is to evaluate the impact of three different types of biochar on soil CO2 emissions and in different physicochemical properties. For this purpose, a sandy-loam soil was amended with the three biochars (BI, BII and BIII) at a rate of 8 wt % and soil CO2 emissions were measured for 45 days. BI is produced from a mixed wood sieving's from wood chip production, BII from a mixture of paper sludge and wheat husks and BIII from sewage sludge. Cumulative CO2 emissions of biochars, soil and amended soil were well fit to a simple first-order kinetic model with correlation coefficients (r2) greater than 0.97. Results shown a negative priming effect in the soil after addition of BI and a positive priming effect in the case of soil amended with BII and BIII. These results can be related with different biochar properties such as ash content, volatile matter, fixed carbon, organic carbon oxidised with dichromate, soluble carbon and metal and phenolic substances content in addition to surface biochar properties. Three biochars increased the values of soil field capacity and wilting point, while effects over pH and cation exchange capacity were not observed.

  7. Factors driving carbon mineralization priming effect in a soil amended with different types of biochar

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    P. Cely

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available The effect of biochar on soil carbon mineralization priming effect depends on the characteristics of the raw materials, production method and pyrolysis conditions. The goal of the present study is to evaluate the impact of three different types of biochar on soil CO2 emissions and in different physicochemical properties. For this purpose, a sandy-loam soil was amended with the three biochars (BI, BII and BIII at a rate of 8 wt % and soil CO2 emissions were measured for 45 days. BI is produced from a mixed wood sieving's from wood chip production, BII from a mixture of paper sludge and wheat husks and BIII from sewage sludge. Cumulative CO2 emissions of biochars, soil and amended soil were well fit to a simple first-order kinetic model with correlation coefficients (r2 greater than 0.97. Results shown a negative priming effect in the soil after addition of BI and a positive priming effect in the case of soil amended with BII and BIII. These results can be related with different biochar properties such as ash content, volatile matter, fixed carbon, organic carbon oxidised with dichromate, soluble carbon and metal and phenolic substances content in addition to surface biochar properties. Three biochars increased the values of soil field capacity and wilting point, while effects over pH and cation exchange capacity were not observed.

  8. Influence of fast pyrolysis temperature on biochar labile fraction and short-term carbon loss in a loamy soil

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bruun, Esben; Hauggaard-Nielsen, Henrik; Ibrahim, Norazana;

    2011-01-01

    Production of bio-oil, gas and biochar from pyrolysis of biomass is considered a promising technology for combined production of bioenergy and recalcitrant carbon (C) suitable for sequestration in soil. Using a fast pyrolysis centrifuge reactor (PCR) the present study investigated the relation...... between fast pyrolysis of wheat straw at different reactor temperatures and the short-term degradability of biochar in soil. After 115 days incubation 3–12% of the added biochar-C had been emitted as CO2. On average, 90% of the total biochar-C loss occurred within the first 20 days of the experiment......, emphasizing the importance of knowing the biochar labile fraction when evaluating a specific biochars C sequestration potential. The pyrolysis temperature influenced the outputs of biochar, bio-oil and syngas significantly, as well as the stability of the biochar produced. Contrary to slow pyrolysis a fast...

  9. Soil carbon mineralization following biochar addition associated with external nitrogen

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rudong Zhao

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Biochar has been attracting increasing attention for its potentials of C sequestration and soil amendment. This study aimed to understand the effects of combining biochar with additional external N on soil C mineralization. A typical red soil (Plinthudults was treated with two biochars made from two types of plantation-tree trunks (soil-biochar treatments, and was also treated with external N (soil-biochar-N treatments. All treatments were incubated for 42 d. The CO2-C released from the treatments was detected periodically. After the incubation, soil properties such as pH, microbial biomass C (MBC, and microbial biomass N (MBN were measured. The addition of biochar with external N increased the soil pH (4.31-4.33 compared to the soil treated with external N only (4.21. This was not observed in the comparison of soil-biochar treatments (4.75-4.80 to soil only (4.74. Biochar additions (whether or not they were associated with external N increased soil MBC and MBN, but decreased CO2-C value per unit total C (added biochar C + soil C according to the model fitting. The total CO2-C released in soil-biochar treatments were enhanced compared to soil only (i.e., 3.15 vs. 2.57 mg and 3.23 vs. 2.45 mg, which was attributed to the labile C fractions in the biochars and through soil microorganism enhancement. However, there were few changes in soil C mineralization in soil-biochar-N treatments. Additionally, the potentially available C per unit total C in soil-biochar-N treatments was lower than that observed in the soil-biochar treatments. Therefore, we believe in the short term, that C mineralization in the soil can be enhanced by biochar addition, but not by adding external N concomitantly.

  10. Aqueous leaching of organic acids and dissolved organic carbon from various biochars prepared at different temperatures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Peng; Ptacek, Carol J; Blowes, David W; Berti, William R; Landis, Richard C

    2015-03-01

    Biochar has been used as a soil amendment, as a water treatment material, and for carbon (C) sequestration. Thirty-six biochars, produced from wood, agricultural residue, and manure feedstocks at different temperatures, were evaluated for the aqueous leaching of different forms of soluble C. The release of inorganic C (alkalinity), organic acids (OAs), and total dissolved organic C (DOC) was highly variable and dependent on the feedstock and pyrolysis temperature. The pH and alkalinity increased for the majority of samples. Higher pH values were associated with high-temperature (high-T) (600 and 700°C) biochars. Statistically significant differences in alkalinity were not observed between low-temperature (low-T) (300°C) and high-T biochars, whereas alkalinity released from wood-based biochar was significantly lower than from others. Concentrations of OAs and DOC released from low-T biochars were greater than from high-T biochars. The C in the OAs represented 1 to 60% of the total DOC released, indicating the presence of other DOC forms. The C released as DOC represented up to 3% (majority biochar. Scanning electron microscopy with energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy showed the high-T biochars had a greater proportion of micropores. Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy showed that hydroxyl, aliphatic, and quinone were the predominant functional groups of all biochars and that the abundance of other functional groups was dependent on the feedstock. The release of DOC, especially bioavailable forms such as OAs, may promote growth of organisms and heavy metal complexation and diminish the potential effectiveness of various biochars for C sequestration. PMID:26023986

  11. Microbial Degradation and Carbon Biosequestration Potential of Biochar in Contrasting Soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tas, N.; Castanha, C.; Reichl, K.; Fischer, M. L.; Brodie, E. L.; Torn, M. S.; Jansson, J. K.

    2012-12-01

    Biochar is a carbon-rich product that is produced by high-temperature and low-oxygen pyrolysis of biomass, whose addition to soil has been proposed as a promising method for carbon sequestration. Biochar carbon has been assumed to be stable in soil, but recent research shows that it is at least partly degradable by soil microbes. However, the influence of environmental conditions on microbial transformation of biochar is poorly understood. Our overall goal is to determine the factors that regulate microbial decomposition of biochar in soils. We performed laboratory incubation experiments to compare the potential for biochar decomposition in soils from contrasting ecosystems (tropical forest from Puerto Rico and Mediterranean grassland from California), varied temperatures (ambient and +6°C) and depths (A and B horizons). Soil incubations with pyrolyzed 13C-enriched wood were continuously monitored for heterotrophic respiration using an online Cavity Ringdown Spectrometer. Samples collected after 10 and 150 days of incubation were analyzed for the activity of extracellular enzymes while changes in microbial community composition were assessed via pyrotag sequencing of both 16S rRNA and 16S rRNA genes. 13C-CO2 measurements confirmed that a fraction of added biochar was degraded in both soils during the one-year incubation period. Biochar addition was associated with a decline in cellulose and hemicellulose degrading enzyme activity in grassland soils, although not in tropical soils. In both soils, native soil organic carbon decomposition was not significantly impacted by biochar addition. Principle coordinates analysis of microbial composition showed that both soils harbored different microbial communities and those communities at different depths were distinct. The main bacterial groups enriched by biochar addition were Actinobacteria in the grassland soil, and α-Proteobacteria, Actinobacteria and Acidobacteria in the tropical soil. Analysis of 16S r

  12. Impact of biochar amendment on soil water soluble carbon in the context of extreme hydrological events.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Daoyuan; Griffin, Deirdre E; Parikh, Sanjai J; Scow, Kate M

    2016-10-01

    Biochar amendments to soil have been promoted as a low cost carbon (C) sequestration strategy as well as a way to increase nutrient retention and remediate contaminants. If biochar is to become part of a long-term management strategy, it is important to consider its positive and negative impacts, and their trade-offs, on soil organic matter (SOM) and soluble C under different hydrological conditions such as prolonged drought or frequent wet-dry cycles. A 52-week incubation experiment measuring the influence of biochar on soil water soluble C under different soil moisture conditions (wet, dry, or wet-dry cycles) indicated that, in general, dry and wet-dry cycles increased water soluble C, and biochar addition further increased release of water soluble C from native SOM. Biochar amendment appeared to increase transformation of native SOM to water soluble C, based on specific ultraviolet absorption (SUVA) and C stable isotope composition; however, the increased amount of water soluble C from native SOM is less than 1% of total biochar C. The impacts of biochar on water soluble C need to be carefully considered when applying biochar to agricultural soil. PMID:27391051

  13. Biochar erosion: A potential threat to its suitability for carbon sequestration?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fister, W.; Heckrath, G.; Greenwood, P.; Kuhn, N. J.

    2013-12-01

    Biochar is often considered to be a ';soft' geo-engineering option, with the potential to encourage soils to sequester more carbon (C) from the atmospheric C pool, and so increase both medium- and long-term soil C stocks. Similar to soil organic carbon (SOC), biochar has a lower bulk density than typical agricultural soils. Therefore, the question about its preferential mobilization and redistribution in the landscape has been raised in recent years. This is especially relevant on soils, which are regularly cultivated and are vulnerable to soil erosion themselves. However, so far few studies about the erodibility and fate of biochar in the landscape exist and the answer to this question is still unknown. Since the efficacy of biochar for sequestering carbon and improving soil quality depends on its amount and residential time in the upper soil matrix, it is important to further our knowledge about mobilization and transport behaviour of biochar. Moreover, such knowledge could have profound economic implications for farmers committed to its use, as a high net annual loss of biochar by erosion could exceed any net annual economic gain. The overall objective of this study was, therefore, to investigate the erodibility of biochar, when erosion events occur directly or soon after its application. The estimation of the financial value of the eroded biochar and its cost-effectiveness were scaled up from plot to field scale. In this investigation, the biochar was applied to the soil surface of three plots on a recently cultivated sandy field near Viborg in northern Jutland, Denmark at concentrations equivalent to 1.5-2.0 kg m-2. After application, the biochar was manually incorporated into the till-zone (20cm). Three consecutive erosion events (each lasted for 30 min. with rainfall intensity of approx. 90 mm h-1) were conducted on both biochar and reference plots. The erosion events were generated by the 2.2 m-2 Portable Wind and Rainfall Simulator. The preliminary results

  14. Removal of copper and cadmium from aqueous solution using switchgrass biochar produced via hydrothermal carbonization process.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Regmi, Pusker; Garcia Moscoso, Jose Luis; Kumar, Sandeep; Cao, Xiaoyan; Mao, Jingdong; Schafran, Gary

    2012-10-30

    Biochar produced from switchgrass via hydrothermal carbonization (HTC) was used as a sorbent for the removal of copper and cadmium from aqueous solution. The cold activation process using KOH at room temperature was developed to enhance the porous structure and sorption properties of the HTC biochar. The sorption efficiency of HTC biochar and alkali activated HTC biochar (HTCB) for removing copper and cadmium from aqueous solution were compared with commercially available powdered activated carbon (PAC). The present batch adsorption study describes the effects of solution pH, biochar dose, and contact time on copper and cadmium removal efficiency from single metal ion aqueous solutions. The activated HTCB exhibited a higher adsorption potential for copper and cadmium than HTC biochar and PAC. Experiments conducted with an initial metal concentration of 40 mg/L at pH 5.0 and contact time of 24 h resulted in close to 100% copper and cadmium removal by activated HTCB at 2 g/L, far greater than what was observed for HTC biochar (16% and 5.6%) and PAC (4% and 7.7%). The adsorption capacities of activated HTCB for cadmium removal were 34 mg/g (0.313 mmol/g) and copper removal was 31 mg/g (0.503 mmol/g). PMID:22687632

  15. Gasification biochar as a valuable by-product for carbon sequestration and soil amendment

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansen, Veronika; Müller-Stöver, Dorette Sophie; Ahrenfeldt, Jesper; Holm, Jens Kai; Henriksen, Ulrik Birk; Hauggaard-Nielsen, Henrik

    2015-01-01

    Thermal gasification of various biomass residues is a promising technology for combining bioenergy production with soil fertility management through the application of the resulting biochar as soil amendment. In this study, we investigated gasification biochar (GB) materials originating from two...... major global biomass fuels: straw gasification biochar (SGB) and wood gasification biochar (WGB), produced by a Low Temperature Circulating Fluidized Bed gasifier (LT-CFB) and a TwoStage gasifier, respectively, optimized for energy conversion. Stability of carbon in GB against microbial degradation was...... assessed in a shortterm soil incubation study and compared to the traditional practice of direct incorporation of cereal straw. The GBs were chemically and physically characterized to evaluate their potential to improve soil quality parameters. After 110 days of incubation, about 3% of the added GB carbon...

  16. Enhanced rice production but greatly reduced carbon emission following biochar amendment in a metal-polluted rice paddy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Afeng; Bian, Rongjun; Li, Lianqing; Wang, Xudong; Zhao, Ying; Hussain, Qaiser; Pan, Genxing

    2015-12-01

    Soil amendment of biochar (BSA) had been shown effective for mitigating greenhouse gas (GHG) emission and alleviating metal stress to plants and microbes in soil. It has not yet been addressed if biochar exerts synergy effects on crop production, GHG emission, and microbial activity in metal-polluted soils. In a field experiment, biochar was amended at sequential rates at 0, 10, 20, and 40 t ha(-1), respectively, in a cadmium- and lead-contaminated rice paddy from the Tai lake Plain, China, before rice cropping in 2010. Fluxes of soil carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4), and nitrous oxide (N2O) were monitored using a static chamber method during the whole rice growing season (WRGS) of 2011. BSA significantly reduced soil CaCl2 extractable pool of Cd, and DTPA extractable pool of Cd and Pb. As compared to control, soil CO2 emission under BSA was observed to have no change at 10 t ha(-1) but decreased by 16-24% at 20 and 40 t ha(-1). In a similar trend, BSA at 20 and 40 t ha(-1) increased rice yield by 25-26% and thus enhanced ecosystem CO2 sequestration by 47-55% over the control. Seasonal total N2O emission was reduced by 7.1, 30.7, and 48.6% under BSA at 10, 20, and 40 t ha(-1), respectively. Overall, a net reduction in greenhouse gas balance (NGHGB) by 53.9-62.8% and in greenhouse gas intensity (GHGI) by 14.3-28.6% was observed following BSA at 20 and 40 t ha(-1). The present study suggested a great potential of biochar to enhancing grain yield while reducing carbon emission in metal-polluted rice paddies. PMID:26213131

  17. How much biochar does gasification energy need to be carbon neutral?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Saez de Bikuna Salinas, Koldo; Ibrom, Andreas; Hauschild, Michael Zwicky

    order to remain carbon neutral. The time scopes assessed are 20 and 100 years and it is assumed a fossil fuel (FF) free Denmark beyond 2050 as targeted by government (no FF displacement occurs after 2050). Results show that willow on marginal land remains carbon negative (4% biochar fraction) for the...... short term, while as much as 31,8% of biochar (or 0,95 Mg C ha-1 yr-1) would be necessary in 100 years to be carbon neutral (taking natural vegetation as reference baseline). As for arable land willow, a biochar fraction of 34,1% (or 2,32 Mg C ha-1 yr-1) would be necessary in the short term to...... socio-political context and economic circumstances in place. We suggest a carbon negative bioenergy system that compensates for potential iLUC emissions and losses in soil organic carbon (SOC). A consequential life cycle assessment on willow bioenergy has been performed, distinguishing marginal and...

  18. Effect of biochar or activated carbon amendment on the volatilisation and biodegradation of organic soil pollutants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Werner, David; Meynet, Paola; Bushnaf, Khaled

    2013-04-01

    Biochar or activated carbon added to contaminated soil may temporarily reduce the volatilisation of organic pollutants by enhanced sorption. The long-term effect of sorbent amendments on the fate of volatile petroleum hydrocarbon mixtures (VPHs) will depend on the responses of the soil bacterial community members, especially those which may utilize VPHs as carbon substrates. We investigated the volatilisation and biodegradation of VPHs emanating from NAPL sources and migrating through one meter long columns containing unsaturated sandy soil with and without 2% biochar or activated carbon amendment. After 420 days, VPH volatilisation from AC amended soil was less than 10 percent of the cumulative VPH volatilisation flux from unamended soil. The cumulative CO2 volatilisation flux increased more slowly in AC amended soil, but was comparable to the untreated soil after 420 days. This indicated that the pollution attenuation over a 1 meter distance was improved by the AC amendment. Biochar was a weaker VPH sorbent than AC and had a lesser effect on the cumulative VPH and CO2 fluxes. We also investgated the predominant bacterial community responses in sandy soil to biochar and/or VPH addition with a factorially designed batch study, and by analyzing preserved soil samples. Biochar addition alone had only weak effects on soil bacterial communities, while VPH addition was a strong community structure shaping factor. The bacterial community effects of biochar-enhanced VPH sorption were moderated by the limited biomass carrying capacity of the sandy soil investigated which contained only low amounts of inorganic nitrogen. Several Pseudomonas spp., including Pseudomonas putida strains, became dominant in VPH polluted soil with and without biochar. The ability of these versatile VPH degraders to effectively regulate their metabolic pathways according to substrate availabilities may additionally have moderated bacterial community structure responses to the presence of biochar

  19. Gasification biochar as a valuable by-product for carbon sequestration and soil amendment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Thermal gasification of various biomass residues is a promising technology for combining bioenergy production with soil fertility management through the application of the resulting biochar as soil amendment. In this study, we investigated gasification biochar (GB) materials originating from two major global biomass fuels: straw gasification biochar (SGB) and wood gasification biochar (WGB), produced by a Low Temperature Circulating Fluidized Bed gasifier (LT-CFB) and a TwoStage gasifier, respectively, optimized for energy conversion. Stability of carbon in GB against microbial degradation was assessed in a short-term soil incubation study and compared to the traditional practice of direct incorporation of cereal straw. The GBs were chemically and physically characterized to evaluate their potential to improve soil quality parameters. After 110 days of incubation, about 3% of the added GB carbon was respired as CO2, compared to 80% of the straw carbon added. The stability of GB was also confirmed by low H/C and O/C atomic ratios with lowest values for WGB (H/C 0.12 and O/C 0.10). The soil application of GBs exhibited a liming effect increasing the soil pH from ca 8 to 9. Results from scanning electron microscopy and BET analyses showed high porosity and specific surface area of both GBs, indicating a high potential to increase important soil quality parameters such as soil structure, nutrient and water retention, especially for WGB. These results seem promising regarding the possibility to combine an efficient bioenergy production with various soil aspects such as carbon sequestration and soil quality improvements. - Highlights: • Biomass gasification can combine efficient bioenergy production with valuable biochar residuals for soil improvements. • The two investigated gasification biochars are recalcitrant indicating soil carbon sequestration potential. • Gasification biochars are potential soil improvers due to high specific surface area, liming effect and

  20. Sorption of priority pollutants to biochars and activated carbons for application to soil and sediment remediation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beckingham, B.; Gomez-Eyles, J. L.; Kwon, S.; Riedel, G.; Gilmour, C.; Ghosh, U.

    2012-04-01

    The effectiveness of different biochars in comparison to 2 commercially available activated carbons (ACs) to sorb polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and mercury (Hg) was assessed, with the aim of identifying promising materials for application to soil and sediment remediation and elucidating material properties that may enhance pollutant binding potential. Biochars studied were produced from pine dust, peanut hull, barley straw, and acai pit in addition to steam-activated biochars made from poultry litter (chicken and turkey). Aqueous concentrations of PCBs were measured using a polyoxymethylene passive sampling technique allowing a very low environmentally-relevant concentration range to be examined. Mercury pH-edge isotherms were conducted at relatively high concentrations in a wide pH range (pH 3-11). Sorption of Hg at low concentrations was also performed with ACs and two other biochars made from a marsh reed and a hard wood. Organic contaminant isotherms were analyzed by the Freundlich model, and Freundlich sorption coefficients (KFr) were normalized to a single concentration to allow comparison among materials (i.e. Kd). Values of Kd were related to the sorbent surface area, with sorption being greater for ACs than activated biochars, followed by unactivated biochars. ACs also had higher carbon content (80-90%) than biochars (22 - 77%). This sorption trend would thus be expected for adsorption of hydrophobic compounds to black carbon surfaces. In contrast, at high concentration all biochars removed more Hg from solution than ACs. Steam-activated poultry litter biochars showed the best performance, with consistent removal of >99.7% Hg over the entire pH range. The relatively high sulfur and phosphate content of these materials likely contribute to this enhanced Hg sorption. Also, owing to their lower pyrolysis temperatures relative to ACs, biochars are reported to have a greater surface group functionality which can enhance cation sorption. The importance of

  1. Application of biochar to soil and N2O emissions: potential effects of blending fast‐pyrolysis biochar with anaerobically digested slurry

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bruun, Esben; Müller-Stöver, Dorette Sophie; Ambus, Per;

    2011-01-01

    Soil applications of recalcitrant biochar offer the possibility of mitigating climate change effects through long‐term carbon sequestration and potentially also by reducing emissions of the potent greenhouse gas nitrous oxide (N2O). This laboratory study examined the effect of combining a fast‐pyrolysis...... biochar at small (1% by mass) and large (3%) concentrations with anaerobically digested slurry on soil N2O and carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions over a period of 55 days. The results showed that fast‐pyrolysis biochar applied on its own increased N2O emissions from soil. However, when biochar was applied...

  2. Stabilization of carbon in composts and biochars in relation to carbon sequestration and soil fertility

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    There have been increasing interests in the conversion of organic residues into biochars in order to reduce the rate of decomposition, thereby enhancing carbon (C) sequestration in soils. However energy is required to initiate the pyrolysis process during biochar production which can also lead to the release of greenhouse gasses. Alternative methods can be used to stabilize C in composts and other organic residues without impacting their quality. The objectives of this study include: (i) to compare the rate of decomposition among various organic amendments and (ii) to examine the effect of clay materials on the stabilization of C in organic amendments. The decomposition of a number of organic amendments (composts and biochars) was examined by monitoring the release of carbon-dioxide using respiration experiments. The results indicated that the rate of decomposition as measured by half life (t1/2) varied between the organic amendments and was higher in sandy soil than in clay soil. The half life value ranged from 139 days in the sandy soil and 187 days in the clay soil for poultry manure compost to 9989 days for green waste biochar. Addition of clay materials to compost decreased the rate of decomposition, thereby increasing the stabilization of C. The half life value for poultry manure compost increased from 139 days to 620, 806 and 474 days with the addition of goethite, gibbsite and allophane, respectively. The increase in the stabilization of C with the addition of clay materials may be attributed to the immobilization of C, thereby preventing it from microbial decomposition. Stabilization of C in compost using clay materials did not impact negatively the value of composts in improving soil quality as measured by potentially mineralizable nitrogen and microbial biomass carbon in soil. - Graphical abstract: Stabilization of compost using clay materials (e.g. allophane) enhances carbon sequestration in soils. Highlights: ► Comparison of decomposition rate

  3. Activated Carbon and Biochar Reduce Mercury Methylation Potentials in Aquatic Sediments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bussan, Derek D; Sessums, Ryan F; Cizdziel, James V

    2016-04-01

    Much of the toxic methylmercury (MeHg) that biomagnifies in the aquatic food chain and accumulates in fish and seafood is believed to originate from microbial methylation of inorganic Hg(+2) in anoxic sediments. We examined the effect amending wetland sediments with activated carbon and biochar on Hg methylation potentials using microcosms and Hg stable isotope tracers. The inorganic (200)Hg(+2) spike was methylated at ~0.37 %/day in the untreated sediment, but that rate decreased to amended sediments, with 80 % and 88 % reductions in methylation rates for activated carbon and biochar amendments, respectively. Demethylation rates were relatively unchanged. Our key finding is that amending contaminated sediment with activated carbon and biochar decreases bioavailable Hg, and thus may also decrease Hg transfer into food webs. However, further research is needed to evaluate exactly how the sorbents impact Hg methylation rates and for related field studies. PMID:26779648

  4. Emission of CO2 from biochar-amended soils and implications for soil organic carbon

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sagrilo, E.; Jeffery, S.L.; Hoffland, E.; Kuyper, T.W.

    2015-01-01

    Soil amendment with pyrogenic organic matter (PyOM), also named biochar, is claimed to sequester carbon (C). However, possible interactions between PyOM and native soil organic carbon (SOC) may accelerate the loss of SOC, thus reducing PyOM's C sequestration potential. We combined the results of 46

  5. Influence of Pyrolysis Temperature on Physico-Chemical Properties of Corn Stover (Zea mays L.) Biochar and Feasibility for Carbon Capture and Energy Balance

    OpenAIRE

    Rafiq, Muhammad Khalid; Bachmann, Robert Thomas; Rafiq, Muhammad Tariq; Shang, Zhanhuan; Joseph, Stephen; Long, Ruijun

    2016-01-01

    This study examined the influence of pyrolysis temperature on biochar characteristics and evaluated its suitability for carbon capture and energy production. Biochar was produced from corn stover using slow pyrolysis at 300, 400 and 500°C and 2 hrs holding time. The experimental biochars were characterized by elemental analysis, BET, FTIR, TGA/DTA, NMR (C-13). Higher heating value (HHV) of feedstock and biochars was measured using bomb calorimeter. Results show that carbon content of corn sto...

  6. Effect of biochar and compost application on quantity, quality and stability of organic carbon in sandy soil

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holes, Annamaria; Szegi, Tamas; Fuchs, Marta; Micheli, Erika; Aleksza, Laszlo

    2014-05-01

    Nowadays the amount of waste is increasing as a consequence of civilization development. Significant proportion of municipal waste is biodegradable. For the treatment of these wastes composting and pyrolysis can be one solution. Many studies were published on the effects of composts in soils, but on combined application of biochars and composts only a limited number of articles are available. Total carbon content, water soluble organic carbon content and organic matter quality have decisive role in the utilization of soils. In our study the effects of combined application of biochars and compost on organic carbon quality, quantity and stability were measured in sandy soil. The sandy soil was mixed with different proportions (1w/w%, 2,5w/w%, 5w/w%, 10w/w%) of biochars. Two types of biochars produced by pyrolization were used: plant origin biochar (POB) and animal origin biochar (AOB). 20w/w% urban green compost was mixed into each sample in addition to biochars. After the 30 days of wet incubation soil organic carbon (SOC) content was determined by Walkley-Black method, while for the SOC quality measurements E4/E6 method was used. The dissolved organic carbon (DOC) was extracted from the soil samples by cold water, and determined by titrimetric method. The future purpose of our study is to find the optimal compost-biochar treatment in order to improve soil fertility and maximize crop yield.

  7. Comparison of the characteristics and mechanisms of Hg(II) sorption by biochars and activated carbon.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Xiaoyun; Schierz, Ariette; Xu, Nan; Cao, Xinde

    2016-02-01

    Two biochars were produced from bagasse and hickory chips (referred to as BB and HCB, respectively) and evaluated for their sorption ability of Hg(II) in aqueous solution. A commercial activated carbon (AC) which is commonly used for Hg(II) removal was included for comparison. Both biochars showed higher sorption capacities than AC, following the trend of BB>HCB>AC. The sorption of Hg(II) by BB and AC was mainly attributed to the formation of (COO)2Hg(II) and (O)2Hg(II). As a result, the adsorption capacity of Hg(II) by BB decreased 17.6% and 37.6% after COOH and OH were blocked, respectively and that of Hg(II) by AC decreased 6.63% and 62.2% for COOH and OH hindered, respectively. However, blocking the function groups had little effect on the Hg removal by HCB since sorption of Hg(II) by HCB was mainly resulted from the π electrons of CC and CO induced Hg-π binding. Further X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy analysis indicated the possibility of reduction of the Hg(II) to Hg(I) by phenol groups or π electrons during the removal of Hg(II) by both biochars. In conclusion, biochar is more effective than activated carbon in removing Hg(II) and there exists a high potential that biochar can be a substitute of activated carbon for removal of Hg(II) from wastewater. PMID:26520810

  8. Characterization of biochars and dissolved organic matter phases obtained upon hydrothermal carbonization of Elodea nuttallii.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poerschmann, J; Weiner, B; Wedwitschka, H; Zehnsdorf, A; Koehler, R; Kopinke, F-D

    2015-01-01

    The invasive aquatic plant Elodea nuttallii was subjected to hydrothermal carbonization at 200 °C and 240 °C to produce biochar. About 58% w/w of the organic carbon of the pristine plant was translocated into the solid biochar irrespectively of the operating temperature. The process water rich in dissolved organic matter proved a good substrate for biogas production. The E. nuttallii plants showed a high capability of incorporating metals into the biomass. This large inorganic fraction which was mainly transferred into the biochar (except sodium and potassium) may hamper the prospective application of biochar as soil amendment. The high ash content in biochar (∼ 40% w/w) along with its relatively low content of organic carbon (∼ 36% w/w) is associated with low higher heating values. Fatty acids were completely hydrolyzed from lipids due to hydrothermal treatment. Low molecular-weight carboxylic acids (acetic and lactic acid), phenols and phenolic acids turned out major organic breakdown products. PMID:25879182

  9. Characterization of biochar and bio-oil samples obtained from carbonization of various biomass materials

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Oezcimen, Didem; Ersoy-Mericboyu, Ayseguel [Istanbul Technical University, Chemical-Metallurgical Engineering Faculty, Department of Chemical Engineering, Maslak 34469, Istanbul (Turkey)

    2010-06-15

    Apricot stone, hazelnut shell, grapeseed and chestnut shell are important biomass residues obtained from the food processing industry in Turkey and they have a great importance as being a source of energy. In this study, the characteristics of bio-oil and biochar samples obtained from the carbonization of apricot stone, hazelnut shell, grapeseed and chestnut shell were investigated. It was found that the biochar products can be characterized as carbon rich, high heating value and relatively pollution-free potential solid biofuels. The bio-oil products were also presented as environmentally friendly green biofuel candidates. (author)

  10. Effects of biochar and manure amendments on water vapor sorption in a sandy loam soil

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Arthur, Emmanuel; Tuller, Markus; Møldrup, Per;

    2015-01-01

    Over the last decade, the application of biochar (BC) as a soil amendment to sequester carbon and mitigate global climate change has received considerable attention. While positive effects of biochar on plant nutrition are well documented, little is known about potential impacts on the physical...

  11. A mycorrhizal fungus grows on biochar and captures phosphorus from its surfaces

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hammer, Edith; Balogh-Brunstad, Zsuzsanna; Jakobsen, Iver;

    2014-01-01

    Biochar application to soils has potential to simultaneously improve soil fertility and store carbon to aid climate change mitigation. While many studies have shown positive effects on plant yields, much less is known about the synergies between biochar and plant growth promoting microbes, such as...

  12. Producing energy while sequestering carbon? The relationship between biochar and agricultural productivity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    A partial solution to problems associated with anthropogenic greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions could be the development and deployment of carbon-negative technologies, i.e., producing energy while reducing atmospheric carbon dioxide levels. Biofuels have been considered a possibility but have faced limitations due to competition with food production and GHG emissions through indirect land-use change (ILUC). In this article, we show how emissions from ILUC can potentially be reduced by producing food and bioenergy from biochar amended soils. The possibility of yield improvements from biochar would reduce the land requirement for crop production and thus, lead to a reduction in emissions from ILUC. In our application, biochar and bio-oil are produced via fast pyrolysis of corn stover. Bio-oil is subsequently upgraded into a fuel suitable for use in internal combustion engines. Applying the U.S. regulatory method used to determine biofuel life cycle emissions, our results show that a biochar-induced yield improvement in the U.S. Midwest ranging from 1% to 8% above trend can lead to an ILUC credit between 1.65 and 14.79 t CO2-equivalent ha−1 year−1 when future emissions are assessed over the next 30 years. The model is generalizable to other feedstocks and locations and illustrates the relationship between biochar and crop production. - Highlights: • If biochar leads to higher crop yields, a land-use change (LUC) credit applies. • Indirect LUC credit is applied to biofuel if biochar is produced as a by-product. • 1.65 to 14.79 t CO2-e ha−1 year−1 credit for 1%–8% yield increase in U.S. Midwest. • Life cycle analysis generalizable to other locations and feedstock

  13. Carbon mineralization and nutrient availability in calcareous sandy soils amended with woody waste biochar.

    Science.gov (United States)

    El-Naggar, Ahmed H; Usman, Adel R A; Al-Omran, Abdulrasoul; Ok, Yong Sik; Ahmad, Mahtab; Al-Wabel, Mohammad I

    2015-11-01

    Many studies have reported the positive effect of biochar on soil carbon sequestration and soil fertility improvement in acidic soils. However, biochar may have different impacts on calcareous sandy soils. A 90-day incubation experiment was conducted to quantify the effects of woody waste biochar (10 g kg(-1)) on CO2-C emissions, K2SO4-extractable C and macro-(N, P and K) and micro-(Fe, Mn, Zn and Cu) nutrient availability in the presence or absence of poultry manure (5 g kg(-1) soil). The following six treatments were applied: (1) conocarpus (Conocarpus erectus L.) waste (CW), (2) conocarpus biochar (BC), (3) poultry manure (PM), (4) PM+CW, (5) PM+BC and (6) untreated soil (CK). Poultry manure increased CO2-C emissions and K2SO4-extractable C, and the highest increases in CO2-C emission rate and cumulative CO2-C and K2SO4-extractable C were observed for the PM+CW treatment. On the contrary, treatments with BC halted the CO2-C emission rate, indicating that the contribution of BC to CO2-C emissions is negligible compared with the soils amended with CW and PM. Furthermore, the combined addition of PM+BC increased available N, P and K compared with the PM or BC treatments. Overall, the incorporation of biochar into calcareous soils might have benefits in carbon sequestration and soil fertility improvement. PMID:26037818

  14. Activated carbon from biochar: influence of its physicochemical properties on the sorption characteristics of phenanthrene.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Park, Junyeong; Hung, Ivan; Gan, Zhehong; Rojas, Orlando J; Lim, Kwang Hun; Park, Sunkyu

    2013-12-01

    The relationship between physicochemical properties of biochar-based activated carbons and its adsorption was investigated using an aromatic model compound, phenanthrene. Solid-state (13)C NMR analysis indicated more condensed aromatic structures when pyrolysis temperature increased or after activation process induced. The increasing aromaticity and non-protonated carbon fraction of the activated biochar treated at 300°C amounted to 14.7% and 24.0%, respectively, compared to 7.4% and 4.4% for biochar treated at 700°C. The surface area and pore volume were reduced with the increase in pyrolysis temperature, but increased after activation. Surface characteristics correlated with the initial sorption rate and equilibrium concentration of phenanthrene, but not with the aromaticity. Solid-state (2)H NMR for phenanthrene-d10 saturated activated biochars, however, showed substantial difference in molecular mobility, which might be due to the high aromaticity of the activated biochars. Overall, these results provide an opportunity to manipulate the characteristics of biomass-based adsorbents based on the application needs. PMID:24128401

  15. Biochar soil amendment for waste-stream diversion, nutrient holding capacity, and carbon sequestration in two contrasting soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deem, L. M.; Crow, S. E.; Deenik, J. L.; Penton, C. R.; Yanagida, J.

    2013-12-01

    Biochar is organic matter that has been pyrolized under low oxygen conditions for use as a soil amendment. Currently biochar is viewed as a way to improve soil quality (e.g., increased nutrient and water holding capacity) and increase in soil carbon (C) sequestration. The use of biochar in soil is not new, yet little is known about the underlying mechanisms that control the interactions between biochar and soil following amendment. In the past, the effects of biochar addition on crop yields, soil properties and greenhouse gas (GHG) fluxes in both in-situ and controlled experiments have produced inconsistent results. These discrepancies may be uncovered in part by chemical and physical characterization of the biochar prior to amendment and identification of soil- and biochar-specific interactions. Furthermore, a more holistic consideration of the system may demonstrate the virtues of biochar amendment beyond the typical considerations of yield and gas flux. We expect that as the differences between the physical and chemical properties of the biochar and the soil increase, the impact on the soil quality metrics will also increase. For this study, we used a waste product (i.e., anaerobic digester sludge) biochar with 81.5% C, pH of 10.44, pH-independent charge for anion exchange capacity (AEC) and a pH-dependent charge for cation exchange capacity (CEC), 4.14% moisture content and 25.75 cmol¬c /kg exchangeable base cations. This biochar was incorporated into both a low and a high fertility Hawaiian field soil to quantitate biochar effects on crop yield, soil pH, CEC, AEC, hot and cold water extractable C and nitrogen, bulk density, phosphorus, soil microbial ecology, and GHG flux in varying soil conditions. Compared to the higher fertility soil, we hypothesized that the low fertility soil would demonstrate a greater increase in soil quality, including higher pH, CEC and water holding capacity. Two crop management practices were included with each soil: traditional

  16. Life cycle assessment to evaluate the environmental impact of biochar implementation in conservation agriculture in Zambia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sparrevik, Magnus; Field, John L; Martinsen, Vegard; Breedveld, Gijs D; Cornelissen, Gerard

    2013-02-01

    Biochar amendment to soil is a potential technology for carbon storage and climate change mitigation. It may, in addition, be a valuable soil fertility enhancer for agricultural purposes in sandy and/or weathered soils. A life cycle assessment including ecological, health and resource impacts has been conducted for field sites in Zambia to evaluate the overall impacts of biochar for agricultural use. The life cycle impacts from conservation farming using cultivation growth basins and precision fertilization with and without biochar addition were in the present study compared to conventional agricultural methods. Three different biochar production methods were evaluated: traditional earth-mound kilns, improved retort kilns, and micro top-lit updraft (TLUD) gasifier stoves. The results confirm that the use of biochar in conservation farming is beneficial for climate change mitigation purposes. However, when including health impacts from particle emissions originating from biochar production, conservation farming plus biochar from earth-mound kilns generally results in a larger negative effect over the whole life cycle than conservation farming without biochar addition. The use of cleaner technologies such as retort kilns or TLUDs can overcome this problem, mainly because fewer particles and less volatile organic compounds, methane and carbon monoxide are emitted. These results emphasize the need for a holistic view on biochar use in agricultural systems. Of special importance is the biochar production technique which has to be evaluated from both environmental/climate, health and social perspectives. PMID:23272937

  17. Sorption and cosorption of lead and sulfapyridine on carbon nanotube-modified biochars.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Inyang, Mandu; Gao, Bin; Zimmerman, Andrew; Zhou, Yanmei; Cao, Xinde

    2015-02-01

    New, sustainable, and low-cost materials that can simultaneously remove a range of wastewater contaminants, such as heavy metals and pharmaceutical residues, are needed. In this work, modified biochars were produced by dip-coating hickory or bagasse biomass in carbon nanotube (CNT) suspensions with or without sodium dodecylbenzenesulfonate (SDBS)-aided dispersion prior to slow pyrolysis in a N2 environment at 600 °C. The sulfapyridine (SPY) and lead (Pb) sorption ability of pristine hickory (HC) and bagasse (BC) biochars and the modified biochars with (HC-SDBS-CNT and BC-SDBS-CNT, respectively) and without (HC-CNT and BC-CNT) SDBS was assessed in laboratory aqueous batch single- and binary-solute system. The greatest removal of SPY and Pb was observed for HC-SDBS-CNT (86 % SPY and 71 % Pb) and BC-SDBS-CNT (56 % SPY and 53 % Pb), whereas HC-CNT, BC-CNT, and the pristine biochars removed far less. This can be attributed to the fact that surfactant could prevent the aggregation of CNTs and thus promote the distribution and stabilization of individual CNT nanoparticle on the biochar surface to adsorb the contaminants. The observation of no significant change in Pb sorption capacities of the surfactant-dispersed CNT-modified biochars in the presence of SPY, or vice versa, was indicative of site-specific sorption interactions and a lack of significant competition for functional groups by the two sorbates. These results suggest that products of hybrid technologies, such as biochars modified with CNTs, can yield multi-sorbents and may hold excellent promise as a sustainable wastewater treatment alternative. PMID:25212810

  18. Environment Friendly Agricultural Brand “Cool Vege” Through Carbon Sequestration by Biochar for Sustainable Management of Food and Water = Cool The Earth from The Dining Table with COOL Vege =

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Akira Shibata

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available The reduction of of greenhouse gas to mitigate or adapt to drastic climate change are one of the most important issues for human beings. On the other hand, rural development is also important issue for sustainable rural natural resources to secure food and water. Then, we propose the new socio-economic scheme to solve these issues at the same time through biochar carbon capture and sequestration. This scheme contains 4 measure factors that 1 Carbon Capture & Storage(CCS via biochar, 2 Biochar CCS should be carried out at agricultural lands for rural development, 3 Biochar CCS should be monitored and measured to generate carbon credits and social creditability, 4 The ECO-brand “Cool Vege” for agricultural products derived from biochar CCS. And, it consists of many stake holders and actors that local community, compost center, farmers, CCS local committee consisted by local governments and universities as scientific authority, companies, retailers and normal citizen as consumers. Therefore, when proceeding this scheme, it is needed to have holistic aspect like bird view.

  19. In situ application of activated carbon and biochar to PCB-contaminated soil and the effects of mixing regime

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The in situ use of carbon amendments such as activated carbon (AC) and biochar to minimize the bioavailability of organic contaminants is gaining in popularity. In the first in situ experiment conducted at a Canadian PCB-contaminated Brownfield site, GAC and two types of biochar were statistically equal at reducing PCB uptake into plants. PCB concentrations in Cucurbita pepo root tissue were reduced by 74%, 72% and 64%, with the addition of 2.8% GAC, Burt's biochar and BlueLeaf biochar, respectively. A complementary greenhouse study which included a bioaccumulation study of Eisenia fetida (earthworm), found mechanically mixing carbon amendments with PCB-contaminated soil (i.e. 24 h at 30 rpm) resulted in shoot, root and worm PCB concentrations 66%, 59% and 39% lower than in the manually mixed treatments (i.e. with a spade and bucket). Therefore, studies which mechanically mix carbon amendments with contaminated soil may over-estimate the short-term potential to reduce PCB bioavailability. Highlights: •Biochar and GAC reduced PCB uptake into plants and earthworms. •Biochar offered additional benefits, including increased plant and earthworm biomass. •BSAF reductions are greater when amendments are mechanically vs. manually mixed. •Mechanically mixing carbon amendments may over-estimate their remediation potential. -- In situ AC and biochar soil amendments perform equally well at reducing PCB uptake, however, laboratory-based mixing methods may exaggerate the sorptive capacities of both amendments

  20. Factors driving the carbon mineralization priming effect in a sandy loam soil amended with different types of biochar

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cely, P.; Tarquis, A. M.; Paz-Ferreiro, J.; Méndez, A.; Gascó, G.

    2014-06-01

    The effect of biochar on the soil carbon mineralization priming effect depends on the characteristics of the raw materials, production method and pyrolysis conditions. The goal of the present study is to evaluate the impact of three different types of biochar on physicochemical properties and CO2 emissions of a sandy loam soil. For this purpose, soil was amended with three different biochars (BI, BII and BIII) at a rate of 8 wt% and soil CO2 emissions were measured for 45 days. BI is produced from a mixed wood sieving from wood chip production, BII from a mixture of paper sludge and wheat husks and BIII from sewage sludge. Cumulative CO2 emissions of biochars, soil and amended soil were well fit to a simple first-order kinetic model with correlation coefficients (r2) greater than 0.97. Results show a negative priming effect in the soil after addition of BI and a positive priming effect in the case of soil amended with BII and BIII. These results can be related to different biochar properties such as carbon content, carbon aromaticity, volatile matter, fixed carbon, easily oxidized organic carbon or metal and phenolic substance content in addition to surface biochar properties. Three biochars increased the values of soil field capacity and wilting point, while effects over pH and cation exchange capacity were not observed.

  1. Role of biochar in low carbon sustainable crop production of China: a synthesizing analysis of field studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zheng, Jufeng; Liu, Xiaoyu; Zhang, Afeng; Wu, Gang; Zhang, Bin; Cheng, Kun; Li, Lianqing; Liu, Yuming; Qu, Jingjing; Zhang, Dengxiao; Kubie, Grace; Muhanmud, Siddie; Pan, Genxing

    2013-04-01

    BSA (BSA) has been proposed as a measure to enhance soil organic C sequestration and mitigate greenhouse gas emission from world croplands. In this study, results of BSA field experiments with rice paddy and dry croplands in 7 sites over China were synthesized for addressing an overall role of biochar in low carbon sustainable crop production. Soil amendment at rates of 0, 20 t ha-1 and 40 t ha-1 of biochar via pyrolysis from wheat straw at 35o-550°was performed consistently across the sites with local conventional fertilization and crop managements. Soil emission monitoring of non-CO2 greenhouse gases (CH4 and N2O) was conducted at 1 week interval during crop growing season in the year of BSA all sites and the subsequent year after BSA in some sites. Yield and properties, greenhouse gases (CH4 and N2O) and C intensity were assessed. The results from single experiments were synthesized for quantifying the relative changes in yield and GWP with BSA as well as changes in soil properties. BSA increased significantly soil pH, TN, SOC and decrease soil bulk density. On average, crop yield was significantly increased (~6% for rice and 10%~18% for maize) at an extent higher in croplands than in rice paddies. While BSA reduced slightly CH4 uptake in dry cropland, increases in CH4 emission showed a large uncertainty related to soil and climate condition as well as water regime from rice paddies. However,N2O emission from treated croplands were significantly reduced with BSA by 37~48% across sites. As the integration effect, global warming potential (GWP) and C intensity were decreased averagely by over 30% agriculture production (38% ~ 44% in dry cropland and 22% ~ 42% in paddy soil) with BSA, which was a great contribution to mitigation of CO2 in Chinese agriculture. The results further implicated BSA to cropland may to develop sustainable low carbon agriculture as a feasible measure. Key words: Biochar soil application, soil properties, C sequestration, CH4 and N2O

  2. Impact of biochar application on nitrogen nutrition of rice, greenhouse-gas emissions and soil organic carbon dynamics in two paddy soils of China

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Xie, Zubin; Xu, Yanping; Liu, Gang; Liu, Qi; Zhu, Jianguo; Tu, Cong; Amonette, James E.; Cadisch, Georg; Yong, Jean W.; Hu, Shuijin

    2013-09-01

    Two field microcosm experiments and 15N labeling techniques were used to investigate the first-year effects of biochar addition on rice N nutrition and GHG emissions in an Inceptisol and an Ultisol. Biochar N bioavailability and effect of biochar on fertilizer nitrogen-use efficiency (NUE) were studied by 15N-enriched wheat biochar (7.8803 atom% 15N) and fertilizer urea (5 atom% 15N) (Experiment I). Corn biochar and corn stalks were applied at 12 Mg ha-1 to study their effects on GHG emissions (Experiment II). Biochar had no significant impact on rice production and less than 2% of the biochar N was available to plants in the first season. Biochar addition increased soil C and N contents and decreased urea NUE.. Seasonal cumulative CH4 emissions with biochar were similar to the controls, but significantly lower than the local practice of straw amendment. Soil emissions of N2O with biochar amendment were similar to the control in the acidic Ultisol, but significantly higher in the slightly alkaline Inceptisol. Carbon-balance calculations found no major losses of biochar-C. Low bio-availability of biochar N did not make a significant impact on rice production or N nutrition during the first year.. Replacement of straw amendments with biochar could decrease CH4 emissions and increase SOC stocks.

  3. Soil biochar amendments: type and dose effects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ojeda, G.; Domene, X.; Mattana, S.; Sousa, J. P.; Ortiz, O.; Andres, P.; Alcañiz, J. M.

    2012-04-01

    Biochar is an organic material produced via the pyrolysis of C-based biomass, which is increasingly being recognized by scientists and policy makers for its potential role in carbon sequestration, reducing greenhouse gas emissions, waste mitigation, and as a soil amendment. Recent studies indicated that biochar improves soil fertility through its positive influence on physical-chemical properties, since not only improves water retention, aggregation and permeability, but its high charge density can also hold large amounts of nutrients, increasing crop production. However, it was observed that combustion temperature could affects the degree of aromaticity and the size of aromatic sheets, which in turns determine short-term mineralization rates. To reconcile the different decompasibility observations of biochar, it has sugested that physical protection and interactions with soil minerals play a significant part in biochar stability. In this context, it has initiated one pilot studies which aims to assess the effects of biochar application on physical and chemical properties of agricultural soil under Mediterranean conditions, such as changes in aggregate formation, intra-aggregate carbon sequestration and chemistry of soil water. In the present study, different clases of biochar produced from fast, slow and gasification pyrolisis of vegetal (pine, poplar) and dried sludge biomass, were applied at 1% of biochar-C to mesocosmos of an agricultural soil. Preliminary, it must be pointed out that slow and gasification pyrolisis changes the proportion of particles < 2 mm in diameter, from 10% (original materials) to almost 100%. In contrast, slow pyrolisis not modifies significantly biochar granulometry. As a consequence, bulk density of poplar and pine splinters decreases after fast pyrolisis. Regarding to organic carbon contents of biochar, all biochars obtained from plant biomass presented percentagens of total organic carbon (TOC) between 70 - 90%, while biochar

  4. Economic feasibility of biochar application to soils in temperate climate regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soja, Gerhard; Bücker, Jannis; Gunczy, Stefan; Kitzler, Barbara; Klinglmüller, Michaela; Kloss, Stefanie; Watzinger, Andrea; Wimmer, Bernhard; Zechmeister-Boltenstern, Sophie; Zehetner, Franz

    2014-05-01

    The findings that fertility improvements in tropical soils have been successfully mediated by biochar applications have caused wide-spread interest to use biochar as a soil amendment also for soils in temperate climate regions. But these soils in intensively cultivated regions are not always as acidic or sandy as the tropical Ferralsols where biochar is most effective. Therefore it is not self-evident that different soil characteristics allow biochar to display the same benefits if site-specific demands for the optimal organic soil amendment are not considered. This study pursued the objective to study the extent of benefits that biochar could provide for crops on two typical Austrian agricultural soils in a two-year field experiment. An economic evaluation assessed the local biochar production costs and compared them with the value of the observed biochar benefits. From a business economic viewpoint, currently high costs of biochar are not balanced by only moderate increases in crop yields and thus agricultural revenues. Improved water retention due to biochar, however, might justify biochar as an adaptation measure to global warming, especially when considering beside business economic aspects also overall economic aspects. When not assuming total crop failures but only increased soil fertility, even an inclusion of avoided social (=societal) costs by sequestering carbon and thereby helping to mitigate climate change do not economically justify the application of biochar. Price of biochar would need to decrease by at least 40 % to achieve a break-even from the overall economic viewpoint (if optimistic assumptions about the social value of sequestered carbon are applied; at pessimistic assumptions price for biochar must decrease even more in order to break even). When applying an alternative type of soil treatment of using modified biochar but avoiding additional N-fertilization, a similar picture arises: Social benefits due to avoided N-fertilization and

  5. Biochar from Biomass and its Potential Agronomic and Environmental Use in Washington: A Promising Alternative to Drawdown Carbon from the Atmosphere and Develop a New Industry

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Amonette, James E. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Garcia-Perez, Manuel [Washington State Univ., Pullman, WA (United States); Sjoding, David [Washington State Energy Program Office, Olympia, WA (United States); Fuchs, Mark R. [Washington Dept. of Ecology, Spokane, WA (United States)

    2016-03-04

    Climate change is one of the most serious issues facing the world today. Increasing concentrations of carbon dioxide (CO2) and other long-lived greenhouse gases (GHGs) in the atmosphere continue to warm the planet and destabilize the climate. It has been estimated that the impact from this warming could cost the state 10 billion per year by 2020, and 16 billion per year by 2040. Long-term solutions to the climate problem likely will require that large quantities of CO2 be removed from the atmosphere. In fact, massive CO2 drawdowns from the atmosphere have occurred in earth’s recent past from events occurring in our hemisphere. Studies of those analogs provide insight into the potential magnitude for specific actions to drawdown significant CO2 from the atmosphere. One of these potential actions is the large-scale production of biochar from abundant woody biomass waste and its storage in soils, where it remains stable for hundreds to thousands of years. Moreover, for the carbon emission intensity of Washington’s fuel mix, biochar production from biomass is twice as effective in offsetting GHG emissions as complete biomass combustion of the same biomass. Washington State has large quantities of wood waste biomass that could be purposed for production of combined heat/power/biochar (CHPB) through existing biomass boilers. We propose to 1) evaluate the quantities of Washington wood waste biomass, 2) inventory existing boiler capacity and assess the technical merits and challenges to repurpose the boilers to CHPB, and 3) apply literature values and analog biochar examples to better quantify the extent of CO2 drawdown that could be achieved in Washington State over the next century using engineered biochar. This white paper explores the potential to replicate the historical drawdowns of atmospheric CO2, a topic the authors think should be part of current climate-change mitigation discussions. This

  6. Fate of Soil Organic Carbon and Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons in a Vineyard Soil Treated with Biochar.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rombolà, Alessandro G; Meredith, Will; Snape, Colin E; Baronti, Silvia; Genesio, Lorenzo; Vaccari, Francesco Primo; Miglietta, Franco; Fabbri, Daniele

    2015-09-15

    The effect of biochar addition on the levels of black carbon (BC) and polcyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in a vineyard soil in central Italy was investigated within a two year period. Hydropyrolysis (HyPy) was used to determine the contents of BC (BCHyPy) in the amended and control soils, while the hydrocarbon composition of the semi-labile (non-BCHyPy) fraction released by HyPy was determined by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry, together with the solvent-extractable PAHs. The concentrations of these three polycyclic aromatic carbon reservoirs changed and impacted differently the soil organic carbon over the period of the trial. The addition of biochar (33 ton dry biochar ha(-1)) gave rise to a sharp increase in soil organic carbon, which could be accounted for by an increase in BCHyPy. Over time, the concentration of BCHyPy decreased significantly from 36 to 23 mg g(-1) and as a carbon percentage from 79% to 61%. No clear time trends were observed for the non-BCHyPy PAHs varying from 39 to 34 μg g(-1) in treated soils, not significantly different from control soils. However, the concentrations of extractable PAHs increased markedly in the amended soils and decreased with time from 153 to 78 ng g(-1) remaining always higher than those in untreated soil. The extent of the BCHyPy loss was more compatible with physical rather than chemical processes. PMID:26263378

  7. Pharmaceutical load in sewage sludge and biochar produced by hydrothermal carbonization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    vom Eyser, C; Palmu, K; Schmidt, T C; Tuerk, J

    2015-12-15

    We investigated the removal of twelve pharmaceuticals in sewage sludge by hydrothermal carbonization (HTC), which has emerged as a technology for improving the quality of organic waste materials producing a valuable biochar material. In this study, the HTC converted sewage sludge samples to a biochar product within 4h at a temperature of 210 °C and a resulting pressure of about 15 bar. Initial pharmaceutical load of the sewage sludge was investigated as well as the residual concentrations in biochar produced from spiked and eight native sewage sludge samples from three waste water treatment plants. Additionally, the solid contents of source material and product were compared, which showed a considerable increase of the solid content after filtration by HTC. All pharmaceuticals except sulfamethoxazole, which remained below the limit of quantification, frequently occurred in the investigated sewage sludges in the μg/kg dry matter (DM) range. Diclofenac, carbamazepine, metoprolol and propranolol were detected in all sludge samples with a maximum concentration of 800 μg/kgDM for metoprolol. HTC was investigated regarding its contaminant removal efficiency using spiked sewage sludge. Pharmaceutical concentrations were reduced for seven compounds by 39% (metoprolol) to≥97% (carbamazepine). In native biochar samples the four compounds phenazone, carbamazepine, metoprolol and propranolol were detected, which confirmed that the HTC process can reduce the load of micropollutants. In contrast to the other investigated compounds phenazone concentration increased, which was further addressed in thermal behaviour studies including three structurally similar potential precursors. PMID:26282751

  8. Influence of biochar amendment on greenhouse gases emission and rice production in paddy field, China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, X.; Pan, G. X.; Li, L. Q.; Zhou, T.

    2012-04-01

    Biochar incorporating into agricultural soils as a strategy to increase soil carbon content and mitigate climate change received great attention. We present a field study about biochar amendment into paddy field in Sichuan province 2010, China. The objective was to evaluate the impacts of biochar incorporation on rice production and greenhouse gas emissions. Biochar used in this study was produced from wheat straw at temperature 350-550°C. Biochar incorporated into paddy field before rice transplanting. Methane (CH4), nitrous oxide (N2O) and carbon dioxide (CO2) fluxes were measured in situ using closed chamber method during whole rice growing season. Flux of greenhouse gases was monitored at about 7 day's interval. Two rates of N fertilizer (0 and 240 kg N/ha) were applied as urea in combination with 3 biochar rates (0, 20 and 40 t/ha). Amendment of biochar had no influence on rice yield even at the hightest rate of 40 t/ha. However, rice production was greatly relying on chemical N fertilization input. No interact effect was detected between biochar and N fertilizer. Amendment of biochar suppressed N2O emission. During the whole rice growing season, the total N2O emission from chemical fertilizer was reduce by 29% and 53% under biochar amendment rates of 20t/ha and 40t/ha respectively. Total amounts of CO2 and CH4 emitted from paddy fields during whole rice growing season were not greatly increased despite of much carbon brought into soil with biochar. However, biochar amendment slightly increased CO2 emission in the absence of N fertilizer. Our results showed that biochar amendment into paddy field did not increase the global warming potential (GPW) and greenhouse gases emission intensity (GHGI).

  9. Biochar suppression of N2O emissions from an agricultural soil: effects and potential mechanisms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Case, S. D. C.; Whitaker, J.; McNamara, N. P.; Reay, D. S.

    2012-04-01

    Biochar is biomass that has been heated in a low-oxygen environment to between 350 and 800°C that is subsequently used as a soil amendment. As well as benefits to soil fertility, biochar has potential as a tool to mitigate climate change on a large scale due to its recalcitrance, high carbon content and observed effect of reducing soil greenhouse gas emissions. Previous studies have shown that biochar-amended soil may emit less nitrous oxide (N2O) than soil alone. Our aim was to investigate the effect of fresh, hardwood biochar on N2O emissions from a clay agricultural soil from Lincolnshire, United Kingdom with a combination of field and laboratory studies. We then investigated the mechanism to try to explain the observed suppression of N2O emissions with biochar. In biochar-amended field plots, quarterly greenhouse gas measurements over two years have recorded one occurrence of significant suppression of N2O emissions (80%), with other measurements showing generally low emissions of N2O across all treatments. In laboratory experiments, biochar suppressed N2O emissions following simulated rainfall events in a low-N agricultural soil (72 % suppression), in the same field-moist soil incubated with biochar in the field for 10 months (40 % suppression) and in a relatively high-N soil from a neighbouring field (83 % suppression). We hypothesised that biochar amendment may suppress soil N2O emissions by increasing the water holding capacity (WHC) of the soil, thus rendering the biochar-amended soil less anaerobic compared to control soil at the same gravimetric water content. Water was added to raise soil to the same WHC (87 %) with and without biochar at a range of addition rates. Biochar significantly suppressed N2O emissions with 5 % biochar addition by 67 % and 10 % biochar addition by 98 %. We concluded that the increased WHC of biochar-amended soil could not explain the suppression of N2O emissions. Subsequently, we formulated two hypotheses: (1) that biochar may

  10. Effects of fresh and aged biochars from pyrolysis and hydrothermal carbonization on nutrient sorption in agricultural soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gronwald, M.; Don, A.; Tiemeyer, B.; Helfrich, M.

    2015-01-01

    Leaching of nutrients from agricultural soils causes major environmental problems that may be reduced with biochar amendments to the soils. Biochars are characterised by a high adsorption capacity, i.e., they may retain nutrients such nitrate and ammonium. However, biochar properties strongly depend on feedstock and the production process. We investigated the nutrient retention capacity of biochars derived from pyrolysis (pyrochar) as well as from hydrothermal carbonization (hydrochar; produced at 200 and 250 °C) from three different feedstocks (digestates, Miscanthus, woodchips) mixed into different soil substrates (sandy loam and silty loam). Moreover, we investigated the influence of biochar degradation on its nutrient retention capacity using a seven-month in-situ field incubation of pyrochar and hydrochar. Pyrochars showed the highest ability to retain nitrate, ammonium and phosphate, with pyrochar from woodchips being particularly efficient in nitrate adsorption. Ammonium adsorption of pyrochars was controlled by the soil type of the soil-biochar mixture. We found some ammonium retention on sandy soils, but no pyrochar effect or even ammonium leaching from the loamy soil. The phosphate retention capacity of pyrochars strongly depended on the pyrochar feedstock with large phosphate leaching from digestate-derived pyrochar and some adsorption capacity from woodchip-derived pyrochar. Application of hydrochars to agricultural soils caused small, and often not significant, effects on nutrient retention. In contrast, some hydrochars did increase the leaching of nutrients compared to the non-amended control soil. We found a surprisingly rapid loss of the biochars' adsorption capacity after field application of the biochars. For all sites and for hydrochar and pyrochar, the adsorption capacity was reduced by 60-80% to less or no nitrate and ammonium adsorption. Thus, our results cast doubt on the efficiency of biochar applications to temperate zone soils to minimize

  11. Can the application of biochar during arable and forestry plantation create an ongoing carbon sink and increase plant productivity?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bell, M. J.; Worrall, F.

    2009-04-01

    This study is based at the National Trust Wallington estate in Northumberland, NE England, an agricultural estate where land-management options are being considered in an attempt to enhance current land carbon stocks. The aim of this research is to identify if biochar (charcoal produced from biomass) can provide an opportunity to create a perpetual carbon sink as apposed to a transitionary sink associated with other land-use changes currently under consideration? The main issues under investigation are: can biochar be ploughed into arable soils to create a long term carbon sink? Can biochar be ploughed into organic rich forest soils to create a long term carbon sink? Will the application of biochar increase crop productivity, increasing photosynthesis and carbon sequestration further still? In order for the estate to become carbon neutral through biochar application alone it was calculated that 3312 Kg/ha/year of biochar would need to be applied to the current area of arable land. This however is based on the assumption that all of the biochar added is stable and will remain in the soil, and assumes that addition does not lead to increased CO2 emissions from the organic matter already present. This study presents the results of weekly soil respiration measurements currently being made on 24 lysimeters filled with arable and forestry soils and 4 levels of charcoal treatment. Levels of treatment were chosen to assess the impact of applying biochar on a yearly basis and any negative impacts which may result from very high eventual concentrations. The following levels of charcoal were applied: 0 Kg/hectare, 6250 Kg/hectare, 62500 Kg/hectare, 87 500 Kg/hectare. The lysimeters containing 0 Kg/ha act as a control, the lysimeters containing 6250 Kg/hectare allow assessment of the impacts of 2 years of addition, 62 500Kg/ha the impact of 18 years of addition, and 87 500kg/ha the impact of 26 years of addition. The study will also present the results of plant productivity

  12. Utilization of biochar and activated carbon to reduce Cd, Pb and Zn phytoavailability and phytotoxicity for plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Břendová, Kateřina; Zemanová, Veronika; Pavlíková, Daniela; Tlustoš, Pavel

    2016-10-01

    In the present study, the content of risk elements and content of free amino acids were studied in spinach (Spinacia oleracea L.) and mustard (Sinapis alba L.) subsequently grown on uncontaminated and contaminated soils (5 mg Cd/kg, 1000 mg Pb/kg and 400 mg Zn/kg) with the addition of activated carbon (from coconut shells) or biochar (derived from local wood residues planted for phytoextaction) in different seasons (spring, summer and autumn). The results showed that activated carbon and biochar increased biomass production on contaminated site. Application of amendments decreased Cd and Zn uptake by spinach plants. Mustard significantly increased Pb accumulation in the biomass as well in subsequently grown autumn spinach. Glutamic acid and glutamine were major free amino acids in leaves of all plants (15-34% and 3-45%) from total content. Application of activated carbon and biochar increased content of glutamic acid in all plants on uncontaminated and contaminated soils. Activated carbon and biochar treatments also induced an increase of aspartic acid in spinach plants. Biochar produced from biomass originated from phytoextraction technologies promoted higher spinach biomass yield comparing unamended control and showed a tendency to reduce accumulation of cadmium and zinc and thus it is promising soil amendment. PMID:27544477

  13. In Situ Persistence and Migration of Biochar Carbon and Its Impact on Native Carbon Emission in Contrasting Soils under Managed Temperate Pastures.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bhupinder Pal Singh

    Full Text Available Pyrogenic carbon (PyC is an important component of the global soil carbon (C pool, but its fate, persistence, and loss dynamics in contrasting soils and environments under planted field conditions are poorly understood. To fill this knowledge gap, a 13C-labelled biochar, as a surrogate material for PyC, produced from Eucalyptus saligna by slow pyrolysis (450°C; δ13C -36.7‰ was surface (0-10 cm applied in C3 dominated temperate pasture systems across Arenosol, Cambisol and Ferralsol. The results show a low proportion of the applied biochar-C mineralised over 12 months in a relatively clay- and C-poor Arenosol (i.e., 2.0% loss via mineralisation, followed by a clay- and C-rich Cambisol (4.6%, and clay-, C- and earthworm-rich Ferralsol (7.0%. The biochar-C mean residence time (MRT, estimated by different models, varied between 44-1079 (Arenosol, 18-172 (Cambisol, and 11-29 (Ferralsol years, with the shorter MRT estimated by a one-pool exponential and the longer MRT by an infinite-pool power or a two-pool exponential model. The two-pool model was best fitted to biochar-C mineralisation. The biochar-C recovery in the 12-30 cm soil layer varied from between 1.2% (Arenosol, 2.5-2.7% (Cambisol and 13.8-15.7% (Ferralsol of the applied biochar-C after 8-12 months. There was a further migration of biochar-C below the 50-cm depth in the Arenosol, as the combined biochar-C recovery in the mineralised pool and soil profile (up to 30 or 50 cm was 82%, in contrast to 101% in the Cambisol and 104% in the Ferralsol after 12 months. These results indicate that the downward migration of biochar-C was greatest in the Arenosol (cf. Cambisol and Ferralsol. Cumulative CO2-C emission from native soil-plant sources was lower (p <0.10 in the biochar-amended vs. non-amended Ferralsol. This field-based study shows that the downward migration of biochar-C exceeded its loss via mineralisation in the Arenosol and Ferralsol, but not in the Cambisol. It is thus important to

  14. Biochar & Carbon Sequestration [Biocarvão (Biochar) e Sequestro de Carbono

    OpenAIRE

    Antonio S. Mangrich; Sailer S. dos Santos; Lilian C. Angelo; Edivaltrys I. P. Rezende

    2011-01-01

    The traditional answer to the question of controlling the growth of global warming involves reducing emissions of greenhouse gases like CO2. However, developed and developing countries have difficulty in adopting measures to reduce use of fossil fuels in the short or medium term. The world is currently exceeding the rate of greenhouse gas emissions. Consequently, it is urgently necessary to remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. Extensive research efforts in science and technology are und...

  15. Removal of micro pollutants using activated biochars and powdered activated carbon in water

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, E.; Jung, C.; Han, J.; Son, A.; Yoon, Y.

    2015-12-01

    Recent studies have suggested that emerging micropollutants containing endocrine disrupting compounds (EDCs); bisphenol A, 17 α-ethinylestradiol, 17 β-estradiol and pharmaceuticals and personal care products (PPCPs); sulfamethoxazole, carbamazepine, ibuprofen, atenolol, benzophenone, benzotriazole, caffeine, gemfibrozil, primidone, triclocarban in water have been linked to ecological impacts, even at trace concentrations (sub ug/L). Adsorption with adsorbent such as activated carbon having a high-binding affinity has been widely used to eliminate various contaminants in the aqueous phase. Recently, an efficient treatment strategy for EDCs and PPCPs has been considered by using cost effective adsorption particularly with biochar in aqueous environmentIn this study, the objective of this study is to determine the removal of 13 target EDCs/PPCPs having different physicochemical properties by a biochar at various water quality conditions (pH (3.5, 7, and 10.5), background ions (NaCl, CaCl2, Na₂SO₄), ionic strength, natural organic matter (NOM)). The activated biochar produced in a laboratory was also characterized by using conventional analytical methods as well as advanced solid-state nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) techniques, which answer how these properties determine the competitive adsorption characteristics and mechanisms of EDCs and PPCPs.The primary findings suggest that micropollutants can be removed more effectively by the biochar than the commercially available powdered activated carbon. At pH values below the pKa of each compound, the adsorption affinity toward adsorbents increased significantly with the pH, whereas the adsorption affinity decreased significantly at the pH above the pKa values. Na+ did not significantly impact adsorption, while increasing the concentration of Ca2+lead to increase in the adsorption of these micropollutants. NOM adsorption with humic acids on these adsorbents disturbed adsorption capacity of the target compounds as

  16. The molar H: Corg ratio of biochar is a key factor in mitigating N2O emissions from soil

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cayuela, M.L.; Jeffery, S.L.; Zwieten, van L.

    2015-01-01

    A previously published meta-analysis of biochar impacts on soil N2O emissions by Cayuela et al. (2014) found a “grand mean” reduction in N2O emissions of 54 ± 6% following biochar application to soil. Here we update this analysis to include 26 additional manuscripts bringing the total to 56 articles

  17. Bioavailability assessments following biochar and activated carbon amendment in DDT-contaminated soil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Denyes, Mackenzie J; Rutter, Allison; Zeeb, Barbara A

    2016-02-01

    The effects of 2.8% w/w granulated activated carbon (GAC) and two types of biochar (Burt's and BlueLeaf) on DDT bioavailability in soil (39 μg/g) were investigated using invertebrates (Eisenia fetida), plants (Cucurbita pepo spp. pepo) and a polyoxymethylene (POM) passive sampler method. Biochar significantly reduced DDT accumulation in E. fetida (49%) and showed no detrimental effects to invertebrate health. In contrast, addition of GAC caused significant toxic effects (invertebrate avoidance and decreased weight) and did not significantly reduce the accumulation of DDT into invertebrate tissue. None of the carbon amendments reduced plant uptake of DDT. Bioaccumulation of 4,4'DDT and 4,4'-DDE in plants (C. pepo spp. pepo) and invertebrates (E. fetida) was assessed using bioaccumulation factors (BAFs) and compared to predicted bioavailability using the freely-dissolved porewater obtained from a polyoxymethylene (POM) equilibrium biomimetic method. The bioavailable fraction predicted by the POM samplers correlated well with measured invertebrate uptake ( 10 μg/g. The results of these studies illustrate the importance of including plants in bioavailability studies as the use of carbon materials for in situ contaminant sorption moves from predominantly sediment to soil remediation technologies. PMID:26495827

  18. Environmental Impacts of the Production and Application of Biochar - EuroChar Project

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rack, Mireille; Woods, Jeremy

    2014-05-01

    magnitude assessment as to the potential role for biochar as a material climate mitigation option. Preliminary results show net negative supply chain emissions, indicating biochar to be a carbon sink. Overall, the life cycle stage that contributes most significantly to the environmental impact profile is feedstock production. Feedstock selection is therefore expected to play a key role in determining the overall viability of biochar production and its use in land application. Further sensitivity analyses show that the allocation method of the attributional LCA has the greatest impact on the results, followed by the oxidation rate of the carbon in the biochar, and the transportation distances of the feedstock and biochar. Indirect impacts, such as avoided use of fossil fuel, can significantly alter the results. As the EuroChar project comes to a completion at the end of May 2014, the near-final results are presented at the EGU 2014 General Assembly.

  19. Influence of process parameters on the surface and chemical properties of activated carbon obtained from biochar by chemical activation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Angın, Dilek; Altintig, Esra; Köse, Tijen Ennil

    2013-11-01

    Activated carbons were produced from biochar obtained through pyrolysis of safflower seed press cake by chemical activation with zinc chloride. The influences of process variables such as the activation temperature and the impregnation ratio on textural and chemical-surface properties of the activated carbons were investigated. Also, the adsorptive properties of activated carbons were tested using methylene blue dye as the targeted adsorbate. The experimental data indicated that the adsorption isotherms are well described by the Langmuir equilibrium isotherm equation. The optimum conditions resulted in activated carbon with a monolayer adsorption capacity of 128.21 mg g(-1) and carbon content 76.29%, while the BET surface area and total pore volume corresponded to 801.5m(2)g(-1) and 0.393 cm(3)g(-1), respectively. This study demonstrated that high surface area activated carbons can be prepared from the chemical activation of biochar with zinc chloride as activating agents. PMID:24080293

  20. Carbon dioxide emissions from semi-arid soils amended with biochar alone or combined with mineral and organic fertilizers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernández, José M; Nieto, M Aurora; López-de-Sá, Esther G; Gascó, Gabriel; Méndez, Ana; Plaza, César

    2014-06-01

    Semi-arid soils cover a significant area of Earth's land surface and typically contain large amounts of inorganic C. Determining the effects of biochar additions on CO2 emissions from semi-arid soils is therefore essential for evaluating the potential of biochar as a climate change mitigation strategy. Here, we measured the CO2 that evolved from semi-arid calcareous soils amended with biochar at rates of 0 and 20tha(-1) in a full factorial combination with three different fertilizers (mineral fertilizer, municipal solid waste compost, and sewage sludge) applied at four rates (equivalent to 0, 75, 150, and 225kg potentially available Nha(-1)) during 182 days of aerobic incubation. A double exponential model, which describes cumulative CO2 emissions from two active soil C compartments with different turnover rates (one relatively stable and the other more labile), was found to fit very well all the experimental datasets. In general, the organic fertilizers increased the size and decomposition rate of the stable and labile soil C pools. In contrast, biochar addition had no effects on any of the double exponential model parameters and did not interact with the effects ascribed to the type and rate of fertilizer. After 182 days of incubation, soil organic and microbial biomass C contents tended to increase with increasing the application rates of organic fertilizer, especially of compost, whereas increasing the rate of mineral fertilizer tended to suppress microbial biomass. Biochar was found to increase both organic and inorganic C contents in soil and not to interact with the effects of type and rate of fertilizer on C fractions. As a whole, our results suggest that the use of biochar as enhancer of semi-arid soils, either alone or combined with mineral and organic fertilizers, is unlikely to increase abiotic and biotic soil CO2 emissions. PMID:24632059

  1. Carbon Sequestration and Nitrogen Mineralization in Soil Cooperated with Organic Composts and Bio-char During Corn (Zea mays) Cultivation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shin, Joung-Du; Lee, Sun-Ill; Park, Wu-Gyun; Choi, Yong-Su; Hong, Seong-Gil; Park, Sang-Won

    2014-05-01

    Objectives of this study were to estimate the carbon sequestration and to evaluate nitrogen mineralization and nitrification in soils cooperated with organic composts and bio-char during corn cultivation. For the experiment, the soil used in this study was clay loam types, and application rates of chemical fertilizer and bio-char were recommended amount after soil test and 2 % to soil weight, respectively. The soil samples were periodically taken at every 15 day intervals during the experimental periods. The treatments were consisted of non-application, cow manure compost, pig manure compost, swine digestate from aerobic digestion system, their bio-char cooperation. For the experimental results, residual amount of inorganic carbon was ranged from 51 to 208kg 10a-1 in soil only cooperated with different organic composts. However it was estimated to be highest at 208kg 10a-1 in the application plot of pig manure compost. In addition to bio-char application, it was ranged from 187.8 to 286kg 10a-1, but was greatest accumulated at 160.3kg 10a-1 in the application plot of cow manure compost. For nitrogen mineralization and nitrification rates, it was shown that there were generally low in the soil cooperated with bio-char compared to the only application plots of different organic composts except for 71 days after sowing. Also, they were observed to be highest in the application plot of swine digestate from aerobic digestion system. For the loss of total inorganic carbon (TIC) by run-off water, it was ranged from 0.18 to 0.36 kg 10a-1 in the different treatment plots. Also, with application of bio-char, total nitrogen was estimated to be reduced at 0.42(15.1%) and 0.38(11.8%) kg 10a-1 in application plots of the pig manure compost and aerobic digestate, respectively.

  2. Biochar impacts soil microbial community composition and nitrogen cycling in an acidic soil planted with rape.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Hui-Juan; Wang, Xiao-Hui; Li, Hu; Yao, Huai-Ying; Su, Jian-Qiang; Zhu, Yong-Guan

    2014-08-19

    Biochar has been suggested to improve acidic soils and to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions. However, little has been done on the role of biochar in ameliorating acidified soils induced by overuse of nitrogen fertilizers. In this study, we designed a pot trial with an acidic soil (pH 4.48) in a greenhouse to study the interconnections between microbial community, soil chemical property changes, and N2O emissions after biochar application. The results showed that biochar increased plant growth, soil pH, total carbon, total nitrogen, C/N ratio, and soil cation exchange capacity. The results of high-throughput sequencing showed that biochar application increased α-diversity significantly and changed the relative abundances of some microbes that are related with carbon and nitrogen cycling at the family level. Biochar amendment stimulated both nitrification and denitrification processes, while reducing N2O emissions overall. Results of redundancy analysis indicated biochar could shift the soil microbial community by changing soil chemical properties, which modulate N-cycling processes and soil N2O emissions. The significantly increased nosZ transcription suggests that biochar decreased soil N2O emissions by enhancing its further reduction to N2. PMID:25054835

  3. Influence of Pyrolysis Temperature on Physico-Chemical Properties of Corn Stover (Zea mays L.) Biochar and Feasibility for Carbon Capture and Energy Balance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rafiq, Muhammad Khalid; Bachmann, Robert Thomas; Rafiq, Muhammad Tariq; Shang, Zhanhuan; Joseph, Stephen; Long, Ruijun

    2016-01-01

    This study examined the influence of pyrolysis temperature on biochar characteristics and evaluated its suitability for carbon capture and energy production. Biochar was produced from corn stover using slow pyrolysis at 300, 400 and 500°C and 2 hrs holding time. The experimental biochars were characterized by elemental analysis, BET, FTIR, TGA/DTA, NMR (C-13). Higher heating value (HHV) of feedstock and biochars was measured using bomb calorimeter. Results show that carbon content of corn stover biochar increased from 45.5% to 64.5%, with increasing pyrolysis temperatures. A decrease in H:C and O:C ratios as well as volatile matter, coupled with increase in the concentration of aromatic carbon in the biochar as determined by FTIR and NMR (C-13) demonstrates a higher biochar carbon stability at 500°C. It was estimated that corn stover pyrolysed at 500°C could provide of 10.12 MJ/kg thermal energy. Pyrolysis is therefore a potential technology with its carbon-negative, energy positive and soil amendment benefits thus creating win- win scenario. PMID:27327870

  4. Influence of Pyrolysis Temperature on Physico-Chemical Properties of Corn Stover (Zea mays L. Biochar and Feasibility for Carbon Capture and Energy Balance.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Muhammad Khalid Rafiq

    Full Text Available This study examined the influence of pyrolysis temperature on biochar characteristics and evaluated its suitability for carbon capture and energy production. Biochar was produced from corn stover using slow pyrolysis at 300, 400 and 500°C and 2 hrs holding time. The experimental biochars were characterized by elemental analysis, BET, FTIR, TGA/DTA, NMR (C-13. Higher heating value (HHV of feedstock and biochars was measured using bomb calorimeter. Results show that carbon content of corn stover biochar increased from 45.5% to 64.5%, with increasing pyrolysis temperatures. A decrease in H:C and O:C ratios as well as volatile matter, coupled with increase in the concentration of aromatic carbon in the biochar as determined by FTIR and NMR (C-13 demonstrates a higher biochar carbon stability at 500°C. It was estimated that corn stover pyrolysed at 500°C could provide of 10.12 MJ/kg thermal energy. Pyrolysis is therefore a potential technology with its carbon-negative, energy positive and soil amendment benefits thus creating win- win scenario.

  5. Influence of Pyrolysis Temperature on Physico-Chemical Properties of Corn Stover (Zea mays L.) Biochar and Feasibility for Carbon Capture and Energy Balance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rafiq, Muhammad Khalid; Bachmann, Robert Thomas; Rafiq, Muhammad Tariq; Shang, Zhanhuan; Joseph, Stephen; Long, Ruijun

    2016-01-01

    This study examined the influence of pyrolysis temperature on biochar characteristics and evaluated its suitability for carbon capture and energy production. Biochar was produced from corn stover using slow pyrolysis at 300, 400 and 500°C and 2 hrs holding time. The experimental biochars were characterized by elemental analysis, BET, FTIR, TGA/DTA, NMR (C-13). Higher heating value (HHV) of feedstock and biochars was measured using bomb calorimeter. Results show that carbon content of corn stover biochar increased from 45.5% to 64.5%, with increasing pyrolysis temperatures. A decrease in H:C and O:C ratios as well as volatile matter, coupled with increase in the concentration of aromatic carbon in the biochar as determined by FTIR and NMR (C-13) demonstrates a higher biochar carbon stability at 500°C. It was estimated that corn stover pyrolysed at 500°C could provide of 10.12 MJ/kg thermal energy. Pyrolysis is therefore a potential technology with its carbon-negative, energy positive and soil amendment benefits thus creating win- win scenario. PMID:27327870

  6. Gasification biochar as a valuable by-product for carbon sequestration and soil amendment

    OpenAIRE

    Hansen, Veronika; Müller-Stöver, Dorette; Ahrenfeldt, Jesper; Holm, Jens Kai; Henriksen, Ulrik Birk; Hauggaard-Nielsen, Henrik

    2015-01-01

    Thermal gasification of various biomass residues is a promising technology for combining bioenergy production with soil fertility management through the application of the resulting biochar as soil amendment. In this study, we investigated gasification biochar (GB) materials originating from two major global biomass fuels: straw gasification biochar (SGB) and wood gasification biochar (WGB), produced by a Low Temperature Circulating Fluidized Bed gasifier (LT-CFB) and a TwoStage gasifier, res...

  7. Heterogeneous global crop yield response to biochar: a meta-regression analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crane-Droesch, Andrew; Abiven, Samuel; Jeffery, Simon; Torn, Margaret S.

    2013-12-01

    Biochar may contribute to climate change mitigation at negative cost by sequestering photosynthetically fixed carbon in soil while increasing crop yields. The magnitude of biochar’s potential in this regard will depend on crop yield benefits, which have not been well-characterized across different soils and biochars. Using data from 84 studies, we employ meta-analytical, missing data, and semiparametric statistical methods to explain heterogeneity in crop yield responses across different soils, biochars, and agricultural management factors, and then estimate potential changes in yield across different soil environments globally. We find that soil cation exchange capacity and organic carbon were strong predictors of yield response, with low cation exchange and low carbon associated with positive response. We also find that yield response increases over time since initial application, compared to non-biochar controls. High reported soil clay content and low soil pH were weaker predictors of higher yield response. No biochar parameters in our dataset—biochar pH, percentage carbon content, or temperature of pyrolysis—were significant predictors of yield impacts. Projecting our fitted model onto a global soil database, we find the largest potential increases in areas with highly weathered soils, such as those characterizing much of the humid tropics. Richer soils characterizing much of the world’s important agricultural areas appear to be less likely to benefit from biochar.

  8. Heterogeneous global crop yield response to biochar: a meta-regression analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Biochar may contribute to climate change mitigation at negative cost by sequestering photosynthetically fixed carbon in soil while increasing crop yields. The magnitude of biochar’s potential in this regard will depend on crop yield benefits, which have not been well-characterized across different soils and biochars. Using data from 84 studies, we employ meta-analytical, missing data, and semiparametric statistical methods to explain heterogeneity in crop yield responses across different soils, biochars, and agricultural management factors, and then estimate potential changes in yield across different soil environments globally. We find that soil cation exchange capacity and organic carbon were strong predictors of yield response, with low cation exchange and low carbon associated with positive response. We also find that yield response increases over time since initial application, compared to non-biochar controls. High reported soil clay content and low soil pH were weaker predictors of higher yield response. No biochar parameters in our dataset—biochar pH, percentage carbon content, or temperature of pyrolysis—were significant predictors of yield impacts. Projecting our fitted model onto a global soil database, we find the largest potential increases in areas with highly weathered soils, such as those characterizing much of the humid tropics. Richer soils characterizing much of the world’s important agricultural areas appear to be less likely to benefit from biochar. (letter)

  9. Nitrogen and Carbon Leaching in Repacked Sandy Soil with Added Fine Particulate Biochar

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bruun, Esben W.; Petersen, Carsten; Strobel, Bjarne W.;

    2012-01-01

    Biochar amendment to soil may affect N turnover and retention, and may cause translocation of dissolved and particulate C. We investigated effects of three fine particulate biochars made of wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) straw (one by slow pyrolysis and two by fast pyrolysis) on N and C leaching from...... leachate came to about 3.0 water filled pore volumes (WFPVs). Our study revealed a high mobility of labile C components originating from the fine particulate fast pyrolysis biochar. This finding highlights a potential risk of C leaching coupled with the use of fast pyrolysis biochars for soil amendment on...... sandy soil. By contrast, C components from the slow pyrolysis biochar were fully retained in the topsoil. Contrary to our expectations, there were no overall effects of biochar amendment on the cumulative leaching of mineral N (NH4+ plus NO3-), that is, the biochars did not increase the N retention...

  10. China's carbon mitigation strategies: Enough?

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    As the largest CO2 emitter in the world, China has made great achievements in carbon mitigation over the past eight years (2005–2013). Through a comprehensive and detailed overview of China's carbon mitigation strategies, this paper presents China's carbon mitigation achievements and strategies, including adjustment to the industrial structure, saving energy, optimizing energy structure, increasing forest carbon sinks, building foundational capacity, innovating technologies and practicing mitigation efforts in localities and sectors. Having been in place for some years already, the results of many of these measures and policies are now plateauing. China is facing challenges including inevitable emissions growth, shrinking of mitigation potential from technological progress, difficulty in further adjusting the industrial structure and economic development mode, continued dominance of coal in the energy mix, local governments’ reluctance to adopt measures to reduce carbon emissions, etc. Through policy diagnosis it is found that the root causes of these problems and challenges are the facts that policy-making is done primarily on the production side and there is an absence of co-benefits in the decision-making process. Therefore, it is recommended that translating mitigation targets to the consumption level and mainstreaming mitigations’ co-benefits into decision-making processes are needed to quickly enhance the results of mitigation work in China. - Highlights: • Key aspects of China's carbon mitigation strategies were outlined. • China's carbon mitigation achievements were summarized. • Challenges to meet further mitigation were investigated. • Strategic suggestions to quickly enhance China's mitigation ambition were given

  11. Carbon Sequestration to Mitigate Climate Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sundquist, Eric; Burruss, Robert; Faulkner, Stephen; Gleason, Robert; Harden, Jennifer; Kharaka, Yousif; Tieszen, Larry; Waldrop, Mark

    2008-01-01

    Human activities, especially the burning of fossil fuels such as coal, oil, and gas, have caused a substantial increase in the concentration of carbon dioxide (CO2) in the atmosphere. This increase in atmospheric CO2 - from about 280 to more than 380 parts per million (ppm) over the last 250 years - is causing measurable global warming. Potential adverse impacts include sea-level rise; increased frequency and intensity of wildfires, floods, droughts, and tropical storms; changes in the amount, timing, and distribution of rain, snow, and runoff; and disturbance of coastal marine and other ecosystems. Rising atmospheric CO2 is also increasing the absorption of CO2 by seawater, causing the ocean to become more acidic, with potentially disruptive effects on marine plankton and coral reefs. Technically and economically feasible strategies are needed to mitigate the consequences of increased atmospheric CO2. The United States needs scientific information to develop ways to reduce human-caused CO2 emissions and to remove CO2 from the atmosphere.

  12. Preparation of porous bio-char and activated carbon from rice husk by leaching ash and chemical activation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahiduzzaman, Md; Sadrul Islam, A K M

    2016-01-01

    Preparation porous bio-char and activated carbon from rice husk char study has been conducted in this study. Rice husk char contains high amount silica that retards the porousness of bio-char. Porousness of rice husk char could be enhanced by removing the silica from char and applying heat at high temperature. Furthermore, the char is activated by using chemical activation under high temperature. In this study no inert media is used. The study is conducted at low oxygen environment by applying biomass for consuming oxygen inside reactor and double crucible method (one crucible inside another) is applied to prevent intrusion of oxygen into the char. The study results shows that porous carbon is prepared successfully without using any inert media. The adsorption capacity of material increased due to removal of silica and due to the activation with zinc chloride compared to using raw rice husk char. The surface area of porous carbon and activated carbon are found to be 28, 331 and 645 m(2) g(-1) for raw rice husk char, silica removed rice husk char and zinc chloride activated rice husk char, respectively. It is concluded from this study that porous bio-char and activated carbon could be prepared in normal environmental conditions instead of inert media. This study shows a method and possibility of activated carbon from agro-waste, and it could be scaled up for commercial production. PMID:27536531

  13. Biomass, Bioenergy and the Sustainability of Soils and Climate: What Role for Biochar?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sohi, Saran

    2013-04-01

    Biochar is the solid, carbon rich product of heating biomass with the exclusion of air (pyrolysis). Whereas charcoal is derived from wood, biochar is a co-product of energy capture and can derive from waste or non-waste, virgin or non-virgin biomass resources. But also, biochar is not a fuel - rather it is intended for the beneficial amendment of soil in agriculture, forestry and horticulture. This results in long-term storage of plant-derived carbon that could improve yield or efficiency of crop production, and/or mitigate trace gas emissions from the land. Life cycle analysis (LCA) shows that pyrolysis bioenergy with biochar production should offer considerably more carbon abatement than combustion, or gasification of the same feedstock. This has potential to link climate change mitigation to bioenergy and sustainable use of soil. But, in economic terms, the opportunity cost of producing biochar (reflecting the calorific value of its stored carbon) is inflated by bioenergy subsidies. This, combined with a lack of clear regulatory position and no mature pyrolysis technologies at large scale, means that pyrolysis-biochar systems (PBS) remain largely conceptual at the current time. Precise understanding of its function and an ability to predict its impact on different soils and crops with certainty, biochar should acquire a monetary value. Combining such knowledge with a system that monetizes climate change mitigation potential (such as carbon markets), could see schemes for producing and using biochar escalate - including a context for its deployment in biomass crops, or through pyrolysis of residues from other bioenergy processes. This talk explores the opportunity, challenges and risks in pursuing biochar production in various bioenergy contexts including enhanced sustainability of soil use in biomass crop production, improving the carbon balance and value chain in biofuel production, and using organic waste streams more effectively (including the processing of

  14. The effect of straw and wood gasification biochar on carbon sequestration, selected soil fertility indicators and functional groups in soil

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansen, Veronika; Müller-Stöver, Dorette Sophie; Munkholm, Lars Juhl;

    2016-01-01

    sugars, and that increased stability against microbial degradation in biochar amended soil was related to highly condensed aromatic groups. Addition of nutrients (N, P and S) together with straw resulted in higher soil respiration compared to the straw treatment, but did not cause differences in other......Annual removal of crop residues may lead to depletion of soil organic carbon and soil degradation. Gasification biochar (GB), the carbon-rich byproduct of gasification of biomass such as straw and wood chips, may be used for maintaining the soil organic carbon content and counteract soil...... revealed a lower content of O–H and aliphatic C–H together with a higher content of aromatic groups in soils amended with GB compared to soils amended with straw. This suggested that the improvement in aggregate stability in straw treatments could be related to microbial derived aliphatics and simple...

  15. Impact of soybean stover- and pine needle-derived biochars on Pb and As mobility, microbial community, and carbon stability in a contaminated agricultural soil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahmad, Mahtab; Ok, Yong Sik; Kim, Byung-Yong; Ahn, Jae-Hyung; Lee, Young Han; Zhang, Ming; Moon, Deok Hyun; Al-Wabel, Mohammad I; Lee, Sang Soo

    2016-01-15

    Biochar is gaining attention as a potential soil amendment to remediate and revitalize the contaminated soils. Simultaneous effects of biochar on metals mobility, microbial abundance, bacterial diversity and carbon storage in soil are scarcely addressed. This study assessed the effect of biochars on metal mobility, microbial abundance, bacterial community, and carbon storage in an agricultural soil contaminated with heavy metals. Biochars derived from soybean stover at 300 and 700 °C (S-BC300 and S-BC700, respectively) and pine needles at the same temperatures (P-BC300 and P-BC700, respectively) were used. A maximum reduction of Pb mobility by 95% was observed from a soil treated with S-BC700, associated with precipitation of chloropyromorphite and hydroxylpyromorphite. In contrast, As was desorbed from soil particles because of P competition. The abundance of Gram-positive and negative bacteria, fungi, actinomycetes, and arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi increased in the soils treated with biochar produced at 300 °C, possibly due to the high dissolved organic and active organic carbons. Microbial abundance in the soils treated with S-BC700 and P-BC700 was constant due to the existence of fixed or non-labile carbon. Changes to bacterial communities in the biochar-treated soils depended on feedstock type and pyrolysis temperature. Actinobacteria substantially increased whereas Acidobacteria and Chloroflexi decreased in the biochar-treated soils. The non-labile carbon fraction was ∼25 fold higher in the biochar-treated soil than the control soil, indicating long-term carbon storage. PMID:26496843

  16. Production and characterization of activated carbon prepared from safflower seed cake biochar and its ability to absorb reactive dyestuff

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Angın, Dilek, E-mail: angin@sakarya.edu.tr [Department of Food Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, Sakarya University, Sakarya (Turkey); Köse, T. Ennil, E-mail: ennilb@ogu.edu.tr [Department of Chemical Engineering, Faculty of Engineering and Architecture, Eskisehir Osmangazi University, 26480 Meselik-Eskisehir (Turkey); Selengil, Uğur, E-mail: uselen@ogu.edu.tr [Department of Chemical Engineering, Faculty of Engineering and Architecture, Eskisehir Osmangazi University, 26480 Meselik-Eskisehir (Turkey)

    2013-09-01

    The use of activated carbon obtained from biochar for the removal of reactive dyestuff from aqueous solutions at various contact times, pHs and temperatures was investigated. The biochar was chemically modified with potassium hydroxide. The surface area and micropore volume of activated carbon was 1277 m{sup 2}/g and 0.4952 cm{sup 3}/g, respectively. The surface characterization of both biochar and activated carbon was undertaken using by Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy and scanning electron microscopy. The experimental data indicated that the adsorption isotherms are well described by the Dubinin–Radushkevich (DR) isotherm equation. The adsorption kinetics of reactive dyestuff obeys the pseudo second-order kinetic model. The thermodynamic parameters such as ΔG{sup o}, ΔH{sup o} and ΔS{sup o} were calculated to estimate the nature of adsorption. The activation energy of the system was calculated as 1.12 kJ/mol. According to these results, prepared activated carbon could be used as a low-cost adsorbent to compare with the commercial activated carbon for the removal reactive dyestuff from waste water.

  17. Production and characterization of activated carbon prepared from safflower seed cake biochar and its ability to absorb reactive dyestuff

    Science.gov (United States)

    Angın, Dilek; Köse, T. Ennil; Selengil, Uğur

    2013-09-01

    The use of activated carbon obtained from biochar for the removal of reactive dyestuff from aqueous solutions at various contact times, pHs and temperatures was investigated. The biochar was chemically modified with potassium hydroxide. The surface area and micropore volume of activated carbon was 1277 m2/g and 0.4952 cm3/g, respectively. The surface characterization of both biochar and activated carbon was undertaken using by Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy and scanning electron microscopy. The experimental data indicated that the adsorption isotherms are well described by the Dubinin-Radushkevich (DR) isotherm equation. The adsorption kinetics of reactive dyestuff obeys the pseudo second-order kinetic model. The thermodynamic parameters such as ΔG̊, ΔH̊ and ΔS̊ were calculated to estimate the nature of adsorption. The activation energy of the system was calculated as 1.12 kJ/mol. According to these results, prepared activated carbon could be used as a low-cost adsorbent to compare with the commercial activated carbon for the removal reactive dyestuff from wastewater.

  18. Speciation of the ionizable antibiotic sulfamethazine on black carbon (biochar).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teixidó, Marc; Pignatello, Joseph J; Beltrán, José L; Granados, Mercè; Peccia, Jordan

    2011-12-01

    Adsorption of ionizable compounds by black carbon is poorly characterized. Adsorption of the veterinary antibiotic sulfamethazine (SMT; a.k.a., sulfadimidine; pK(a1) = 2.28, pK(a2) = 7.42) on a charcoal was determined as a function of concentration, pH, inorganic ions, and organic ions and molecules. SMT displayed unconventional adsorption behavior. Despite its hydrophilic nature (log K(ow) = 0.27), the distribution ratio K(d) at pH 5, where SMT(0) prevails, was as high as 10(6) L kg(-1), up to 10(4) times greater than literature reported K(oc). The K(d) decreases at high and low pH but not commensurate with the decline in K(ow) of the ionized forms. At pH 1, where SMT(+) is predominant and the surface is positive, a major driving force is π-π electron donor-acceptor interaction of the protonated aniline ring with the π-electron rich graphene surface, referred to as π(+)-π EDA, rather than ordinary electrostatic cation exchange. In the alkaline region, where SMT(-) prevails and the surface is negative, adsorption is accompanied by near-stoichiometric proton exchange with water, leading to the release of OH(-) and formation of an exceptionally strong H-bond between SMT(0) and a surface carboxylate or phenolate, classified as a negative charge-assisted H-bond, (-)CAHB. At pH 5, SMT(0) adsorption is accompanied by partial proton release and is competitive with trimethylphenylammonium ion, signifying contributions from SMT(+) and/or the zwitterion, SMT(±), which take advantage of π(+)-π EDA interaction and Coulombic attraction to deprotonated surface groups. In essence, both pK(a1) and pK(a2) increase, and SMT(±) is stabilized, in the adsorbed relative to the dissolved state. PMID:22026725

  19. Effect of organic fertilizer and biochar application on soil macro-aggregate formation and organic carbon turnover

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grunwald, Dennis; Kaiser, Michael; Ludwig, Bernard

    2015-04-01

    Macro-aggregates are important for the organic matter dynamic and thus the productivity of sustainably managed soils. To date, less is known about the influence of biochar in comparison to other commonly used organic soil additives on the formation of macro-aggregates and organic carbon turnover. Here we aimed to analyze the effects of biochar applied individually and in combination with slurry versus the effects of the individual application of slurry and manure on macro-aggregate yield, the associated organic carbon concentration, and the organic carbon mineralization. For this, we crushed the macro-aggregate fraction (>250 μm) of two different soils that were then mixed with biochar (combustion temperature: 550° C, feedstock: woodchips) and/or cattle-slurry or cattle-manure and incubated within a microcosm experiment at 5° C, 15° C, and 25° C. We monitored the CO2 evolution during the incubation experiment. After four and eight weeks, we determined the dry mass and the carbon concentration of the newly formed macro-aggregates (>250 μm) and the microbial biomass carbon concentration. Carbon mineralization was modelled assuming first-order kinetics and using a rate modifying factor for the temperature (taken from the RothC-26.3 model). Two pools were considered (mineralization of the native organic matter from the control soils and mineralization of the substrates added) in each treatment and the models were calibrated to the C mineralization data at 25° C, whereas the data for 15° C and 5° C were used for validation. Independent from the incubation temperature and the duration of the experiment, the individual application of biochar did not show significant effects on the macro-aggregate yield, the associated carbon concentration, or the CO2 emission rate compared to the control sample receiving no amendments. For the application of biochar in combination with slurry, we observed only for the 15° C treatment higher CO2 emission rates in combination with

  20. Pyrolysis polygeneration of pine nut shell: Quality of pyrolysis products and study on the preparation of activated carbon from biochar.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Dengyu; Chen, Xiaojuan; Sun, Jun; Zheng, Zhongcheng; Fu, Kexin

    2016-09-01

    A lab-scale pyrolysis reactor was utilized to investigate the effect of pyrolysis temperature (300-700°C) on the yield, quality, and energy distribution of products issued from the pyrolysis polygeneration of pine nut shells. Afterward, activated carbon was prepared from biochar using the steam activation method. Pyrolysis temperatures ranging from 500 to 600°C were found to be optimal in inducing products with improved properties, such as higher heating values of non-condensable gas, lower water content and elevated heating values of bio-oil, and substantial fixed carbon content and greater specific surface area of biochar. In addition, it was noticed that the activation conditions had a significant effect on the yield and adsorption performance of the activated carbon. As a result, activated carbon with elevated specific surface area reaching 1057.8m(2)/g was obtained at the optimal conditions of 850°C activation temperature, 80min activation time, and 1.5 steam/biochar ratio. PMID:27289053

  1. Effect of activated carbon or biochars on toxicity of different soils contaminated by mixture of native polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons and heavy metals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kołtowski, Michał; Oleszczuk, Patryk

    2016-05-01

    Activated carbon (AC), biochar from wheat straw (BCS), and biochar from willow (BCW) were added to the soils sampled from areas of strong anthropogenic influence at doses of 0.5%, 1%, 2.5%, or 5% (w/w) and incubated for 2 mo. At the end of this period, the toxicity of the soils was measured. The effect of AC and biochars on the toxicity of the soils varied based on soil, type of amendment, dose, and test organism. For most of the parameters tested, the highest effectiveness of AC in terms of reduction of toxicity was observed in soil POPI (from bitumen processing plant area). In the case of the remaining soils, after the addition of AC varied results were observed, in which a reduction or an increase of toxicity, relative to the control soil, occurred. As in the case of AC, biochars also caused a significant reduction of phytotoxicity of soil POPI. In soils KB (from coking plant area, industrial waste deposit) and KOK (from coking plant area, coking battery), the reduction or increase of toxicity depended on biochar dose. Compared with the biochars, the effectiveness of AC in the reduction of toxicity depended also on soil, type of amendment, dose, and test organism. Generally, the AC was more effective than biochars in relation to mortality and reproduction of Folsomia candida (in all soils) and for reduction of luminescence inhibition of Vibrio fischeri (in POPI soil). Environ Toxicol Chem 2016;35:1321-1328. © 2015 SETAC. PMID:26378767

  2. Enrichment of Methanosaetaceae on carbon felt and biochar during anaerobic digestion of a potassium-rich molasses stream.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Vrieze, Jo; Devooght, Arno; Walraedt, Diego; Boon, Nico

    2016-06-01

    Biorefineries allow the production of value-added chemicals, yet this also causes the formation of considerable amounts of wastewater that require suitable treatment. These biorefinery wastewaters often contain a high salinity, which inhibits methanogenesis. In this research, molasses were used to mimic these waste streams to evaluate their treatability by anaerobic digestion. Two different carrier materials, i.e., carbon felt and biochar, with similar surface properties were evaluated for their potential to stabilize anaerobic digestion of these wastewaters via active enrichment of the methanogenic community. Initial stable methane production values between 620 and 640 mL CH4 L(-1) day(-1) were reported in each treatment. At the end of the experiment, methane production decreased with more than 50 %, while VFA increased to values up to 20 g COD L(-1), indicating severe process failure, due to the high potassium concentration in these wastewaters, irrespective of the presence of carrier material. However, an increased relative abundance of Methanosaetaceae both on the biochar and carbon felt was observed. In conclusion, this research demonstrated that carbon felt and biochar are both suitable carrier materials for selective enrichment of Methanosaetaceae, yet this did not lead to stable anaerobic digestion of a potassium-rich molasses waste stream. The increased relative abundance of Methanosaetaceae on both carrier materials can, nonetheless, be considered valuable in terms of alternative applications and warrants further research. PMID:27063010

  3. Retention efficiency of Cd, Pb and Zn from agricultural by-products activated carbon and biochar under laboratory conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coscione, Aline; Ramos, Barbara

    2015-04-01

    The immobilization of inorganic contaminants by using biochar in soils has played an increasingly important role and it is seen as an attractive alternative for the remediation of heavy metals. Although, the production of activated carbon (CA) from agricultural by-products has received special attention, the activation of the the organic source has been studied in order to increase its porposity, surface area and chemical polarity, resulting in higher adsorption of metals. Therefore, this study aimed to evaluate the effectiveness of BC and CA samples, obtained from a eucalyptus husks and cane sugar bagasse after activation with 20% phosphoric acid and pyrolyzed at 450oC in the retention of Zn, Cd and Pb using contaminated individual solutions. The experiment was performed using samples of activated carbon of eucalyptus husk (CCA), eucalyptus husk biochar (BC), activated carbon of sugar cane bagasse (CBA) and sugar cane bagasse biochar (BB) previously treated with Zn, Cd (range of tested solution from 0.1 up to 12 mmol L-1) and Pb (from 0.1 up 50 mmol L-1) which were submitted to stirring with ammonium acetate solution at pH 4.9 for 48 h. The results obtained were adjusted with Langmuir desorptiom isotherms. The pH of the resulting solution, were the meatls were analyse, was measure and remained in the range 4.9 - 5.0. The lower pH found in activated samples (range 2.4-2.5) resulted in larger desorption of metals than the biochar samples (pH of 9.7 for BC and 7.0 for BB). This result is surprising since for the biochar samples it was expected that any precipated metals were dissolved by the desorption solution in addition to metals released by ion exchange. Although the desorption results of activated samoels is still unclear, hich we belive may be explaibed by some adicitonal insterumental analysis, biochar samples showed better potential for application in contaminated soils than the previous.

  4. Changes in water, carbon, and nitrogen fluxes with the addition of biochar to soils: lessons learned from laboratory and greenhouse experiments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barnes, R. T.; Gallagher, M. E.; Masiello, C. A.; Liu, Z.; Dugan, B.; Rudgers, J. A.

    2011-12-01

    The addition of biochar to agricultural soils has the potential to provide a number of ecosystem services, ranging from carbon (C) sequestration to increased soil fertility and crop production. It is estimated that 0.5 to 0.9 Pg of C yr-1 can be sequestered through the addition of biochar to soils, significantly increasing the charcoal flux to the biosphere over natural inputs from fire (0.05 to 0.20 Pg C yr-1). There remain large uncertainties about biochar mobility within the environment, making it a challenge to assess the ecosystem residence time of biochar. We conducted laboratory and greenhouse experiments to understand how soil amendment with laboratory-produced biochar changes water, C, and nitrogen (N) fluxes from soils. We used column experiments to assess how biochar amendment to three types of soils (sand, organic, clay-rich) affected hydraulic conductivity and dissolved organic carbon (DOC) and total dissolved nitrogen (TDN) fluxes. Results varied with soil type; biochar significantly decreased the hydraulic conductivity of the sand and organic soils by a factor of 10.6 and 2.7, respectively. While not statistically significant, biochar addition increased the hydraulic conductivity of the clay-rich soil by 50% on average. The addition of biochar significantly increased the DOC fluxes from the C-poor sand and clay soils while it significantly decreased the DOC flux from the organic-rich soil. In contrast, TDN fluxes decreased with biochar additions from all soil types, though the results were not statistically significant from the clay-rich soil. These laboratory experiments suggest that changes in the hydraulic conductivity of soil due to biochar amendments could play a significant role in understanding how biochar additions to agricultural fields will change watershed C and N dynamics. We additionally conducted a 28-day greenhouse experiment with sorghum plants using a three-way factorial treatment (water availability x biochar x mycorrhizae) to

  5. Soil biochar amendment shapes the composition of N2O-reducing microbial communities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harter, Johannes; Weigold, Pascal; El-Hadidi, Mohamed; Huson, Daniel H; Kappler, Andreas; Behrens, Sebastian

    2016-08-15

    Soil biochar amendment has been described as a promising tool to improve soil quality, sequester carbon, and mitigate nitrous oxide (N2O) emissions. N2O is a potent greenhouse gas. The main sources of N2O in soils are microbially-mediated nitrogen transformation processes such as nitrification and denitrification. While previous studies have focused on the link between N2O emission mitigation and the abundance and activity of N2O-reducing microorganisms in biochar-amended soils, the impact of biochar on the taxonomic composition of the nosZ gene carrying soil microbial community has not been subject of systematic study to date. We used 454 pyrosequencing in order to study the microbial diversity in biochar-amended and biochar-free soil microcosms. We sequenced bacterial 16S rRNA gene amplicons as well as fragments of common (typical) nosZ genes and the recently described 'atypical' nosZ genes. The aim was to describe biochar-induced shifts in general bacterial community diversity and taxonomic variations among the nosZ gene containing N2O-reducing microbial communities. While soil biochar amendment significantly altered the 16S rRNA gene-based community composition and structure, it also led to the development of distinct functional traits capable of N2O reduction containing typical and atypical nosZ genes related to nosZ genes found in Pseudomonas stutzeri and Pedobacter saltans, respectively. Our results showed that biochar amendment can affect the relative abundance and taxonomic composition of N2O-reducing functional microbial traits in soil. Thus these findings broaden our knowledge on the impact of biochar on soil microbial community composition and nitrogen cycling. PMID:27100017

  6. Dynamic molecular structure of plant biomass-derived black carbon (biochar)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Keiluweit, M.; Nico, P.S.; Johnson, M.G.; Kleber, M.

    2009-11-15

    Char black carbon (BC), the solid residue of incomplete combustion, is continuously being added to soils and sediments due to natural vegetation fires, anthropogenic pollution, and new strategies for carbon sequestration ('biochar'). Here we present a molecular-level assessment of the physical organization and chemical complexity of biomass-derived chars and, specifically, that of aromatic carbon in char structures. BET-N{sub 2} surface area, X-ray diffraction (XRD), synchrotron-based Near-edge X-ray Absorption Fine Structure (NEXAFS), and Fourier transform infrared (FT-IR) spectroscopy are used to show how two plant materials (wood and grass) undergo analogous, but quantitatively different physical-chemical transitions as charring temperature increases from 100 to 700 C. These changes suggest the existence of four distinct categories of char consisting of a unique mixture of chemical phases and physical states: (i) in transition chars the crystalline character of the precursor materials is preserved, (ii) in amorphous chars the heat-altered molecules and incipient aromatic polycondensates are randomly mixed, (iii) composite chars consist of poorly ordered graphene stacks embedded in amorphous phases, and (iv) turbostratic chars are dominated by disordered graphitic crystallites. The molecular variations among the different char categories translate into differences in their ability to persist in the environment and function as environmental sorbents.

  7. Characterization of narrow micropores in almond shell biochars by nitrogen, carbon dioxide, and hydrogen adsorption

    Science.gov (United States)

    Characterization of biochars usually includes surface area and pore volume determination by nitrogen adsorption. In this study, we show that there is a substantial pore volume in biochars created via slow pyrolysis from low- and high-ash almond shells that cannot be characterized in this fashion due...

  8. Partitioning of carbon sources among functional pools to investigate short-term priming effects of biochar in soil: A (13)C study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kerré, Bart; Hernandez-Soriano, Maria C; Smolders, Erik

    2016-03-15

    Biochar sequesters carbon (C) in soils because of its prolonged residence time, ranging from several years to millennia. In addition, biochar can promote indirect C-sequestration by increasing crop yield while, potentially, reducing C-mineralization. This laboratory study was set up to evaluate effects of biochar on C-mineralization with due attention to source appointment by using (13)C isotope signatures. An arable soil (S) (7.9g organic C, OCkg(-1)) was amended (single dose of 10gkg(-1) soil) with dried, grinded maize stover (leaves and stalks), either natural (R) or (13)C enriched (R*), and/or biochar (B/B*) prepared from the maize stover residues (450°C). Accordingly, seven different combinations were set up (S, SR, SB, SR*, SB*, SRB*, SR*B) to trace the source of C in CO2 (180days), dissolved organic-C (115days) and OC in soil aggregate fractions (90days). The application of biochar to soil reduced the mineralization of native soil organic C but the effect on maize stover-C mineralization was not consistent. Biochar application decreased the mineralization of the non-enriched maize stover after 90days, this being consistent with a significant reduction of dissolved organic C concentration from 45 to 18mgL(-1). However, no significant effect was observed for the enriched maize stover, presumably due to differences between the natural and enriched materials. The combined addition of biochar and enriched maize stover significantly increased (twofold) the presence of native soil organic C or maize derived C in the free microaggregate fraction relative to soil added only with stover. Although consistent effects among C sources and biochar materials remains elusive, our outcomes indicate that some biochar products can reduce mineralization and solubilization of other sources of C while promoting their physical protection in soil particles. PMID:26780129

  9. Carbon Dioxide Mitigation Benefit of High-Speed Railway in Terms of Carbon Tax

    OpenAIRE

    Fu Yanbing; Zhang Sufen; Xie Meiquan; Li Shuping; Huang Zelin

    2013-01-01

    This paper calculates the carbon dioxide mitigation benefit of high-speed railway based on the carbon dioxide tax policy. We define the carbon dioxide emission system boundary for high-speed railway in its whole life cycle and estimate the life cycle carbon dioxide inventories during its construction, application, and recovery stages. And then we establish a theoretical model to calculate the life cycle carbon dioxide mitigation quantity for high-speed railway when compared with road transpor...

  10. Carbon flux from plants to soil microbes is highly sensitive to nitrogen addition and biochar amendment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaiser, C.; Solaiman, Z. M.; Kilburn, M. R.; Clode, P. L.; Fuchslueger, L.; Koranda, M.; Murphy, D. V.

    2012-04-01

    The release of carbon through plant roots to the soil has been recognized as a governing factor for soil microbial community composition and decomposition processes, constituting an important control for ecosystem biogeochemical cycles. Moreover, there is increasing awareness that the flux of recently assimilated carbon from plants to the soil may regulate ecosystem response to environmental change, as the rate of the plant-soil carbon transfer will likely be affected by increased plant C assimilation caused by increasing atmospheric CO2 levels. What has received less attention so far is how sensitive the plant-soil C transfer would be to possible regulations coming from belowground, such as soil N addition or microbial community changes resulting from anthropogenic inputs such as biochar amendments. In this study we investigated the size, rate and sensitivity of the transfer of recently assimilated plant C through the root-soil-mycorrhiza-microbial continuum. Wheat plants associated with arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi were grown in split-boxes which were filled either with soil or a soil-biochar mixture. Each split-box consisted of two compartments separated by a membrane which was penetrable for mycorrhizal hyphae but not for roots. Wheat plants were only grown in one compartment while the other compartment served as an extended soil volume which was only accessible by mycorrhizal hyphae associated with the plant roots. After plants were grown for four weeks we used a double-labeling approach with 13C and 15N in order to investigate interactions between C and N flows in the plant-soil-microorganism system. Plants were subjected to an enriched 13CO2 atmosphere for 8 hours during which 15NH4 was added to a subset of split-boxes to either the root-containing or the root-free compartment. Both, 13C and 15N fluxes through the plant-soil continuum were monitored over 24 hours by stable isotope methods (13C phospho-lipid fatty acids by GC-IRMS, 15N/13C in bulk plant

  11. Nitrogen enrichment potential of biochar in relation to pyrolysis temperature and feedstock quality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jassal, Rachhpal S; Johnson, Mark S; Molodovskaya, Marina; Black, T Andrew; Jollymore, Ashlee; Sveinson, Kelly

    2015-04-01

    Nitrogen (N) enrichment of biochar from both inorganic and organic waste N sources has the potential to add economic and environmental value through its use as a slow release N fertilizer. We investigated the sorption of N by, and its release from, biochar made at pyrolysis temperatures of 400, 500 and 600 °C from three feedstocks: poultry litter (PL with a carbon (C) to N ratio (C:N) of 14), softwood chips of spruce-pine-fir (SPF with a C:N of 470), and a 50:50 mixture of PL and SPF (PL/SPF). The prepared biochars were enriched with ammonium nitrate (AN) and urea ammonium nitrate (UAN). PL biochars had the lowest C content (50-56% C), but the highest pH (9.3-9.9), electrical conductivity (EC, 780-960 dS m(-1)), cation exchange capacity (CEC, 40-46 cmol kg(-1)), and N content (3.3-4.5%). While N content and hydrogen (H) to C atomic ratio (H:C) decreased with increasing pyrolysis temperature irrespective of the feedstock used, both pH and EC slightly increased with pyrolysis temperature for all feedstocks. The PL and SPF biochars showed similar H:C and also similar N sorption and N release at all pyrolysis temperatures. These biochars sorbed up to 5% N by mass, irrespective of the source of N. However, PL/SPF biochar performed poorly in sorbing N from either AN or UAN. Biochar H:C was found to be unrelated to N sorption rates, suggesting that physical adsorption on active surfaces was the main mechanism of N sorption in these biochars. There were minor differences between N sorbed from NO3-N and NH4-N among different biochars. Very small amounts of sorbed N (0.2-0.4 mg N g(-1) biochar) was released when extracted with 1 M KCl solution, indicating that the retained N was strongly held in complex bonds, more so for NH4-N because the release of NO3-N was 3-4 times greater than that of NH4-N. NH4-N sorption far exceeded the effective CEC of the biochars, thereby suggesting that most of the sorption may be due to physical entrapment of NH4(+) in biochar pores

  12. Effectiveness of activated carbon and biochar in reducing the availability of polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins/dibenzofurans in soils.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chai, Yunzhou; Currie, Rebecca J; Davis, John W; Wilken, Michael; Martin, Greg D; Fishman, Vyacheslav N; Ghosh, Upal

    2012-01-17

    Five activated carbons (ACs) and two biochars were tested as amendments to reduce the availability of aged polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxin/dibenzofurans (PCDD/Fs) in two soils. All sorbents (ACs and biochars) tested substantially reduced the availability of PCDD/Fs measured by polyoxymethylene (POM) passive uptake and earthworm (E. fetida) biouptake. Seven sorbents amended at a level of 0.2 × soil total organic carbon (0.2X) reduced the passive uptake (physicochemical availability) of total PCDD/Fs in POM by 40% to 92% (or toxic equivalent by 48% to 99%). Sorbents with finer particle sizes or more macropores showed higher reduction efficiencies. The powdered regenerated AC and powdered coconut AC demonstrated to be the most effective and the two biochars also performed reasonably well especially in the powdered form. The passive uptake of PCDD/F in POM increased approximately 4 to 5 fold as the contact time between POM and soil slurry increased from 24 to 120 d while the efficacy of ACs in reducing the physicochemical availability remained unchanged. The reduction efficiencies measured by POM passive uptake for the regenerated AC were comparable to those measured by earthworm biouptake (bioavailability) at both dose levels of 0.2X and 0.5X. The biota-soil accumulation factor (BSAF) values for unamended soil ranged from 0.1 for tetra-CDD/F to 0.02 for octa-CDD/F. At both dose levels, the regenerated AC reduced the BSAFs to below 0.03 with the exception of two hexa-CDD/Fs. The reduction efficiencies measured by earthworm for coconut AC and corn stover biochar were generally less than those measured by POM probably due to larger particle sizes of these sorbents that could not be ingested by the worms. PMID:22136630

  13. Activated carbon and biochar from agricultural by-products in the adorption of Cd, Pb and Zn under laboratory conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coscione, Aline; Zini, Barbara

    2015-04-01

    The immobilization of inorganic contaminants by using biochar in soils has played an increasingly important role and it is seen as an attractive alternative for the remediation of heavy metals. Although, the production of activated carbon (CA) from agricultural by-products has received special attention, the activation of the the organic source has been studied in order to increase its porposity, surface area and chemical polarity, resulting in higher adsorption of metals. Therefore, this study aimed to evaluate the effectiveness of BC and CA samples, obtained from a eucalyptus husks and cane sugar bagasse after activation with 20% phosphoric acid and pyrolyzed at 450oC in the retention of Zn, Cd and Pb using contaminated individual solutions. The experiment was performed using samples of activated carbon of eucalyptus husk (CCA), eucalyptus husk biochar (BC), activated carbon of sugar cane bagasse (CBA) and sugar cane bagasse biochar (BB), treated with Zn, Cd (range of tested solution from 0.1 up to 12 mmol L-1) and Pb (from 0.1 up 50 mmol L-1) and the adjustemento of Langmuir adsorption isotherms. Samples obtained from bagasse presented higher adsoprtion of the metals tested then eucalyptus. Also the activation process had not the expected effect on either eucalyptus and bagasse samples The maxmum adsorption capacyty of samples were as follws, in mmol g-1: for Cd - 0.36 for BC; 0.32 for CCA; 0.40 for BB; 0.31 for CBA. For Zn- 0.14 for BC; no adsorbed by CCA; 0.35 5 for BB; 0.06 for CBA. For Pb - 1.24 for BC; 0.40 for CCA; 0,45 for BB; 0,03 for CBA. However, it was also observed that due to the activation with phosphoric acid, the pH of the activated carbon (CCA and CBA) were 2.4 and 2.5 in comparison with the biochars not activated (BC and BB) 9.7 and 7.0 respectively. Thus, it is yet not possible to state if the calculate capacity is due exclusively to the complexation of chemical groups in the surface of samples or to which extent there is a contribution of

  14. Climate change mitigation by carbon stocking

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lykke, Anne Mette; Barfod, Anders S.; Svendsen, Gert Tinggaard;

    2009-01-01

    Semi-arid West Africa has not been integrated into the afforestation/reforestation (AR) carbon market. Most projects implemented under the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) have focused on carbon emission reductions from industry and energy consumption, whereas only few (only one in West Africa) ...

  15. Restoration of carbon and microbial activity in salt-induced soil by application of peanut shell biochar during short-term incubation study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhaduri, Debarati; Saha, Ajoy; Desai, Deepali; Meena, H N

    2016-04-01

    For the present study, soil samples of four artificially-induced salinity gradients (S0: control, S1: 2.0, S2: 4.0, S3: 6.0 ECiw) was incubated with fine-textured peanut shell biochar at various ratios (B0: control, B1: 2.5%, B2: 5.0%, B3: 10% w/w) for 30 days. At 1, 3, 7, 15, 30 days of incubation, samples were analyzed for soil carbon and selected enzyme activities. Results showed that biochar could increase soil organic carbon on application of highest rate of biochar addition (B3), hence potentially restored the saline soils by less C mineralization, and more sequestration of soil C. However, soil enzyme activities were biochar rate(s), day(s) of incubation and enzyme dependent. The lowest rate of biochar addition (B1) showed highest dehydrogenase (20.5 μg TPF g(-1) soil h(-1)), acid phosphatase (29.1 μg PNP g(-1) soil h(-1)) and alkaline phosphatase (16.1 μg PNP g(-1) soil h(-1)) whereas the higher rate (B2) increased the urease (5.51 μg urea-N g(-1) soil h(-1)) and fluorescein diacetate hydrolyzing activities (3.95 μg fluorescein g(-1) OD soil h(-1)) in soil. All the positive changes persisted at higher levels of salinity (S2, S3) suggesting biochar-amended soil may be potential for better nutrient cycling. Soil enzymes were found to be correlated with soil carbon and with each other while principal component analysis (PCA) extracted the most sensitive parameters as the acid and alkaline phosphatases and urease activities in the present experimental condition. This is the first time report of examining soil microbial environment using peanut shell biochar under a degraded (saline) soil. PMID:26802267

  16. Photochemistry of Dissolved Black Carbon Released from Biochar: Reactive Oxygen Species Generation and Phototransformation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fu, Heyun; Liu, Huiting; Mao, Jingdong; Chu, Wenying; Li, Qilin; Alvarez, Pedro J J; Qu, Xiaolei; Zhu, Dongqiang

    2016-02-01

    Dissolved black carbon (BC) released from biochar can be one of the more photoactive components in the dissolved organic matter (DOM) pool. Dissolved BC was mainly composed of aliphatics and aromatics substituted by aromatic C-O and carboxyl/ester/quinone moieties as determined by solid-state nuclear magnetic resonance. It underwent 56% loss of absorbance at 254 nm, almost complete loss of fluorescence, and 30% mineralization during a 169 h simulated sunlight exposure. Photoreactions preferentially targeted aromatic and methyl moieties, generating CH2/CH/C and carboxyl/ester/quinone functional groups. During irradiation, dissolved BC generated reactive oxygen species (ROS) including singlet oxygen and superoxide. The apparent quantum yield of singlet oxygen was 4.07 ± 0.19%, 2-3 fold higher than many well-studied DOM. Carbonyl-containing structures other than aromatic ketones were involved in the singlet oxygen sensitization. The generation of superoxide apparently depended on electron transfer reactions mediated by silica minerals in dissolved BC, in which phenolic structures served as electron donors. Self-generated ROS played an important role in the phototransformation. Photobleaching of dissolved BC decreased its ability to further generate ROS due to lower light absorption. These findings have significant implications on the environmental fate of dissolved BC and that of priority pollutants. PMID:26717492

  17. Softwood biochar as a soil amendment material for boreal agriculture

    OpenAIRE

    Tammeorg, Priit

    2014-01-01

    Biochar is a porous carbonaceous solid material produced by pyrolysis. Application of biochar is considered as an efficient way of carbon (C) sequestration since the C in biochar is relatively resistant to microbial degradation. Furthermore, previous research in (sub-) tropical conditions suggests that it may enhance soil fertility and the yields of agricultural crops. To target the lack of knowledge about the effects of biochar in the boreal zone, softwood biochar was added to two boreal soi...

  18. Terahertz Spectroscopy of Biochars and Related Aromatic Compounds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lepodise, L. M.; Horvat, J.; Lewis, R. A.

    2016-07-01

    A recent application of terahertz spectroscopy is to biochar, the agricultural charcoal produced by pyrolysis of various organic materials. Biochars simultaneously improve soil fertility and assist in carbon sequestration. Terahertz spectroscopy allows different biochars to be distinguished. However, the origin of the absorption features observed has not been clear. Given that biochar-based fertilizers are rich in aromatic compounds, we have investigated simple aromatic compounds as an approach to unravelling the complex biochar spectrum.

  19. Biochar characterization for its environmental and agricultural utilization. Occurrence, distribution and fate of labile organic carbon and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons

    OpenAIRE

    Rombola', Alessandro Girolamo

    2015-01-01

    In this thesis the potential risks associated to the application of biochar in soil as well the stability of biochar were investigated. The study was focused on the potential risks arising from the occurrence of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in biochar. An analytical method was developed for the determination of the 16 USEPA-PAHs in the original biochar and soil containing biochar. The method was successfully validated with a certified reference material for the soil matrix and comp...

  20. Study on Biochar Production from Empty Fruit Bunch Biomass Under Self-Sustained Carbonization for the Development of Yamasen Carbonization Oven

    OpenAIRE

    Juferi Bin Idris

    2015-01-01

    The usage of OPEFB biomass as an alternative source for renewable energy such as biochar has a great potential to overcome the shortage of fossil fuel. Moreover, the utilization of biomass as a source of biofuel can reduce the problem of environmental pollution particularly on the issues related to greenhouse gases. Being the second largest oil palm producer in the world, Malaysia has a great potential to produce clean renewable energy from biomass. The selfsustained carbonization was propose...

  1. Biochar composts and composites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ekebafe, Marian Osazoduwa; Ekebafe, Lawrence Olu; Ugbesia, Stella Omozee

    2015-01-01

    Research has shown that the carbon content of wastes decreases during composting with an increase in the nitrogen content. This indicates that the increased microbial activity in the process results in an increased mineralisation rate of organic nitrogen. A formula containing biochar in the form of terra preta, biochar bokashi, biochar glomalin, biochar hydrogel and biochar mokusaku-eki could further enhance the stability of the system and its effectiveness as a soil ameliorant. It could increase the cation exchange capacity, reuse crop residue, reduce runoff, reduce watering, reduce the quantity of fertiliser increase crop yield, build and multiply soil biodiversity, strengthen and rebuild our soil food web, sequester atmospheric carbon in a carbon negative process, increase soil pH, restructure poor soils, and reduce carbon dioxide/methane/ nitrous oxide/ammonia emissions from gardens and fields. This paper considers these claims and also the wider environmental implications of the adoption of these processes. The intention of this overview is not just to summarise current knowledge of the subject, but also to identify gaps in knowledge that require further research. PMID:26288918

  2. Adsorption and transport of methane in biochars derived from waste wood.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sadasivam, Bala Yamini; Reddy, Krishna R

    2015-09-01

    Mitigation of landfill gas (LFG) is among the critical aspects considered in the design of a landfill cover in order to prevent atmospheric pollution and control global warming. In general, landfill cover soils can partially remove methane (CH4) through microbial oxidation carried out by methanotrophic bacteria present within them. The oxidizing capacity of these landfill cover soils may be improved by adding organic materials, such as biochar, which increase adsorption and promote subsequent or simultaneous oxidation of CH4. In this study, seven wood-derived biochars and granular activated carbon (GAC) were characterized for their CH4 adsorption capacity by conducting batch and small-scale column studies. The effects of influential factors, such as exposed CH4 concentration, moisture content and temperature on CH4 adsorption onto biochars, were determined. The CH4 transport was modeled using a 1-D advection-dispersion equation that accounted for sorption. The effects of LFG inflow rates and moisture content on the combined adsorption and transport properties of biochars were determined. The maximum CH4 adsorption capacity of GAC (3.21mol/kg) was significantly higher than that of the biochars (0.05-0.9mol/kg). The CH4 gas dispersion coefficients for all of the biochars ranged from 1×10(-3) to 3×10(-3)m(2)s(-1). The presence of moisture significantly suppressed the extent of methane adsorption onto the biochars and caused the methane to break through within shorter periods of time. Overall, certain biochar types have a high potential to enhance CH4 adsorption and transport properties when used as a cover material in landfills. However, field-scale studies need to be conducted in order to evaluate the performance of biochar-based cover system under a more dynamic field condition that captures the effect of seasonal and temporal changes. PMID:26005190

  3. Hydrological restoration of Indonesian peatlands to mitigate carbon dioxide emissions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wösten, H.; Jaenicke, J.; Budiman, A.; Siegert, F.

    2010-01-01

    Delta Session DS 9: The lowland deltas of Indonesia. Hydrological restoration of Indonesian peatlands to mitigate carbon dioxide emissions, Henk Wösten (2010). Presented at the international conference Deltas in Times of Climate Change, 29 September - 1 October, Rotterdam, the Netherlands.

  4. Mitigation of Global Warming with Focus on Personal Carbon Allowances

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Meyer, Niels I

    2008-01-01

    The mitigation of global warming requires new efficient systems and methods. The paper presents a new proposal called personal carbon allowances with caps on the CO2 emission from household heating and electricity and on emission from transport in private cars and in personal air flights. Results...

  5. Biochar amendment decreased global warming potential of a Cd/Pb contaminated paddy ecosystem from the Tai Lake plain, China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, A.; Hussian, Q.; Li, L.; Zheng, J.; Pan, G.; Zhang, X.; Bian, R.

    2012-04-01

    Nitrous oxide (N2O), carbon dioxide (CO2) and methane (CH4) are concerned as the predominant biogenic greenhouse gases (GHGs) in the net GHGs balance of agro-ecosystems. Predicting the net exchanges of these gases in a systemic approach would be critical for assessing the effects on GHGs mitigation of environmental conditions and crop management. Previous studies have shown a great potential of biochar amendment to mitigate GHGs emission from croplands. Here, we report a field experiment on biochar effects on rice production, net ecosystem exchange (NEE) and global warming potential (GWP) in cadmium (Cd) and lead (Pb) contaminated paddy field. Biochar was amended in 2009 before rice transplanting at rate of 0, 10, 20 and 40 t ha-1 and soil emission of CO2, ecosystem emissions of CH4 and N2O were monitored with closed chamber method at 7 days interval throughout the whole rice growing season (WRGS) in 2010. Soil samples were collected after rice harvest in 2010 for analysis of soil property changes with biochar amendment. Biochar amendment increased soil pH, soil organic carbon, total N but decreased soil bulk density. DTPA Cd and Pb were decreased by 25.3%, 21.3% and 48.7%, and by 11.9%, 17.3% and 23.6% under biochar amendment at rates of 10 t ha-1, 20 t ha-1 and 40 t ha-1, respectively. Total soil CO2 emission of WRGS was decreased by 16% and 24% under biochar amendment respectively at 20 and 40 t ha-1. There was a weak correlation of total CO2 emission with DTPA Pb concentration (p=0.0642). Total WRGS ecosystem emission of N2O was reduced by 11%, 33% and 50% under biochar amendment at 10 t ha-1, 20 t ha-1 and 40 t ha-1, respectively while an increase by 31% in that of CH4 emission was observed only under biochar amendment at 40 t ha-1.Overall, an consistent increase in ecosystem carbon sink was observed across all treatments of biochar amendment as the overall GWP of the ecosystem was decreased by 54% and 63% under biochar amendment at 20 t ha-1 and 40 t ha-1

  6. Carbon Dioxide Mitigation by Microalgal Photosynthesis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Algal growth studies of Chlorella strains were conducted in a batch mode with bench type experiments. Carbon dioxide fixation rates of the following green microalgae were determined: Chlorella sp. H84, Chlorella sp. A2, Chlorella sorokiniana UTEX 1230, Chlorella vulgaris, and Chlorella pyrenoidosa. C. vulgaris, among other strains of microalgae, showed the highest growth rate (1.17 optical density/5 days). Cultivating conditions for C. vulgaris that produced the highest growth rate were at concentrations of 243 μg CO2/mL, 10 mM ammonia, and 1 mM phosphate, with an initial pH range of 7-8

  7. Biochar, activated carbon, and carbon nanotubes have different effects on fate of 14C-catechol and microbial community in soil

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shan, Jun; Ji, Rong; Yu, Yongjie; Xie, Zubin; Yan, Xiaoyuan

    2015-10-01

    This study investigated the effects of biochar, activated carbon (AC)-, and single-walled and multi-walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs and MWCNTs) in various concentrations (0, 0.2, 20, and 2,000 mg/kg dry soil) on the fate of 14C-catechol and microbial community in soil. The results showed that biochar had no effect on the mineralization of 14C-catechol, whereas AC at all amendment rates and SWCNTs at 2,000 mg/kg significantly reduced mineralization. Particularly, MWCNTs at 0.2 mg/kg significantly stimulated mineralization compared with the control soil. The inhibitory effects of AC and SWCNTs on the mineralization were attributed to the inhibited soil microbial activities and the shifts in microbial communities, as suggested by the reduced microbial biomass C and the separated phylogenetic distance. In contrast, the stimulatory effects of MWCNTs on the mineralization were attributed to the selective stimulation of specific catechol-degraders by MWCNTs at 0.2 mg/kg. Only MWCNTs amendments and AC at 2,000 mg/kg significantly changed the distribution of 14C residues within the fractions of humic substances. Our findings suggest biochar, AC, SWCNTs and MWCNTs have different effects on the fate of 14C-catechol and microbial community in soil.

  8. Granular biochar compared with activated carbon for wastewater treatment and resource recovery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huggins, Tyler M; Haeger, Alexander; Biffinger, Justin C; Ren, Zhiyong Jason

    2016-05-01

    Granular wood-derived biochar (BC) was compared to granular activated carbon (GAC) for the treatment and nutrient recovery of real wastewater in both batch and column studies. Batch adsorption studies showed that BC material had a greater adsorption capacity at the high initial concentrations of total chemical oxygen demand (COD-T) (1200 mg L(-1)), PO4 (18 mg L(-1)), and NH4 (50 mg L(-1)) compared to GAC. Conversely the BC material showed a lower adsorption capacity for all concentrations of dissolved chemical oxygen demand (COD-D) and the lower concentrations of PO4 (5 mg L(-1)) and NH4 (10 mg L(-1)). Packed bed column studies showed similar average COD-T removal rate for BC with 0.27 ± 0.01 kg m(-3) d(-1) and GAC with 0.24 ± 0.01 kg m(-3) d(-1), but BC had nearly twice the average removal rate (0.41 ± 0.08 kg m(-3) d(-3)) compared to GAC during high COD-T concentrations (>500 mg L(-1)). Elemental analysis showed that both materials accumulated phosphorous during wastewater treatment (2.6 ± 0.4 g kg(-1) and 1.9 ± 0.1 g kg(-1) for BC and GAC respectively). They also contained high concentrations of other macronutrients (K, Ca, and Mg) and low concentrations of metals (As, Cd, Cr, Pb, Zn, and Cu). The good performance of BC is attributed to its macroporous structure compared with the microporous GAC. These favorable treatment data for high strength wastewater, coupled with additional life-cycle benefits, helps support the use of BC in packed bed column filters for enhanced wastewater treatment and nutrient recovery. PMID:26954576

  9. Greenhouse gas emissions and soil properties following amendment with manure-derived biochars: Influence of pyrolysis temperature and feedstock type.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Subedi, Raghunath; Taupe, Natalie; Pelissetti, Simone; Petruzzelli, Laura; Bertora, Chiara; Leahy, James J; Grignani, Carlo

    2016-01-15

    Manure-derived biochars can offer a potential option for the stabilization of manure, while mitigating climate change through carbon sequestration and the attenuation of nitrous oxide emission. A laboratory incubation study was conducted to assess the effects of four different manure-derived biochars produced from different feedstocks (poultry litter and swine manure) at different temperatures (400 or 600 °C). A commonly available standard wood chip biochar, produced at a greater temperature (1000 °C), and non-amended treatments were used as references. Two different soils (sandy and silt-loam) were amended with 2% (w/w) biochar on a dry soil weight basis (corresponding to 20 Mg ha(-1)), with the soil moisture being adjusted to 75% saturation level. After a pre-incubation period (21 days), 170 kg N ha(-1) of NH4NO3 fertilizer was added. Measurements of CO2, N2O, CH4 emissions and soil N mineralisation were carried out on different days during the 85 days of incubation. The net C mineralization and N2O emissions from both soils amended with poultry litter biochar at 400 °C were significantly greater than the other biochar treatments. Nitrate availability was greater in both soils in which the manure-derived biochar was used instead of the standard biochar. All of the biochars increased the pH of the silt-loam, sub-acid soil, but failed to improve the cation exchange capacities (CEC) in either soil. Total C and N, P, K and Mg (except Ca) were significantly increased in the manure-derived biochar amended soils, compared to the Control, and were positively correlated to the biochar nutrient contents. This study indicates that the soil application of biochar engenders effects that can vary considerably according to the biochar properties, as determined on the basis of the feedstock types and process conditions. Low-temperature biochar production from manure represents a possible way of producing a soil amendment that can stabilize C while supplying a

  10. Biochar and soil nitrous oxide emissions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carlos Francisco Brazão Vieira Alho

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available The objective of this work was to evaluate the effect of biochar application on soil nitrous oxide emissions. The experiment was carried out in pots under greenhouse conditions. Four levels of ground commercial charcoal of 2 mm (biochar were evaluated in a sandy Albaqualf (90% of sand: 0, 3, 6, and 9 Mg ha-1. All treatments received 100 kg ha-1 of N as urea. A cubic effect of biochar levels was observed on the N2O emissions. Biochar doses above 5 Mg ha-1 started to mitigate the emissions in the evaluated soil. However, lower doses promote the emissions.

  11. A preliminary assessment of carbon dioxide mitigation options

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The purpose of this paper is to place the potential needs to control global carbon dioxide emissions in perspective. In order to limit carbon dioxide levels in the earth's atmosphere to no more than twice pre- anthropogenic levels, it will be necessary to limit carbon emissions to approximately 10 gigatons per year by 2050. The implications of such a constraint to the developed countries, developing countries, and international community are assessed. It is clear that international priorities must be established and specific approaches developed in the first quarter of the 21st century to define the necessary, minimum- cost mitigation strategies. Because of the complexity of establishing a meaningful policy approach, imposition of an arbitrary carbon tax is unlikely to provide the constraints necessary to achieve a satisfactory earth atmosphere - carbon dioxide equilibrium state

  12. Evaluation of Sorbed Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAH) on Various Biochars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biochar is the name given to the chemical and/or thermal transformation of biomass feed stocks into a more stable carbon form for purposes of carbon sequestration. Soil has been the focused, but not exclusive, application target for biochar. Biochar additions have resulted in both positive and nega...

  13. Promoting interspecies electron transfer with biochar

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Chen, Shanshan; Rotaru, Amelia-Elena; Shrestha, Pravin Malla;

    2014-01-01

    attached to the biochar, yet not in close contact, suggesting that electrons were likely conducted through the biochar, rather than biological electrical connections. The finding that biochar can stimulate DIET may be an important consideration when amending soils with biochar and can help explain why......Biochar, a charcoal-like product of the incomplete combustion of organic materials, is an increasingly popular soil amendment designed to improve soil fertility. We investigated the possibility that biochar could promote direct interspecies electron transfer (DIET) in a manner similar...... to that previously reported for granular activated carbon (GAC). Although the biochars investigated were 1000 times less conductive than GAC, they stimulated DIET in co-cultures of Geobacter metallireducens with Geobacter sulfurreducens or Methanosarcina barkeri in which ethanol was the electron donor. Cells were...

  14. CARBON DIOXIDE MITIGATION THROUGH CONTROLLED PHOTOSYNTHESIS; FINAL

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This research was undertaken to meet the need for a robust portfolio of carbon management options to ensure continued use of coal in electrical power generation. In response to this need, the Ohio Coal Research Center at Ohio University developed a novel technique to control the emissions of CO(sub 2) from fossil-fired power plants by growing organisms capable of converting CO(sub 2) to complex sugars through the process of photosynthesis. Once harvested, the organisms could be used in the production of fertilizer, as a biomass fuel, or fermented to produce alcohols. In this work, a mesophilic organism, Nostoc 86-3, was examined with respect to the use of thermophilic algae to recycle CO(sub 2) from scrubbed stack gases. The organisms were grown on stationary surfaces to facilitate algal stability and promote light distribution. The testing done throughout the year examined properties of CO(sub 2) concentration, temperature, light intensity, and light duration on process viability and the growth of the Nostoc. The results indicate that the Nostoc species is suitable only in a temperature range below 125 F, which may be practical given flue gas cooling. Further, results indicate that high lighting levels are not suitable for this organism, as bleaching occurs and growth rates are inhibited. Similarly, the organisms do not respond well to extended lighting durations, requiring a significant (greater than eight hour) dark cycle on a consistent basis. Other results indicate a relative insensitivity to CO(sub 2) levels between 7-12% and CO levels as high as 800 ppm. Other significant results alluded to previously, relate to the development of the overall process. Two processes developed during the year offer tremendous potential to enhance process viability. First, integration of solar collection and distribution technology from Oak Ridge laboratories could provide a significant space savings and enhanced use of solar energy. Second, the use of translating slug flow

  15. CARBON DIOXIDE MITIGATION THROUGH CONTROLLED PHOTOSYNTHESIS

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Unknown

    2000-10-01

    This research was undertaken to meet the need for a robust portfolio of carbon management options to ensure continued use of coal in electrical power generation. In response to this need, the Ohio Coal Research Center at Ohio University developed a novel technique to control the emissions of CO{sub 2} from fossil-fired power plants by growing organisms capable of converting CO{sub 2} to complex sugars through the process of photosynthesis. Once harvested, the organisms could be used in the production of fertilizer, as a biomass fuel, or fermented to produce alcohols. In this work, a mesophilic organism, Nostoc 86-3, was examined with respect to the use of thermophilic algae to recycle CO{sub 2} from scrubbed stack gases. The organisms were grown on stationary surfaces to facilitate algal stability and promote light distribution. The testing done throughout the year examined properties of CO{sub 2} concentration, temperature, light intensity, and light duration on process viability and the growth of the Nostoc. The results indicate that the Nostoc species is suitable only in a temperature range below 125 F, which may be practical given flue gas cooling. Further, results indicate that high lighting levels are not suitable for this organism, as bleaching occurs and growth rates are inhibited. Similarly, the organisms do not respond well to extended lighting durations, requiring a significant (greater than eight hour) dark cycle on a consistent basis. Other results indicate a relative insensitivity to CO{sub 2} levels between 7-12% and CO levels as high as 800 ppm. Other significant results alluded to previously, relate to the development of the overall process. Two processes developed during the year offer tremendous potential to enhance process viability. First, integration of solar collection and distribution technology from Oak Ridge laboratories could provide a significant space savings and enhanced use of solar energy. Second, the use of translating slug flow

  16. Biochar Effect on Maize Yield and Soil Characteristics in Five Conservation Farming Sites in Zambia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alfred Obia

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available Biochar addition to agricultural soils can improve soil fertility, with the added bonus of climate change mitigation through carbon sequestration. Conservation farming (CF is precision farming, often combining minimum tillage, crop rotation and residue retention. In the present farmer-led field trials carried out in Zambia, the use of a low dosage biochar combined with CF minimum tillage was tested as a way to increase crop yields. Using CF minimum tillage allows the biochar to be applied to the area where most of the plant roots are present and mirrors the fertilizer application in CF practices. The CF practice used comprised manually hoe-dug planting 10-L sized basins, where 10%–12% of the land was tilled. Pilot trials were performed with maize cob biochar and wood biochar on five soils with variable physical/chemical characteristics. At a dosage as low as 4 tons/ha, both biochars had a strong positive effect on maize yields in the coarse white aeolian sand of Kaoma, West-Zambia, with yields of 444% ± 114% (p = 0.06 and 352% ± 139% (p = 0.1 of the fertilized reference plots for maize and wood biochar, respectively. Thus for sandy acidic soils, CF and biochar amendment can be a promising combination for increasing harvest yield. Moderate but non-significant effects on yields were observed for maize and wood biochar in a red sandy clay loam ultisol east of Lusaka, central Zambia (University of Zambia, UNZA, site with growth of 142% ± 42% (p > 0.2 and 131% ± 62% (p > 0.2 of fertilized reference plots, respectively. For three other soils (acidic and neutral clay loams and silty clay with variable cation exchange capacity, CEC, no significant effects on maize yields were observed (p > 0.2. In laboratory trials, 5% of the two biochars were added to the soil samples in order to study the effect of the biochar on physical and chemical soil characteristics. The large increase in crop yield in Kaoma soil was tentatively explained by a combination

  17. Preparation of ultrafine magnetic biochar and activated carbon for pharmaceutical adsorption and subsequent degradation by ball milling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shan, Danna; Deng, Shubo; Zhao, Tianning; Wang, Bin; Wang, Yujue; Huang, Jun; Yu, Gang; Winglee, Judy; Wiesner, Mark R

    2016-03-15

    Ball milling was used to prepare two ultrafine magnetic biochar/Fe3O4 and activated carbon (AC)/Fe3O4 hybrid materials targeted for use in pharmaceutical removal by adsorption and mechanochemical degradation of pharmaceutical compounds. Both hybrid adsorbents prepared after 2h milling exhibited high removal of carbamazepine (CBZ), and were easily separated magnetically. These adsorbents exhibited fast adsorption of CBZ and tetracycline (TC) in the initial 1h. The biochar/Fe3O4 had a maximum adsorption capacity of 62.7mg/g for CBZ and 94.2mg/g for TC, while values obtained for AC/Fe3O4 were 135.1mg/g for CBZ and 45.3mg/g for TC respectively when data were fitted using the Langmuir expression. Solution pH values slightly affected the sorption of TC on the adsorbents, while CBZ sorption was almost pH-independent. The spent adsorbents with adsorbed CBZ and TC were milled to degrade the adsorbed pollutants. The adsorbed TC itself was over 97% degraded after 3h of milling, while about half of adsorbed CBZ were remained. The addition of quartz sand was found to improve the mechanochemical degradation of CBZ on biochar/Fe3O4, and its degradation percent was up to 98.4% at the dose of 0.3g quarts sand/g adsorbent. This research provided an easy method to prepare ultrafine magnetic adsorbents for the effective removal of typical pharmaceuticals from water or wastewater and degrade them using ball milling. PMID:26685062

  18. Impacts of biochar concentration and particle size on hydraulic conductivity and DOC leaching of biochar-sand mixtures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Zuolin; Dugan, Brandon; Masiello, Caroline A.; Barnes, Rebecca T.; Gallagher, Morgan E.; Gonnermann, Helge

    2016-02-01

    The amendment of soil with biochar can sequester carbon and alter hydrologic properties by changing physical and chemical characteristics of soil. To understand the effect of biochar amendment on soil hydrology, we measured the hydraulic conductivity (K) of biochar-sand mixtures as well as dissolved organic carbon (DOC) in leachate. Specifically, we assessed the effects of biochar concentration and particle size on K and amount of DOC in the soil leachate. To better understand how physical properties influenced K, we also measured the skeletal density of biochars and sand, and the bulk density, the water saturation, and the porosity of biochar-sand mixtures. Our model soil was sand (0.251-0.853 mm) with biochar rates from 2 to 10 wt% (g biochar/g total soil × 100%). As biochar (biochar particle size was equal to, greater than, and less than particle size of sand, we found that biochar in different particle sizes have different effects on K. For a 2 wt% biochar rate, K decreased by 72 ± 2% when biochar particles were finer than sand particles, and decreased by 15 ± 2% when biochar particles were coarser than sand particles. When biochar and sand particle size were comparable, we observed no significant effect on K. We propose that the decrease of K through the addition of fine biochar was because finer biochar particles filled spaces between sand particles, which increased tortuosity and reduced pore throat size of the mixture. The decrease of K associated with coarser biochar was caused by the bimodal particle size distribution, resulting in more compact packing and increased tortuosity. The loss of biochar C as DOC was related to both biochar rate and particle size. The cumulative DOC loss was 1350% higher from 10 wt% biochar compared to pure sand. This large increase reflected the very small DOC yield from pure sand. In addition, DOC in the leachate decreased as biochar particle size increased. For all treatments, the fraction of carbon lost as DOC ranged from

  19. Sustainable Biofuel Contributions to Carbon Mitigation and Energy Independence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Phillip Steele

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available The growing interest in US biofuels has been motivated by two primary national policy goals, (1 to reduce carbon emissions and (2 to achieve energy independence. However, the current low cost of fossil fuels is a key barrier to investments in woody biofuel production capacity. The effectiveness of wood derived biofuels must consider not only the feedstock competition with low cost fossil fuels but also the wide range of wood products uses that displace different fossil intensive products. Alternative uses of wood result in substantially different unit processes and carbon impacts over product life cycles. We developed life cycle data for new bioprocessing and feedstock collection models in order to make life cycle comparisons of effectiveness when biofuels displace gasoline and wood products displace fossil intensive building materials. Wood products and biofuels can be joint products from the same forestland. Substantial differences in effectiveness measures are revealed as well as difficulties in valuing tradeoffs between carbon mitigation and energy independence.

  20. Mitigating wildfire carbon loss in managed northern peatlands through restoration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Granath, Gustaf; Moore, Paul A.; Lukenbach, Maxwell C.; Waddington, James M.

    2016-01-01

    Northern peatlands can emit large amounts of carbon and harmful smoke pollution during a wildfire. Of particular concern are drained and mined peatlands, where management practices destabilize an array of ecohydrological feedbacks, moss traits and peat properties that moderate water and carbon losses in natural peatlands. Our results demonstrate that drained and mined peatlands in Canada and northern Europe can experience catastrophic deep burns (>200 t C ha−1 emitted) under current weather conditions. Furthermore, climate change will cause greater water losses in these peatlands and subject even deeper peat layers to wildfire combustion. However, the rewetting of drained peatlands and the restoration of mined peatlands can effectively lower the risk of these deep burns, especially if a new peat moss layer successfully establishes and raises peat moisture content. We argue that restoration efforts are a necessary measure to mitigate the risk of carbon loss in managed peatlands under climate change. PMID:27346604

  1. Mitigating wildfire carbon loss in managed northern peatlands through restoration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Granath, Gustaf; Lukenbach, Max; Moore, Paul; Waddington, James

    2015-04-01

    Wildfire frequency and severity are expected to increase in forested temperate and boreal ecosystems. Recent research indicates that northern peatlands are no exceptions to these risks and may be particularly vulnerable. These ecosystems represent a major component of the global carbon cycle and serve as contemporary and long-term net carbon sink. However, severe, deep burning, fires on these organic soils may not only compromise long-term carbon storage by releasing large amounts of carbon but also impose a real threat to human health and economies through smoke pollution and large costs in fire suppression, respectively. As research in tropical peatlands has revealed, these risks are likely enhanced when northern peatlands are drained and/or mined. Here we examine whether peatland restoration (re-wetting) practices can mitigate the risk of deep burns (>20 cm) and provide management recommendations. We synthesize the effects of drainage on peat moisture content and show how drainage and mining can weaken ecohydrological feedbacks in peatlands, making drained peatlands vulnerable to deep burns and carbon loss. We use bulk density and moisture data from burned, unburned and restored peatlands to evaluate the risk of deep burns under various conditions (differences in peat properties, extent of water table drop) using a new peat smouldering model. Climate change scenarios are shown to explore future risks of deep peat burning in extensively drained areas such as northern Europe. Combining modeling and experimental data we conclude that restoration can successfully lower the risk of deep burns if, for example, a new peat moss layer is established which will ensure a higher moisture content. Considering the large areas of drained and mined peatlands in the northern hemisphere, we will argue that restoration efforts are important to mitigate deep burns and carbon loss in peatlands.

  2. Carbon allocation, sequestration and carbon dioxide mitigation under plantation forests of north western Himalaya, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bandana Devi

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available The organic carbon and soils of the world comprise bulk of the terrestrial carbon and serve as a major sink and source of atmospheric carbon. Increasing atmospheric concentrations of green house gases may be mitigated by increasing carbon sequestration in vegetation and soil. The study attempted to estimate biomass production and carbon sequestration potential of different plantation ecosystems in north western Himalaya, India. Biomass, carbon density of biomass, soil, detritus, carbon sequestration and CO2 mitigation potential were studied under different plantation forest ecosystems comprising of eight different tree species: Quercus leucotrichophora, Pinus roxburghii, Acacia catechu, Acacia mollissima, Albizia procera, Alnusnitida, Eucalyptus tereticornis and Ulmus villosa. Above (185.57±48.99tha-1 and below ground (42.47±10.38 tha-1 biomass was maximum in Ulmus villosa. The vegetation carbon density was maxium in Albizia procera(118.37±1.49 tha-1 and minimum (36.50±9.87 tha-1 in Acacia catechu. Soil carbon density was maximum (219.86±10.34 tha-1 in Alnus nitida, and minimum (170.83±20.60 tha-1 in Pinus roxburghii. Detritus was higher in Pinus roxburghii (6.79±2.0 tha-1. Carbon sequestration (7.91±3.4 tha-1 and CO2 mitigation potential (29.09±12.78 tha-1 was maximum in Ulmus villosa. Pearson correlation matrix revealed significant positive relationship of ecosystem carbon with plantation biomass, soil carbon and CO2 mitigation potential. With the emerging threat of climate change, such assessment of forest and soil carbon inventory would allow to devise best land management and policy decisions for sustainable management of fragile hilly ecosystem.

  3. Carbon allocation, sequestration and carbon dioxide mitigation under plantation forests of north western Himalaya, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bandana Devi

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available The organic carbon and soils of the world comprise bulk of the terrestrial carbon and serve as amajorsink and source of atmospheric carbon. Increasing atmospheric concentrations of green house gases may be mitigated by increasing carbon sequestration in vegetation and soil. The study attempted to estimate biomass production and carbon sequestration potential of different plantation ecosystems in north western Himalaya, India. Biomass, carbon density of biomass, soil, detritus, carbon sequestration and CO2 mitigation potential were studied underdifferent plantation forest ecosystems comprising of eight different tree species viz. Quercus leucotrichophora, Pinus roxburghii, Acacia catechu, Acacia mollissima, Albizia procera, Alnus nitida, Eucalyptus tereticornis and Ulmus villosa. Above (185.57 ą 48.99 tha-1 and below ground (42.47 ą 10.38 tha-1 biomass was maximum in Ulmus villosa. The vegetation carbon density was maxium in Albizia procera (118.37 ą 1.49 tha-1 and minimum (36.50 ą 9.87 tha-1 in Acacia catechu. Soil carbon density was maximum (219.86ą 10.34 tha-1 in Alnus nitida, and minimum (170.83ą 20.60 tha-1in Pinus roxburghii. Detritus was higher in Pinus roxburghii (6.79 ą 2.0 tha-1. Carbon sequestration (7.91ą 3.4 tha-1 and CO2 mitigation potential (29.09 ą 12.78 tha-1 was maximum in Ulmus villosa. Pearson correlation matrix revealed significant positive relationship of ecosystem carbon with plantation biomass, soil carbon and CO2 mitigation potential. With the emerging threat of climate change, such assessment of forest and soil carbon inventory would allow to devise best land management and policy decisions forsustainable management of fragile hilly ecosystem. 

  4. Crop residue decomposition in Minnesota biochar-amended plots

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biochar, a black carbon substance, can be a beneficial soil amendment to improve soil properties and sequester C. Positive and negative priming effects on soil organic matter (SOM) are as wide ranging as the feedstocks and pyrolysis platforms used to create biochar. Impacts of biochar application on...

  5. Plant development effects of biochars from different raw materials

    OpenAIRE

    Cely Parra, Paola Andrea; Mendez Lazaro, Ana M.; Paz Ferreiro, Jorge; Gasco Guerrero, Gabriel

    2015-01-01

    Biochar can provide multiple benefits in the ecosystem. However, the presence of phytotoxic compounds in some biochars is an important concern that needs to be addressed and that depends on the raw material and the pyrolysis conditions used in biochar production. For example, sewage sludge biochars can have elevated heavy metal con- tents as they were present in the feedstock and were enriched during pyrolysis. Also during carbonization, some phytotoxic compounds such as polycyclic aromatic h...

  6. H/C atomic ratio as a smart linkage between pyrolytic temperatures, aromatic clusters and sorption properties of biochars derived from diverse precursory materials

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xiao, Xin; Chen, Zaiming; Chen, Baoliang

    2016-03-01

    Biochar is increasingly gaining attention due to multifunctional roles in soil amelioration, pollution mitigation and carbon sequestration. It is a significant challenge to compare the reported results from world-wide labs regarding the structure and sorption of biochars derived from various precursors under different pyrolytic conditions due to a lack of a simple linkage. By combining the published works on various biochars, we established a quantitative relationship between H/C atomic ratio and pyrolytic temperature (T), aromatic structure, and sorption properties for naphthalene and phenanthrene. A reverse sigmoid shape between T and the H/C ratio was observed, which was independent of the precursors of biochars, including the ash contents. Linear correlations of Freundlich parameters (N, log Kf) and sorption amount (log Qe, log QA) with H/C ratios were found. A rectangle-like model was proposed to predict the aromatic cluster sizes of biochars from their H/C ratios, and then a good structure-sorption relationship was derived. These quantitative relationships indicate that the H/C atomic ratio is a universal linkage to predict pyrolytic temperatures, aromatic cluster sizes, and sorption characteristics. This study would guide the global study of biochars toward being comparable, and then the development of the structure-sorption relationships will benefit the structural design and environmental application of biochars.

  7. Environmental Responses to Carbon Mitigation through Geological Storage

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cunningham, Alfred; Bromenshenk, Jerry

    2013-08-30

    In summary, this DOE EPSCoR project is contributing to the study of carbon mitigation through geological storage. Both deep and shallow subsurface research needs are being addressed through research directed at improved understanding of environmental responses associated with large scale injection of CO{sub 2} into geologic formations. The research plan has two interrelated research objectives.  Objective 1: Determine the influence of CO{sub 2}-related injection of fluids on pore structure, material properties, and microbial activity in rock cores from potential geological carbon sequestration sites.  Objective 2: Determine the Effects of CO{sub 2} leakage on shallow subsurface ecosystems (microbial and plant) using field experiments from an outdoor field testing facility.

  8. Environmental Responses to Carbon Mitigation through Geological Storage

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cunningham, Alfred; Bromenshenk, Jerry

    2013-08-30

    In summary, this DOE EPSCoR project is contributing to the study of carbon mitigation through geological storage. Both deep and shallow subsurface research needs are being addressed through research directed at improved understanding of environmental responses associated with large scale injection of CO{sub 2} into geologic formations. The research plan has two interrelated research objectives. Objective 1: Determine the influence of CO{sub 2}-related injection of fluids on pore structure, material properties, and microbial activity in rock cores from potential geological carbon sequestration sites. Objective 2: Determine the Effects of CO{sub 2} leakage on shallow subsurface ecosystems (microbial and plant) using field experiments from an outdoor field testing facility.

  9. Policy Considerations for Using Forests to Mitigate Carbon Dioxide Emissions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sandra Brown

    2001-01-01

    Full Text Available A recent article in Nature, “Soil Fertility Limits Carbon Sequestration by Forest Ecosystems in a CO2-Enriched Atmosphere” by Oren and colleagues[1], has been widely reported on, and often misinterpreted, by the press. The article dampens enthusiasm for accelerated forest growth due to CO2 fertilization and puts in question the fringe theory that the world’s forests can provide an automatic mitigation feedback. We agree that these results increase our understanding of the global carbon cycle. At the same time, their relevance in the context of the international climate change negotiations is much more complicated than portrayed by newspapers such as the New York Times (“Role of Trees in Curbing Greenhouse Gases is Challenged”, May 24, 2001 and the Christian Science Monitor (“Trees No Savior for Global Warming”, May 25, 2001.

  10. Utilisation of biochar and superabsorbent polymers for soil amendment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ekebafe, M O; Ekebafe, L O; Maliki, M

    2013-01-01

    The application of superabsorbent polymers (SAPs) and/or biochars to stressed lands offer solutions to several critical ecological, energy and economic challenges posed by degraded lands due to human activities. These substances are like, 'artificial humus' as they are hydrophilic and contain carboxylic groups (SAPs) which enable them to bind cations and water and sequester carbon from air to reverse global warming (biochars). Several research studies using these substances point to their ability to increase the plant-available water in the soil which enables the plants to survive longer with water shortage, increase soil fertility and agricultural yields, improve soil structure, aeration and water penetration, reduce use of synthetic fertilisers and pesticides, reduce nitrous oxide and methane emission from soil, reduce nitrate and farm chemicals leaching into watersheds, convert green and brown wastes into valuable resources, and reduce the evapotranspiration rate of the plants. SAPs and biochars induce a significantly higher growth rate in plants; they bind heavy metals and mitigate their action on plants as well as mitigate the effects of salinity. This paper reviews what is known about these claims and considers the wider environmental implications of the adoption of these processess. The intention is not just to summarise the current knowledge but also to identify gaps that require further research. PMID:23738439

  11. Effects of biochar on air and water permeability and colloid and phosphorus leaching in soils from a natural calcium carbonate gradient.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumari, K G I D; Moldrup, Per; Paradelo, Marcos; Elsgaard, Lars; Hauggaard-Nielsen, Henrik; de Jonge, Lis W

    2014-03-01

    Application of biochar to agricultural fields to improve soil quality has increased in popularity in recent years, but limited attention is generally paid to existing field conditions before biochar application. This study examined the short-term physicochemical effects of biochar amendment in an agricultural field in Denmark with a calcium carbonate (CaCO) gradient. The field comprised four reference plots and four plots to which biochar (birch wood pyrolyzed at 500°C) was applied at a rate of 20 t ha. Five undisturbed soil columns (10 cm diam., 8 cm height) were sampled from each plot 7 mo after biochar application, and a series of leaching experiments was conducted. The leachate was analyzed for tritium (used as a tracer), colloids, and phosphorus concentration. The results revealed that the presence of CaCO has resulted in marked changes in soil structure (bulk density) and soil chemical properties (e.g., pH and ionic strength), which significantly affected air and water transport and colloid and phosphorous leaching. In denser soils (bulk density, 1.57-1.69 g cm) preferential flow dominated the transport and caused an enhanced movement of air and water, whereas in less dense soils (bulk density, 1.38-1.52 g cm) matrix flow predominated the transport. Compared with reference soils, biochar-amended soils showed slightly lower air permeability and a shorter travel time for 5% of the applied tracer (tritium) to leach through the soil columns. Colloid and phosphorus leaching was observed to be time dependent in soils with low CaCO. Biochar-amended soils showed higher colloid and P release than reference soils. Field-scale variations in total colloid and P leaching reflected clear effects of changes in pH and ionic strength due to the presence of CaCO. There was a linear relationship between colloid and P concentrations in the leachate, suggesting that colloid-facilitated P leaching was the dominant P transport mechanism. PMID:25602666

  12. Biochar alters the resistance and resilience to drought in a tropical soil

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liang, Chenfei; Zhu, Xiaolin; Fu, Shenglei; Méndez, Ana; Gascó, Gabriel; Paz-Ferreiro, Jorge

    2014-05-01

    Soil microbes play a key role in nutrient cycling and carbon sequestration. Global change can alter soil microbial population composition and behavior. Biochar addition has been explored in the last years as a way to mitigate global warming. However, responses of microbial communities to biochar addition in particular in relation to abiotic disturbances are seldom documented. An example of these disturbances, which is predicted to be exacerbated with global warming, is regional drought. It has been known that fungal-based food webs are more resistant to drought than their bacterial counterparts. Our study found that biochar addition can increase the resistance of both the bacterial and fungal networks to drought. Contrary to expected, this result was not related to a change in the dominance of fungal or bacteria. In general, soil amended with biochar was characterized by a faster recovery of soil microbial properties to its basal values. Biochar addition to the soil also suppressed the Birch effect, a result that has not been previously reported.

  13. Biochar alters the resistance and resilience to drought in a tropical soil

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Soil microbes play a key role in nutrient cycling and carbon sequestration. Global change can alter soil microbial population composition and behavior. Biochar addition has been explored in the last years as a way to mitigate global warming. However, responses of microbial communities to biochar addition in particular in relation to abiotic disturbances are seldom documented. An example of these disturbances, which is predicted to be exacerbated with global warming, is regional drought. It has been known that fungal-based food webs are more resistant to drought than their bacterial counterparts. Our study found that biochar addition can increase the resistance of both the bacterial and fungal networks to drought. Contrary to expected, this result was not related to a change in the dominance of fungal or bacteria. In general, soil amended with biochar was characterized by a faster recovery of soil microbial properties to its basal values. Biochar addition to the soil also suppressed the Birch effect, a result that has not been previously reported. (papers)

  14. Denitrification kinetics in biomass and biochar amended soils of different landscape positions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Knowledge of how biochar impacts soil denitrification kinetics as well as the mechanisms of interactions are essential in order to better predict the nitrous oxide (N2O) mitigation capacity of biochar additions. This study had multiple experiments in which the effect of three biochar materials produ...

  15. Climate Change, Carbon Dioxide, and Pest Biology: Monitor, Mitigate, Manage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ziska, Lewis H; McConnell, Laura L

    2016-01-13

    Rising concentrations of atmospheric carbon dioxide ([CO2]) and subsequent changes in climate, including temperature and precipitation extremes, are very likely to alter pest pressures in both managed and unmanaged plant communities. Such changes in pest pressures can be positive (migration from a region) or negative (new introductions), but are likely to be accompanied by significant economic and environmental consequences. Recent studies indicate the range of invasive weeds such as kudzu and insects such as mountain pine beetle have already expanded to more northern regions as temperatures have risen. To reduce these consequences, a better understanding of the link between CO2/climate and pest biology is needed in the context of existing and new strategies for pest management. This paper provides an overview of the probable biological links and the vulnerabilities of existing pest management (especially chemical control) and provides a preliminary synthesis of research needs that could potentially improve the ability to monitor, mitigate, and manage pest impacts. PMID:25671793

  16. Liquefaction of sunflower husks for biochar production / Nontembiso Piyo

    OpenAIRE

    Piyo, Nontembiso

    2014-01-01

    Biochar, a carbon-rich and a potential solid biofuel, is produced during the liquefaction of biomass. Biochar can be combusted for heat and power, gasified, activated for adsorption applications, or applied to soils as a soil amendment and carbon sequestration agent. It is very important and advantageous to produce biochar under controlled conditions so that most of the carbon is converted. The main objective of the study was to investigate the effect of solvents, reaction temp...

  17. Slow Pyrolysis of Cassava Wastes for Biochar Production and Characterization

    OpenAIRE

    Nurhidayah Mohamed Noor; Adilah Shariff; Nurhayati Abdullah

    2012-01-01

    Production of biochar from slow pyrolysis of biomass is a promising carbon negative procedure since it removes the net carbon dioxide in the atmosphere and produce recalcitrant carbon suitable for sequestration in soil. Biochar production can vary significantly with the pyrolysis parameter. This study investigated the impact of temperature and heating rate on the yield and properties of biochar derived from cassava plantations residues which are cassava stem (CS) and cassava rhizome (CR). The...

  18. Slow Pyrolysis of Cassava Wastes for Biochar Production and Characterization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nurhidayah Mohamed Noor

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Production of biochar from slow pyrolysis of biomass is a promising carbon negative procedure since it removes the net carbon dioxide in the atmosphere and produce recalcitrant carbon suitable for sequestration in soil. Biochar production can vary significantly with the pyrolysis parameter. This study investigated the impact of temperature and heating rate on the yield and properties of biochar derived from cassava plantations residues which are cassava stem (CS and cassava rhizome (CR. The pyrolysis temperatures ranged from 400°C to 600°C while the heating rate parameter was varied from 5°C/min to 25°C/min. The experiment was conducted using the lab scale slow pyrolysis system. The increment of temperature and heating rate of slow pyrolysis for both cassava wastes had raised the fixed carbon content of the biochar but decreased the biochar yield. More biochar was produced at lower temperature and lower heating rate. Temperature gave more influence on the biochar yield as compared to the heating rate parameter. The highest biochar yield of more than 35 mf wt. % can be obtained from both CS and CR at 400°C and heating rate of 5°C/min. From the proximate analysis, the results showed that cassava wastes contain high percentage of volatile matter which is more than 80 mf wt. %. Meanwhile, the biochar produced from cassava wastes contain high percentage of fixed carbon which is about 5−8 times higher than their raw samples. This suggested that, it is a good step to convert CS and CR into high carbon biochar via slow pyrolysis process that can substantially yield more biochar, up to 37 mf wt. % in this study. Since the fixed carbon content for both CS and CR biochar produced in any studied parameter were found to be more than 75 mf wt. %, it is suggested that biochar from cassava wastes is suitable for carbon sequestration.

  19. Synthesis, characterization, and environmental implications of graphene-coated biochar.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Ming; Gao, Bin; Yao, Ying; Xue, Yingwen; Inyang, Mandu

    2012-10-01

    Biochar has attracted much research attention recently because of its potential applications in many environmental areas. In this work, the biochar technology was combined with the emerging graphene technology to create a new engineered graphene-coated biochar from cotton wood. The biomass feedstock was first treated with graphene/pyrene-derivative and was then annealed at 600°C in a quartz tube furnace under N(2) environment. Laboratory characterization with different microscopy and spectrometry tools showed that the graphene sheets were "soldered" by the pyrene molecules on the biochar surface during the annealing process. Thermogravimetric analysis showed that the graphene "skin" could improve the thermal stability of the biochar, making the engineered biochar a better carbon sequester for large scale land applications. Batch sorption experimental results indicated that the graphene-coated biochar has excellent adsorption ability of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) with a maximum methylene blue adsorption capacity of 174 mg g(-1), which is more than 20 times higher than that of the unmodified cotton wood biochar and comparable to those of some physically or chemically activated carbons. The enhanced adsorption of methylene blue on the graphene-coated biochar is mainly controlled by the strong π-π interactions between aromatic molecules and the graphene sheets on biochar surface. It is anticipated that this novel, facile, and low-cost method can be expanded to other carbon-rich materials to create engineered biochar for various environmental applications. PMID:22906501

  20. Impacts of biochar concentration and particle size on hydraulic conductivity and DOC leaching of biochar-sand mixtures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Zuolin; Dugan, Brandon; Masiello, Caroline A.; Barnes, Rebecca T.; Gallagher, Morgan E.; Gonnermann, Helge

    2016-02-01

    The amendment of soil with biochar can sequester carbon and alter hydrologic properties by changing physical and chemical characteristics of soil. To understand the effect of biochar amendment on soil hydrology, we measured the hydraulic conductivity (K) of biochar-sand mixtures as well as dissolved organic carbon (DOC) in leachate. Specifically, we assessed the effects of biochar concentration and particle size on K and amount of DOC in the soil leachate. To better understand how physical properties influenced K, we also measured the skeletal density of biochars and sand, and the bulk density, the water saturation, and the porosity of biochar-sand mixtures. Our model soil was sand (0.251-0.853 mm) with biochar rates from 2 to 10 wt% (g biochar/g total soil × 100%). As biochar (experiments suggest that mixing sandy soils with biochar is likely to reduce infiltration rates, holding water near the surface longer with little loss of biochar-derived carbon to groundwater and streams.

  1. Benefits of biochar, compost and biochar-compost for soil quality, maize yield and greenhouse gas emissions in a tropical agricultural soil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Agegnehu, Getachew; Bass, Adrian M; Nelson, Paul N; Bird, Michael I

    2016-02-01

    Soil quality decline represents a significant constraint on the productivity and sustainability of agriculture in the tropics. In this study, the influence of biochar, compost and mixtures of the two on soil fertility, maize yield and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions was investigated in a tropical Ferralsol. The treatments were: 1) control with business as usual fertilizer (F); 2) 10 t ha(-1) biochar (B)+F; 3) 25 t ha(-1) compost (Com)+F; 4) 2.5 t ha(-1) B+25 t ha(-1) Com mixed on site+F; and 5) 25 t ha(-1) co-composted biochar-compost (COMBI)+F. Total aboveground biomass and maize yield were significantly improved relative to the control for all organic amendments, with increases in grain yield between 10 and 29%. Some plant parameters such as leaf chlorophyll were significantly increased by the organic treatments. Significant differences were observed among treatments for the δ(15)N and δ(13)C contents of kernels. Soil physicochemical properties including soil water content (SWC), total soil organic carbon (SOC), total nitrogen (N), available phosphorus (P), nitrate-nitrogen (NO3(-)N), ammonium-nitrogen (NH4(+)-N), exchangeable cations and cation exchange capacity (CEC) were significantly increased by the organic amendments. Maize grain yield was correlated positively with total biomass, leaf chlorophyll, foliar N and P content, SOC and SWC. Emissions of CO2 and N2O were higher from the organic-amended soils than from the fertilizer-only control. However, N2O emissions generally decreased over time for all treatments and emission from the biochar was lower compared to other treatments. Our study concludes that the biochar and biochar-compost-based soil management approaches can improve SOC, soil nutrient status and SWC, and maize yield and may help mitigate greenhouse gas emissions in certain systems. PMID:26590867

  2. Effects of pyrolysis temperature on carbon retention and stability of biochar%热解温度对生物质炭碳保留量及稳定性的影响

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    李飞跃; 汪建飞; 谢越; 李贺; 李孝良; 李粉茹

    2015-01-01

    以核桃壳为生物质炭生产原料,研究热解温度(200~700℃)对生物质炭产率、元素组成、表面官能团分布及其稳定性的影响,以期探明生物质炭基本性质随热解温度变化的规律,为全面了解生物质炭固碳减排效果提供理论参考。结果表明,生物质炭的C含量随温度升高而增加,H和O元素含量却随温度升高而降低。此外,生物质炭的H/C和O/C随着温度增加而减少。生物质炭的产率及碳保留量随着温度的升高而降低。红外光谱分析结果表明,经过热解核桃壳原材料分子中所含的-C-O和O-CH3基团消失,随着热解温度升高,生物质炭中的烷烃基团-CH逐渐减少,芳香化程度逐渐升高。500℃制备生物质炭的K2Cr2O7和KMnO4氧化碳损失量均最低,分别为10.4%和1.66%。相关分析表明,生物质炭的产率、碳保留量及稳定性与热解温度之间均具有显著相关关系。%Turning biomass wastes into biochar under the conditions of low temperature and limited oxygen has recently proven to be a promising approach for long-term carbon sequestration. However, the ultimate carbon sequestration efficiency of biochar depends not only on the feedstock type and production condition, but also on the environmental conditions of soil. In order to reveal the effects of pyrolysis temperature which is main parameter of biochar production condition on carbon retention and biochar stability, and provide more information for further improvement of carbon sequestration potential by turning biomass into biochar, the characteristics of biochar derived from walnut shell under lab condition were analyzed. During a typical slow pyrolysis process, the biochar was heated at a speed of approximately 20℃/minin a Muffle Furnace under limited oxygen and held at 200-700℃ for 2 h; then, biochar yield, elemental composition, functional groups distribution using Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR

  3. Changes in physicochemical characteristics of biochars by hydrothermal and dry carbonization of swine solids and poultry litter

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biomass conversion from agricultural residues is an important resource for renewable energy production. Biochar, the carbonaceous materials derived from biomass conversion, has received a great attention due to its useful applications. Combination of feedstock and thermal processing conditions produ...

  4. Rapid decomposition of traditionally produced biochar in an Oxisol under savannah in Northeastern Brazil

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sagrilo, E.; Francischinelli Rittl, T.; Hoffland, E.; Alves, B.J.R.; Mehl, H.U.; Kuijper, T.W.M.

    2015-01-01

    Soil amendment with biochar has been claimed as an option for carbon (C) sequestration in agricultural soils. Most studies on biochar/soil organic carbon (SOC) interactions were executed under laboratory conditions. Here we tested the stability of biochar produced in a traditional kiln and its effec

  5. Effect of biochar on reclaimed tidal land soil properties and maize (Zea mays L.) response.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Hyuck-Soo; Kim, Kwon-Rae; Yang, Jae E; Ok, Yong Sik; Owens, Gary; Nehls, Thomas; Wessolek, Gerd; Kim, Kye-Hoon

    2016-01-01

    Reclaimed tidal land soil (RTLS) often contains high levels of soluble salts and exchangeable Na that can adversely affect plant growth. The current study examined the effect of biochar on the physicochemical properties of RTLS and subsequently the influence on plant growth performance. Rice hull derived biochar (BC) was applied to RTLS at three different rates (1%, 2%, and 5% (w/w)) and maize (Zea mays L.) subsequently cultivated for 6weeks. While maize was cultivated, 0.1% NaCl solution was supplied from the bottom of the pots to simulate the natural RTLS conditions. Biochar induced changes in soil properties were evaluated by the water stable aggregate (WSA) percentage, exchangeable sodium percentage (ESP), soil organic carbon contents, cation exchange capacity, and exchangeable cations. Plant response was measured by growth rate, nutrient contents, and antioxidant enzyme activity of ascorbate peroxidase (APX) and glutathione reductase (GR). Application of rice hull derived biochar increased the soil organic carbon content and the percentage of WSA by 36-69%, while decreasing the ESP. The highest dry weight maize yield was observed from soil which received 5% BC (w/w), which was attributed to increased stability of water-stable aggregates and elevated levels of phosphate in BC incorporated soils. Moreover, increased potassium, sourced from the BC, induced mitigation of Na uptake by maize and consequently, reduced the impact of salt stress as evidenced by overall declines in the antioxidant activities of APX and GR. PMID:26138709

  6. Governing Carbon Mitigation and Climate Change within Local Councils: A Case Study of Adelaide, South Australia

    OpenAIRE

    Heather Zeppel

    2012-01-01

    There is growing concern about climate change impacts on local government areas. In Australia, the federal carbon tax (from 1 July 2012) will also increase costs for local councils. This paper evaluates what carbon mitigation (i.e. energy, water, and waste management) actions have been implemented by metropolitan Adelaide councils (n=14) and why (or why not). A survey of environmental officers profiled carbon mitigation actions, emissions auditing, and motives for emissions reduction by Adela...

  7. Sugarcane rice residue biochars and their applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, J. J.

    2014-12-01

    Sugarcane production in U.S. involves either pre-harvest burning or after-harvest burning of the residue. Approximately 70-90% of the dry matter of harvested sugarcane trash is lost through open field burning. This practice has caused considerable concerns over air quality and soil sustainability. We propose an alternative conservation approach to convert the sugarcane residue to biochar and used as soil amendment to conserve carbon and potentially improve soil fertility. In this study, fundamental properties of biochars made from sugarcane residue along with rice residues were tested for agronomic and environmental benefits. Sugarcane and rice harvest residues and milling processing byproducts bagasse and rice husk were converted to biochars at different pyrolysis temperatures and characterized. In general, sugarcane leave biochar contained more P, K, Ca and Mg than sugarcane bagasse biochar. Rice straw biochar had more S, K Ca but less P than rice husk biochar. Both biochars had higher available fraction of total P than that of total K. Sugarcane leave biochar converted at 450oC was dominated with various lignin derived phenols as well as non-specific aromatic compounds whereas bagasse biochar was with both lignin derived phenol and poly aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH). Rice straw char was dominated with non-specific aromatic compounds. At 750oC, charred material was dominated with aromatic ethers while losing the aromatic C=C structures. These molecular and surface property differences likely contributed to the difference in water holding capacities observed with these biochars. On the other hand, rice straw biochars produced at different pyrolysis temperatures had no significant effect on rice germination. Soils treated with sugarcane leave/trash biochar significantly enhanced sugarcane growth especially the root length. Treating soil with either sugarcane leave or bagasse char also enhanced soil adsorption capacity of atrazine; a common herbicide used in sugarcane

  8. Nitrogen availability from residues-based biochar at two pyrolisis temperatures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coscione, Aline Renee; Silveira Bibar, Maria Paula; de Andrade, Cristiano Alberto

    2014-05-01

    Biochar has been studied for several applications, such as soil quality improvement, heavy metals remediation and N2O mitigation. Considering the soil quality improvement aspect it is desirable to evaluate if the nitrogen content in biochar samples obtained from several residues used as the biomass sources could be available for plants. Samples of sewage sludge (SS), coffee grounds (CG), chicken manure (CM) and fungi mycelia (FM) were pyrolyzed at two temperatures, 400 and 700 oC (indicated by the number 4 and 7 in this abstract, respectively), in order to obtain the biochar samples. The Kjeldahl nitrogen of biochar was (% m/m): 3.0 (CM4, CG7, FM7 and CG4); 2.0 (CM7 e SS4); 3.4 (FM7); 1.4 (SS7), with organic carbon (potassium dichromate method) ranging from 2.0 to 3.0% for all but CG4 (6%). The C/N ratio of biochar samples was: 9 (CM4, SS4 and CG7); 11 (CM7); 15 (SS7); 7 (FM4 and FM7); 21 (CG4). The eight soil + biochar resulting mixtures, prepared using the equivalent to 60 t/ha of biochar (about 3% w/w), and one additional control treatment (no biochar added) were incubated for 90 days, with four replications of each treatment per time evaluated. Inorganic nitrogen and soil pH measurements were performed for all treatments at 0, 5, 15, 30, 60 and 90 days of incubation. Soil moisture was kept at 40% soil water holding capacity, by weighting, during the experiment. The data was submitted to ANOVA with Tukey's average comparison test (p biochar samples. At the initial incubation time (zero days) no statistical difference was observed among biochar sources or pyrolisis temperatures. After five days of incubation SS4 and CM4 showed significant inorganic nitrogen release compared to all other treatments, behavior repeated at all the following times evaluated. For CM7, FM4 and FM7 maximum nitrogen availability was observed after 15 days, while it occurred after 90 days for SS4. After 90 days, only SS4 and CM4 presented a positive nitrogen balance, reaching 8 and 9 % of

  9. Biochar and manure affect calcareous soil and corn silage nutrient concentrations and uptake.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lentz, R D; Ippolito, J A

    2012-01-01

    Carbon-rich biochar derived from the pyrolysis of biomass can sequester atmospheric CO, mitigate climate change, and potentially increase crop productivity. However, research is needed to confirm the suitability and sustainability of biochar application to different soils. To an irrigated calcareous soil, we applied stockpiled dairy manure (42 Mg ha dry wt) and hardwood-derived biochar (22.4 Mg ha), singly and in combination with manure, along with a control, yielding four treatments. Nitrogen fertilizer was applied when needed (based on preseason soil test N and crop requirements) in all plots and years, with N mineralized from added manure included in this determination. Available soil nutrients (NH-N; NO-N; Olsen P; and diethylenetriaminepentaacetic acid-extractable K, Mg, Na, Cu, Mn, Zn, and Fe), total C (TC), total N (TN), total organic C (TOC), and pH were evaluated annually, and silage corn nutrient concentration, yield, and uptake were measured over two growing seasons. Biochar treatment resulted in a 1.5-fold increase in available soil Mn and a 1.4-fold increase in TC and TOC, whereas manure produced a 1.2- to 1.7-fold increase in available nutrients (except Fe), compared with controls. In 2009 biochar increased corn silage B concentration but produced no yield increase; in 2010 biochar decreased corn silage TN (33%), S (7%) concentrations, and yield (36%) relative to controls. Manure produced a 1.3-fold increase in corn silage Cu, Mn, S, Mg, K, and TN concentrations and yield compared with the control in 2010. The combined biochar-manure effects were not synergistic except in the case of available soil Mn. In these calcareous soils, biochar did not alter pH or availability of P and cations, as is typically observed for acidic soils. If the second year results are representative, they suggest that biochar applications to calcareous soils may lead to reduced N availability, requiring additional soil N inputs to maintain yield targets. PMID:22751045

  10. Biochar: an effective amendment for remediating contaminated soil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kong, Lu-Lu; Liu, Wei-Tao; Zhou, Qi-Xing

    2014-01-01

    Biochar is a carbon-rich material derived from incomplete combustion of biomass.Applying biochar as an amendment to treat contaminated soils is receiving increasing attention, and is a promising way to improve soil quality. Heavy metals are persistent and are not environmentally biodegradable. However, they can be stabilized in soil by adding biochar. Moreover, biochar is considered to be a predominant sorptive agent for organic pollutants, having a removal efficiency of about 1 order of magnitude higher than does soil/sediment organic matter or their precursor substances alone.When trying to stabilize organic and inorganic pollutants in soil, several features of biochar' s sorption capacity should be considered, viz., the nature of the pollutants to be remediated, how the biochar is prepared, and the complexity of the soil systemin which biochar may be used. In addition, a significant portion of the biochar or some of its components that are used to remediate soils do change over time through abiotic oxidation and microbial decomposition. This change process is commonly referred to as "aging:" Biochar "aging" in nature is inevitable, and aged biochar exhibits an effect that is totally different than non-aged biochar on stabilizing heavy metals and organic contaminants in soils.Studies that have been performed to date on the use of biochar to remediate contaminated soil are insufficient to allow its use for wide-scale field application.Therefore, considerable new data are necessary to expand both our understanding of how biochar performs in the field, and where it can be best used in the future for soil remediation. For example, how biochar and soil biota (microbial and faunal communities)interact in soils is still poorly understood. Moreover, studies are needed on how to best remove new species of heavy metals, and on how biochar aging affects sorption capacity are also needed. PMID:24162093

  11. Biochar organic fertilizers from natural resources as substitute for mineral fertilizers

    OpenAIRE

    Glaser, Bruno; Wiedner, Katja; Seelig, Sebastian; Schmidt, Hans-Peter; Gerber, Helmut

    2015-01-01

    International audience Biochars are new, carbon-rich materials that could sequester carbon in soils improve soil properties and agronomic performance, inspired by investigations of Terra Preta in Amazonia. However, recent studies showed contrasting performance of biochar. In most studies, only pure biochar was used in tropical environments. Actually, there is little knowledge on the performance of biochar in combination with fertilizers under temperate climate. Therefore, we conducted an e...

  12. Removing Gaseous NH3 Using Biochar as an Adsorbent

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kyoung S. Ro

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Ammonia is a major fugitive gas emitted from livestock operations and fertilization production. This study tested the potential of various biochars in removing gaseous ammonia via adsorption processes. Gaseous ammonia adsorption capacities of various biochars made from wood shaving and chicken litter with different thermal conditions and activation techniques were determined using laboratory adsorption column tests. Ammonia adsorption capacities of non-activated biochars ranged from 0.15 to 5.09 mg·N/g, which were comparable to that of other commercial activated carbon and natural zeolite. There were no significant differences in ammonia adsorption capacities of steam activated and non-activated biochars even if the surface areas of the steam activated biochars were about two orders of magnitude greater than that of non-activated biochars. In contrast, phosphoric acid activation greatly increased the biochar ammonia adsorption capacity. This suggests that the surface area of biochar did not readily control gaseous NH3 adsorption. Ammonia adsorption capacities were more or less linearly increased with acidic oxygen surface groups of non-activated and steam-activated biochars. Phosphoric acid bound to the acid activated biochars is suspected to contribute to the exceptionally high ammonia adsorption capacity. The sorption capacities of virgin and water-washed biochar samples were not different, suggesting the potential to regenerate spent biochar simply with water instead of energy- and capital-intensive steam. The results of this study suggest that non-activated biochars can successfully replace commercial activated carbon in removing gaseous ammonia and the removal efficiency will greatly increase if the biochars are activated with phosphoric acid.

  13. Methylene Blue Removal by Biochars from Food Industry By-Products

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orfanos, Alexis; Manariotis, Ioannis D.; Karapanagioti, Hrissi K.

    2016-04-01

    Biomass produced by food industries is mainly used as feedstock or in composting. In recent years, considerable research effort has been focused on the production of biochar under oxygen-limited conditions from carbon-rich biomass, such as food industry by-products, as mitigation measure for global warming once it is used as a soil amendment. The present study presents the findings of an experimental work, which investigated the use of different biochars for the removal of methylene blue (MB) from aqueous solutions. Biochars were produced from malt spent rootlets (MSR) from brewering and espresso coffee residue from coffee shops. MSR was pyrolyzed at temperatures of 300, 400, 500, 750, 850, and 900oC and the coffee residue was pyrolyzed at 850oC. The charring process was performed under limited-oxygen conditions using specialized containers. The surface area and the porosity of the materials were determined. Batch experiments were conducted in order to evaluate the sorption capacity of the above materials, and samples were agitated for 24 h at 25oC, at an optimum pH of about 7. Kinetic analysis was conducted over a period of 24 h, and isotherm studies were also constructed. The surface area of biochar produced from MSR and the MB removal were considerably increased at pyrolysis temperatures higher than 500oC. At 850oC, the maximum surface area value (300 m2 g-1) was observed, and the MB sorption capacity was 99 mg g-1. Based on the kinetic experimental data, sorption capacities at 120 min were over 58% of their equilibrium values for the biochars used. The maximum MB sorption capacity, based on the isotherm data, was 130 mg g-1, for the two biochars employed.

  14. Biochar Treatment Resulted in a Combined Effect on Soybean Growth Promotion and a Shift in Plant Growth Promoting Rhizobacteria

    OpenAIRE

    EGAMBERDIEVA, Dilfuza; Wirth, Stephan; Behrendt, Undine; Abd_Allah, Elsayed F.; Berg, Gabriele

    2016-01-01

    The application of biochar to soil is considered to have the potential for long-term soil carbon sequestration, as well as for improving plant growth and suppressing soil pathogens. In our study we evaluated the effect of biochar on the plant growth of soybeans, as well as on the community composition of root-associated bacteria with plant growth promoting traits. Two types of biochar, namely, maize biochar (MBC), wood biochar (WBC), and hydrochar (HTC) were used for pot experiments to monito...

  15. Developing Carbon Sequestration Forestry for Mitigating Climate Change: Practice and Management of Carbon Sequestration Forestry in China

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2010-01-01

    By elaborating the functions and effects of forestry in mitigating climate change, introducing the concepts and significance of forest carbon sink, forestry carbon sequestration, and carbon sequestration forestry, and summarizing the practices of carbon sequestration forestry in China, the paper came up with the outline for strengthening the management of carbon sequestration forestry, i.e. implementing the Climate Change Forestry Action Plan, reinforcing the accounting and monitoring of national forest car...

  16. Exploring Opportunities for Promoting Synergies between Climate Change Adaptation and Mitigation in Forest Carbon Initiatives

    OpenAIRE

    Eugene L. Chia; Kalame Fobissie; Markku Kanninen

    2016-01-01

    There is growing interest in designing and implementing climate change mitigation and adaptation (M + A) in synergy in the forest and land use sectors. However, there is limited knowledge on how the planning and promotion of synergies between M + A can be operationalized in the current efforts to mitigate climate change through forest carbon. This paper contributes to fill this knowledge gap by exploring ways of planning and promoting M + A synergy outcomes in forest carbon initiatives. It ex...

  17. Biochar effect on the mineralization of soil organic matter

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sander Bruun

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available The objective of this work was to verify whether the addition of biochar to the soil affects the degradation of litter and of soil organic matter (SOM. In order to investigate the effect of biochar on the mineralization of barley straw, soil was incubated with 14C-labelled barley straw with or without unlabelled biochar. To investigate the effect of straw on the mineralization of biochar, soil was incubated with 14C-labelled biochar with or without straw. In addition, to investigate the effect of biochar on old SOM, a soil labelled by applying labelled straw 40 years ago was incubated with different levels of biochar. All experiments had a control treatment, without any soil amendment. The effect of biochar on the straw mineralization was small and nonsignificant. Without biochar, 48±0.2% of the straw carbon was mineralized within the 451 days of the experiment. In comparison, 45±1.6% of C was mineralized after biochar addition of 1.5 g kg-1. In the SOM-labelled soil, the organic matter mineralized more slowly with the increasing doses of biochar. Biochar addition at 7.7 g kg-1 reduced SOM mineralization from 6.6 to 6.3%, during the experimental period. The addition of 15.5 g kg-1 of biochar reduced the mineralized SOM to 5.7%. There is no evidence of increased degradation of either litter or SOM due to biochar addition; consequently, there is no evidence of decreased stability of SOM.

  18. Effects of biochar prepared from organic waste on soil properties

    OpenAIRE

    Gasco Guerrero, Gabriel; Cely Parra, Paola Andrea; Tarquis Alfonso, Ana Maria; Paz Ferreiro, Jorge; Saa Requejo, Antonio; Méndez, Ana

    2014-01-01

    Biochar is a carbon-rich solid obtained by the thermal decomposition of organic matter under a limited supply of oxygen and at relatively low temperatures. Biochar can be prepared from the pyrolysis of different organic feed- stocks, such as wood and biomass crops, agricultural by-products, different types of waste or paper industry waste materials . The pyrolysis procedure of waste, i.e. sewage sludge, has mainly two advantages, firstly, it removes pathogens from waste and, secondly, biochar...

  19. Biochar reduces DOC but not NO3- leaching in relation to vinasse application in a tropical sugarcane soil

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eykelbosh, A. J.; Johnson, M. S.; Santos de Queiroz, E.; Couto, E. G.

    2013-12-01

    Objectives: Sugarcane cultivation for bioethanol production is associated with impacts on water quality, particularly those related to the application of vinasse, a corrosive, nutrient-dense effluent with high eutrophication potential (Martinelli et al. 2008 Ecol. Appl. 18:885-98). Vinasse is typically disposed of via soil application, which also recaptures waste nutrients and water (i.e., fertigation). However, vinasse constituents, including dissolved organic carbon (DOC) and nitrate (NO3-), are highly mobile in the soil and their presence can be observed at the catchment scale after vinasse application (Ometo et al. 2000 Freshwater Biol. 44:327-37). Biochar (charcoal produced from waste biomass via pyrolysis) has been investigated as a soil amendment to improve water and nutrient retention. Here, we evaluate the potential for biochar to mitigate carbon and nutrient leaching in a cultivated Oxisol in relation to vinasse application. Methods: Biochar was produced from dried filtercake (a solid organic waste obtained from cane juice filtration) via slow pyrolysis at 550°C for 3 h under N2. Sieved soil was packed into 12 PVC tubes (10 cm diameter, 50 cm tall) representing four treatments: soil alone as a control (S), soil with vinasse (S+V), soil with vinasse and 5% (w/w) biochar (S+V+B), and soil with 5% biochar (S+B). Columns were flushed with water, treated with 250 mL of water or vinasse (32 mm, equivalent to a moderate field application rate of ~300 m3 ha-1), and flushed again with water. Samples collected via vacuum filtration were analyzed for pH, ORP, conductivity and examined via UV-Vis and fluorescence spectroscopy. Soil samples were collected before and after leaching for residual soil nutrient analysis. Results: Biochar strongly attenuated the leaching of vinasse-derived DOC (p < 0.001). This was also related to a change in DOC composition as determined by fluorescence spectroscopy. Vinasse application greatly increased total NO3- flux (p < 0

  20. Effects of biochar prepared from organic waste on soil properties

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gascó, Gabriel; Cely, Paola; María Tarquis, Ana; Paz-Ferreiro, Jorge; Saa-Requejo, Antonio; María Méndez, Ana

    2014-05-01

    Biochar is a carbon-rich solid obtained by the thermal decomposition of organic matter under a limited supply of oxygen and at relatively low temperatures. Biochar can be prepared from the pyrolysis of different organic feedstocks, such as wood and biomass crops, agricultural by-products, different types of waste or paper industry waste materials . The pyrolysis procedure of waste, i.e. sewage sludge, has mainly two advantages, firstly, it removes pathogens from waste and, secondly, biochar can reduce the leaching of heavy metals present in raw sewage sludge. This trend of the use of waste material as feedstocks to the preparation of biochar is increasing in the last years due to industrial development and economic growth imply an increase in waste generation. The application of biochar may have positive effects on soil physical properties as water holding capacity and structure or on soil biological activity and soil quality. Also, biochar can be used to remove water pollutants and can be used in multiple ways in soil remediation due to its adsorption of pesticides or metals. Also, biochar contribute to carbon sequestration due to carbon stability of biochar materials. The objective of this presentation is to review the positive effects of the biochar prepared from organic waste on soil properties.

  1. Potential for carbon sequestration and mitigation of climate change by irrigation of grasslands

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Highlights: • A generic method for climate change mitigation feasibility of PVWPS is developed. • Restoration of degraded lands in China has large climate change mitigation potential. • PV produces excess electricity included in the mitigation potential of the system. • The benefit is higher than if the PV were to produce electricity for the grid only. - Abstract: The climate change mitigation potential of irrigation powered by a photovoltaic water pumping system (PVWPS) to restore degraded grasslands has been investigated using the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) 2006 Guidelines for National Greenhouse Gas Inventories for Agriculture, Forestry and Other Land Use. The purpose of this study is to develop a generic and simple method to estimate the climate change mitigation benefit of a PVWPS. The possibility to develop carbon credits for the carbon offset markets has also been studied comparing carbon sequestration in grasslands to other carbon sequestration projects. The soil carbon sequestration following irrigation of the grassland is calculated as an annual increase in the soil organic carbon pool. The PVWPS can also generate an excess of electricity when irrigation is not needed and the emissions reductions due to substitution of grid electricity give additional climate change mitigation potential. The results from this study show that the carbon sequestration and emissions reductions benefits per land area using a PVWPS for irrigating grasslands are comparable to other carbon sequestration options such as switching to no-till practice. Soil carbon in irrigated grasslands is increased with over 60% relative to severely degraded grasslands and if nitrogen fixing species are introduced the increase in soil organic carbon can be almost 80%. Renewable electricity generation by the PVWPS will further increase the mitigation benefit of the system with 70–90%. When applying the methodology developed in this paper to a case in Qinghai, China

  2. Thailand's Low-Carbon Scenario 2050: The AIM/CGE analyses of CO2 mitigation measures

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Climate change and CO2 mitigation have become increasingly important environmental issues. Recently Thailand has proposed policies on GHG mitigation such as Thailand’s Nationally Appropriate Mitigation Action (NAMA), which aims at GHG mitigation in the energy sector. This study used the computable general equilibrium (CGE) model, called “AIM/CGE” model, to analyse GHG mitigation measures under emission trading and carbon capture and storage (CCS) technology in Thailand. Results show that the international free emission trading policy can drive more GHG reduction by decreasing energy supply and demand, and increasing prices of emissions. The CCS technologies would balance emission reduction but they would reduce energy efficiency improvement and renewable energy utilization. In the energy security aspect, the policy options in this study would improve energy security, energy import dependency, and co-benefits of GHG mitigation in forms of improving local air quality. Results are also helpful to GHG mitigation policy in developing countries. -- Highlights: •A Computable General Equilibrium (CGE) model was used to analyze GHG mitigation policies in Thailand. •The CCS and emission trading will increase GHG mitigation in Thailand. •The 30% GHG mitigation target with 50% emission trading will give the best result in GDP. •The share of biomass resource and energy efficiency will decrease with CCS. •The emission trading will play an important role in decreasing fossil consumption and increasing renewable energy utilization

  3. Carbon Emissions Decomposition and Environmental Mitigation Policy Recommendations for Sustainable Development in Shandong Province

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Changjian Wang

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Provincial carbon emissions research is necessary for China to realize emissions reduction targets. Two-level decomposition model based on the Kaya identity was applied to uncover the main driving forces for the energy related carbon emissions in Shandong province from 1995 to 2011, an important energy base in China. Coal consumption is still the biggest contributor to the increased carbon emissions in Shandong. Decomposition results show that the affluence effect is the most important contributors to the carbon emissions increments. The energy intensity effect is the dominant factor in curbing carbon emissions. The emission coefficient effect plays an important negative but relatively minor effect on carbon emissions. Based on the local realities, a series of environment-friendly mitigation policies are raised by fully considering all of these influencing factors. Sustainable mitigation policies will pay more attention to the low-carbon economic development along with the significant energy intensity reduction in Shangdong province.

  4. Effects of Biochar amendments on soil chemistry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mukherjee, A.; Zimmerman, A. R.

    2009-12-01

    Humans have been transforming soil composition, both accidentally and purposefully, for centuries. For example, terra preta soils found in Amazonia that are greatly enriched in organic carbon and phosphorus and have enhanced fertility relative to the surrounding depleted oxisols, seem to have been deliberately created by native pre-Colombian Indians through the addition of combusted biomass, or biochar. Biochar amendment has gained attention recently as a way to enhance soil carbon sequestration while increasing soil fertility. It may also have adsorptive properties that are useful for pollution control. Our research examines the chemical and morphological properties of biochar with the goals of understanding the origin of terra preta, as well as how biochar can best be put to use as a soil amendment. Biochar was produced from a range of parent biomass types (hardwoods, softwoods and grasses) and under a range of combustion conditions (250 to 650 oC, under air and N2). Surface areas, determined by gas sorptometry, ranged from 3 to 394 m2g-1 (for N2) and from 129 to 345 m2g-1 (for CO2) and were found to generally increase with increasing pyrolysis temperature. The pH of the biochars ranged from 1.8 to 4.5, from 6.2 to 8.7, and from 6.2 to 9.2 for the 250, 400, and 650 oC biochars, respectively, and did not vary consistently with parent biomass types. Cation exchange capacity (CEC), determined using K+ exchange, ranged between 5 to 60 cmolc kg-1, higher than most soils, and generally increased with charring temperature. Anion exchange capacity (AEC) was low or undetectable. Lastly, the isoelectric point of the chars, determined using a zeta potential analyzer, ranged from a pH of 1.3 to 1.5, indicating that the biochar surfaces will be predominantly negatively charged in soil solutions. These data are complimentary and show that, when added to soil, biochar, particularly those produced at higher temperatures, would function as a cation exchanger system. The acid

  5. The Application of Biochar in the EU: Challenges and Opportunities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emanuele Lugato

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available Biochar application to agricultural soils is an interesting emerging technology with promising potential for long-term carbon storage, sustainable waste disposal, and soil fertility enhancement. Extensive information exists in the literature on the highly beneficial properties of biochar. Nevertheless, systematic application of biochar on European agricultural soils may have wide ranging policy implications as well as environmental and public health concerns. In this paper we critically review existing scientific evidence from a European policy perspective and identify research gaps for future comprehensive assessments of the policy, environmental, economic, and health implications of the systematic use of biochar in European agricultural soils.

  6. Increasing biomass of winter wheat using sorghum biochars

    OpenAIRE

    Sigua, Gilbert C.; Stone, Kenneth C.; Hunt, Patrick G.; Keri B. Cantrell; Novak, Jeffrey M.

    2015-01-01

    Biochar is a black solid formed by pyrolysis of biomass such as crop residues. Biochar could be used for soil fertilization, carbon sequestration, and improvement of soil structure. Here, we tested the effect of sorghum biochars on winter wheat, with or without supplemental inorganic phosphorus, in a greenhouse. The application rate for sorghum residues and sorghum biochars based on a yield goal of 200 bushels ha−1 was 13 Mg ha−1. Inorganic phosphorus was added at the rate of 40 kg P ha−1. Re...

  7. Governing Carbon Mitigation and Climate Change within Local Councils: A Case Study of Adelaide, South Australia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Heather Zeppel

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available There is growing concern about climate change impacts on local government areas. In Australia, the federal carbon tax (from 1 July 2012 will also increase costs for local councils. This paper evaluates what carbon mitigation (i.e. energy, water, and waste management actions have been implemented by metropolitan Adelaide councils (n=14 and why (or why not. A survey of environmental officers profiled carbon mitigation actions, emissions auditing, and motives for emissions reduction by Adelaide councils. The main reasons for adopting carbon actions were a climate change plan, climate leadership, and cost savings. Internal council governance of climate change actions was also evaluated. A climate governance framework based on adaptive management, communication, and reflective practice (Nursey-Bray 2010 was applied to assess climate mitigation by Adelaide councils.

  8. Nanoscale Interactions between Engineered Nanomaterials and Black Carbon (Biochar) in Soil

    Science.gov (United States)

    An understanding of the interactions between engineered nanomaterials (NMs) and soil constituents, and a comprehension of how these interactions may affect biological uptake and toxicity are currently lacking. Charcoal black carbon is a normal constituent of soils due to fire history, and can be pre...

  9. Impact of activated carbon, biochar and compost on the desorption and mineralization of phenanthrene in soil

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Marchal, Geoffrey; Smith, Kilian E.C.; Rein, Arno;

    2013-01-01

    Sorption of PAHs to carbonaceous soil amendments reduces their dissolved concentrations, limiting toxicity but also potentially biodegradation. Therefore, the maximum abiotic desorption of freshly sorbed phenanthrene (≤5 mg kg−1) was measured in three soils amended with activated carbon (AC...

  10. Adsorption and catalytic hydrolysis of carbaryl and atrazine on pig manure-derived biochars: Impact of structural properties of biochars

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Highlights: ► High ash content biochar can increase solution pH and released metal ions. ► Ash in biochar can combine pesticide through specific interactions. ► Composition and structure of biochar is favor for the hydrolysis of pesticides. -- Abstract: Biochars were produced from pig manure to elucidate the influence of biochars with high ash contents on the fate of pesticides. Adsorption and catalytic hydrolysis of carbaryl and atrazine on original biochars and deashed biochars were investigated. The two pesticides were substantially adsorbed by the biochars, with organic carbon normalized sorption coefficient (Koc) values of 102.65–103.66 L/kg for carbaryl and 101.90–103.57 L/kg for atrazine at Ce of 0.5 mg/L. Hydrophobic effect alone could not explain the sorption, and several other processes including pore-filling and π–π electron donor–acceptor interactions were involved in pesticide adsorption. Adsorption increased greatly on the deashed biochar, indicating that some organic sorption sites in the original biochars were blocked or difficult to access due to their interactions with inorganic moiety. The pesticides were found to hydrolyze faster in the presence of biochars, and in the presence of biochar pyrolyzed at 700 °C, carbaryl and atrazine were decomposed by 71.8% and 27.9% in 12 h, respectively. The elevated solution pH was the main reason for the enhanced hydrolysis; however both the mineral surface and dissolved metal ions released from the biochars were confirmed to catalyze the hydrolysis

  11. Linking Mitigation and Adaptation in Carbon Forestry Projects: Evidence from Belize

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kongsager, Rico; Corbera, Esteve

    2015-01-01

    Committed action to deal with climate change requires reducing greenhouse gas emissions, i.e., mitigation, as well as dealing with its ensuing consequences, i.e., adaptation. To date, most policies and projects have promoted mitigation and adaptation separately, and they have very rarely considered...... linking mitigation and adaptation has not been possible, because the mandate of forest carbon markets does not incorporate adaptation concerns. The projects’ contribution to forest ecosystems’ adaptation, for instance, by reducing human encroachments and by increasing ecosystem connectivity, has been...... and lack of rigorous enforcement. We then conclude that the integration of mitigation and adaptation in Belize’s carbon forestry projects remains a laudable but elusive goal. Consequently, we request climate change donors to refrain from providing support to narrowly designed projects and we urge them...

  12. Biochar Ameliorate Drought and Salt Stress in Plants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Saleem Akhtar, Saqib

    due to its high adsorption capacity; decreasing osmotic stress by enhancing soil moisture content; and releasing mineral nutrients (particularly K+, Ca++, Mg++) into the soil solution - Growth, physiology and yield of plants were positively affected by biochar due to its ability to increase soil...... plant with halophytic plant growth promoting bacteria) approaches. The results showed that: - Biochar mitigated drought stress in plants by enhancing soil moisture availability due to its high porosity and large surface area - Biochar ameliorated salinity stress in plant by a high transient Na+ binding...... moisture content, improve nutrient acquisition and reduce Na+ uptake under drought and salinity stress, respectively - Biochar had long-term positive residual effect on plant growth and performance under salinity stress - Positive responses of biochar on plants could be further enhanced by adopting...

  13. Activation of Cassava Stem Biochar by Physico-Chemical Method for Stimulating Cadmium Removal Efficiency from Aqueous Solution

    OpenAIRE

    Songkrit Prapagdee; Somkiat Piyatiratitivorakul; Amorn Petsom

    2014-01-01

    Removal of Cadmium (Cd) from aqueous solution using biochar was considered a cost effective sorbent. Biochar quality and specification depend on its carbonization processes. In this study, the cassava stem biochars were produced at temperature of 300, 400 and 500 °C with slow pyrolysis technique. The biochar in each carbonization temperature was activated with physico-chemical treatments, pre-activated by 1.63M KOH solution then activated with second pyrolysis as same as first pyrolysis condi...

  14. Investigating biochar as a tool for mine soil remediation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biochar is a cost-effective, carbon negative soil amendment that can lead to improved soil quality. Research has also demonstrated the efficacy of biochar to sorb heavy metals and agricultural chemicals from contaminated soils, thus effectively reducing the potential for metal and chemical contamin...

  15. Essays on the economics of forestry-based carbon mitigation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Benítez-Ponce, P.C.

    2005-01-01

    Keywords:climate change, carbon costs, afforestation, risk, secondary forests, conservation payments, ecosystem services

    This thesis is a collection of articles that deal with the economics of carbon sequestration in forests. It pays

  16. Mitigation of Global Warming with Focus on Personal Carbon Allowances

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    The paper discusses a novel approach to address the carbon challenge by making it personal. Just as commodities like food and petrol are rationed at times of scarcity, carbon, in principle, can also be rationed, say, on a per capita basis. This, of course, raises serious equity issues since prese...

  17. NAMAs and the carbon market. Nationally appropriate mitigation actions of developing countries

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Holm Olsen, K.; Fenhann, J.; Hinostroza, M.

    2009-07-01

    The role of carbon markets in scaling up mitigation actions in developing countries in the post-2012 climate regime is the topic of Perspectives 2009: NAMAs and the Carbon Market - Nationally Appropriate Mitigation Actions of Developing Countries. The eight papers presented explore how mitigation actions in developing countries, in the context of sustainable development, may be supported by technology, finance and capacity development in a measurable, reportable and verifiable manner. Key issues discussed are the pros and cons of market and non-market mechanisms in raising private and public finance, and the appropriate governance structures at the international and national levels. The aim of this publication is to present possible answers to these questions, with a specific focus on the role of existing and emerging carbon markets to finance NAMAs. (LN)

  18. Electricity-generation mix considering energy security and carbon emission mitigation: Case of Korea and Mongolia

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    To compare electricity-generation fuel mixes in two countries with multiple energy policy goals and unique circumstances, we look at three scenarios reflecting the carbon emissions mitigation targets, differences in energy security levels, and electricity-generating costs of each nation. Korea and Mongolia show clear differences in electricity-generation structure related to import dependency, the potential of renewable energy, and threats to energy security. These variations lead to different decisions on the power-generation fuel mix plan. Use of fossil fuel resources in Korea results in carbon dioxide emissions and energy insecurity, while in Mongolia carbon emissions, also from fossil fuels, and energy insecurity are separate concerns as Mongolia domestically operates coal-fired power plants and imports electricity. Policies targeting two objectives, carbon emissions mitigation and energy security improvement, show complementarity in Korea as fossil fuels are replaced by renewables or nuclear power, but represent trade-offs in Mongolia as emissions mitigation and improved energy security cannot be achieved with one strategy. In conclusion, national plans to achieve two goals differ by country: In Korea, the appropriate portion of nuclear energy is the determining policy factor. In Mongolia, carbon capture and storage is the clear alternative for mitigating carbon emissions despite large renewables potential. - Highlights: • Electricity-generation fuel mixes in Korea and Mongolia are compared with multiple energy policy goals. • The relationship between two policy objectives differs by country. • Strategies on fuel mixes to achieve goals differ by country

  19. Biochar amendment to lead-contaminated soil: Effects on fluorescein diacetate hydrolytic activity and phytotoxicity to rice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tan, Xiaofei; Liu, Yunguo; Gu, Yanling; Zeng, Guangming; Hu, Xinjiang; Wang, Xin; Hu, Xi; Guo, Yiming; Zeng, Xiaoxia; Sun, Zhichao

    2015-09-01

    The amendment effects of biochar on total microbial activity was measured by fluorescein diacetate (FDA) hydrolytic activity, and phytotoxicity in Pb(II)-contaminated soils was examined by the application of 4 different biochars to soil, with rice as a test plant. The FDA hydrolytic activities of biochar-amended soils were much higher than that of the control. The survival rate of rice in lead-contaminated biochar-amended soils showed significant improvement over the control, especially for bamboo biochar-amended soil (93.3%). In addition, rice grown in lead-contaminated control sediment displayed lower biomass production than that in biochar-amended soil. The immobilization of Pb(II) and the positive effects of biochar amendment on soil microorganisms may account for these effects. The results suggest that biochar may have an excellent ability to mitigate the toxic effects of Pb(II) on soil microorganisms and rice. PMID:25900615

  20. Agronomic value of sewage sludge and corn cob biochar in an infertile Oxisol

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deenik, J. L.; Cooney, M. J.; Antal, M. J., Jr.

    2013-12-01

    Disposal of sewage sludge and other agricultural waste materials has become increasingly difficult in urban environments with limited land space. Carbonization of the hazardous waste produces biochar as a soil amendment with potential to improve soil quality and productivity. A series of greenhouse pot experiments were conducted to assess the agrnomic value of two biochars made from domestic wastewater sludge and corn cob waste. The ash component of the sewage sludge biochar was very high (65.5%) and high for the corn cob (11.4%) biochars. Both biochars contained low concentrations of heavy metals and met EPA land application criteria. The sewage sludge biochar was a better liming material and source of mineral nutrients than the corn cob biochar, but the corn cob biochar showed the greatest increase in soil carbon and total nitrogen. Both biochar materials increased soil pH compared with soils not receiving biochar, but the sewage sludge biochar was a more effective liming material maintaining elevated soil pH throughout the 3 planting cycles. The sewage sludge biochar also showed the greatest increase in extractable soil P and base cations. In the first planting cycle, both biochars in combination with conventional fertilizers produced significantly higher corn seedling growth than the fertilized control. However, the sewage sludge biochar maintained beneficial effects corn seedling growth through the third planting cycle showing 3-fold increases in biomass production compared with the control in the third planting. The high ash content and associated liming properties and mineral nutrient contributions in the sewage sludge biochar explain benefits to plant growth. Conversion of sewage sludge waste into biochar has the potential to effectively address several environmental issues: 1) convert a hazardous waste into a valuable soil amendment, 2) reduce land and water contamination, and 3) improve soil quality and productivity.

  1. Exploring the options for carbon dioxide mitigation in Turkish electric power industry: System dynamics approach

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Electric power industry has a huge carbon mitigation potential, fundamentally because there are large carbon-free, renewable resource options. In Turkey, with growing demand in electricity consumption and incentives offered for natural gas fired electricity generation, CO2 emissions sourced from electric power industry had tripled over the last two decades. Current governmental strategy focuses on energy security and resource diversity in a growing economy and does not articulate sufficient mitigation targets and appropriate regulations. In this research, an original dynamic simulation model is built, validated and analyzed to explore the options for carbon mitigation in Turkish electric power industry. Model structure represents the investment, dispatch and pricing heuristics as well as the natural resource base of electricity generation in Turkey. It operates on annual basis over 30 years to simulate installed capacities and generations of power plants with alternative resources and their resulting CO2 emissions. The analysis presented in this paper reveals that there are mitigation options below 50% of business as usual growth, with common policy options such as feed-in-tariffs, investment subsidies and carbon taxes. The model can serve as an experimental platform for further analysis of problems related to carbon mitigation in Turkish electricity sector. - Highlights: • An original computer model is created to investigate carbon mitigation. • It is holistic and comprises investment, generation, dispatch, and resources. • The model's structure, information base and foresights are specific to Turkey. • Direct and indirect strategies are explored and integrated. • Dramatic reductions are possible only with supply side strategies

  2. Recapturing nutrients from dairy waste using biochar

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sarkhot, D.; Ghezzehei, T. A.; Berhe, A. A.

    2009-12-01

    Biochar or biomass derived black carbon is known to be highly resistant to decomposition with half-life periods ranging from hundreds of years to millennia. It is also reported to enhance soil productivity due to high nutrient retention and favorable effects on soil pH, water retention capacity as well as microbial population. Brazilian Terra Preta soils have shown the potential of biochar for long-term carbon sequestration capacity and productivity of soil and many researchers have now focused on utilizing this phenomenon to create fertile, carbon-rich soils, called Terra Preta Nova. Although the highly adsorptive nature of biochar is well characterized, the potential for using biochar in environmental cleanup efforts is relatively unexplored. Dairy waste is a source of significant water pollution because it introduces excess nutrients such as phosphates and nitrates into the soil and water system. Since many soils have limited capacity to retain nitrate and phosphate, especially for long periods of time, the utility of dairy waste manure to enhance soil fertility and nutrient availability to plants is limited. Here, we present results from a project that we started to determine the potential of biochar to recover the excess nutrients from dairy flushed manure. In this initial study, a commercially available biochar amendment was ground and used in a batch sorption experiment with the dairy flushed manure from a local dairy in Merced, California. Four manure dilutions viz. 10, 25, 50 and 100%, and three shaking times, viz. 1, 12 and 24 hours were used for this study. We then calculated the amount of ammonia, nitrate and phosphate adsorbed by the biochar using differences in nutrient concentrations before and after the sorption experiment. Biochar showed significant capacity of adsorbing these nutrients, suggesting a potential for controlling the dairy pollution. The resulting enriched biochar can potentially act as a slow release fertilizer and enhance soil

  3. Aerosol emissions from biochar-amended agricultural soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ravi, S.; Sharratt, B. S.; Li, J. J.; Olshvevski, S.; Meng, Z.; Zhang, J.

    2015-12-01

    Agricultural production is a major contributor to anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions and associated global warming. In this regard, novel carbon sequestration strategies such as large-scale biochar application may provide sustainable pathways to increase the terrestrial storage of carbon in agricultural areas. Biochar has a long residence time in the soil and hence understanding the soil properties affected by biochar addition needs to be investigated to identify the tradeoffs and synergies of large-scale biochar application. Even though several studies have investigated the impacts of biochar application on a variety of soil properties, very few studies have investigated the impacts on soil erosion, in particular wind (aeolian) erosion and subsequent particulate emissions. Using a combination of wind tunnel studies and laboratory experiments, we investigated the dust emission potential of biochar-amended agricultural soils. We amended biochar (unsieved or sieved to appropriate particle size; application rates ranging from 1 - 5 % of the soil by weight) to three soil types (sand, sandy loam, and silt loam) and estimated the changes in threshold shear velocity for wind erosion and dust emission potential in comparison to control soils. Our experiments demonstrate that emissions of fine biochar particles may result from two mechanisms (a) very fine biochar particles (suspension size) that are entrained into the air stream when the wind velocity exceeds the threshold, and (b) production of fine biochar particles originating from the abrasion by quartz grains. The results indicate that biochar application significantly increased particulate emissions and more interestingly, the rate of increase was found to be higher in the intermediate range of biochar application. As fine biochar particles effectively adsorb/trap contaminants and pathogens from the soil, the preferential erosion of fine biochar particles by wind may lead to concentration of contaminants in the

  4. Design of a Soil Science practical exercise to understand the soil carbon sequestration after biochar addition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gascó, Gabriel; Cely, Paola; Saa-Requejo, Antonio; Mendez, Ana; Antón, Jose Manuel; Sánchez, Elena; Moratiel, Ruben; Tarquis, Ana M.

    2014-05-01

    The adaptation of the Universities to European Higher Education Area (EHEA) involves changes in the learning system. Students must obtain specific capabilities in the different degrees or masters. For example, in the degree of Agronomy at the Universidad Politécnica de Madrid (UPM, Spain), they must command Soil science, Mathematics or English. Sometimes, There is not a good communication between teachers and it causes that students do not understand the importance of the different subjects of a career. For this reason, teachers of the Soil Science and Mathematics Departments of the UPM designed a common practice to teach to the students the role of soil on the carbon sequestration. The objective of this paper is to explain the followed steps to the design of the practice. Acknowledgement to Universidad Politécnica de Madrid for the Projects in Education Innovation IE12_13-02009 and IE12_13-02012.

  5. Enhanced wheat yield by biochar addition under different mineral fertilization levels

    OpenAIRE

    Alburquerque, José; Salazar, Pablo; Barrón, Vidal; Torrent, José; del Campillo, María del; Gallardo, Antonio; Villar, Rafael

    2013-01-01

    Climate change and global warming have worldwide adverse consequences. Biochar production and its use in agriculture can play a key role in climate change mitigation and help improve the quality and management of waste materials coming from agriculture and forestry. Biochar is a carbonaceous material obtained from thermal decomposition of residual biomass at relatively low temperature and under oxygen limited conditions (pyrolysis). Biochar is currently a subject of active research worldwide ...

  6. Mineral-Biochar Composites: Molecular Structure and Porosity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rawal, Aditya; Joseph, Stephen D; Hook, James M; Chia, Chee H; Munroe, Paul R; Donne, Scott; Lin, Yun; Phelan, David; Mitchell, David R G; Pace, Ben; Horvat, Joseph; Webber, J Beau W

    2016-07-19

    Dramatic changes in molecular structure, degradation pathway, and porosity of biochar are observed at pyrolysis temperatures ranging from 250 to 550 °C when bamboo biomass is pretreated by iron-sulfate-clay slurries (iron-clay biochar), as compared to untreated bamboo biochar. Electron microscopy analysis of the biochar reveals the infusion of mineral species into the pores of the biochar and the formation of mineral nanostructures. Quantitative (13)C nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy shows that the presence of the iron clay prevents degradation of the cellulosic fraction at pyrolysis temperatures of 250 °C, whereas at higher temperatures (350-550 °C), the clay promotes biomass degradation, resulting in an increase in both the concentrations of condensed aromatic, acidic, and phenolic carbon species. The porosity of the biochar, as measured by NMR cryoporosimetry, is altered by the iron-clay pretreatment. In the presence of the clay, at lower pyrolysis temperatures, the biochar develops a higher pore volume, while at higher temperature, the presence of clay causes a reduction in the biochar pore volume. The most dramatic reduction in pore volume is observed in the kaolinite-infiltrated biochar at 550 °C, which is attributed to the blocking of the mesopores (2-50 nm pore) by the nonporous metakaolinite formed from kaolinite. PMID:27284608

  7. Effect of formation conditions on biochars: Compositional and structural properties of cellulose, lignin, and pine biochars

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The application of biochar to soil has been proposed as a long-term sink for atmospheric carbon dioxide in terrestrial ecosystems while providing improved soil fertility and increased crop production. Because biochar differs from the widely documented activated carbon, initial characterization information on effects of formation conditions on physical and chemical properties of biochar is important prior to its large-scale incorporation into soils. Plant biomass is composed primarily of cellulose and lignin. As a means of predicting biochar characteristics, samples of cellulose, lignin, and pine were charred under a nitrogen atmosphere at temperatures ranging from 250 °C to 500 °C for times ranging from 1 h to 168 h. Mass loss, elemental composition (carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen), Fourier transform infrared and 13C Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) spectra of the biochars produced were compared. Mass loss combined with NMR spectrometry showed that the initial rapid loss of material is attributed to aliphatic components, which are either lost or converted to aromatic carbon early in the charring process, and oxygen was lost more rapidly than carbon. The biomass contains a labile oxygen fraction that is quickly removed or lost upon initial heating, and a recalcitrant oxygen fraction which remains fixed in the char. If biochar is to be incorporated into agricultural soils, formation conditions should be tailored to optimize desirable characteristics, such as recalcitrance to degradation, soil fertility and pollutant sequestration, and minimize less desirable characteristics of degradability or low yield (mass loss). -- Highlights: ► Effects of formation conditions on physical and chemical properties of biochar. ► Cellulose, lignin, pine charred under inert atmosphere at various times and temperatures. ► Mass loss, elemental composition (C, H, and O), FTIR, NMR spectra compared. ► Aliphatic components either lost or converted to aromatic carbon early in

  8. Effects of biochar and activated carbon amendment on maize growth and the uptake and measured availability of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and potentially toxic elements (PTEs).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brennan, Aoife; Moreno Jiménez, Eduardo; Alburquerque, José A; Knapp, Charles W; Switzer, Christine

    2014-10-01

    With the aim of investigating the effects of carbonaceous sorbent amendment on plant health and end point contaminant bioavailability, plant experiments were set up to grow maize (Zea mays) in soil contaminated with polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and metals. Maize and pine derived biochars, as well as a commercial grade activated carbon, were used as amendments. Plant growth characteristics, such as chlorophyll content and shoot to root biomass, improved with sorbent amendment to varying extents and contaminant uptake to shoots was consistently reduced in amended soils. By further defining the conditions in which sorbent amended soils successfully reduce contaminant bioavailability and improve plant growth, this work will inform field scale remediation efforts. PMID:25014015

  9. Analysis of low-carbon industrial symbiosis technology for carbon mitigation in a Chinese iron/steel industrial park: A case study with carbon flow analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    CO2 mitigation strategies in industrial parks are a significant component of the Chinese climate change mitigation policy, and industrial symbiosis can provide specific CO2 mitigation opportunity. Technology is important to support symbiosis, but few studies in China have focused on this topic at the industrial park level. This research presented a case study in a national iron and steel industrial park in China. Focus was given onto carbon mitigation through industrial symbiosis technology using substance flow analysis (SFA). Three typical iron and steel industry technologies, including coke dry quenching (CDQ), combined cycle power plant (CCPP), and CO2 capture by slag carbonization (CCSC) were evaluated with SFA. Technology assessment was further conducted in terms of carbon mitigation potential and unit reduction cost. Compared with the Business as usual (BAU) scenario, application with CDQ, CCPP, and CCSC reduced the net carbon emissions by 56.18, 134.43, and 222.89 kg CO2 per ton crude steel inside the industrial parks, respectively, including both direct and indirect emissions. Economic assessment revealed that the unit costs for the three technologies were also high, thereby necessitating national financial support. Finally, relevant policy suggestions and future concerns were proposed and discussed. - Highlights: • A typical carbon mitigation case study on China iron/steel industrial park. • Using carbon SFA to investigate mitigation effects of industrial symbiosis technology. • CCPP greatly reduced the indirect carbon emission embodied in power purchase. • CCSC reduced the carbon emission by distributing fixed carbon into by-product. • Specific low carbon-tech promotion policies fit to China was discussed and proposed

  10. A novel approach in organic waste utilization through biochar addition in wood/polypropylene composites

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Das, Oisik [Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Auckland, Auckland 1142 (New Zealand); Sarmah, Ajit K., E-mail: a.sarmah@auckland.ac.nz [Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Auckland, Auckland 1142 (New Zealand); Bhattacharyya, Debes [Department of Mechanical Engineering, Center for Advanced Composite Materials, University of Auckland, Auckland 1142 (New Zealand)

    2015-04-15

    Highlights: • Biochar made from waste wood was added with wood polypropylene composites. • 24% biochar gave the best mechanical properties. • 6% biochar had no effect on physico-mechanical properties of composites. • Coupling agent remained unreacted in composites having higher amount of biochar. - Abstract: In an attempt to concurrently address the issues related to landfill gas emission and utilization of organic wastes, a relatively novel idea is introduced to develop biocomposites where biochar made from pyrolysis of waste wood (Pinus radiata) is added with the same wood, plastic/polymer (polypropylene) and maleated anhydride polypropylene (MAPP). Experiments were conducted by manufacturing wood and polypropylene composites (WPCs) mixed with 6 wt%, 12 wt%, 18 wt%, 24 wt%, and 30 wt% biochar. Though 6 wt% addition had similar properties to that of the control (composite without biochar), increasing biochar content to 24 wt% improved the composite’s tensile/flexural strengths and moduli. The biochar, having high surface area due to fine particles and being highly carbonised, acted as reinforcing filler in the biocomposite. Composites having 12 wt% and 18 wt% of biochar were found to be the most ductile and thermally stable, respectively. This study demonstrates that, WPCs added with biochar has good potential to mitigate wastes while simultaneously producing biocomposites having properties that might be suited for various end applications.

  11. A novel approach in organic waste utilization through biochar addition in wood/polypropylene composites

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Highlights: • Biochar made from waste wood was added with wood polypropylene composites. • 24% biochar gave the best mechanical properties. • 6% biochar had no effect on physico-mechanical properties of composites. • Coupling agent remained unreacted in composites having higher amount of biochar. - Abstract: In an attempt to concurrently address the issues related to landfill gas emission and utilization of organic wastes, a relatively novel idea is introduced to develop biocomposites where biochar made from pyrolysis of waste wood (Pinus radiata) is added with the same wood, plastic/polymer (polypropylene) and maleated anhydride polypropylene (MAPP). Experiments were conducted by manufacturing wood and polypropylene composites (WPCs) mixed with 6 wt%, 12 wt%, 18 wt%, 24 wt%, and 30 wt% biochar. Though 6 wt% addition had similar properties to that of the control (composite without biochar), increasing biochar content to 24 wt% improved the composite’s tensile/flexural strengths and moduli. The biochar, having high surface area due to fine particles and being highly carbonised, acted as reinforcing filler in the biocomposite. Composites having 12 wt% and 18 wt% of biochar were found to be the most ductile and thermally stable, respectively. This study demonstrates that, WPCs added with biochar has good potential to mitigate wastes while simultaneously producing biocomposites having properties that might be suited for various end applications

  12. Biochar has no effect on soil respiration across Chinese agricultural soils.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Xiaoyu; Zheng, Jufeng; Zhang, Dengxiao; Cheng, Kun; Zhou, Huimin; Zhang, Afeng; Li, Lianqing; Joseph, Stephen; Smith, Pete; Crowley, David; Kuzyakov, Yakov; Pan, Genxing

    2016-06-01

    Biochar addition to soil has been widely accepted as an option to enhance soil carbon sequestration by introducing recalcitrant organic matter. However, it remains unclear whether biochar will negate the net carbon accumulation by increasing carbon loss through CO2 efflux from soil (soil respiration). The objectives of this study were to address: 1) whether biochar addition increases soil respiration; and whether biochar application rate and biochar type (feedstock and pyrolyzing system) affect soil respiration. Two series of field experiments were carried out at 8 sites representing the main crop production areas in China. In experiment 1, a single type of wheat straw biochar was amended at rates of 0, 20 and 40tha(-1) in four rice paddies and three dry croplands. In experiment 2, four types of biochar (varying in feedstock and pyrolyzing system) were amended at rates of 0 and 20tha(-1) in a rice paddy under rice-wheat rotation. Results showed that biochar addition had no effect on CO2 efflux from soils consistently across sites, although it increased topsoil organic carbon stock by 38% on average. Meanwhile, CO2 efflux from soils amended with 40t of biochar did not significantly higher than soils amended with 20t of biochar. While the biochars used in Experiment 2 had different carbon pools and physico-chemical properties, they had no effect on soil CO2 efflux. The soil CO2 efflux following biochar addition could be hardly explained by the changes in soil physic-chemical properties and in soil microbial biomass. Thus, we argue that biochar will not negate the net carbon accumulation by increasing carbon loss through CO2 efflux in agricultural soils. PMID:26950640

  13. What Role Should Black Carbon Play in Climate Change Mitigation Strategies?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deangelo, B. J.

    2006-12-01

    The uncertainties of the black carbon-climate linkage remain large with regard to emissions quantification, temporal and regional atmospheric concentrations, and net radiative and other climatic effects. Given these physical uncertainties plus other economic and emission control considerations, what is the appropriate role for BC and organic carbon in any climate change mitigation strategy? If the climate effects of BC are considered `large enough' (a judgment call) to warrant emission controls to mitigate climate change, additional considerations are necessary to determine how best to do this. First, BC cannot be singly targeted, as BC is co-emitted with OC in various ratios depending on fuel type and combustion technology. The climate effects of any control strategy will depend on the net BC and OC, plus possible greenhouse gas, co-effects, which in turn will vary by specific emission source, sector and region. Second, the extent to which air quality policies (primarily targeting particulate matter for health concerns) control BC and OC can determine whether additional emission mitigation is necessary, or if additional mitigation is best pursued within the context of air quality policies, rather than being introduced into the climate area. In the U.S., on-road and off-road diesel vehicles are the largest sources of BC, but these emissions are expected to decline substantially over the next few decades due to recently issued U.S. EPA standards. Third is the issue of costs of BC reductions relative to the costs of other mitigation strategies. Results will be presented on 1) near-term (out to 2020) emission projections for the U.S. taking into account recent air quality regulations; 2) emerging work from the Energy Modeling Forum Black Carbon Subgroup on global and regional projections by region and sector, and mitigation scenarios; and 3) the costs of potential BC mitigation options for the U.S.

  14. The effects of alternative carbon mitigation policies on Japanese industries

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    To address the climate change issue, developed nations have considered introducing carbon pricing mechanisms in the form of a carbon tax or an emissions trading scheme (ETS). Despite the small number of programmes actually in operation, these mechanisms remain under active discussion in a number of countries, including Japan. Using an input–output model of the Japanese economy, this article analyses the effects of carbon pricing on Japan′s industrial sector. We also examine the impact of a rebate programme of the type proposed for energy-intensive trade-exposed (EITE) industries in U.S. legislation, the Waxman–Markey Bill (H.R. 2454), and in the European Union′s ETS. We find that a carbon pricing scheme would impose a disproportionate burden on a limited number of sectors – namely, pig iron, crude steel (converters), cement and other EITE industries. Out of 401 industries, 23 would be eligible for rebates according to the Waxman–Markey-type programme, whereas 122 industries would be eligible for rebates according to the E.U.-type programme, if adopted in Japan. Overall, despite the differences in coverage, we find that the Waxman–Markey and E.U. rebate programmes have roughly similar impacts in reducing the average burden on EITE industries. - Highlights: • Energy-intensive trade-exposed (EITE) industries suffer the most due to carbon pricing policies. • Twenty-three industries will be eligible under a Waxman–Markey (WM)-type rebate programme. • The E.U. emissions trading scheme (ETS)-type programme identifies 122 industries. • Both WM- and E.U.-type programmes will lower the cost of production to similar levels. • Industries eligible for rebates must be determined carefully

  15. Mitigation choices impact carbon budget size compatible with low temperature goals

    OpenAIRE

    Rogelj, J.; Reisinger, A.; McCollum, D.L.; Knutti, R.; Riahi, K.; Meinshausen, M.

    2015-01-01

    Global-mean temperature increase is roughly proportional to cumulative emissions of carbon-dioxide (CO2). Limiting global warming to any level thus implies a finite CO2 budget. Due to geophysical uncertainties, the size of such budgets can only be expressed in probabilistic terms and is further influenced by non-CO2 emissions. We here explore how societal choices related to energy demand and specific mitigation options influence the size of carbon budgets for meeting a given temperature obj...

  16. Renewable and low-carbon energies as mitigation options of climate change for China

    OpenAIRE

    Urban, F.; Benders, R.M.J.; Moll, H.C.

    2009-01-01

    This article discusses how renewable and low-carbon energies can serve as mitigation options of climate change in China's power sector. Our study is based on scenarios developed in PowerPlan, a bottom-up model simulating a countries' power sector and its emissions. We first adjusted the model to China's present-day economy and power sector. We then developed different scenarios based on story lines for possible future developments in China. We simulated China's carbon-based electricity produc...

  17. Characterization and Mineralization Rates of Low Temperature Peanut Hull and Pine Chip Biochars

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K.C. Das

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available Biochar can potentially increase soil fertility and sequester carbon by incorporating nutrients and stable black carbon into the soil; however its effect on soil nitrogen (N and carbon (C processes is not well understood. A defined methodology to characterize biochar is necessary to predict how specific biochars will affect C and N mineralization. We amended a Tifton soil (Fine-loamy, siliceous, thermic Plinthic Kandiudults with peanut hull (Arachis hypogaea; PH; 2.1% N and pine chip (Pinus taeda; PC: 0.4% N biochar at application rates of 1% and 2% (w/w and performed a 136-day mineralization study. A companion 24-day mineralization study amended Tifton soil with PH and PC biochar at 2% and their respective feedstocks at equal C rates. Soil C mineralization rates were monitored periodically throughout each study and total N mineralization rates were also measured. In addition, we characterized each biochar using thermogravimetric analysis with mass spectrometer (TGA-MS, proximate analysis, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR, and total mineral analysis to identify biochar characteristics that might correlate with mineralization properties. Limited C (<2% mineralized from both biochars, but mineralization rates of soil amended with PH biochar were higher than PC biochar. Carbon mineralization correlated well with estimated aliphatic content determined by TGA-MS but not with volatile content indicated by proximate analysis. Nitrogen was not mineralized from either biochar, indicating that plant-based biochar should not be considered a source of N for plant growth. The N in biochar may be contained in the stable aromatic structure of the biochar, as indicated by TGA-MS, and not available to soil microbes.

  18. Renewable and low-carbon energies as mitigation options of climate change for China

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Urban, F.; Benders, R. M. J.; Moll, H. C.

    2009-01-01

    This article discusses how renewable and low-carbon energies can serve as mitigation options of climate change in China's power sector. Our study is based on scenarios developed in PowerPlan, a bottom-up model simulating a countries' power sector and its emissions. We first adjusted the model to Chi

  19. A three-year experiment confirms continuous immobilization of cadmium and lead in contaminated paddy field with biochar amendment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Highlights: • Biochar significantly increased soil pH, organic matter and immobilized soil Cd and Pb. • Biochar treatment consistently reduced rice Cd and Pb content in three years. • Contaminated biochar from the study field contained much higher heavy metals than fresh biochar. • Biochar caused metal immobilization primarily due to the precipitation and surface adsorption. - Abstract: Heavy metal contamination in croplands has been a serious concern because of its high health risk through soil-food chain transfer. A field experiment was conducted in 2010–2012 in a contaminated rice paddy in southern China to determine if bioavailability of soil Cd and Pb could be reduced while grain yield was sustained over 3 years after a single soil amendment of wheat straw biochar. Contaminated biochar particles were separated from the biochar amended soil and microscopically analyzed to help determine where, and how, metals were immobilized with biochar. Biochar soil amendment (BSA) consistently and significantly increased soil pH, total organic carbon and decreased soil extractable Cd and Pb over the 3 year period. While rice plant tissues’ Cd content was significantly reduced, depending on biochar application rate, reduction in plant Pb concentration was found only in root tissue. Analysis of the fresh and contaminated biochar particles indicated that Cd and Pb had probably been bonded with the mineral phases of Al, Fe and P on and around and inside the contaminated biochar particle. Immobilization of the Pb and Cd also occurred to cation exchange on the porous carbon structure

  20. A three-year experiment confirms continuous immobilization of cadmium and lead in contaminated paddy field with biochar amendment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bian, Rongjun [Institute of Resources, Ecosystem and Environment of Agriculture, Nanjing Agricultural University, 1 Weigang, Nanjing 210095 (China); Joseph, Stephen [Institute of Resources, Ecosystem and Environment of Agriculture, Nanjing Agricultural University, 1 Weigang, Nanjing 210095 (China); School of Materials Science and Engineering, University of New South Wales, Sydney, NSW 2052 (Australia); Discipline of Chemistry, University of Newcastle, Callaghan, NSW 2308 (Australia); Cui, Liqiang [Institute of Resources, Ecosystem and Environment of Agriculture, Nanjing Agricultural University, 1 Weigang, Nanjing 210095 (China); Pan, Genxing, E-mail: pangenxing@aliyun.com [Institute of Resources, Ecosystem and Environment of Agriculture, Nanjing Agricultural University, 1 Weigang, Nanjing 210095 (China); Li, Lianqing [Institute of Resources, Ecosystem and Environment of Agriculture, Nanjing Agricultural University, 1 Weigang, Nanjing 210095 (China); Jiangsu Collaborative Innovation Center for Solid Organic Waste Resource Utilization, Nanjing Agricultural University, 1 Weigang, Nanjing 210095 (China); Liu, Xiaoyu; Zhang, Afeng [Institute of Resources, Ecosystem and Environment of Agriculture, Nanjing Agricultural University, 1 Weigang, Nanjing 210095 (China); Rutlidge, Helen [Solid State and Elemental Analysis Unit, Mark Wainwright Analytical Centre, University of New South Wales, Kensington, NSW 2052 (Australia); Wong, Singwei [Electron Microscope Unit, University of Newcastle, Callaghan, NSW 2308 (Australia); Chia, Chee [School of Materials Science and Engineering, University of New South Wales, Sydney, NSW 2052 (Australia); Marjo, Chris; Gong, Bin [Solid State and Elemental Analysis Unit, Mark Wainwright Analytical Centre, University of New South Wales, Kensington, NSW 2052 (Australia); Munroe, Paul [School of Materials Science and Engineering, University of New South Wales, Sydney, NSW 2052 (Australia); Donne, Scott [Discipline of Chemistry, University of Newcastle, Callaghan, NSW 2308 (Australia)

    2014-05-01

    Highlights: • Biochar significantly increased soil pH, organic matter and immobilized soil Cd and Pb. • Biochar treatment consistently reduced rice Cd and Pb content in three years. • Contaminated biochar from the study field contained much higher heavy metals than fresh biochar. • Biochar caused metal immobilization primarily due to the precipitation and surface adsorption. - Abstract: Heavy metal contamination in croplands has been a serious concern because of its high health risk through soil-food chain transfer. A field experiment was conducted in 2010–2012 in a contaminated rice paddy in southern China to determine if bioavailability of soil Cd and Pb could be reduced while grain yield was sustained over 3 years after a single soil amendment of wheat straw biochar. Contaminated biochar particles were separated from the biochar amended soil and microscopically analyzed to help determine where, and how, metals were immobilized with biochar. Biochar soil amendment (BSA) consistently and significantly increased soil pH, total organic carbon and decreased soil extractable Cd and Pb over the 3 year period. While rice plant tissues’ Cd content was significantly reduced, depending on biochar application rate, reduction in plant Pb concentration was found only in root tissue. Analysis of the fresh and contaminated biochar particles indicated that Cd and Pb had probably been bonded with the mineral phases of Al, Fe and P on and around and inside the contaminated biochar particle. Immobilization of the Pb and Cd also occurred to cation exchange on the porous carbon structure.

  1. 生物质炭施用量及水热条件对淹水土壤 CO2释放的影响%Effects of carbon dioxide emissions from waterlogged soils by biochar amendments and hydrothermal condition

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    花莉; 唐志刚; 洛晶晶; 贾卫华

    2013-01-01

    通过模拟土柱实验,向水稻土中添加质量分数分别为0%(C0)、2%(C2)、5%(C5)、8%(C8)的生物质炭,并在不同淹水深度和温度下培养,旨在了解生物质炭的施用量及其水热条件对土壤CO2释放的影响,以期通过控制生物质炭的施炭量和改进农田管理措施,从而为农业温室气体碳减排提供依据.研究结果发现:施加生物质炭对土壤CO2释放的抑制作用明显,与对照相比,2%、5%、8%施炭量处理的土壤CO2累计释放量分别降低了5.1%、2.4%和26.5%.低施炭量对土壤CO2的释放降幅较少,而较高施炭量可能对抑制土壤CO2释放的效果更好;温度越高,土壤的呼吸作用越强,CO2释放速率也越快;在昼夜变化上,土壤夜间CO2的释放速率要高于白天;就淹水深度而言,土壤灌水深度愈深,CO2的释放速率愈低.此外,还从施炭量和水热条件对土壤CO2和CH4释放的综合排放效应进行了展望.%A waterlogged soil environment was simulated and added with mass fraction of 0%(C0) ,2% (C2) ,5% (C5) ,and 8% (C8) of biochar to paddy soils to realize the effects of carbon dioxide emissions by biochar amendments and hydrothermal condition under different irrigated water depths and culture temperature .It is aimed at decreasing agricultural green-house gases emissions by means of controlling biochar amendments and improving field man-agement measures .The results showed that there is a significant inhibition of carbon dioxide emission from soils due to biochar amendment .Compared with the control ,cumulative car-bon dioxide emissions from soils by biochar addition of 2% ,5% ,and 8% were reduced by 5 .1% ,2 .4% and 26 .5% respectively .In terms of inhibition of carbon dioxide emission from soils by biochar amendment ,higher biochar amendments might be better than lower amend-ments;with the higher temperature ,the stronger soil respiration became

  2. Effect of Pinus radiata derived biochars on soil sorption and desorption of phenanthrene

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zhang Honghua [College of Biological and Environmental Engineering, Zhejiang University of Technology, Hangzhou 310032 (China); Lin Kunde, E-mail: lin.kunde@gamil.co [College of Biological and Environmental Engineering, Zhejiang University of Technology, Hangzhou 310032 (China); Department of Environmental Sciences, University of California, Riverside, CA 92521 (United States); Wang Hailong [Scion, Private Bag 3020, Rotorua 3046 (New Zealand); Gan, Jay [Department of Environmental Sciences, University of California, Riverside, CA 92521 (United States)

    2010-09-15

    Biochars are anthropogenic carbonaceous sorbent and their influences on the sorption of environmental contaminants need to be characterized. Here we evaluated the effect of Pinus radiata derived biochars on soil sorption and desorption of phenanthrene. Two biochars separately produced at 350 {sup o}C and 700 {sup o}C and three soils were tested. Biochar amendment generally enhanced the soil sorption of phenanthrene. The biochar produced at 700 {sup o}C generally showed a greater ability at enhancing a soil's sorption ability than that prepared at 350 {sup o}C. The single-step desorption measurement showed an apparent hysteresis in biochar-amended soils. After 28 d equilibration, the sorptive capacity of biochar-amended soil (with an organic carbon content of 0.16%) significantly decreased. This study clearly suggested that biochar application enhanced soil sorption of hydrophobic organic compounds, but the magnitude of enhancement depended on the preparation of biochars, the indigenous soil organic carbon levels, and the contact time between soil and biochar. - Pinus radiata derived biochars influence soil sorption and desorption of phenanthrene.

  3. [Effect of Biochar Application on Soil Aggregates Distribution and Moisture Retention in Orchard Soil].

    Science.gov (United States)

    An, Yan; Ji, Qiang; Zhao, Shi-xiang; Wang, Xu-dong

    2016-01-15

    Applying biochar to soil has been considered to be one of the important practices in improving soil properties and increasing carbon sequestration. In order to investigate the effects of biochar application on soil aggregates distribution and its organic matter content and soil moisture constant in different size aggregates, various particle-size fractions of soil aggregates were obtained with the dry-screening method. The results showed that, compared to the treatment without biochar (CK), the application of biochar reduced the mass content of 5-8 mm and biochar application. The mean diameter of soil aggregates was reduced by biochar application at 0-10 cm soil horizon. However, the effect of biochar application on the mean diameter of soil aggregates at 10-20 cm soil horizon was not significant. Compared to CK, biochar application significantly increased soil organic carbon content in aggregates, especially in 1-2 mm aggregates which was increased by > 70% compared to CK. Both the water holding capacity and soil porosity were significantly increased by biochar application. Furthermore, the neutral biochar was more effective than alkaline biochar in increasing soil moisture. PMID:27078970

  4. Physical and chemical characterization of waste wood derived biochars.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yargicoglu, Erin N; Sadasivam, Bala Yamini; Reddy, Krishna R; Spokas, Kurt

    2015-02-01

    Biochar, a solid byproduct generated during waste biomass pyrolysis or gasification in the absence (or near-absence) of oxygen, has recently garnered interest for both agricultural and environmental management purposes owing to its unique physicochemical properties. Favorable properties of biochar include its high surface area and porosity, and ability to adsorb a variety of compounds, including nutrients, organic contaminants, and some gases. Physical and chemical properties of biochars are dictated by the feedstock and production processes (pyrolysis or gasification temperature, conversion technology and pre- and post-treatment processes, if any), which vary widely across commercially produced biochars. In this study, several commercially available biochars derived from waste wood are characterized for physical and chemical properties that can signify their relevant environmental applications. Parameters characterized include: physical properties (particle size distribution, specific gravity, density, porosity, surface area), hydraulic properties (hydraulic conductivity and water holding capacity), and chemical and electrochemical properties (organic matter and organic carbon contents, pH, oxidation-reduction potential and electrical conductivity, zeta potential, carbon, nitrogen and hydrogen (CHN) elemental composition, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), heavy metals, and leachable PAHs and heavy metals). A wide range of fixed carbon (0-47.8%), volatile matter (28-74.1%), and ash contents (1.5-65.7%) were observed among tested biochars. A high variability in surface area (0.1-155.1g/m(2)) and PAH and heavy metal contents of the solid phase among commercially available biochars was also observed (0.7-83 mg kg(-1)), underscoring the importance of pre-screening biochars prior to application. Production conditions appear to dictate PAH content--with the highest PAHs observed in biochar produced via fast pyrolysis and lowest among the gasification

  5. Physical, chemical and biological characterization of six biochars produced for the remediation of contaminated sites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Denyes, Mackenzie J; Parisien, Michèle A; Rutter, Allison; Zeeb, Barbara A

    2014-01-01

    The physical and chemical properties of biochar vary based on feedstock sources and production conditions, making it possible to engineer biochars with specific functions (e.g. carbon sequestration, soil quality improvements, or contaminant sorption). In 2013, the International Biochar Initiative (IBI) made publically available their Standardized Product Definition and Product Testing Guidelines (Version 1.1) which set standards for physical and chemical characteristics for biochar. Six biochars made from three different feedstocks and at two temperatures were analyzed for characteristics related to their use as a soil amendment. The protocol describes analyses of the feedstocks and biochars and includes: cation exchange capacity (CEC), specific surface area (SSA), organic carbon (OC) and moisture percentage, pH, particle size distribution, and proximate and ultimate analysis. Also described in the protocol are the analyses of the feedstocks and biochars for contaminants including polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), metals and mercury as well as nutrients (phosphorous, nitrite and nitrate and ammonium as nitrogen). The protocol also includes the biological testing procedures, earthworm avoidance and germination assays. Based on the quality assurance / quality control (QA/QC) results of blanks, duplicates, standards and reference materials, all methods were determined adequate for use with biochar and feedstock materials. All biochars and feedstocks were well within the criterion set by the IBI and there were little differences among biochars, except in the case of the biochar produced from construction waste materials. This biochar (referred to as Old biochar) was determined to have elevated levels of arsenic, chromium, copper, and lead, and failed the earthworm avoidance and germination assays. Based on these results, Old biochar would not be appropriate for use as a soil amendment for carbon sequestration, substrate quality

  6. Biochar physico-chemical properties as affected by environmental exposure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sorrenti, Giovambattista; Masiello, Caroline A; Dugan, Brandon; Toselli, Moreno

    2016-09-01

    To best use biochar as a sustainable soil management and carbon (C) sequestration technique, we must understand the effect of environmental exposure on its physical and chemical properties because they likely vary with time. These properties play an important role in biochar's environmental behavior and delivery of ecosystem services. We measured biochar before amendment and four years after amendment to a commercial nectarine orchard at rates of 5, 15 and 30tha(-1). We combined two pycnometry techniques to measure skeletal (ρs) and envelope (ρe) density and to estimate the total pore volume of biochar particles. We also examined imbibition, which can provide information about soil hydraulic conductivity. Finally, we investigated the chemical properties, surface, inner layers atomic composition and C1s bonding state of biochar fragments through X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS). Ageing increased biochar skeletal density and reduced the water imbibition rate within fragments as a consequence of partial pore clogging. However, porosity and the volume of water stored in particles remained unchanged. Exposure reduced biochar pH, EC, and total C, but enhanced total N, nitrate-N, and ammonium-N. X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy analyses showed an increase of O, Si, N, Na, Al, Ca, Mn, and Fe surface (0-5nm) atomic composition (at%) and a reduction of C and K in aged particles, confirming the interactions of biochar with soil inorganic and organic phases. Oxidation of aged biochar fragments occurred mainly in the particle surface, and progressively decreased down to 75nm. Biochar surface chemistry changes included the development of carbonyl and carboxylate functional groups, again mainly on the particle surface. However, changes were noticeable down to 75nm, while no significant changes were measured in the deepest layer, up to 110nm. Results show unequivocal shifts in biochar physical and chemical properties/characteristics over short (~years) timescales. PMID

  7. Suitability of marginal biomass-derived biochars for soil amendment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buss, Wolfram; Graham, Margaret C; Shepherd, Jessica G; Mašek, Ondřej

    2016-03-15

    The term "marginal biomass" is used here to describe materials of little or no economic value, e.g. plants grown on contaminated land, food waste or demolition wood. In this study 10 marginal biomass-derived feedstocks were converted into 19 biochars at different highest treatment temperatures (HTT) using a continuous screw-pyrolysis unit. The aim was to investigate suitability of the resulting biochars for land application, judged on the basis of potentially toxic element (PTE) concentration, nutrient content and basic biochar properties (pH, EC, ash, fixed carbon). It was shown that under typical biochar production conditions the percentage content of several PTEs (As, Al, Zn) and nutrients (Ca, Mg) were reduced to some extent, but also that biochar can be contaminated by Cr and Ni during the pyrolysis process due to erosion of stainless steel reactor parts (average+82.8% Cr, +226.0% Ni). This can occur to such an extent that the resulting biochar is rendered unsuitable for soil application (maximum addition +22.5 mg Cr kg(-1) biochar and +44.4 mg Ni kg(-1) biochar). Biomass grown on land heavily contaminated with PTEs yielded biochars with PTE concentrations above recommended threshold values for soil amendments. Cd and Zn were of particular concern, exceeding the lowest threshold values by 31-fold and 7-fold respectively, despite some losses into the gas phase. However, thermal conversion of plants from less severely contaminated soils, demolition wood and food waste anaerobic digestate (AD) into biochar proved to be promising for land application. In particular, food waste AD biochar contained very high nutrient concentrations, making it interesting for use as fertiliser. PMID:26789369

  8. Biochar effects on soils: overview and knowledge gaps

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verheijen, F. G. A.; Jeffery, S.; Bastos, A. C.; van der Velde, M.

    2012-04-01

    One of the cornerstones of the sustainable biochar concept is to improve, or at least to not deteriorate, soil quality and functioning. The idea of global sustainable biochar systems, with biochar applied to global cropland and grassland soils, has highlighted limitations in: i) current scientific understanding of biochar interactions with soil components, ii) the capacity to assess ecosystem services provided by soils, and iii) the uncertainty in spatio-temporal representation of both (i) and (ii). Pyrolysis conditions and feedstock characteristics largely control the physico-chemical properties of the resulting biochar, which in turn determine the suitability for a given application. Soils are highly heterogeneous systems at a range of scales. Combinations of land use, soil management and changing climatic conditions further enhance this heterogeneity. While this leads to difficulties in identifying the underlying mechanisms behind reported effects in the scientific literature, it also provides an opportunity for 'critical matching' of biochar properties that are best suited to a particular site (depending on soil type, hydrology, climate, land use, soil contaminants, etc.). Biochar's relatively long mean residence times in soils (100s of years) make it a potential instrument for sequestering carbon (if done sustainably). However, that same long mean residence time sets biochar apart from conventional soil amendments (such as manures and other organic fertilizers) that are considered as transient in the soil (1-10s of years). The functional life time of biochar in soils essentially moves biochar from a soil management tool to a geo-engineering technique. One of the consequences is that desired ecosystem services that are provided by soils, have to be projected for the same time period. This presentation aims to discuss critical knowledge gaps in biochar-soil-ecosystem interactions against a background of ecosystem services.

  9. Local-scale analysis of carbon mitigation strategies: Tompkins County, New York, USA

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The costs and potential for several carbon mitigation options were analyzed for Tompkins County, NY, within several categories: terrestrial carbon sequestration, local power generation, transportation, and energy end-use efficiency. The total county emissions are about 340 Gg C/year, with current biomass sequestration rates of about 121 Gg C/year. The potential for mitigation with the options examined, assuming full market penetration, amounts to at least 234 Gg C/year (69%), with 100 Gg C/year (29%) at no net cost to the consumer. Effective carbon mitigation strategies for this county based on costs per mg carbon and maximum potential include reforestation of abandoned agricultural lands for terrestrial carbon sequestration, biomass production for residential heating and co-firing in coal power plants, changes in personal behavior related to transportation (e.g., carpooling or using public transportation), installation of numerous residential energy-efficient products and development of local wind power. The principal barriers to the implementation of these approaches are discussed and policies for overcoming these barriers are analyzed

  10. Sustainable gasification–biochar systems? A case-study of rice-husk gasification in Cambodia, Part II: Field trial results, carbon abatement, economic assessment and conclusions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    In part I we described the gasification technology and characterised the physio-chemical properties and environmental impacts of the rice husk char (RHC) by-product. In part II we present summary results from field trials using the RHC, and provide an estimate of the carbon abatement and economic evaluation of the system. Statistically significant yield increases are demonstrated for RHC addition in irrigated rice cultivation (33% increase in paddy rice yield for a 41.5 t (dry weight) RHC application per hectare). The carbon abatement from the RHC addition is approximately 0.42 t CO2 t−1 rice husk; including energy generation from gasification this increases to ca. 0.86 tCO2 t−1. Assuming a carbon value of $5 t CO2 t−1, and agronomic value of $3 t−1 RHC based on the field trials, the economic value of the RHC varies from $9 t−1 (including only recalcitrant carbon) to $15 t−1 (including avoided emissions from energy production). We summarise results from parts I and II, concluding that the gasification–biochar system meets many of the criteria of sustainability, but requires better waste water management and more field trials to demonstrate repeatable agronomic efficacy of RHC application. - Highlights: ► Field trials show statistically significant rice yield increases using rice husk char (RHC). ► Carbon abatement of 0.42 t CO2 t−1 rice husk from RHC production. ► Bioenergy generation via gasification gives carbon abatement of 0.44 t CO2 t−1 husk. ► Total carbon abatement is therefore ca. 0.86 t CO2 t−1 husk. ► Agronomic value from trials is $3 t−1 char; assuming $5 CO2 t−1, the total value of RHC is $9–$15 t−1.

  11. Biochar As a Renewable Energy Source

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stein, Richard

    2011-11-01

    Biochar is a form of charcoal prepared by heating biomass in limited air. It is porous and has high surface area, maintaining much of the morphology of the biomass. The heat for its preparation arises primarily from burning volatiles emitted upon heating. About half the chemical energy in the biomass is contained in the biochar, about 40% is used for the conversion, and about 10% may be used as a local heat source. The biochar can serve as a soil additive where it acts as a template for the growth of bacteria and fungi which then lead to improved growth of biomass by as much as several hundred percent. It remains inert in the soil for many years. Thus, it sequesters the carbon, originally coming from the carbon dioxide absorbed during the photosynthesis occurring during the growth of the biomass. Its use reduces fertilizer and water needs and to pollution arising from the run-off of fertilizer and emission of noxious vapors. Its use is best done at a local level, close to sources of biomass from farm and forest waste. The Pioneer Valley Biochar Initiative along with the Center of Agriculture of the University of Massachusetts, Amherst is promoting the use of biochar on local farms which reduces their dependence on energy arising from fossil fuel and nuclear sources.

  12. Global and regional ocean carbon uptake and climate change: sensitivity to a substantial mitigation scenario

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Vichi, Marcello; Masina, Simona; Navarra, Antonio [Centro Euro-Mediterraneo per i Cambiamenti Climatici (CMCC), Bologna (Italy); Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia, Bologna (Italy); Manzini, Elisa [Centro Euro-Mediterraneo per i Cambiamenti Climatici (CMCC), Bologna (Italy); Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia, Bologna (Italy); Max Planck Institute for Meteorology, Hamburg (Germany); Fogli, Pier Giuseppe [Centro Euro-Mediterraneo per i Cambiamenti Climatici (CMCC), Bologna (Italy); Alessandri, Andrea [Centro Euro-Mediterraneo per i Cambiamenti Climatici (CMCC), Bologna (Italy); ENEA, Rome (Italy); Patara, Lavinia [Centro Euro-Mediterraneo per i Cambiamenti Climatici (CMCC), Bologna (Italy); Leibniz Institute of Marine Sciences (IFM-GEOMAR), Kiel (Germany); Scoccimarro, Enrico [Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia, Bologna (Italy)

    2011-11-15

    Under future scenarios of business-as-usual emissions, the ocean storage of anthropogenic carbon is anticipated to decrease because of ocean chemistry constraints and positive feedbacks in the carbon-climate dynamics, whereas it is still unknown how the oceanic carbon cycle will respond to more substantial mitigation scenarios. To evaluate the natural system response to prescribed atmospheric ''target'' concentrations and assess the response of the ocean carbon pool to these values, 2 centennial projection simulations have been performed with an Earth System Model that includes a fully coupled carbon cycle, forced in one case with a mitigation scenario and the other with the SRES A1B scenario. End of century ocean uptake with the mitigation scenario is projected to return to the same magnitude of carbon fluxes as simulated in 1960 in the Pacific Ocean and to lower values in the Atlantic. With A1B, the major ocean basins are instead projected to decrease the capacity for carbon uptake globally as found with simpler carbon cycle models, while at the regional level the response is contrasting. The model indicates that the equatorial Pacific may increase the carbon uptake rates in both scenarios, owing to enhancement of the biological carbon pump evidenced by an increase in Net Community Production (NCP) following changes in the subsurface equatorial circulation and enhanced iron availability from extratropical regions. NCP is a proxy of the bulk organic carbon made available to the higher trophic levels and potentially exportable from the surface layers. The model results indicate that, besides the localized increase in the equatorial Pacific, the NCP of lower trophic levels in the northern Pacific and Atlantic oceans is projected to be halved with respect to the current climate under a substantial mitigation scenario at the end of the twenty-first century. It is thus suggested that changes due to cumulative carbon emissions up to present and the

  13. Ultra-Low Carbon Emissions from Coal-Fired Power Plants through Bio-Oil Co-Firing and Biochar Sequestration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dang, Qi; Mba Wright, Mark; Brown, Robert C

    2015-12-15

    This study investigates a novel strategy of reducing carbon emissions from coal-fired power plants through co-firing bio-oil and sequestering biochar in agricultural lands. The heavy end fraction of bio-oil recovered from corn stover fast pyrolysis is blended and co-fired with bituminous coal to form a bio-oil co-firing fuel (BCF). Life-cycle greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions per kWh electricity produced vary from 1.02 to 0.26 kg CO2-eq among different cases, with BCF heavy end fractions ranging from 10% to 60%, which corresponds to a GHG emissions reduction of 2.9% to 74.9% compared with that from traditional bituminous coal power plants. We found a heavy end fraction between 34.8% and 37.3% is required to meet the Clean Power Plan's emission regulation for new coal-fired power plants. The minimum electricity selling prices are predicted to increase from 8.8 to 14.9 cents/kWh, with heavy end fractions ranging from 30% to 60%. A minimum carbon price of $67.4 ± 13 per metric ton of CO2-eq was estimated to make BCF power commercially viable for the base case. These results suggest that BCF co-firing is an attractive pathway for clean power generation in existing power plants with a potential for significant reductions in carbon emissions. PMID:26545153

  14. Analysis of carbon mitigation policies. Feed-in tariffs, energy and carbon price interactions and competitive distortions on carbon markets

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Reichenbach, Johanna

    2011-07-19

    I study several policy instruments for carbon mitigation with a focus on subsidies for renewable energies, emission taxes and emission allowances. In Chapter 1, I analyze the optimal design and the welfare implications of two policies consisting of an emission tax for conventional fossil-fuel utilities combined with a subsidy for the producers of renewable energy equipment and an emission tax combined with a feed-in tariff for renewable electricity. In Chapter 2 I study the empirical interrelationships between European emission allowance prices and prices for electricity, hard coal and natural gas with an application to portfolio allocation. In Chapters 3 and 4, I discuss several policy-related issues of emissions trading, in particular the potential for market manipulations by firms holding a dominant position in the emission market, the output market or both, and competitive distortions and leakage due to unequal emission regulations across industries, sectors, regions, or countries. (orig.)

  15. Characterization of human manure-derived biochar and energy-balance analysis of slow pyrolysis process.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Xuan; Li, Zifu; Zhang, Yaozhong; Feng, Rui; Mahmood, Ibrahim Babatunde

    2014-09-01

    Biochars have received increasing attention in recent years because of their soil improvement potential, contaminant immobilization properties, and ability to function as carbon sinks. This study adopted a pyrolytic process to prepare a series of biochars from dried human manure at varying temperatures. The thermal analysis of human manure and physicochemical properties of the resulting biochars illustrated that human manure can be a favorable feedstock for biochar production. In particular, the porous texture and nutrient-rich properties of biochars produced from human manure and may significantly enhance soil fertility when used as used soil additives. A temperature range of 500-600°C was optimal for human manure biochar production. Significantly, when the moisture content of the feedstock is lower than 57%, the system could not only harvest manure-derived biochar but also have a net energy output, which can be provide heat source for nearby users. PMID:24961565

  16. Biochar and Forest Ecology

    OpenAIRE

    Coleman, Mark

    2011-01-01

    Charcoal is a common component temperate forest soils. It results from wildfire events that frequently disturb the structure and function of vegetation and soils. Recent interest in applying biochar (artificially produced charcoal) to forest ecosystems raises both opportunities and concerns. The greatest opportunity for biochar application to forest soils is through the utilization of continuously produced and overabundant forest biomass for the production of bioenergy. Biochar is a co...

  17. Kinetics and mechanisms of hydrogen sulfide adsorption by biochars.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shang, Guofeng; Shen, Guoqing; Liu, Liang; Chen, Qin; Xu, Zhiwei

    2013-04-01

    Three different biochars as cost-effective substitutes for activated carbon (AC) were tested for their hydrogen sulfide (H2S) adsorption ability. The biochars were produced from camphor (SC), bamboo (SB), and rice hull (SR) at 400°C by oxygen-limited pyrolysis. The surface area (SA), pH, and Fourier transform infrared spectras of the biochars and AC were compared. The maximum removal rates and the saturation constants were obtained using the Michaelis-Menten-type equation. The three biochars were found to be alkaline, and the SAs of the biochars were much smaller than that of the AC. The H2S breakthrough capacity was related to the local pH within the pore system of the biochar. The order observed in terms of both biochar and AC adsorption capacity was SR>SB>SC>AC. SR efficiently removed H2S within the inlet concentration range of 10-50 μL/L. Biochars derived from agricultural/forestry wastes are a promising H2S adsorbent with distinctive properties. PMID:23455220

  18. Assessing Microbial Contributions to N2O Impacts Following Biochar Additions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiurong Lin

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Varying degrees of soil nitrous oxide (N2O mitigation have been observed following biochar applications. Laboratory incubation experiments were conducted using soils from agriculture, forest, prairie, and a sterilized sand to examine the relative contributions of bacteria and fungi to this N2O alteration. Selective chemical inhibitors were used to distinguish the relative contributions of fungal and bacterial groups to N2O production/suppression in each soil type following a fast-pyrolysis macadamia nut shell biochar (10% w/w addition. Overall, suppressed production of N2O was initially observed between the agricultural and prairie soils following biochar addition and stimulation of N2O production was observed in the biochar amended forest soil. However, if the N2O production that was observed in the biochar control (sterile sand and biochar = 4.2 ± 0.7 ng-N g−1 day−1 was subtracted from all treatments, N2O production following biochar addition was consistently lower in all soils following biochar additions. In terms of the microbial contributions, there were no significant differences in N2O production between the microbial inhibitor treatments, despite CO2 production rate differences. Therefore, the response in the N2O production to biochar could not be directly attributed to a particular microbial group (fungi or bacteria. These results suggest the presence of abiotic production or consumption routes for nitrogen species in biochar amended soils.

  19. Evaluation of Varying Biochars as Carrier Materials for Bacterial Soil Inoculants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hale, Lauren; Crowley, David

    2014-05-01

    The incorporation of biochar into agricultural soils for carbon sequestration and improved soil fertility creates an opportunity to simultaneously deliver plant-growth promoting rhizobacteria (PGPR). Many characteristics of biochar materials indicate that these particles could be conducive as inoculum carriers. This could provide a value-added component for biochar marketing and has an advantage over traditional carrier materials, which can be unsustainable or expensive to produce. Here, we assessed the suitability of 10 biochar types, made from 5 feedstocks at 2 pyrolysis temperatures (300°C and 600°C), to serve as carriers for 2 model PGPR strains, Enterobacter cloacae UW5 and Pseudomonas putida UW4. All biochars were characterized based on BET specific surface area, C-N content, pH, EC, and their abilities to adsorb bacterial cells from a liquid inoculum. Further studies incorporated qPCR to quantify the survival of inoculants after introduction into soils via biochar carriers. The biochars that performed well were further assayed for their influence on PGPR traits, 1-aminocyclopropane-1-carboxylate (ACC) deaminase and auxin production. Peat and vermiculite served as traditional carrier materials to which we compared the biochars. Our findings indicated that biochars varied in their interactions with our model PGPR strains. Based on our analysis several biochar types were able to serve as carriers which were as good, if not better than, the traditional carrier materials. Future work should seek to assess shelf life and varying inoculation methods for the biochar-inoculant complexes.

  20. Exploring Opportunities for Promoting Synergies between Climate Change Adaptation and Mitigation in Forest Carbon Initiatives

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eugene L. Chia

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available There is growing interest in designing and implementing climate change mitigation and adaptation (M + A in synergy in the forest and land use sectors. However, there is limited knowledge on how the planning and promotion of synergies between M + A can be operationalized in the current efforts to mitigate climate change through forest carbon. This paper contributes to fill this knowledge gap by exploring ways of planning and promoting M + A synergy outcomes in forest carbon initiatives. It examines eight guidelines that are widely used in designing and implementing forest carbon initiatives. Four guiding principles with a number of criteria that are relevant for planning synergy outcomes in forest carbon activities are proposed. The guidelines for developing forest carbon initiatives need to demonstrate that (1 the health of forest ecosystems is maintained or enhanced; (2 the adaptive capacity of forest-dependent communities is ensured; (3 carbon and adaptation benefits are monitored and verified; and (4 adaptation outcomes are anticipated and planned in forest carbon initiatives. The forest carbon project development guidelines can encourage the integration of adaptation in forest carbon initiatives. However, their current efforts guiding projects and programs to deliver biodiversity and environmental benefits, ecosystem services, and socioeconomic benefits are not considered explicitly as efforts towards enhancing adaptation. An approach for incentivizing and motivating project developers, guideline setters, and offset buyers is imperative in order to enable existing guidelines to make clear contributions to adaptation goals. We highlight and discuss potential ways of incentivizing and motivating the explicit planning and promotion of adaptation outcomes in forest carbon initiatives.

  1. Decomposition of energy-related carbon emissions in Xinjiang and relative mitigation policy recommendations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Changjian; Zhang, Xiaolei; Wang, Fei; Lei, Jun; Zhang, Li

    2015-03-01

    Regional carbon emissions research is necessary and helpful for China in realizing reduction targets. The LMDI I (Logarithmic Mean Divisia Index I) technique based on an extended Kaya identity was conducted to uncover the main five driving forces for energy-related carbon emissions in Xinjiang, an important energy base in China. Decomposition results show that the affluence effect and the population effect are the two most important contributors to increased carbon emissions. The energy intensity effect had a positive influence on carbon emissions during the pre-reform period, and then became the dominant factor in curbing carbon emissions after 1978. The renewable energy penetration effect and the emission coefficient effect showed important negative but relatively minor effects on carbon emissions. Based on the local realities, a comprehensive suite of mitigation policies are raised by considering all of these influencing factors. Mitigation policies will need to significantly reduce energy intensity and pay more attention to the regional economic development path. Fossil fuel substitution should be considered seriously. Renewable energy should be increased in the energy mix. All of these policy recommendations, if implemented by the central and local government, should make great contributions to energy saving and emission reduction in Xinjiang.

  2. Evaluating the Contribution of Soil Carbon to Global Climate Change Mitigation in an Integrated Assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomson, A. M.; Izaurralde, R. C.; Clarke, L. E.

    2006-12-01

    Assessing the contribution of terrestrial carbon sequestration to national and international climate change mitigation requires integration across scientific and disciplinary boundaries. In a study for the US Climate Change Technology Program, site based measurements and geographic data were used to develop a three- pool, first-order kinetic model of global agricultural soil carbon (C) stock changes over 14 continental scale regions. This model was then used together with land use scenarios from the MiniCAM integrated assessment model in a global analysis of climate change mitigation options. MiniCAM evaluated mitigation strategies within a set of policy environments aimed at achieving atmospheric CO2 stabilization by 2100 under a suite of technology and development scenarios. Adoption of terrestrial sequestration practices is based on competition for land and economic markets for carbon. In the reference case with no climate policy, conversion of agricultural land from conventional cultivation to no tillage over the next century in the United States results in C sequestration of 7.6 to 59.8 Tg C yr-1, which doubles to 19.0 to 143.4 Tg C yr-1 under the most aggressive climate policy. Globally, with no carbon policy, agricultural C sequestration rates range from 75.2 to 18.2 Tg C yr-1 over the century, with the highest rates occurring in the first fifty years. Under the most aggressive global climate change policy, sequestration in agricultural soils reaches up to 190 Tg C yr-1 in the first 15 years. The contribution of agricultural soil C sequestration is a small fraction of the total global carbon offsets necessary to reach the stabilization targets (9 to 20 Gt C yr-1) by the end of the century. This integrated assessment provides decision makers with science-based estimates of the potential magnitude of terrestrial C sequestration relative to other greenhouse gas mitigation strategies in all sectors of the global economy. It also provides insight into the

  3. Effect of biochar on the extractability of heavy metals (Cd, Cu, Pb, and Zn) and enzyme activity in soil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Xing; Liu, Jingjing; McGrouther, Kim; Huang, Huagang; Lu, Kouping; Guo, Xi; He, Lizhi; Lin, Xiaoming; Che, Lei; Ye, Zhengqian; Wang, Hailong

    2016-01-01

    Biochar is a carbon-rich solid material derived from the pyrolysis of agricultural and forest residual biomass. Previous studies have shown that biochar is suitable as an adsorbent for soil contaminants such as heavy metals and consequently reduces their bioavailability. However, the long-term effect of different biochars on metal extractability or soil health has not been assessed. Therefore, a 1-year incubation experiment was carried out to investigate the effect of biochar produced from bamboo and rice straw (at temperatures ≥500 °C) on the heavy metal (cadmium (Cd), copper (Cu), lead (Pb), and zinc (Zn)) extractability and enzyme activity (urease, catalase, and acid phosphatase) in a contaminated sandy loam paddy soil. Three rates (0, 1, and 5%) and two mesh sizes (biochar applications were investigated. After incubation, the physicochemical properties, extractable heavy metals, available phosphorus, and enzyme activity of soil samples were analyzed. The results demonstrated that rice straw biochar significantly (P biochar significantly (P biochar application rate increased. The heavy metal extractability was significantly (P water-soluble organic carbon, and available phosphorus in soil. The 5% application rate of fine rice straw biochar resulted in the greatest reductions of extractable Cu and Zn, 97.3 and 62.2%, respectively. Both bamboo and rice straw biochar were more effective at decreasing extractable Cu and Pb than removing extractable Cd and Zn from the soil. Urease activity increased by 143 and 107% after the addition of 5% coarse and fine rice straw biochars, respectively. Both bamboo and rice straw biochars significantly (P biochar had greater potential as an amendment for reducing the bioavailability of heavy metals in soil than that of the bamboo biochar. The impact of biochar treatment on heavy metal extractability and enzyme activity varied with the biochar type, application rate, and particle size. PMID:25772863

  4. The Influence of Urban Soil Rehabilitation on Soil Carbon Dynamics, Greenhouse Gas Emission, and Stormwater Mitigation

    OpenAIRE

    Chen, Yujuan

    2013-01-01

    Global urbanization has resulted in rapidly increased urban land. Soils are the foundation that supports plant growth and human activities in urban areas. Furthermore, urban soils have potential to provide a carbon sink to mitigate greenhouse gas emission and climate change. However, typical urban land development practices including vegetation clearing, topsoil removal, stockpiling, compaction, grading and building result in degraded soils. In this work, we evaluated an urban soil rehabilita...

  5. How CO2 Leakage May Impact the Role of Geologic Carbon Storage in Climate Mitigation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peters, C. A.; Deng, H.; Bielicki, J. M.; Fitts, J. P.; Oppenheimer, M.

    2014-12-01

    Among CCUS technologies (Carbon Capture Utilization and Sequestration), geological storage of CO2 has a large potential to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions, but confidence in its deployment is often clouded by the possibility and cost of leakage. In this study, we took the Michigan sedimentary basin as an example to investigate the monetized risks associated with leakage, using the Risk Interference of Subsurface CO2 Storage (RISCS) model. The model accounts for spatial heterogeneity and variability of hydraulic properties of the subsurface system and permeability of potential leaking wells. In terms of costs, the model quantifies the financial consequences of CO2 escaping back to the atmosphere as well as the costs incurred if CO2 or brine leaks into overlying formations and interferes with other subsurface activities or resources. The monetized leakage risks derived from the RISCS model were then used to modify existing cost curves by shifting them upwards and changing their curvatures. The modified cost curves were used in the integrated assessment model - GCAM (Global Change Assessment Model), which provides policy-relevant results to help inform the potential role of CCUS in future energy systems when carbon mitigation targets and incentives are in place. The results showed that the extent of leakage risks has a significant effect on the extent of CCUS deployment. Under more stringent carbon mitigation policies such as a high carbon tax, higher leakage risks can be afforded and incorporating leakage risks will have a smaller impact on CCUS deployment. Alternatively, if the leakage risks were accounted for by charging a fixed premium, similar to how the risk of nuclear waste disposal is treated, the contribution of CCUS in mitigating climate change varies, depending on the value of the premium.

  6. Biochar application during reforestation alters species present and soil chemistry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Drake, J A; Carrucan, A; Jackson, W R; Cavagnaro, T R; Patti, A F

    2015-05-01

    Reforestation of landscapes is being used as a method for tackling climate change through carbon sequestration and land restoration, as well as increasing biodiversity and improving the provision of ecosystem services. The success of reforestation activities can be reduced by adverse field conditions, including those that reduce germination and survival of plants. One method for improving success is biochar addition to soil, which is not only known to improve soil carbon sequestration, but is also known to improve growth, health, germination and survival of plants. In this study, biochar was applied to soil at rates of 0, 1, 3 and 6 t ha(-1) along with a direct-seed forest species mix at three sites in western Victoria, Australia. Changes in soil chemistry, including total carbon, and germination and survival of species were measured over an 18 month period. Biochar was found to significantly increase total carbon by up to 15.6% on soils low in carbon, as well as alter electrical conductivity, Colwell phosphorous and nitrate- and ammonium-nitrogen. Biochar also increased the number of species present, and stem counts of Eucalyptus species whilst decreasing stem counts of Acacia species. Biochar has the potential to positively benefit reforestation activities, but site specific and plant-soil-biochar responses require targeted research. PMID:25679816

  7. Carrot, Corn, Lettuce and Soybean Nutrient Contents are Affected by Biochar

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biochar, the carbon-rich material remaining after pyrolysis of cellulosic and manure feedstocks, has the potential as a soil amendment to sequester carbon and to improve soil water-holding and nutrient properties- thereby enhancing plant growth. However, biochar produced from so...

  8. Potential of carbon mitigation by vertical axis wind turbines in urban regions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Popel, K.; Naterer, G.F. [Univ. of Ontario Inst. of Technology, Oshawa, ON (Canada)

    2009-07-01

    The environmental impact of climate change is quickly gaining momentum and its alleviation is of significant importance. Reducing pollutants such as carbon dioxide (CO{sub 2}) emissions is crucial to sustainability. Because of its emission-free operation, the capacity of wind power has expanded rapidly to make a significant contribution to global electricity generation. Specifically, a significant potential for vertical axis wind turbines (VAWTs) to provide small localized power generation in urban areas has not been fully utilized. This paper presented an investigation of the potential of carbon mitigation from urban residential wind power systems. Four different wind turbine designs were compared, in terms of greenhouse gas reduction and specific energy distribution of the wind resource. A case study was performed, investigating the CO{sub 2} mitigation that could be achieved through urban residential installations in Toronto. Results were presented to demonstrate that a VAWT covering one square metre, installed in half of Toronto residential dwellings, could mitigate between 29,193 and 138,741 tonnes of carbon dioxide per year. 36 refs., 1 tab., 3 figs.

  9. Biochar from swine manure solids: influence on carbon sequestration and Olsen phosphorus and mineral nitrogen dynamics in soil with and without digestate incorporation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rosa Marchetti

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available Interest in biochar (BC has grown dramatically in recent years, due mainly to the fact that its incorporation into soil reportedly enhances carbon sequestration and fertility. Currently, BC types most under investigation are those obtained from organic matter (OM of plant origin. As great amounts of manure solids are expected to become available in the near future, thanks to the development of technologies for the separation of the solid fraction of animal effluents, processing of manure solids for BC production seems an interesting possibility for the recycling of OM of high nutrient value. The aim of this study was to investigate carbon (C sequestration and nutrient dynamics in soil amended with BC from dried swine manure solids. The experiment was carried out in laboratory microcosms on a silty clay soil. The effect on nutrient dynamics of interaction between BC and fresh digestate obtained from a biogas plant was also investigated to test the hypothesis that BC can retain nutrients. A comparison was made of the following treatments: soil amended with swine manure solids (LC, soil amended with charred swine manure solids (LT, soil amended with wood chip (CC, soil amended with charred wood chip (CT, soil with no amendment as control (Cs, each one of them with and without incorporation of digestate (D for a total of 10 treatments. Biochar was obtained by treating OM (wood chip or swine manure with moisture content of less than 10% at 420°C in anoxic conditions. The CO2-C release and organic C, available phosphorus (P (Olsen P, POls and inorganic (ammonium+nitrate nitrogen (N (Nmin contents at the start and three months after the start of the experiment were measured in the amended and control soils. After three months of incubation at 30°C, the CO2-C emissions from soil with BC (CT and LT, ±D were the same as those in the control soil (Cs and were lower than those in the soils with untreated amendments (CC and LC, ±D. The organic C content

  10. Characteristics of and sorption to biochars derived from waste material

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Huichao; Kah, Melanie; Sigmund, Gabriel; Hofmann, Thilo

    2015-04-01

    Biochars can exhibit a high sorption potential towards heavy metals and organic contaminants in various environmental matrices (e.g., water, soil). They have therefore been proposed for environmental remediation purposes to sequester contaminants. To date, most studies have focused on the physicochemical and sorption properties of mineral phases poor biochars, which are typically produced from plant residues. Only little knowledge is available for biochars derived from human and animal waste material, which are typically characterized by high mineral contents (e.g., sewage sludge, manure). Using human and animal waste as source material to produce biochars would support the development of attractive combined strategies for waste management and remediation. The potential impact of mineral phases on the physicochemical and sorption properties of biochars requires further studies so that the potential as sorbent material can be evaluated. With this purpose, different source material biochars were produced at 200°C, 350°C and 500°C, to yield a series of biochars representing a range of mineral content. The derived biochars from wood shavings (environmental application. Single point sorption coefficients for the model sorbate pyrene were measured to investigate the effect of mineral content, feedstock, pyrolysis temperature, particle size fractions and acid demineralization on sorption behavior. Overall, sorption of pyrene was strong for all materials (4 pyrolysis temperature but there was no effect of particle size on sorption affinity. For mineral phase rich biochars, sorption generally increased after acid demineralization. When considering all materials together, the sorbent aromaticity (hydrogen-carbon ratio) was the most important factor controlling sorption of pyrene. Overall, the study demonstrates that biochars derived from human and animal waste material and exhibiting high mineral contents have potential for remediation applications.

  11. Influence of biochar on isoproturon partitioning and bioaccessibility in soil

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The influence of biochar (5%) on the loss, partitioning and bioaccessibility of 14C-isoproturon (14C-IPU) was evaluated. Results indicated that biochar had a dramatic effect upon 14C-IPU partitioning: 14C-IPU extractability (0.01 M CaCl2) in biochar-amended treatments was reduced to 14C-IPU extractability in biochar free treatments decreased with ageing from 90% to 40%. A partitioning model was constructed to derive an effective partition coefficient for biochar:water (KBW of 7.82 × 104 L kg−1). This was two orders of magnitude greater than the apparent Kfoc value of the soil organic carbon:water (631 L kg−1). 14C-radiorespirometry assays indicated high competence of microorganisms to mineralise 14C-IPU in the absence of biochar (40.3 ± 0.9%). Where biochar was present 14C-IPU mineralisation never exceeded 2%. These results indicate reduced herbicide bioaccessibility. Increasing IPU application to ×10 its recommended dose was ineffective at redressing IPU sequestration and its low bioaccessibility. Highlights: •Biochar had a dramatic effect on IPU partitioning. •IPU extractability was reduced to BW) was 7.82 × 104 L kg−1. •KBW was 124 times greater than the apparent Kfoc value of the control. •Biochar precluded microbial bioaccessibility – no catabolic response was observed. -- Biochar dramatically reduced 14C-IPU extractability (BW being ×123 greater than the apparent Kfoc. Correspondingly, microbial bioaccessibility of IPU was negligible

  12. Mimicking biochar-albedo feedback in complex Mediterranean agricultural landscapes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bozzi, E.; Genesio, L.; Toscano, P.; Pieri, M.; Miglietta, F.

    2015-08-01

    Incorporation of charcoal produced by biomass pyrolysis (biochar) in agricultural soils is a potentially sustainable strategy for climate change mitigation. However, some side effects of large-scale biochar application need to be investigated. In particular a massive use of a low-reflecting material on large cropland areas may impact the climate via changes in surface albedo. Twelve years of MODIS-derived albedo data were analysed for three pairs of selected agricultural sites in central Italy. In each pair bright and dark coloured soil were identified, mimicking the effect of biochar application on the land surface albedo of complex agricultural landscapes. Over this period vegetation canopies never completely masked differences in background soil colour. This soil signal, expressed as an albedo difference, induced a local instantaneous radiative forcing of up to 4.7 W m-2 during periods of high solar irradiance. Biochar mitigation potential might therefore be reduced up to ˜30%. This study proves the importance of accounting for crop phenology and crop management when assessing biochar mitigation potential and provides more insights into the analysis of its environmental feedback.

  13. Mimicking biochar-albedo feedback in complex Mediterranean agricultural landscapes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Incorporation of charcoal produced by biomass pyrolysis (biochar) in agricultural soils is a potentially sustainable strategy for climate change mitigation. However, some side effects of large-scale biochar application need to be investigated. In particular a massive use of a low-reflecting material on large cropland areas may impact the climate via changes in surface albedo. Twelve years of MODIS-derived albedo data were analysed for three pairs of selected agricultural sites in central Italy. In each pair bright and dark coloured soil were identified, mimicking the effect of biochar application on the land surface albedo of complex agricultural landscapes. Over this period vegetation canopies never completely masked differences in background soil colour. This soil signal, expressed as an albedo difference, induced a local instantaneous radiative forcing of up to 4.7 W m−2 during periods of high solar irradiance. Biochar mitigation potential might therefore be reduced up to ∼30%. This study proves the importance of accounting for crop phenology and crop management when assessing biochar mitigation potential and provides more insights into the analysis of its environmental feedback. (letter)

  14. Effect of biochar on aerobic processes, enzyme activity, and crop yields in two sandy loam soils

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sun, Zhencai; Bruun, Esben; Arthur, Emmanuel;

    2014-01-01

    Biochar added to agricultural soils may sequester carbon and improve physico-chemical conditions for crop growth, due to effects such as increased water and nutrient retention in the root zone. The effects of biochar on soil microbiological properties are less certain. We addressed the effects of...... in reference and biochar-amended soil plots.......Biochar added to agricultural soils may sequester carbon and improve physico-chemical conditions for crop growth, due to effects such as increased water and nutrient retention in the root zone. The effects of biochar on soil microbiological properties are less certain. We addressed the effects of...... wood-based biochar on soil respiration, water contents, potential ammonia oxidation (PAO), arylsulfatase activity (ASA), and crop yields at two temperate sandy loam soils under realistic field conditions. In situ soil respiration, PAO, and ASA were not significantly different in quadruplicate field...

  15. Mapping of soil organic carbon stocks for spatially explicit assessments of climate change mitigation potential

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Current methods for assessing soil organic carbon (SOC) stocks are generally not well suited for understanding variations in SOC stocks in landscapes. This is due to the tedious and time-consuming nature of the sampling methods most commonly used to collect bulk density cores, which limits repeatability across large areas, particularly where information is needed on the spatial dynamics of SOC stocks at scales relevant to management and for spatially explicit targeting of climate change mitigation options. In the current study, approaches were explored for (i) field-based estimates of SOC stocks and (ii) mapping of SOC stocks at moderate to high resolution on the basis of data from four widely contrasting ecosystems in East Africa. Estimated SOC stocks for 0–30 cm depth varied both within and between sites, with site averages ranging from 2 to 8 kg m−2. The differences in SOC stocks were determined in part by rainfall, but more importantly by sand content. Results also indicate that managing soil erosion is a key strategy for reducing SOC loss and hence in mitigation of climate change in these landscapes. Further, maps were developed on the basis of satellite image reflectance data with multiple R-squared values of 0.65 for the independent validation data set, showing variations in SOC stocks across these landscapes. These maps allow for spatially explicit targeting of potential climate change mitigation efforts through soil carbon sequestration, which is one option for climate change mitigation and adaptation. Further, the maps can be used to monitor the impacts of such mitigation efforts over time. (letter)

  16. Assessing the influence of compost and biochar amendments on the mobility and toxicity of metals and arsenic in a naturally contaminated mine soil

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Amending contaminated soils with organic wastes can influence trace element mobility and toxicity. Soluble concentrations of metals and arsenic were measured in pore water and aqueous soil extracts following the amendment of a heavily contaminated mine soil with compost and biochar (10% v:v) in a pot experiment. Speciation modelling and toxicity assays (Vibrio fischeri luminescence inhibition and Lolium perenne germination) were performed to discriminate mechanisms controlling metal mobility and assess toxicity risk thereafter. Biochar reduced free metal concentrations furthest but dissolved organic carbon primarily controlled metal mobility after compost amendment. Individually, both amendments induced considerable solubilisation of arsenic to pore water (>2500 μg l−1) related to pH and soluble phosphate but combining amendments most effectively reduced toxicity due to simultaneous reductions in extractable metals and increases in soluble nutrients (P). Thus the measure–monitor-model approach taken determined that combining the amendments was most effective at mitigating attendant toxicity risk. -- Highlights: • Compost and biochar addition to a mine soil decreased metal solubility. • Inorganic arsenic solubility was increased furthest by compost alone. • Combining amendments most effectively reduced toxicity, assessed by bio-assays. • Field study should verify the efficacy of the amendment in the longer term. -- Individual compost and biochar amendments to a contaminated mine soil decreased metal and increased arsenic solubility, but combining amendments most effectively reduced toxicity

  17. Long-term effects assessment of biochar to remediate heavy-metals contaminated soils,

    OpenAIRE

    Rees, Frédéric; Morel, Jean-Louis; Simonnot, Marie-Odile

    2012-01-01

    Biochar, the residual solid of biomass pyrolysis, has recently drained considerable attention as a potential carbon sequestration agent in soils due to its high recalcitrance to biodegradation as long as a low-cost soil quality improver to increase plant growth 1. Recent studies suggest also biochar ability to immobilize heavy metals in soils and thus to reduce the toxic impact of these elements 2–4. However, the sorption mechanisms and reversibility degree of biochar effects for the remediat...

  18. Biochar can be used to recapture essential nutrients from dairy wastewater and improve soil quality

    OpenAIRE

    Ghezzehei, T. A.; D. V. Sarkhot; Berhe, A. A.

    2014-01-01

    Recently, the potential for biochar use to recapture excess nutrients from dairy wastewater has been a focus of a growing number of studies. It is suggested that biochar produced from locally available waste biomass can be important in reducing release of excess nutrient elements from agricultural runoff, improving soil productivity, and long-term carbon (C) sequestration. Here we present a review of a new approach that is showing promise for the use of biochar for nutrie...

  19. Direct and Indirect Short-term Effects of Biochar on Physical Characteristics of an Arable Sandy Loam

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sun, Zhencai; Moldrup, Per; Elsgaard, Lars;

    2013-01-01

    Biochar addition to agricultural soil is reported in several studies to reduce climate gas emissions, boost carbon storage, and improve soil fertility and crop productivity. These effects may be partly related to soil physical changes resulting from biochar amendment, but knowledge of how biochar...... experiment on an arable sandy loam that included four reference plots without biochar and four plots with 20 tons ha(-1) biochar incorporated into the upper 20 cm 7 months before sampling. Water retention was measured at matric potentials ranging from wet (pF 1.0) to extremely dry conditions (pF similar to 6...

  20. Biochar treatment resulted in a combined effect on soybean growth promotion and a shift in plant growth promoting rhizobacteria

    OpenAIRE

    Dilfuza eEgamberdieva; Stephan eWirth; Undine eBehrendt; Elsayed eAbd_Allah; Gabriele eBerg

    2016-01-01

    The application of biochar to soil is considered to have the potential for long-term soil carbon sequestration, as well as for improving plant growth and suppressing soil pathogens. In our study we evaluated the effect of biochar on the plant growth of soybeans, as well as on the composition of root-associated bacteria with plant growth promoting traits. Two types of biochar, namely, maize biochar (MBC), wood biochar (WBC), and hydrochar (HTC) were used for pot experiments to monitor plant gr...

  1. Adsorption of selected endocrine disrupting compounds and pharmaceuticals on activated biochars.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jung, Chanil; Park, Junyeong; Lim, Kwang Hun; Park, Sunkyu; Heo, Jiyong; Her, Namguk; Oh, Jeill; Yun, Soyoung; Yoon, Yeomin

    2013-12-15

    Chemically activated biochar produced under oxygenated (O-biochar) and oxygen-free (N-biochar) conditions were characterized and the adsorption of endocrine disrupting compounds (EDCs): bisphenol A (BPA), atrazine (ATR), 17 α-ethinylestradiol (EE2), and pharmaceutical active compounds (PhACs); sulfamethoxazole (SMX), carbamazepine (CBM), diclofenac (DCF), ibuprofen (IBP) on both biochars and commercialized powdered activated carbon (PAC) were investigated. Characteristic analysis of adsorbents by solid-state nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) was conducted to determine better understanding about the EDCs/PhACs adsorption. N-biochar consisted of higher polarity moieties with more alkyl (0-45 ppm), methoxyl (45-63 ppm), O-alkyl (63-108 ppm), and carboxyl carbon (165-187 ppm) content than other adsorbents, while aromaticity of O-biochar was higher than that of N-biochar. O-biochar was composed mostly of aromatic moieties, with low H/C and O/C ratios compared to the highly polarized N-biochar that contained diverse polar functional groups. The higher surface area and pore volume of N-biochar resulted in higher adsorption capacity toward EDCs/PhACs along with atomic-level molecular structural property than O-biochar and PAC. N-biochar had a highest adsorption capacity of all chemicals, suggesting that N-biochar derived from loblolly pine chip is a promising sorbent for agricultural and environmental applications. The adsorption of pH-sensitive dissociable SMX, DCF, IBP, and BPA varied and the order of adsorption capacity was correlated with the hydrophobicity (Kow) of adsorbates throughout the all adsorbents, whereas adsorption of non-ionizable CBM, ATR, and EE2 in varied pH allowed adsorbents to interact with hydrophobic property of adsorbates steadily throughout the study. PMID:24231319

  2. Fundamental and molecular composition characteristics of biochars produced from sugarcane and rice crop residues and by-products.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jeong, Chang Yoon; Dodla, Syam K; Wang, Jim J

    2016-01-01

    Biochar conversion of sugarcane and rice harvest residues provides an alternative for managing these crop residues that are traditionally burned in open field. Sugarcane leaves, bagasse, rice straw and husk were converted to biochar at four pyrolysis temperatures (PTs) of 450 °C, 550 °C, 650 °C, and 750 °C and evaluated for various elemental, molecular and surface properties. The carbon content of biochars was highest for those produced at 650-750 °C. Biochars produced at 550 °C showed the characteristics of biochar that are commonly interpreted as being stable in soil, with low H/C and O/C ratios and pyrolysis fingerprints dominated by aromatic and polyaromatic hydrocarbons. At 550 °C, all biochars also exhibited maximum CEC values with sugarcane leaves biochar (SLB) > sugarcane bagasse biochar (SBB) > rice straw biochar (RSB) > rice husk biochar (RHB). The pore size distribution of biochars was dominated by pores of 20 nm and high PT increased both smaller and larger than 50 nm pores. Water holding capacity of biochars increased with PT but the magnitude of the increase was limited by feedstock types, likely related to the hydrophobicity of biochars as evident by molecular composition, besides pore volume properties of biochars. Py-GC/MS analysis revealed a clear destruction of lignin with decarboxylation and demethoxylation at 450 °C and dehydroxylation at above 550 °C. Overall, biochar molecular compositions became similar as PT increased, and the biochars produced at 550 °C demonstrated characteristics that have potential benefit as soil amendment for improving both C sequestration and nutrient dynamics. PMID:26058554

  3. Tracking airborne CO2 mitigation and low cost transformation into valuable carbon nanotubes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ren, Jiawen; Licht, Stuart

    2016-01-01

    Primary evidence of the direct uptake of atmospheric CO2 and direct transformation into carbon nanotubes, CNTs, is demonstrated through isotopic labeling, and provides a new high yield route to mitigate this greenhouse gas. CO2 is converted directly to CNTs and does not require pre-concentration of the airbone CO2. This C2CNT (CO2 to carbon nanotube) synthesis transforms CO2-gas dissolved in a 750 °C molten Li2CO3, by electrolysis, into O2-gas at a nickel electrode, and at a steel cathode into CNTs or carbon or nanofibers, CNFs. CNTs are synthesized at a 100-fold price reduction compared to conventional chemical vapour deposition, CVD, synthesis. The low cost conversion to a stable, value-added commodity incentivizes CO2 removal to mitigate climate change. The synthesis allows morphology control at the liquid/solid interface that is not available through conventional CVD synthesis at the gas/solid interface. Natural abundance (12)CO2 forms hollow CNTs, while equivalent synthetic conditions with heavier (13)CO2 favours closed core CNFs, as characterized by Raman, SEM and TEM. Production ease is demonstrated by the first synthesis of a pure (13)C multiwalled carbon nanofiber. PMID:27279594

  4. Tracking airborne CO2 mitigation and low cost transformation into valuable carbon nanotubes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ren, Jiawen; Licht, Stuart

    2016-06-01

    Primary evidence of the direct uptake of atmospheric CO2 and direct transformation into carbon nanotubes, CNTs, is demonstrated through isotopic labeling, and provides a new high yield route to mitigate this greenhouse gas. CO2 is converted directly to CNTs and does not require pre-concentration of the airbone CO2. This C2CNT (CO2 to carbon nanotube) synthesis transforms CO2-gas dissolved in a 750 °C molten Li2CO3, by electrolysis, into O2-gas at a nickel electrode, and at a steel cathode into CNTs or carbon or nanofibers, CNFs. CNTs are synthesized at a 100-fold price reduction compared to conventional chemical vapour deposition, CVD, synthesis. The low cost conversion to a stable, value-added commodity incentivizes CO2 removal to mitigate climate change. The synthesis allows morphology control at the liquid/solid interface that is not available through conventional CVD synthesis at the gas/solid interface. Natural abundance 12CO2 forms hollow CNTs, while equivalent synthetic conditions with heavier 13CO2 favours closed core CNFs, as characterized by Raman, SEM and TEM. Production ease is demonstrated by the first synthesis of a pure 13C multiwalled carbon nanofiber.

  5. Hydrogen peroxide modification enhances the ability of biochar (hydrochar) produced from hydrothermal carbonization of peanut hull to remove aqueous heavy metals: Batch and column tests

    Science.gov (United States)

    Experimental and modeling investigations were conducted to examine the effect of hydrogen peroxide treatment on hydrothermally produced biochar (hydrochar) from peanut hull to remove aqueous heavy metals. Characterization measurements showed that hydrogen peroxide modification increased the oxygen-c...

  6. The costs of mitigating carbon emissions in China: findings from China MARKAL-MACRO modeling

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    In this paper MARKAL-MACRO, an integrated energy-environment-economy model, is used to generate China's reference scenario for future energy development and carbon emission through the year 2050. The results show that with great efforts on structure adjustment, energy efficiency improvement and energy substitution, China's primary energy consumption is expected to be 4818 Mtce and carbon emission 2394 MtC by 2050 with annual decrease rate of 3% for the carbon intensity per GDP during the period 2000-2050. On the basis of this reference scenario, China's marginal abatement cost curves of carbon for the year 2010, 2020 and 2030 are derived from the model, and the impacts of carbon emission abatement on GDP are also simulated. The results are compared with those from other sources. The research shows that the marginal abatement costs vary from 12US$/tC to 216US$/tC and the rates of GDP losses relative to reference range from 0.1% to 2.54% for the reduction rates between 5% and 45%. Both the marginal abatement costs and the rates of GDP losses further enlarge on condition that the maximum capacity of nuclear power is constrained to 240 GW or 160 GW by 2050. The paper concludes that China's costs of carbon abatement is rather high in case of carbon emissions are further cut beyond the reference scenario, and China's carbon abatement room is limited due to her coal-dominant energy resource characteristic. As economic development still remains the priority and per capita income as well as per capita carbon emission are far below the world average, it will be more realistic for China to make continuous contributions to combating global climate change by implementing sustainable development strategy domestically and playing an active role in the international carbon mitigation cooperation mechanisms rather than accepting a carbon emission ceiling

  7. The potential contribution to climate change mitigation from temporary carbon storage in biomaterials

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jørgensen, Susanne Vedel; Hauschild, Michael Zwicky; Nielsen, Per H.

    2015-01-01

    While lasting mitigation solutions are needed to avoid climate change in the long term, temporary solutions may play a positive role in terms of avoiding certain climatic target levels, for preventing the crossing of critical and perhaps irreversible climatic tipping points. While the potential v...... the long-term climate change impacts given by the global warming potential which does not account for temporary aspects like benefits from non-permanent storage in terms of avoiding a critical climatic target level.......While lasting mitigation solutions are needed to avoid climate change in the long term, temporary solutions may play a positive role in terms of avoiding certain climatic target levels, for preventing the crossing of critical and perhaps irreversible climatic tipping points. While the potential...... value of temporary carbon storage in terms of climate change mitigation has been widely discussed, this has not yet been directly coupled to avoiding climatic target levels representing predicted climatic tipping points. This paper provides recommendations on how to model temporary carbon storage in...

  8. Immobilization of Pb and Cu in polluted soil by superphosphate, multi-walled carbon nanotube, rice straw and its derived biochar.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rizwan, Muhammad Shahid; Imtiaz, Muhammad; Huang, Guoyong; Chhajro, Muhammad Afzal; Liu, Yonghong; Fu, Qingling; Zhu, Jun; Ashraf, Muhammad; Zafar, Mohsin; Bashir, Saqib; Hu, Hongqing

    2016-08-01

    Lead (Pb) and copper (Cu) contamination in croplands pose severe health hazards and environmental concerns throughout soil-food chain transfer. In the present study, BCR, TCLP, CaCl2, and SBET techniques were employed to evaluate the simultaneous effectiveness of rice straw (RS) and its derived biochar (BC), multiwall carbon nanotube (MWCNT), and single superphosphate (SSP) to immobilize the Pb and Cu in co-contaminated soil. The BCR sequential extraction results suggested that with increasing BC and SSP amount, the acid-soluble fractions decreased while oxidizable and residual proportions of Pb and Cu were increased significantly. Compared to SSP, the application of BC amendment substantially modified partitioning of Cu from easily exchangeable phase to less bioavailable residual bound fraction. The immobilized Pb and Cu were mainly transformed to reducible forms. The TCLP and CaCl2-extracted Pb and Cu were reduced significantly by the addition of BC compared to RS and MWCNT, whereas the bio-accessibility of Pb significantly reduced with RS addition. SSP showed better results for Pb immobilization while marginal for Cu in co-contaminated soil. Overall, the addition of BC offered the best results and could be effective in both Pb and Cu immobilization thereby reducing their mobility and bioavailability in the co-contaminated soil. PMID:27121017

  9. Co-composted biochar can promote plant growth by serving as a nutrient carrier: first mechanistic insights

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kammann, Claudia; Haider, Ghulam; Messerschmidt, Nicole; Schmidt, Hans-Peter; Koyro, Hans-Werner; Steffens, Diedrich; Clough, Timothy; Müller, Christoph

    2014-05-01

    Pyrogenic carbon (biochar) offers considerable potential for carbon capture (CCSS) and soil storage and meta-analysis suggests that it can significantly reduce soil N2O emissions. Freshly produced biochars, however, do not always have yield-improving effects; pure, production-fresh biochar seems to 'claim' some nutrients initially from soil, particularly nitrogen, although the mechanisms are unclear to date. Hence, combining biochar with organic nutrient-rich materials and waste streams may be a promising strategy to enable CCSS by yield improvements, which may enable economically feasible biochar use in agriculture. We explored the potential of organically post-treated biochar to act as a nutrient carrier and thus to increase its socio-economic value as beneficial soil amendment with associated CCSS value. In a first proof-of-concept study the effects of untreated biochar were compared to those of co-composted biochar, combined with stepwise improved nutritional regimes (+/- compost; +/- mineral-N application). While the untreated biochar reduced plant growth under N-limiting conditions, or at best did not reduce it, the co-composted biochar always significantly stimulated plant growth. The relative stimulation was largest with the lowest nutrient additions (305% versus 61% of control with untreated biochar). Subsequent electro-ultra-filtration analyses revealed that the co-composted but not the untreated biochar carried considerable amounts of easily extractable as well as more strongly sorbed plant nutrients, in particular nitrate and phosphorus. Nevertheless the co-composted N-rich biochar still sorbed 15N labelled NH4+ or NO3- when present in the soil, and again released it to growing barley plants. We will report on the relationship between particle size, increased nutrient content, and plant accessibility of the nutrients associated with the co-composted biochar, and analyse the extent to which the strongly sorbed nutrients on the biochar may be 'invisible

  10. Carbon flows and economic evaluation of mitigation options in Tanzania's forest sector

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This paper presents estimates of the rate of forest use, deforestation and forest degradation, as well as the corresponding carbon flows, in the Tanzanian forest sector. It is estimated that the country lost 525,000 ha of forests in 1990, with associated committed emissions of 31.5 Mt carbon (MtC), and 7.05 MtC of committed carbon sequestration. The paper then describes the possible response options in the forest sector to mitigate GHG emissions, and evaluates the most stable subset of these - i.e. forest conservation, woodfuel plantations and agroforestry. The conservation options were found to cost an average of US$1.27 per tonne of carbon (tC) conserved. Five options for fuelwood plantations and agroforestry, with two different ownership regimes were evaluated. Each one of the options gives a positive net present value at low rates of discount, ranging from U.S.$1.06 to 3.4/tC of avoided emissions at 0% discount rate. At 10% discount, the eucalyptus and maize option has a highest PNV of U.S.$1.73/tC, and the government plantation gives a negative PNV (loss) of U.S.$ 0.13 tC sequestered. The options with a private/community type of ownership scheme fared better than government run options. This conclusion also held true when ranking the options by the BRAC indicator, with the government fuelwood plantation ranked the lowest, and the private agroforestry option of eucalyptus and corn performing best. The mitigation options evaluated here show that the forest sector in Tanzania has one of the most cost-effective GHG mitigation opportunities in the world, and they are within the development aspirations of the country. (Author)

  11. Influence of biochar amendments on marine sediment trace metal bioavailability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gehrke, G. E.; Hsu-Kim, H.

    2014-12-01

    Biochar has become a desirable material for use in agricultural application to enhance soil quality and in-situ soil and sediment remediation to immobilize organic contaminants. We investigated the effects of biochar sediment amendments on the bioavailability of a suite of inorganic trace metals (Cr, Co, Ni, Cu, Zn, Pb) in contaminated sediments from multiple sites in Elizabeth River, VA. We incubated sediments in microcosms with a variety of water column redox and salinity conditions and compared sediments amended with two types of woody biochar to sediments amended with charcoal activated carbon and unamended sediments. We leached sediments in artificial gut fluid mimic of the benthic invertebrate Arenicola marina as a measure of bioavailability of the trace metals analyzed. In unamended anaerobic sediments, the gut fluid mimic leachable fraction of each trace metal is 1-4% of the total sediment concentration for each metal. Initial results indicate that in anaerobic microcosms, woody biochar sediment amendments (added to 5% dry wt) decrease the gut fluid mimic leachable fraction by 30-90% for all trace metals analyzed, and have comparable performance to charcoal activated carbon amendments. However, in microcosms without controlled redox conditions, woody biochar amendments increase the bioavailable fraction of Ni and Cu by up to 80%, while decreasing the bioavailable fraction of Co, Zn, and Pb by approximately 50%; charcoal activated carbon amendments decreased the bioavailability of all trace metals analyzed by approximately 20%. In microcosms without an overlying water column, biochar and activated carbon amendments had no significant effects on trace metal bioavailability. This research demonstrates that biochar can effectively decrease the bioavailability of trace metals in marine sediments, but its efficiency is metal-specific, and environmental conditions impact biochar performance.

  12. Biochar amendment and greenhouse gas emissions from agricultural soils

    OpenAIRE

    Case, Sean

    2013-01-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of biochar amendment on soil greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and to elucidate the mechanisms behind these effects. I investigated the suppression of soil carbon dioxide (CO2) and nitrous oxide (N2O) emissions in a bioenergy and arable crop soil, at a range of temperatures and with or without wetting/drying cycles. More detailed investigation on the underlying mechanisms focused on soil N2O emissions. I tested how biochar alter...

  13. Biochar and Plant Growth Promoting Rhizobacteria as Soil Amendments

    OpenAIRE

    Hale, Lauren Elizabeth

    2014-01-01

    The notion of introducing biochar into soil for carbon sequestration provides the impetus for studying these materials as inoculum carriers. For this goal I assessed the survival of plant growth promoting rhizobacteria (PGPR) introduced into natural soils after pre-inoculation onto biochar materials. First, molecular and culture-based methods, which involved the use of a green fluorescent protein (GFP) marker, were developed to track the introduced bacterial strain. The key findings of a case...

  14. The Potential Benefits and Limitations of Corn Cob and Sewage Sludge Biochars in an Infertile Oxisol

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jonathan L. Deenik

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available The thermal conversion of sewage sludge to biochar offers a promising alternative use for a hazardous waste material with potential benefits to agricultural productivity and soil quality. Three short-term greenhouse experiments were conducted to evaluate the effect of corn cob (CC and sewage sludge (SS biochars, with their anaerobically treated counterparts, on soil properties and plant growth in an infertile Oxisol. The anaerobically treated SS biochar showed the greatest concentration of bioavailable essential nutrients, but treatment only resulted in increased yields for the SS biochar in the first crop in the absence of added fertilizer. Both CC and SS biochars in combination with fertilizer doubled plant growth compared to the control in the first crop cycle, produced no significant effect in the second cycle, and more than tripled plant growth for the SS biochars in the third cycle. High ash content with high nutrient contributions (especially P and a persistent liming effect explain the benefits of the SS biochars to plant growth. The SS biochar showed promise in mitigating the negative effects of soil Mn toxicity. Sewage sludge biochars reduced Cd bioavailability and had no significant effect on the bioavailability of other potentially toxic metals compared to the control.

  15. Assessment of herbicide sorption by biochars and organic matter associated with soil and sediment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sorption of two herbicides, fluridone (FLUN) and norflurazon (NORO), by two types of biochars, whole sediment, and various soil/sediment organic matter (OM) fractions including nonhydrolyzable carbon (NHC), black carbon (BC) and humic acid (HA) was examined. The single-point organic carbon (OC)-normalized distribution coefficients (KOC) of FLUN and NORO at low solution concentration (Ce = 0.01SW, solubility) for HA, NHC, and BC were about 3, 14, and 24 times and 3, 16, and 36 times larger than their bulk sediments, respectively, indicating the importance of different OM fractions in herbicide sorption. This study revealed that aliphatic moieties of the hydrothermal biochars and aromatic moieties of NHC samples, respectively, were possibly responsible for herbicide sorption. The hydrothermal biochar and condensed OM (i.e., NHC and BC) showed relatively high or similar herbicide sorption efficiency compared to the thermal biochar, suggesting that the hydrothermal biochar may serve as an amendment for minimizing off-site herbicide movement. - Highlights: ► Sorption of fluridone and norflurazon by biochars and organic matter was determined. ► Structural difference of biochars and organic matter affects herbicide sorption. ► Hydrothermal biochar is preferred as amendment for minimizing herbicide movement. - Hydrothermal biochars had relatively high herbicide sorption capacity and may be used as an amendment for minimizing off-site herbicide movement.

  16. Removal of phosphate from aqueous solution by biochar derived from anaerobically digested sugar beet tailings.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yao, Ying; Gao, Bin; Inyang, Mandu; Zimmerman, Andrew R; Cao, Xinde; Pullammanappallil, Pratap; Yang, Liuyan

    2011-06-15

    Biochar converted from agricultural residues or other carbon-rich wastes may provide new methods and materials for environmental management, particularly with respect to carbon sequestration and contaminant remediation. In this study, laboratory experiments were conducted to investigate the removal of phosphate from aqueous solution by biochar derived from anaerobically digested sugar beet tailings (DSTC). Batch adsorption kinetic and equilibrium isotherm experiments and post-adsorption characterizations using SEM-EDS, XRD, and FTIR suggested that colloidal and nano-sized MgO (periclase) particles on the biochar surface were the main adsorption sites for aqueous phosphate. Batch adsorption experiments also showed that both initial solution pH and coexisting anions could affect the adsorption of phosphate onto the DSTC biochar. Of the mathematical models used to describe the adsorption kinetics of phosphate removal by the biochar, the Ritchie N_th-order (N=1.14) model showed the best fit. Two heterogeneous isotherm models (Freundlich and Langmuir-Freundlich) fitted the experimental isotherm of phosphate adsorption onto the biochar better than the Langmuir adsorption model. Our results suggest that biochar converted from anaerobically digested sugar beet tailings is a promising alternative adsorbent, which can be used to reclaim phosphate from water or reduce phosphate leaching from fertilized soils. In addition, there is no need to regenerate the exhausted biochar because the phosphate-laden biochar contains abundance of valuable nutrients, which may be used as a slow-release fertilizer to enhance soil fertility and to sequester carbon. PMID:21497441

  17. Amending greenroof soil with biochar to affect runoff water quantity and quality

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Numbers of greenroofs in urban areas continue to grow internationally; so designing greenroof soil to reduce the amount of nutrients in the stormwater runoff from these roofs is becoming essential. This study evaluated changes in extensive greenroof water discharge quality and quantity after adding biochar, a soil amendment promoted for its ability to retain nutrients in soils and increase soil fertility. Prototype greenroof trays with and without biochar were planted with sedum or ryegrass, with barren soil trays used as controls. The greenroof trays were subjected to two sequential 7.4 cm/h rainfall events using a rain simulator. Runoff from the rain events was collected and evaluated. Trays containing 7% biochar showed increased water retention and significant decreases in discharge of total nitrogen, total phosphorus, nitrate, phosphate, and organic carbon. The addition of biochar to greenroof soil improves both runoff water quality and retention. - Highlights: → Biochar in green roof soil reduces nitrogen and phosphorus in the runoff. → Addition of biochar reduces turbidity of runoff. → Addition of biochar reduces total organic carbon content in runoff by 67-72%. → Biochar improves water retention of saturated soil. - In this controlled laboratory experiment, greenroof soil was amended by the addition of biochar, which reduced the water runoff concentration of nitrogen, phosphorus, and organic carbon.

  18. Nitrous oxide emission reduction in temperate biochar-amended soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    Felber, R.; Hüppi, R.; Leifeld, J.; Neftel, A.

    2012-01-01

    Biochar, a pyrolysis product of organic residues, is an amendment for agricultural soils to improve soil fertility, sequester CO2 and reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. In highly weathered tropical soils laboratory incubations of soil-biochar mixtures revealed substantial reductions for nitrous oxide (N2O) and carbon dioxide (CO2). In contrast, evidence is scarce for temperate soils. In a three-factorial laboratory incubation experiment two different temperate agricultural soils were amended with green waste and coffee grounds biochar. N2O and CO2 emissions were measured at the beginning and end of a three month incubation. The experiments were conducted under three different conditions (no additional nutrients, glucose addition, and nitrate and glucose addition) representing different field conditions. We found mean N2O emission reductions of 60 % compared to soils without addition of biochar. The reduction depended on biochar type and soil type as well as on the age of the samples. CO2 emissions were slightly reduced, too. NO3- but not NH4+ concentrations were significantly reduced shortly after biochar incorporation. Despite the highly significant suppression of N2O emissions biochar effects should not be transferred one-to-one to field conditions but need to be tested accordingly.

  19. Nitrous oxide emission reduction in temperate biochar-amended soils

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. Felber

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Biochar, a pyrolysis product of organic residues, is an amendment for agricultural soils to improve soil fertility, sequester CO2 and reduce greenhouse gas (GHG emissions. In highly weathered tropical soils laboratory incubations of soil-biochar mixtures revealed substantial reductions for nitrous oxide (N2O and carbon dioxide (CO2. In contrast, evidence is scarce for temperate soils. In a three-factorial laboratory incubation experiment two different temperate agricultural soils were amended with green waste and coffee grounds biochar. N2O and CO2 emissions were measured at the beginning and end of a three month incubation. The experiments were conducted under three different conditions (no additional nutrients, glucose addition, and nitrate and glucose addition representing different field conditions. We found mean N2O emission reductions of 60 % compared to soils without addition of biochar. The reduction depended on biochar type and soil type as well as on the age of the samples. CO2 emissions were slightly reduced, too. NO3 but not NH4+ concentrations were significantly reduced shortly after biochar incorporation. Despite the highly significant suppression of N2O emissions biochar effects should not be transferred one-to-one to field conditions but need to be tested accordingly.

  20. Interactive effects of biochar ageing in soils related to feedstock, pyrolysis temperature, and historic charcoal production.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heitkötter, Julian; Marschner, Bernd

    2015-04-01

    Biochar is suggested for soil amelioration and carbon sequestration, based on its assumed role as the key factor for the long-term fertility of Terra preta soils. Several studies have shown that certain biochar properties can undergo changes through ageing processes, especially regarding charge characteristics. However, only a few studies determined the changes of different biochars under the same incubation conditions and in different soils. The objective of this study was to characterize the changes of pine chip (PC)- and corn digestate (CD)-derived biochars pyrolyzed at 400 or 600 °C during 100 days of laboratory incubation in a historical kiln soil and an adjacent control soil. Separation between soil and biochar was ensured by using mesh bags. Especially, changes in charge characteristics depended on initial biochar properties affected by feedstock and pyrolysis temperature and on soil properties affected by historic charcoal production. While the cation exchange capacity (CEC) markedly increased for both CD biochars during incubation, PC biochars showed no or only slight increases in CEC. Corresponding to the changes in CEC, ageing of biochars also increased the amount of acid functional groups with increases being in average about 2-fold higher in CD biochars than in PC biochars. Further and in contrast to other studies, the surface areas of biochars increased during ageing, likely due to ash leaching and degradation of tar residues. Changes in CEC and surface acidity of CD biochars were more pronounced after incubation in the control soil, while surface area increase was higher in the kiln soil. Since the two acidic forest soils used in this this study did not greatly differ in physical or chemical properties, the main process for inducing these differences in the buried biochar most likely is related to the differences in dissolved organic carbon (DOC). Although the kiln soil contained about 50% more soil organic carbon due to the presence of charcoal

  1. Characterization, stability, and plant effects of kiln-produced wheat straw biochar.

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Toole, A; Knoth de Zarruk, K; Steffens, M; Rasse, D P

    2013-01-01

    Biochar is a promising technology for improving soil quality and sequestering C in the long term. Although modern pyrolysis technologies are being developed, kiln technologies often remain the most accessible method for biochar production. The objective of the present study was to assess biochar characteristics, stability in soil, and agronomic effects of a kiln-produced biochar. Wheat-straw biochar was produced in a double-barrel kiln and analyzed by solid-state C nuclear magneticresonance spectroscopy. Two experiments were conducted with biochar mixed into an Ap-horizon sandy loam. In the first experiment, CO efflux was monitored for 3 mo in plant-free soil columns across four treatments (0, 10, 50, and 100 Mg biochar ha). In the second experiment, ryegrass was grown in pots having received 17 and 54 Mg biochar ha combined with four N rates from 144 to 288 kg N ha. Our kiln method generated a wheat-straw biochar with carbon content composed of 92% of aromatic structures. Our results suggest that the biochar lost impact on ryegrass yields. PMID:23673835

  2. Biochar pyrolyzed at two temperatures affects Escherichia coli transport through a sandy soil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bolster, Carl H; Abit, Sergio M

    2012-01-01

    The incorporation of biochar into soils has been proposed as a means to sequester carbon from the atmosphere. An added environmental benefit is that biochar has also been shown to increase soil retention of nutrients, heavy metals, and pesticides. The goal of this study was to evaluate whether biochar amendments affect the transport of Escherichia coli through a water-saturated soil. We looked at the transport of three E. coli isolates through 10-cm columns packed with a fine sandy soil amended with 2 or 10% (w/w) poultry litter biochar pyrolyzed at 350 or 700°C. For all three isolates, mixing the high-temperature biochar at a rate of 2% into the soil had no impact on transport behavior. When added at a rate of 10%, a reduction of five orders of magnitude in the amount of E. coli transported through the soil was observed for two of the isolates, and a 60% reduction was observed for the third isolate. Mixing the low-temperature biochar into the soil resulted in enhanced transport through the soil for two of the isolates, whereas no significant differences in transport behavior were observed between the low-temperature and high-temperature biochar amendments for one isolate. Our results show that the addition of biochar can affect the retention and transport behavior of E. coli and that biochar application rate, biochar pyrolysis temperature, and bacterial surface characteristics were important factors determining the transport of E. coli through our test soil. PMID:22218181

  3. Understanding the contribution of non-carbon dioxide gases in deep mitigation scenarios

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gernaat, David; Calvin, Katherine V.; Lucas, Paul; Luderer, Gunnar; Otto, Sander; Rao, Shilpa; Strefler, Jessica; Van Vuuren, Detlef

    2015-07-01

    The combined 2010 emissions of methane (CH4), nitrous oxide (N2O) and the fluorinated gasses (F-gas) account for about 20-30% of total emissions and about 30% of radiative forcing. At the moment, most studies looking at reaching ambitious climate targets project the emission of carbon dioxide (CO2) to be reduced to zero (or less) by the end of the century. As for non-CO2 gases, the mitigation potential seem to be more constrained, we find that by the end of the century in the current deep mitigation scenarios non-CO2 emissions could form the lion’s share of remaining greenhouse gas emissions. In order to support effective climate policy strategies, in this paper we provide a more in-depth look at the role of non-CO2¬ emission sources (CH4, N2O and F-gases) in achieving deep mitigation targets (radiative forcing target of 2.8 W/m2 in 2100). Specifically, we look at the sectorial mitigation potential and the remaining non-CO2 emissions. By including a set of different models, we provide some insights into the associated uncertainty. Most of the remaining methane emissions in 2100 in the climate mitigation scenario come from the livestock sector. Strong reductions are seen in the energy supply sector across all models. For N2O, less reduction potential is seen compared to methane and the sectoral differences are larger between the models. The paper shows that the assumptions on remaining non-CO2 emissions are critical for the feasibility of reaching ambitious climate targets and the associated costs.

  4. Mitigation potential of carbon dioxide emissions by management of forests in Asia

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Substantial areas of available forest lands in Asia could be managed for conservation and sequestration of carbon. These include 133 Mha for establishment of plantations and agroforests, 33.5 Mha for slowed tropical deforestation, and 48 Mha for natural and assisted regeneration of tropical forests. The potential quantity of C conserved and sequestered on these lands was conservatively estimated to be 24 Pg C (1 Pg = 1015 g) by 2050. Establishment of plantations and agroforests could account for 58% of the total mitigation potential on Asian forest lands. The amount of C that could be conserved and sequestered by all forest sector practices by 2050 under baseline conditions is equivalent to about 4% of the global fossil fuel emissions over the same time period. The uncertainties in estimates of mitigation potential presented in this paper are likely to be high, particularly with respect to the land area available for forestation projects and the rate at which deforestation could be slowed. The uncertainty terms are compounded in making global estimates of the mitigation potential, perhaps to large proportions, but to what extent is presently unknown. An example of a forestry project in China whose main goal was to rehabilitate degraded lands and at the same time provide biomass fuel for the local rural inhabitants is presented to demonstrate that C sequestration, and thus mitigation, is an added benefit to more traditional uses of forests. This forestry project is currently mitigating CO2 emissions (up to 1.4 Mg C ha-1 yr -1) and, with a change in management, an almost two-fold increase in the current reduction of net C emissions would occur. 33 refs, 2 figs, 2 tabs

  5. The near-term impacts of carbon mitigation policies on manufacturing industries

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Who pays for new policies to reduce carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gas emissions in the United States? This paper considers a slice of the question by examining the near-term impact on domestic manufacturing industries of both upstream (economy-wide) and downstream (electric power industry only) carbon mitigation policies. Detailed Census data on the electricity use of four-digit manufacturing industries are combined with input-output information on inter-industry purchases to paint a detailed picture of carbon use, including effects on final demand. Regional information on electricity supply and use by region is also incorporated. A relatively simple model is developed which yields estimates of the relative burdens within the manufacturing sector of alternative carbon policies. Overall, the principal conclusion is that within the manufacturing sector (which by definition excludes coal production and electricity generation), only a small number of industries would bear a disproportionate short-term burden of a carbon tax or similar policy. Not surprisingly, an electricity-only policy affects very different manufacturing industries than an economy-wide carbon tax

  6. Biochar-macrofauna interplay: Searching for new bioindicators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castracani, C; Maienza, A; Grasso, D A; Genesio, L; Malcevschi, A; Miglietta, F; Vaccari, F P; Mori, A

    2015-12-01

    Biochar incorporation in agricultural soils has been proposed as a climate change mitigation strategy and has proved to substantially increase crop productivity via physical, chemical and biological mechanisms. The changes induced in soil properties are known to have a direct impact on soil ecosystem with consequences for soil biota community that, in turn, can influence biochar aging in soil. Despite several studies investigated in the interplay between biochar and soil microbiology, there is a clear lack of information on groups that live in the most superficial ground layers: soil meso and macro fauna. These groups are of great importance if we consider that biochar application should ideally be located in the soil's surface layer (0-30 cm). Our study is the first attempt to investigate the interactions between biochar soil amendments and aboveground soil macro-meso fauna in a field crop. This was made setting-up a randomized-block experiment on a processing tomato crop in northern Italy, using three different biochar types and periodically monitoring soil parameters and fauna abundances along the crop growing cycle in summer 2013. Results show that the impact of biochar application on soil fauna as a whole is small when compared to that of agricultural management, suggesting that this amendment does not have short-term ecological interferences. Nevertheless, ants exhibited variations in abundances and distribution connected to properties of amended soils such as temperature, pH and humidity, proving that they can be effectively used as a target group in the study of interactions between biochar and soil biota. PMID:26232755

  7. Methodological interference of biochar in the determination of extracellular enzyme activities in composting samples

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jindo, K.; Matsumoto, K.; García Izquierdo, C.; Sonoki, T.; Sanchez-Monedero, M. A.

    2014-07-01

    Biochar application has received increasing attention as a means to trap recalcitrant carbon and enhance soil fertility. Hydrolytic enzymatic assays, such as β-glucosidase and phosphatase activities, are used for the assessment of soil quality and composting process, which are based on use of p-nitrophenol (PNP) derivatives as substrate. However, sorption capacity of biochar can interfere with colorimetric determination of the hydrolysed PNP, either by the sorption of the substrate or the reaction product of hydrolysis into biochar surface. The aim of the present work is to study the biochar sorption capacity for PNP in biochar-blended composting mixtures in order to assess its impact on the estimation of the colorimetric-based enzymatic assays. A retention test was conducted by adding a solution of known amounts of PNP in universal buffer solution (pH = 5, 6.5 and 11, corresponding to the β-glucosidase, acid and alkaline phosphatase activity assays, respectively), in samples taken at the initial stage and after maturation stage from four different composting piles (two manure composting piles; PM: poultry manure, CM: cow manure and two other similar piles containing 10% of additional biochar (PM + B, CM + B)). The results show that biochar-blended composts (PM + B, CM + B) generally exhibited low enzymatic activities, compared to manure compost without biochar (PM, CM). In terms of the difference between the initial and maturation stage of composting process, the PNP retention in biochar was shown higher at maturation stage, caused most probably by an enlarged proportion of biochar inside compost mixture after the selective degradation of easily decomposable organic matter. TThe retention of PNP on biochar was influenced by pH dependency of sorption capacity of biochar and/or PNP solubility, since PNP was more efficiently retained by biochar at low pH values (5 and 6.5) than at high pH values (11).

  8. Remediation of metal polluted soils by phytorremediation combined with biochar addition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Méndez, Ana; Paz-Ferreiro, Jorge; Gómez-Limón, Dulce; César Arranz, Julio; Saa, Antonio; Gascó, Gabriel

    2016-04-01

    The main objective of this work is to optimize and quantify the treatment of metal polluted soils through phytoremediation techniques combined with the addition of biochar. Biochar is a carbon rich material obtained by thermal treatment of biomass in inert atmosphere. In recent years, it has been attracted considerable interest due to their positive effect after soil addition. The use of biochar also seems appropriate for the treatment of metal-contaminated soils decreasing their mobility. Biochar properties highly depend on the raw material composition and manufacturing conditions. This paper is based on the use of manure wastes, rich in nutrients and therefore interesting raw materials for biochar production, especially when combined with phytoremediation techniques since the biochar act as conditioner and slow release fertilizer. We are very grateful to Ministerio de Economia y Competitividad (Spain) for financial support under Project CGL2014-58322-R.

  9. A multi-period superstructure optimisation model for the optimal planning of China's power sector considering carbon dioxide mitigation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Power sector is the largest CO2 emitter in China. To mitigate CO2 emissions for the power sector is a tough task, which requires implementation of targeted carbon mitigation policies. There might be multiple forms for carbon mitigation policies and it is still unclear which one is the best for China. Applying a superstructure optimisation model for optimal planning of China's power sector built by the authors previously, which was based on real-life plants composition data of China's power sector in 2009, and could incorporate all possible actions of the power sector, including plants construction, decommission, and application of carbon capture and sequestration (CCS) on coal-fuelled plants, the implementation effects of three carbon mitigation policies were studied quantitatively, achieving a conclusion that the so-called “Surplus-Punishment and Deficit-Award” carbon tax policy is the best from the viewpoint of increasing CO2 reduction effect and also reducing the accumulated total cost. Based on this conclusion, the corresponding relationships between CO2 reduction objectives (including the accumulated total emissions reduction by the objective year and the annual emissions reduction in the objective year) were presented in detail. This work provides both directional and quantitative suggestions for China to make carbon mitigation policies in the future. - Highlights: ► We study the best form of carbon mitigation policy for China's power sector. ► We gain quantitative relationship between CO2 reduction goal and carbon tax policy. ► The “Surplus-Punishment and Deficit-Award” carbon tax policy is the best. ► Nuclear and renewable power and CCS can help greatly reduce CO2 emissions of the power sector. ► Longer objective period is preferred from the viewpoint of policy making.

  10. Biochar application to sandy and loamy soils for agricultural nutrient management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gronwald, Marco; Don, Axel; Tiemeyer, Baerbel; Helfrich, Mirjam

    2014-05-01

    Soil fertility of agricultural soils is challenged by nutrients losses and increasing soil acidification. Furthermore, leached nutrients negatively affect the quality of ground and surface water 1]. In addition to the possible soil carbon sequestration by applying biochars, many positive soil-improving properties are attributed to biochars. The application of biochars to agricultural - especially sandy - soils could reduce leaching of nutrients and may improve their availability 1,2]. Thus, biochar application to agricultural fields could be an ecologically and economically viable option to improve soils' fertility. However, biochar properties strongly depend on their feedstock and production process 3]. Various types of biochars (pyrolysis char, hydrochar (produced at 200 and 250° C); feedstocks: digestate, Miscanthus and wood chips) were used to determine sorption kinetics and sorption isotherms for the major nutrients Ca, Mg, K, NH4 and NO3 as a function of biochar types in different soil substrates (sand, loess). In addition, the biochars were washed to create free binding sites on the chars' surface that simulate aged char. We compared the simulated aged char with biochars that was aged in-situ at a field experiment for seven months. The first results showed that pyrochars have the largest retention potential for NO3 and hydrochars have retention potential for NH4. Washing of biochars turned them from a PO4 and NH4 source into an adsorber, especially for hydrochars. Highest leaching was observed for biochars from digestates likely due to the high nutrient content of digestates. But the different ions may lead to pH-dependent interactions between each other and the chars' surface that override the adsoption effects. In this context, cation-bridge and ligand bindings 4,5] need to be further investigated. Most of the fresh, unwashed biochars were a source of nutrients with hardly any detectable nutrient retention. Pyrochars showed the highest potential for anion

  11. Organic and inorganic contaminants removal from water with biochar, a renewable, low cost and sustainable adsorbent--a critical review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mohan, Dinesh; Sarswat, Ankur; Ok, Yong Sik; Pittman, Charles U

    2014-05-01

    Biochar is used for soil conditioning, remediation, carbon sequestration and water remediation. Biochar application to water and wastewater has never been reviewed previously. This review focuses on recent applications of biochars, produced from biomass pyrolysis (slow and fast), in water and wastewater treatment. Slow and fast pyrolysis biochar production is briefly discussed. The literature on sorption of organic and inorganic contaminants by biochars is surveyed and reviewed. Adsorption capacities for organic and inorganic contaminants by different biochars under different operating conditions are summarized and, where possible, compared. Mechanisms responsible for contaminant remediation are briefly discussed. Finally, a few recommendations for further research have been made in the area of biochar development for application to water filtration. PMID:24636918

  12. How large are the impacts of carbon-motivated border tax adjustments on China and how to mitigate them?

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    There have been growing clamours for carbon-motivated border tax adjustments (CBTAs) targeted at countries that do not accept the carbon emission reduction targets. Currently, China is the largest carbon emitter with large annual incremental carbon emissions and might have to face the challenge of CBTA. Therefore, it is a pressing policy challenge for the government to get prepared for mitigating the negative impacts of CBTAs on China. In this article, we compare the impacts of CBTAs across large developing economies and compare the performances of different policy options to mitigate the negative impacts. The main findings are as follows. First, CBTA would affect different economies and different sectors differently. CBTA would result in a shift of production across sectors and relocation of output from the target countries to CBTA users. Second, CBTA would contribute to world's emissions reduction, but less than expected due to carbon leakage. Finally, policy options, which could reduce the present distorting effects, would be preferred to other policy options that would add additional distorting effects to the economy. Looking ahead, the Chinese government should get prepared for mitigating the negative impacts of CBTAs because its economy could be adversely affected. - Highlights: • We compare impacts of carbon-motivated border tax adjustments (CBTAs) across large emerging countries. • We test effectiveness of different policy options to mitigate the negative impacts. • We investigate how to design policy mix to mitigate negative impacts of CBTAs

  13. Sorption of halogenated phenols and pharmaceuticals to biochar: affecting factors and mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oh, Seok-Young; Seo, Yong-Deuk

    2016-01-01

    The feasibility of using biochar as a sorbent to remove nine halogenated phenols (2,4-dichlorophenol, 2,4-dibromophenol, 2,4-difluorophenol, 2-chlorophenol, 4-chlorophenol, 2-bromophenol, 4-bromophenol, 2-fluorophenol, and 4-fluorophenol) and two pharmaceuticals (triclosan and ibuprofen) from water was examined through a series of batch experiments. Types of biochar, synthesized using various biomasses including fallen leaves, rice straw, corn stalk, used coffee grounds, and biosolids, were evaluated. Compared to granular activated carbon (GAC), most of the biochar samples did not effectively remove halogenated phenols or pharmaceuticals from water. The increase in pH and deprotonation of phenols in biochar systems may be responsible for its ineffectiveness at this task. When pH was maintained at 4 or 7, the sorption capacity of biochar was markedly increased. Considering maximum sorption capacity and properties of sorbents and sorbates, it appears that the sorption capacity of biochar for halogenated phenols is related to the surface area and carbon content of the biochar and the hydrophobicity of halogenated phenols. In the cases of triclosan and ibuprofen, the sorptive capacities of GAC, graphite, and biochars were also significantly affected by pH, according to the point of zero charge (PZC) of sorbents and deprotonation of the pharmaceuticals. Pyrolysis temperature did not affect the sorption capacity of halogenated phenols or pharmaceuticals. Based on the experimental observations, some biochars are good candidates for removal of halogenated phenols, triclosan, and ibuprofen from water and soil. PMID:25687609

  14. Chemical transformation of CO2 during its capture by waste biomass derived biochars.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Xiaoyun; Kan, Yue; Zhao, Ling; Cao, Xinde

    2016-06-01

    Biochar is a porous carbonaceous material with high alkalinity and rich minerals, making it possible for CO2 capture. In this study, biochars derived from pig manure, sewage sludge, and wheat straw were evaluated for their CO2 sorption behavior. All three biochars showed high sorption abilities for CO2, with the maximum capacities reaching 18.2-34.4 mg g(-1) at 25 °C. Elevating sorption temperature and moisture content promoted the transition of CO2 uptake from physical to chemical process. Mineral components such as Mg, Ca, Fe, K, etc. in biochar induced the chemical sorption of CO2 via the mineralogical reactions which occupied 17.7%-50.9% of the total sorption. FeOOH in sewage sludge biochar was transformed by sorbed CO2 into Fe(OH)2CO3, while the sorbed CO2 in pig manure biochar was precipitated as K2Ca(CO3)2 and CaMg(CO3)2, which resulted in a dominant increase of insoluble inorganic carbon in both biochars. For wheat straw biochar, sorbed CO2 induced CaCO3 transformed into soluble Ca(HCO3)2, which led to a dominant increase of soluble inorganic carbons. The results obtained from this study demonstrated that biochar as a unique carbonaceous material could distinctly be a promising sorbent for CO2 capture in which chemical sorption induced by mineralogical reactions played an important role. PMID:26995449

  15. Investigating the Feasibility of Utilizing Carbon Nanotube Fibers for Spacesuit Dust Mitigation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manyapu, Kavya K.; de Leon, Pablo; Peltz, Leora; Tsentalovich, Dmitri; Gaier, James R.; Calle, Carlos; Mackey, Paul

    2016-01-01

    Historical data from the Apollo missions has compelled NASA to identify dust mitigation of spacesuits and other components as a critical path prior to sending humans on potential future lunar exploration missions. Several studies thus far have proposed passive and active countermeasures to address this challenge. However, these technologies have been primarily developed and proven for rigid surfaces such as solar cells and thermal radiators. Integration of these technologies for spacesuit dust mitigation has remained an open challenge due to the complexity of suit design. Current research investigates novel methods to enhance integration of the Electrodynamic Dust Shield (EDS) concept for spacesuits. We leverage previously proven EDS concept developed by NASA for rigid surfaces and apply new techniques to integrate the technology into spacesuits to mitigate dust contamination. The study specifically examines the feasibility of utilizing Carbon Nanotube (CNT) yarns manufactured by Rice University as electrodes in spacesuit material. Proof of concept testing was conducted at NASA Kennedy Space Center using lunar regolith simulant to understand the feasibility of the proposed techniques for spacesuit application. Results from the experiments are detailed in this paper. Potential challenges of applying this technology for spacesuits are also identified.

  16. Analysis and Optimization of Carbon Dioxide Emission Mitigation Options in the Cement Industry

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohammed B. Shammakh

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available The cement industry is responsible for approximately 5% of global anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions emitting nearly 900 kg of CO2 for every 1000 kg of cement produced. Effective control strategies to mitigate these emissions are discussed and a mathematical programming model able to suggest the best cost effective strategy is outlined. Control costs consisting of operating and investment costs along with the efficiency of control options are taken into account in the model. A representative case study from the cement industry was considered in order to illustrate the use of the model in giving optimal control strategies. Efficiency improvement measures were found to be effective options for reduction targets up to 10 %. The model suggested that fuel switching and carbon capture must be considered at reduction targets higher than 10%. The cost of cement production was shown to increase dramatically with an increase in reduction target.

  17. Use of Biochar from the Pyrolysis of Woody and Herbaceous Organic Matter as Soil Amendments

    Science.gov (United States)

    “Biochar”, a typical by-product of biomass pyrolysis is being promoted for its potential large-scale and low-cost carbon sequestration in soil. Much of the knowledge regarding biochar derives from studies of Terra Preta soils in the Amazonian basin, where biochar-like materials appear to have subst...

  18. Review of the stability of biochar in soils: predictability of O:C molar ratios

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biochar is not a structured homogeneous material; rather it possesses a range of chemical structures and a heterogeneous elemental composition. This variability is based on the conditions of pyrolysis and the biomass parent material, with biochar spanning the range of various forms of black carbon. ...

  19. Impact of Biochar on Earthworm Populations: A Review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sharon L. Weyers

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Despite the overwhelming importance of earthworm activity in the soil system, there are a limited number of studies that have examined the impact resulting from biochar addition to soil. Biochar is part of the black carbon continuum of chemo-thermal converted biomass. This review summarizes existing data pertaining to earthworms where biochar and other black carbon substances, including slash-and-burn charcoals and wood ash, have been applied. After analyzing existing studies on black carbon, we identified that these additions have a range from short-term negative impacts to long-term null effects on earthworm population density and total biomass. Documented cases of mortality were found with certain biochar-soil combinations; the cause is not fully understood, but hypothesized to be related to pH, whether the black carbon is premoistened, affects feeding behaviors, or other unknown factors. With wood ashes, negative impacts were overcome with addition of other carbon substrates. Given that field data is limited, soils amended with biochar did not appear to cause significant long-term impacts. However, this may indicate that the magnitude of short-term negative impacts on earthworm populations can be reduced with time.

  20. Biochar from Coffee Residues: A New Promising Sorbent

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fotopoulou, Kalliopi; Karapanagioti, Hrissi; Manariotis, Ioannis

    2014-05-01

    Biochar is a carbon-rich material produced by heating biomass in an oxygen-limited environment. Biochar is mainly used as an additive to soils to sequester carbon and improve soil fertility as well as a sorbent for environmental remediation processes. Surface properties such as point of zero charge, surface area and pore volume, surface topography, surface functional groups and acid-base behavior are important factors, which affect sorption efficiency. Understanding the surface alteration of biochars increases our understanding of the pollutant-sorbent interaction. The objective of the present study was to characterize the surface properties of biochar produced, and to investigate the effect of thermal treatment conditions on key characteristics that affect sorptive properties. The espresso coffee residue was obtained after the coffee was brewed through espresso machines in coffee shops. The coffee residue was dried and kept in an oven at 50oC until its pyrolysis at 850oC. Pyrolysis with different coffee mass and containers were tested in order to find optimum biochar characteristics. Detailed characterization techniques were carried out to determine the properties of the produced biochar. The surface area, the pore volume, and the average pore size of the biochars were determined using gas (N2) adsorption-desorption cycles using the Brunauer, Emmett, and Teller (BET) equation. Open surface area and micropore volume were determined using the t-plot method and the Harkins & Jura equation. Total organic carbon was also determined because it is an important factor that affects sorption. The results were compared with the corresponding properties of activated carbons. The biochar produced exhibited a wide range of surface area from 21 to 770 m2/g and open surface area from 21 to 65 m2/g. It is obvious that the surface area results from the formation of pores. Actually it was calculated that up to 90% of the porosity is due to the micropores. More specifically the

  1. Spectroscopic characterization of dissolved organic matter derived from different biochars and their polycylic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) binding affinity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tang, Jianfeng; Li, Xinhu; Luo, Yan; Li, Gang; Khan, Sardar

    2016-06-01

    In recent years, biochar has received a great attention due to its high application in different sectors of environment. The feasibility of biochar applications is depended on its physical and chemical properties and biochar-derived dissolved organic matter (DOM) characteristics. This study was conducted to investigate the spectroscopic characteristics of biochar-derived DOM and its binding capacity of hydrophobic organic chemicals (HOCs). DOM solutions were isolated from five different biochars prepared through pyrolysis and analyzed for dissolved organic carbon (DOC) contents. The optical analysis with UV-visible absorption and excitation-emission matrix (EEM) fluorescence spectroscopes and DOC water distribution coefficient (KDOC) were calculated in the presence of PAHs and DOM. The DOC contents and the estimated aromaticity (SUVA254) were different for selected biochars. The DOM derived from soybean straw biochar (SBBC) showed the highest DOC contents followed by rice straw biochar (RSBC). The SBBC and RSBC peak position in the fluorescence excitation/emission matrix at longer wavelength corresponded to the peak position of other three biochars indicating that SBBC and RSBC had relatively higher degree of humification. This was well correlated with the observed KDOC values, suggesting that the KDOC value(')s dominant factor was the degree of biochar-derived DOM humification. The results of this study indicate that the optical analysis may provide valuable information regarding the characteristics of biochar-derived DOM and its application as environmental amendments for minimization of toxic organic compounds. PMID:26994600

  2. Analysis on the Influencing Factors of Low-carbon Economy and Its Mitigation Countermeasures in Sichuan Province

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2011-01-01

    [Objective]The study aimed to analyze the influencing factors of low-carbon economy and its mitigation countermeasures in Sichuan Province.[Method]Taking Sichuan Province as an example,an extended STIRPAT model was established firstly,then the impacts of population,economy and technology on carbon emissions from 2000 to 2009 were analyzed econometrically by using the principal component analysis method.Finally,some corresponding countermeasures to reduce carbon dioxide emissions were put forward.[Result]At ...

  3. Metrics to assess the mitigation of global warming by carbon capture and storage in the ocean and in geological reservoirs

    OpenAIRE

    Haugan, Peter Mosby; Joos, Fortunat

    2004-01-01

    Different metrics to assess mitigation of global warming by carbon capture and storage are discussed. The climatic impact of capturing 30% of the anthropogenic carbon emission and its storage in the ocean or in geological reservoir are evaluated for different stabilization scenarios using a reduced-form carbon cycle-climate model. The accumulated Global Warming Avoided (GWA) remains, after a ramp-up during the first ~50 years, in the range of 15 to 30% over the next millennium for de...

  4. Long-term balance in heavy metal adsorption and release in biochar derived from sewage sludge

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sohi, Saran; Cleat, Robert; Graham, Margaret; Cross, Andrew

    2014-05-01

    In Europe, sewage sludge has major potential as a resource for producing biochar. Biochar from sludge could offer a means for the controlled recycling of phosphorus to soil, with the additional benefit of carbon stabilisation. Biochar made from contaminated feedstock could, however, also leach heavy metals into soil. Counter to release of metals, biochar from fresh plant biomass has a documented affinity and adsorption capacity. The longer term balance of release and adsorption of metals in sludge-derived biochar has not been established. Our work compared the adsorption and release of both indigenous metals and metals adsorbed to sludge derived biochar. The hypotheses were threefold: (1) the capacity to adsorb metals is lower than the potential to release them, (2) the affinity for indigenous metals is higher than for metals in solution, 3) oxidative ageing of biochar leads to partial release of adsorbed metals. Sludge biochar was produced in a horizontal, externally heated kiln at a feed rate of approx. 0.5 kg/hr. Dry sludge was converted in a 20 min. transit time with peak kiln temperature of 550°C. Elemental analysis using ICP OES (after a published preparation step) showed Zn, Pb and Cu to be the most abundant heavy metals in the biochar. The same elements were assessed in sequential water and Mehlich III extracts. Adsorption of the metals from pure and mixed Zn, Pb and Pb solutions were undertaken before and after the other extractions. All the treatments were applied to the same biochar after oxidative ageing, in which biochar C was also found to be very stable. Extractability of all three metals from fresh biochar was low (less than 5 %), but for two of the metals it was lower after ageing. For one of the metals, ageing increased extractability. For the same metal, adsorption was lower when undertaken with a mixed rather than pure solution. Capacity for adsorption of one of the other metals was higher after biochar ageing; the general capacity for metal

  5. CHARACTERIZATION OF OIL PALM EMPTY FRUIT BUNCH AND RICE HUSK BIOCHARS AND THEIR POTENTIAL TO ADSORB ARSENIC AND CADMIUM

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Norazlina Abu Sari

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Biochar as a new soil amendment has a potential in controlling the fate of trace elements in the soil system. However, the production of biochar from different feedstocks and pyrolysis conditions resulted in variable biochar properties which have an influence on trace elements availability. The experimental works are focused on physical and chemical properties of biochars produced from Empty Fruit Bunch (EFB and Rice Husk (RH as heavy metals adsorbents. The morphology of EFB biochar comprise rigid structure with uniform pores size. The surface area of biochars ranged between 23.22-46.32 m2 g-1, dominated with mesopores. The chemical characterization of biochars revealed high carbon content in EFB biochar compared to RH biochar (54.08 and 7.78%. Both biochars are alkaline in nature (>pH 9 and contain substantial amounts of N, P, K, Ca and Mg. Fourier transform infra-red spectra showed the heterogenic functional groups on EFB biochar surface and domination of silica content in RH biochar. The batch experiment was employed to determine the adsorption capacity of these biochars for As and Cd. The adsorption data were fitted well in Langmuir isotherm with high correlation coefficient (R2>0.9 for As and Cd. The qmax of EFB biochar for As and Cd was higher than RH biochar. The qmax of EFB biochar was 0.4240 and 15.1515 mg g-1 for As and Cd, respectively. In contrast, the qmax of RH biochar for As and Cd was only 0.3522 and 3.1908 mg g-1. The results show that EFB biochar and RH biochar have potentials as good sorbent for As and Cd. Therefore, it can be suggested that the application of these biochars may possibly reduce the trace elements availability in the contaminated soil.

  6. Effect of biochar on nitrous oxide emission and its potential mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Liang; Shen, Guoqing; Sun, Mingxing; Cao, Xinde; Shang, Guofeng; Chen, Ping

    2014-08-01

    Extensive use of biochar to mitigate nitrous oxide (N2O) emission is limited by the lack of understanding on the exact mechanisms altering N2O emission from biochar-amended soil. Biochars produced from rice straw and dairy manure at 350 and 500 degrees C by oxygen-limited pyrolysis were used to investigate their influence on N2O emission. A quadratic effect of biochar levels was observed on the N2O emissions. The potential mechanisms were explored by terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism (T-RFLP) and real-time polymerase chain reaction (qPCR). A lower relative abundance of bacteria, which included ammonia-oxidizing bacteria (AOB) and nitrite-oxidizing bacteria (NOB), was observed at 4% biochar application rate. Reduced copy numbers of the ammonia monooxygenase gene amoA and the nitrite reductase gene nirS coincided with decreased N2O emissions. Therefore, biochar may potentially alter N2O emission by affecting ammonia-oxidizing and denitrification bacteria, which is determined by the application rate of biochar in soil. Implications: Biochar research has received increased interest in recent years because of the potential beneficial effects of biochar on soil properties. Recent research shows that biochar can alter the rates of nitrogen cycling in soil systems by influencing nitrification and denitrification, which are key sources of the greenhouse gas nitrous oxide (N2O). However, there are still some controversial data. The purpose of this research was to (1) examine how applications of different dose of biochar to soil affect emission of N2O and (2) improve the understanding of the underlying mechanisms. PMID:25185392

  7. CO2 mitigation potential of mineral carbonation with industrial alkalinity sources in the United States.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kirchofer, Abby; Becker, Austin; Brandt, Adam; Wilcox, Jennifer

    2013-07-01

    The availability of industrial alkalinity sources is investigated to determine their potential for the simultaneous capture and sequestration of CO2 from point-source emissions in the United States. Industrial alkalinity sources investigated include fly ash, cement kiln dust, and iron and steel slag. Their feasibility for mineral carbonation is determined by their relative abundance for CO2 reactivity and their proximity to point-source CO2 emissions. In addition, the available aggregate markets are investigated as possible sinks for mineral carbonation products. We show that in the U.S., industrial alkaline byproducts have the potential to mitigate approximately 7.6 Mt CO2/yr, of which 7.0 Mt CO2/yr are CO2 captured through mineral carbonation and 0.6 Mt CO2/yr are CO2 emissions avoided through reuse as synthetic aggregate (replacing sand and gravel). The emission reductions represent a small share (i.e., 0.1%) of total U.S. CO2 emissions; however, industrial byproducts may represent comparatively low-cost methods for the advancement of mineral carbonation technologies, which may be extended to more abundant yet expensive natural alkalinity sources. PMID:23738892

  8. Influence of biochar pyrolysis temperature and post-treatment on the uptake of mercury from flue gas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thermal processing, or pyrolysis, of plant and animal waste under oxygen limiting conditions results in a carbonized material called biochar. Most often, the proposed application for the biochar is soil applications as a conditioner or for the purpose of carbon sequestration. In this paper we demons...

  9. A Survey of Measurement, Mitigation, and Verification Field Technologies for Carbon Sequestration Geologic Storage

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cohen, K. K.; Klara, S. M.; Srivastava, R. D.

    2004-12-01

    The U.S. Department of Energy's (U.S. DOE's) Carbon Sequestration Program is developing state-of-the-science technologies for measurement, mitigation, and verification (MM&V) in field operations of geologic sequestration. MM&V of geologic carbon sequestration operations will play an integral role in the pre-injection, injection, and post-injection phases of carbon capture and storage projects to reduce anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions. Effective MM&V is critical to the success of CO2 storage projects and will be used by operators, regulators, and stakeholders to ensure safe and permanent storage of CO2. In the U.S. DOE's Program, Carbon sequestration MM&V has numerous instrumental roles: Measurement of a site's characteristics and capability for sequestration; Monitoring of the site to ensure the storage integrity; Verification that the CO2 is safely stored; and Protection of ecosystems. Other drivers for MM&V technology development include cost-effectiveness, measurement precision, and frequency of measurements required. As sequestration operations are implemented in the future, it is anticipated that measurements over long time periods and at different scales will be required; this will present a significant challenge. MM&V sequestration technologies generally utilize one of the following approaches: below ground measurements; surface/near-surface measurements; aerial and satellite imagery; and modeling/simulations. Advanced subsurface geophysical technologies will play a primary role for MM&V. It is likely that successful MM&V programs will incorporate multiple technologies including but not limited to: reservoir modeling and simulations; geophysical techniques (a wide variety of seismic methods, microgravity, electrical, and electromagnetic techniques); subsurface fluid movement monitoring methods such as injection of tracers, borehole and wellhead pressure sensors, and tiltmeters; surface/near surface methods such as soil gas monitoring and infrared

  10. Mining-related environmental impacts of carbon mitigation; Coal-based carbon capture and sequestration and wind-enabling transmission expansion

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Grubert, Emily

    2010-09-15

    Carbon mitigation can occur by preventing generation of greenhouse gases or by preventing emissions from entering the atmosphere. Accordingly, increasing the use of wind energy or carbon capture and storage (CCS) at coal-fired power plants could reduce carbon emissions. This work compares the direct mining impacts of increased coal demand associated with CCS with those of increased aluminum demand for expanding transmission systems to enable wind power incorporation. Aluminum needs for expanded transmission probably represent a one-time need for about 1.5% of Jamaica's annual bauxite production, while CCS coal needs for the same mitigation could almost double US coal demand.

  11. Effects of Biochar on Air and Water Permeability and Colloid and Phosphorus Leaching in Soils from a Natural Calcium Carbonate Gradient

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kahawaththa Gamage, Inoka Damayanthi Kumari; Møldrup, Per; Paradelo Pérez, Marcos;

    2014-01-01

    biochar application, and a series of leaching experiments was conducted. The leachate was analyzed for tritium (used as a tracer), colloids, and phosphorus concentration. The results revealed that the presence of CaCO3 has resulted in marked changes in soil structure (bulk density) and soil chemical...... to be time dependent in soils with low CaCO3. Biochar-amended soils showed higher colloid and P release than reference soils. Field-scale variations in total colloid and P leaching reflected clear effects of changes in pH and ionic strength due to the presence of CaCO3. There was a linear relationship...

  12. A review of biochars' potential role in the remediation, revegetation and restoration of contaminated soils

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Biochars are biological residues combusted under low oxygen conditions, resulting in a porous, low density carbon rich material. Their large surface areas and cation exchange capacities, determined to a large extent by source materials and pyrolysis temperatures, enables enhanced sorption of both organic and inorganic contaminants to their surfaces, reducing pollutant mobility when amending contaminated soils. Liming effects or release of carbon into soil solution may increase arsenic mobility, whilst low capital but enhanced retention of plant nutrients can restrict revegetation on degraded soils amended only with biochars; the combination of composts, manures and other amendments with biochars could be their most effective deployment to soils requiring stabilisation by revegetation. Specific mechanisms of contaminant-biochar retention and release over time and the environmental impact of biochar amendments on soil organisms remain somewhat unclear but must be investigated to ensure that the management of environmental pollution coincides with ecological sustainability. - Highlights: → Biochars can reduce mobilities of some organic and inorganic pollutants in soil. → Source material and production conditions influence pollutant retention. → Highly alkaline pH and water soluble carbon can undesirably mobilise some elements. → Large surface area may be toxic to soil fauna but create microbial niches. → Efficacy of biochar may depend on other organic materials applied in combination. - Biochars can reduce the mobility and impact of some soil pollutants but, if applied alone, may fail to support soil restoration, revegetation and hence ecologically circumspect remediation.

  13. Comparison of biochar properties from biomass residues produced by slow pyrolysis at 500°C.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Yongwoon; Park, Jinje; Ryu, Changkook; Gang, Ki Seop; Yang, Won; Park, Young-Kwon; Jung, Jinho; Hyun, Seunghun

    2013-11-01

    Application of biochar from biomass pyrolysis to soil is gaining greater interest; this can ameliorate the soil quality, reduce fertilizer consumption, and sequestrate carbon. This study compares the characteristics of biochar produced by slow pyrolysis at 500°C for agricultural residues: sugarcane bagasse, cocopeat, paddy straw, palm kernel shell (PKS) and umbrella tree. In the biochar yield, the influence of the inert and lignin contents was significant. The wood stem, bagasse and paddy straw had biochar yields of 24-28 wt.% from the organic fraction while cocopeat had 46 wt.%. The carbon content of biochar ranged from 84 wt.% to 89 wt.%, which corresponded to 43-63% of carbon in the biomass. The biochar from wood stem and bagasse had well-developed pores of various sizes with large surface areas. Although the surface area was significant, PKS biochar had dense matrix with few large pores. The elemental composition and pH of biochars were also compared. PMID:24047681

  14. Direct and indirect effects of biochar on the mobility of metals and nutrients in contaminated soils: a two-column leaching experiment

    OpenAIRE

    Rees, Frédéric; Simonnot, Marie-Odile; Morel, Jean-Louis

    2014-01-01

    Biochar is a charred carbon-enriched material intended to be used as a soil amendment to sequester carbon and enhance soil quality. Addition of biochar to soil has many environmental and agricultural benefits, including waste reduction, energy production, carbon sequestration, water resource protection, and soil improvement. Biochar has been reported to boost soil fertility and improve soil quality by raising soil pH, increasing moisture holding capacity, attracting more beneficial fungi and ...

  15. Reductions in soil surface albedo as a function of biochar application rate: implications for global radiative forcing

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Biochar can be defined as pyrolysed (charred) biomass produced for application to soils with the aim of mitigating global climate change while improving soil functions. Sustainable biochar application to soils has been estimated to reduce global greenhouse gas emissions by 71–130 Pg CO2-Ce over 100 years, indicating an important potential to mitigate climate change. However, these estimates ignored changes in soil surface reflection by the application of dark-coloured biochar. Through a laboratory experiment we show a strong tendency for soil surface albedo to decrease as a power decay function with increasing biochar application rate, depending on soil moisture content, biochar application method and land use. Surface application of biochar resulted in strong reductions in soil surface albedo even at relatively low application rates. As a first assessment of the implications for climate change mitigation of these biochar–albedo relationships, we applied a first order global energy balance model to compare negative radiative forcings (from avoided CO2 emissions) with positive radiative forcings (from reduced soil surface albedos). For a global-scale biochar application equivalent to 120 t ha−1, we obtained reductions in negative radiative forcings of 5 and 11% for croplands and 11 and 23% for grasslands, when incorporating biochar into the topsoil or applying it to the soil surface, respectively. For a lower global biochar application rate (equivalent to 10 t ha−1), these reductions amounted to 13 and 44% for croplands and 28 and 94% for grasslands. Thus, our findings revealed the importance of including changes in soil surface albedo in studies assessing the net climate change mitigation potential of biochar, and we discuss the urgent need for field studies and more detailed spatiotemporal modelling. (letter)

  16. Effects of biochar amendment on geotechnical properties of landfill cover soil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reddy, Krishna R; Yaghoubi, Poupak; Yukselen-Aksoy, Yeliz

    2015-06-01

    Biochar is a carbon-rich product obtained when plant-based biomass is heated in a closed container with little or no available oxygen. Biochar-amended soil has the potential to serve as a landfill cover material that can oxidise methane emissions for two reasons: biochar amendment can increase the methane retention time and also enhance the biological activity that can promote the methanotrophic oxidation of methane. Hydraulic conductivity, compressibility and shear strength are the most important geotechnical properties that are required for the design of effective and stable landfill cover systems, but no studies have been reported on these properties for biochar-amended landfill cover soils. This article presents physicochemical and geotechnical properties of a biochar, a landfill cover soil and biochar-amended soils. Specifically, the effects of amending 5%, 10% and 20% biochar (of different particle sizes as produced, size-20 and size-40) to soil on its physicochemical properties, such as moisture content, organic content, specific gravity and pH, as well as geotechnical properties, such as hydraulic conductivity, compressibility and shear strength, were determined from laboratory testing. Soil or biochar samples were prepared by mixing them with 20% deionised water based on dry weight. Samples of soil amended with 5%, 10% and 20% biochar (w/w) as-is or of different select sizes, were also prepared at 20% initial moisture content. The results show that the hydraulic conductivity of the soil increases, compressibility of the soil decreases and shear strength of the soil increases with an increase in the biochar amendment, and with a decrease in biochar particle size. Overall, the study revealed that biochar-amended soils can possess excellent geotechnical properties to serve as stable landfill cover materials. PMID:25898984

  17. Impact of woodchip biochar amendment on the sorption and dissipation of pesticide acetamiprid in agricultural soils.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Xiang-Yang; Mu, Chang-Li; Gu, Cheng; Liu, Cun; Liu, Xian-Jin

    2011-11-01

    Pyrolysis of vegetative biomass into biochar and application of the more stable form of carbon to soil have been shown to be effective in reducing the emission of greenhouse gases, improving soil fertility, and sequestering soil contaminants. However, there is still lack of information about the impact of biochar amendment in agricultural soils on the sorption and environmental fate of pesticides. In this study, we investigated the sorption and dissipation of a neonicotinoid insecticide acetamiprid in three typical Chinese agricultural soils, which were amended by a red gum wood (Eucalyptus spp.) derived biochar. Our results showed that the amendment of biochar (0.5% (w/w)) to the soils could significantly increase the sorption of acetamiprid, but the magnitudes of enhancement were varied. Contributions of 0.5% newly-added biochar to the overall sorption of acetamiprid were 52.3%, 27.4% and 11.6% for red soil, paddy soil and black soil, respectively. The dissipation of acetamiprid in soils amended with biochar was retarded compared to that in soils without biochar amendment. Similar to the sorption experiment, in soil with higher content of organic matter, the retardation of biochar on the dissipation of acetamiprid was lower than that with lower content of organic matter. The different effects of biochar in agricultural soils may attribute to the interaction of soil components with biochar, which would block the pore or compete for binding site of biochar. Aging effect of biochar application in agricultural soils and field experiments need to be further investigated. PMID:21862101

  18. Chicken manure biochar as liming and nutrient source for acid Appalachian soil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hass, Amir; Gonzalez, Javier M; Lima, Isabel M; Godwin, Harry W; Halvorson, Jonathan J; Boyer, Douglas G

    2012-01-01

    Acid weathered soils often require lime and fertilizer application to overcome nutrient deficiencies and metal toxicity to increase soil productivity. Slow-pyrolysis chicken manure biochars, produced at 350 and 700°C with and without subsequent steam activation, were evaluated in an incubation study as soil amendments for a representative acid and highly weathered soil from Appalachia. Biochars were mixed at 5, 10, 20, and 40 g kg into a Gilpin soil (fine-loamy, mixed, active, mesic Typic Hapludult) and incubated in a climate-controlled chamber for 8 wk, along with a nonamended control and soil amended with agronomic dolomitic lime (AgLime). At the end of the incubation, soil pH, nutrient availability (by Mehlich-3 and ammonium bicarbonate diethylene triamine pentaacetic acid [AB-DTPA] extractions), and soil leachate composition were evaluated. Biochar effect on soil pH was process- and rate-dependent. Biochar increased soil pH from 4.8 to 6.6 at the high application rate (40 g kg), but was less effective than AgLime. Biochar produced at 350°C without activation had the least effect on soil pH. Biochar increased soil Mehlich-3 extractable micro- and macronutrients. On the basis of unit element applied, increase in pyrolysis temperature and biochar activation decreased availability of K, P, and S compared to nonactivated biochar produced at 350°C. Activated biochars reduced AB-DTPA extractable Al and Cd more than AgLime. Biochar did not increase NO in leachate, but increased dissolved organic carbon, total N and P, PO, SO, and K at high application rate (40 g kg). Risks of elevated levels of dissolved P may limit chicken manure biochar application rate. Applied at low rates, these biochars provide added nutritional value with low adverse impact on leachate composition. PMID:22751051

  19. A review of biochars' potential role in the remediation, revegetation and restoration of contaminated soils.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beesley, Luke; Moreno-Jiménez, Eduardo; Gomez-Eyles, Jose L; Harris, Eva; Robinson, Brett; Sizmur, Tom

    2011-12-01

    Biochars are biological residues combusted under low oxygen conditions, resulting in a porous, low density carbon rich material. Their large surface areas and cation exchange capacities, determined to a large extent by source materials and pyrolysis temperatures, enables enhanced sorption of both organic and inorganic contaminants to their surfaces, reducing pollutant mobility when amending contaminated soils. Liming effects or release of carbon into soil solution may increase arsenic mobility, whilst low capital but enhanced retention of plant nutrients can restrict revegetation on degraded soils amended only with biochars; the combination of composts, manures and other amendments with biochars could be their most effective deployment to soils requiring stabilisation by revegetation. Specific mechanisms of contaminant-biochar retention and release over time and the environmental impact of biochar amendments on soil organisms remain somewhat unclear but must be investigated to ensure that the management of environmental pollution coincides with ecological sustainability. PMID:21855187

  20. Characteristics of biochar produced from slow pyrolysis of Geodae-Uksae 1.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Yongwoon; Eum, Pu-Reun-Byul; Ryu, Changkook; Park, Young-Kwon; Jung, Jin-Ho; Hyun, Seunghun

    2013-02-01

    This study investigated producing biochar from Geodae-Uksae 1 for soil applications to sequestrate carbon from the atmosphere and improve the productivity of crops. Using a lab-scale packed bed reactor, pyrolysis products of Geodae-Uksae 1 were produced over a temperature range of 300-700°C with a heating rate of 10°C/min. Pyrolysis at 500°C was found appropriate for biochar production considering the properties of char and the amount of heat required. It yielded biochar of 27.2wt.% that contained approximately 48% carbon in the raw biomass. The surface area of the biochar rapidly increased to 181m(2)/g. Large cylindrical pores with diameters of 5-40μm developed within the biochar due to the vascular cell structure of the parent biomass. The byproducts (bio-oil and gases) were also analyzed for use as fuel. PMID:23313679

  1. Biochar in viticulture

    Science.gov (United States)

    Niggli, C.; Schmidt, H.-P.

    2012-04-01

    Viticulture is becoming the pioneering culture for biochar research. Biochar has been applied to many large-scale viticulture experiments across Europe this spring. After the first large-scale and long term experiments at the Delinat Institute in 2007-08, expectations are high. The latest results confirm these expectations and also show that only scientifically sound experiments will lead to conclusive information on the effect of biochar on vine growth and wine quality in many different climates and soil types. In the last three years it has been clearly shown that biologically activated biochar does not only have positive impact on soil-plant systems in the tropics, but in all soil types and climatic zones [Crane Droescher [2011], Ogawa [2010], IBI [2011]). While biochar improves water availability for plants and microorganisms in dry or seasonally dry farming areas, it also plays a substantial role in high rainfall zones because it improves nutrient dynamics through prevention of nutrient leaching. Spectacular crop growth can be seen in extreme climates (tropical or semi-desert), partly due to biochar's buffering capacity leading to the compensation of strong limiting factors (water in semi-deserts, washed-out nutrients in the tropics). In temperate climates, however, the achievable increase in harvest is lower as there are no extremely limiting elements which have to be compensated. In addition, potential maximum growth of many plant species is easily reached in temperate zones through using good fertilizers and careful seed selection. Therefore the advantage of biochar application in temperate climates is less evident as crop growth but rather is seen as plant quality improvement through optimizing plant nutrition. 1. Increase of plant resistance and hence reduction of plant protection products 2. Stimulation of soil microbial activity and symbioses between plants and soil organisms 3. Reduction in fertilizer use by optimizing the supply of nutrients, limiting

  2. Biomass pyrolysis processes: performance parameters and their influence on biochar system benefits

    OpenAIRE

    Brownsort, Peter A

    2009-01-01

    This study focuses on performance of biomass pyrolysis processes for use in biochar systems. Objectives are to understand the range of control of such processes and how this affects potential benefits of pyrolysis biochar systems, in particular for climate change mitigation. Slow, intermediate and fast pyrolysis processes are reviewed. Product yield distributions change depending on feedstock composition and preparation, control of temperature and material flows. These allow s...

  3. Biochar as a soil amendment: Environmental friend or foe?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pyrolysis to produce biofuels and biochar from biomass is not a new idea, but the use of pyrolysis to extract energy from biomass through a process that can be carbon neutral to carbon negative (i.e., reduces atmospheric CO2) is a novel application of an old technology to a curre...

  4. Biochar Mechanisms of Heavy Metal Sorption and Potential Utility

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ippolito, J.

    2015-12-01

    Mining-affected lands are a global issue; in the USA alone there are an estimated 500,000 abandoned mines encompassing hundreds of thousands of hectares. Many of these sites generate acidic mine drainage that causes release of heavy metals, and subsequently degradation in environmental quality. Because of its potential liming characteristics, biochar may play a pivotal role as a soil amendment in future mine land reclamation. However, to date, most studies have focused on the use of biochar to sorb metals from solution. Previous studies suggest that metals are complexed by biochar surface function groups (leading to ion exchange, complexation), coordination with Pi electrons (C=C) of carbon, and precipitation of inorganic mineral phases. Several recent studies have focused on the use of biochar for amending mine land soils, showing that biochar can indeed reduce heavy metal lability, yet the mechanism(s) behind labile metal reduction have yet to be established. In a proof-of-concept study, we added lodgepole pine, tamarisk, and switchgrass biochar (0, 5, 10, 15% by weight; 500 oC) to four different western US mine land soils affected by various heavy metals (Cd, Cu, Mn, Pb, Zn). Extraction with 0.01M CaCl2 showed that increasing biochar application rate significantly decreased 'bioaccessible' metals in almost all instances. A concomitant increase in solution pH was observed, suggesting that metals may be rendered bio-inaccessible through precipitation as carbonate or (hydr)oxide phases, or sorbed onto mineral surfaces. However, this was only supposition and required further research. Thus, following the 0.01M CaCl2 extraction, biochar-soil mixtures were air-dried and metals were further extracted using the four-step BCR sequential removal procedure. Results from selective extraction suggest that, as compared to the controls, most metals in the biochar-amended mine land soils were associated with exchange sites, carbonate, and oxide phases. Biochar may play a

  5. National-level infrastructure and economic effects of switchgrass cofiring with coal in existing power plants for carbon mitigation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morrow, William R; Griffin, W Michael; Matthews, H Scott

    2008-05-15

    We update a previously presented Linear Programming (LP) methodology for estimating state level costs for reducing CO2 emissions from existing coal-fired power plants by cofiring switchgrass, a biomass energy crop, and coal. This paper presents national level results of applying the methodology to the entire portion of the United States in which switchgrass could be grown without irrigation. We present incremental switchgrass and coal cofiring carbon cost of mitigation curves along with a presentation of regionally specific cofiring economics and policy issues. The results show that cofiring 189 million dry short tons of switchgrass with coal in the existing U.S. coal-fired electricity generation fleet can mitigate approximately 256 million short tons of carbon-dioxide (CO2) per year, representing a 9% reduction of 2005 electricity sector CO2 emissions. Total marginal costs, including capital, labor, feedstock, and transportation, range from $20 to $86/ton CO2 mitigated,with average costs ranging from $20 to $45/ton. If some existing power plants upgrade to boilers designed for combusting switchgrass, an additional 54 million tons of switchgrass can be cofired. In this case, total marginal costs range from $26 to $100/ton CO2 mitigated, with average costs ranging from $20 to $60/ton. Costs for states east of the Mississippi River are largely unaffected by boiler replacement; Atlantic seaboard states represent the lowest cofiring cost of carbon mitigation. The central plains states west of the Mississippi River are most affected by the boiler replacement option and, in general, go from one of the lowest cofiring cost of carbon mitigation regions to the highest. We explain the variation in transportation expenses and highlight regional cost of mitigation variations as transportation overwhelms other cofiring costs. PMID:18546680

  6. The Role of Biochar in Ameliorating Disturbed Soils and Sequestering Soil Carbon in Tropical Agricultural Production Systems

    OpenAIRE

    Wolde Mekuria; Andrew Noble

    2013-01-01

    Agricultural soils in the tropics have undergone significant declines in their native carbon stock through the long-term use of extractive farming practices. However, these soils have significant capacity to sequester CO2 through the implementation of improved land management practices. This paper reviews the published and grey literature related to the influence of improved land management practices on soil carbon stock in the tropics. The review suggests that the implementation of improved ...

  7. Study of Biodiesel Emissions and Carbon Mitigation in Gas Turbine Combustor

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohamed Alalim Altaher

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available The energy security and reduction of carbon emissions have accelerated the R&D of the alternative fuels in the transport, heating and power generation sectors in last decade. The heating and power generation sectors are two of the major contributors to carbon dioxide emissions, which are due to the combustion of petroleum fuels. A gas turbine combustor test rig was used to study the combustion and emission characteristics of waste cooking oil methyl ester (WME biodiesel. A 140mm diameter atmospheric pressure premixed combustion test rig was used at 600K inlet air temperature and Mach number 0.017. The tests were conducted using pure WME and blend with kerosene. The central fuel injection was used for liquid fuels and wall injection was used for NG (Natural Gas. The exhaust samples for smoke and gaseous emissions (NOx, UHC, CO and CO₂ have been analysed on dry basis and corrected to 15% O₂ over range of different fuel rate. The results showed that the biodiesel had lower CO, UHC emissions and higher NOx emissions than the kerosene. The blend B20 had lowest NOx emissions comparing with pure biodiesel (B100 and B50. The optimum conditions for WME with lowest emissions were identified. The carbon dioxide emissions per 100 megawatts of heat generated for each fuel were calculated. The relative carbon emissions and mitigations by biodiesel were compared. The results can be used to estimate pollutant emissions and carbon reductions by biodiesel in power generation industry and other sectors where gas turbine engines are used.

  8. Furfural and its biochar improve the general properties of a saline soil

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Y.; Xu, G.; Shao, H. B.

    2014-07-01

    Organic materials (e.g., furfural residue) are generally believed to improve the physical and chemical properties of saline soils with low fertility. Recently, biochar has been received more attention as a possible measure to improve the carbon balance and improve soil quality in some degraded soils. However, little is known about their different amelioration of a sandy saline soil. In this study, 56 d incubation experiment was conducted to evaluate the influence of furfural and its biochar on the properties of saline soil. The results showed that both furfural and biochar greatly reduced pH, increased soil organic carbon (SOC) content and cation exchange capacity (CEC), and enhanced the available phosphorus (P) in the soil. Furfural is more efficient than biochar in reducing pH: 5% furfural lowered the soil pH by 0.5-0.8 (soil pH: 8.3-8.6), while 5% biochar decreased by 0.25-0.4 due to the loss of acidity in pyrolysis process. With respect to available P, furfural addition at a rate of 5% increased available P content by 4-6 times in comparison to 2-5 times with biochar application. In reducing soil exchangeable sodium percentage (ESP), biochar is slightly superior to furfural because soil ESP reduced by 51% and 43% with 5% furfural and 5% biochar at the end of incubation. In addition, no significant differences were observed between furfural and biochar about their capacity to retain N, P in leaching solution and to increase CEC in soil. These facts may be caused by the relatively short incubation time. In general, furfural and biochar exhibited a different effect depending on the property: furfural was more effective in decreasing pH and increasing available P, whereas biochar played a more important role in increasing SOC and reducing ESP of saline soil.

  9. Mitigating climate change by sequestering carbon soils: A hypertext-based scientific assessment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rauscher, H.M.; Alban, D.H. (USDA Forest Service, Grand Rapids, MN (United States)); Johnson, D.W. (Univ. of Nevada, Reno (United States))

    1992-01-01

    The general objective of this project is the development of a hypertext-based scientific assessment on the subject of mitigating climate change by sequestering carbon in soils. Specifically, the authors want to (1) translate the scientific knowledge base on soil carbon cycling into a form meaningful for policy makers by using the theory of issue-based hypertext for problem solving using the argumentative approach developed by the late Horst Rittel, professor of planning and design at the University of California, Berkeley; (2) provide an organized and evaluated scientific knowledge base on soil carbon dynamics for research scientists to aid in the rapid and economical review and understanding of the subfield of science; and (3) test this new hybrid hypertext and AI methodology for use as a tool for program managers to help them evaluate a research domain to find knowledge gaps, to prioritize these knowledge gaps, to channel available research funding to these projects aimed at filling the most promising knowledge gaps in order to have the greatest possible impact on the entire knowledge base of the field, and to help explicitly measure scientific progress in terms that funding sources can understand. The authors began this project in fall 1991 and expect to complete it by fall 1993.

  10. Mitigating climate change by sequestering carbon soils: A hypertext-based scientific assessment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The general objective of this project is the development of a hypertext-based scientific assessment on the subject of mitigating climate change by sequestering carbon in soils. Specifically, the authors want to (1) translate the scientific knowledge base on soil carbon cycling into a form meaningful for policy makers by using the theory of issue-based hypertext for problem solving using the argumentative approach developed by the late Horst Rittel, professor of planning and design at the University of California, Berkeley; (2) provide an organized and evaluated scientific knowledge base on soil carbon dynamics for research scientists to aid in the rapid and economical review and understanding of the subfield of science; and (3) test this new hybrid hypertext and AI methodology for use as a tool for program managers to help them evaluate a research domain to find knowledge gaps, to prioritize these knowledge gaps, to channel available research funding to these projects aimed at filling the most promising knowledge gaps in order to have the greatest possible impact on the entire knowledge base of the field, and to help explicitly measure scientific progress in terms that funding sources can understand. The authors began this project in fall 1991 and expect to complete it by fall 1993

  11. Can heterotrophic uptake of dissolved organic carbon and zooplankton mitigate carbon budget deficits in annually bleached corals?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levas, Stephen; Grottoli, Andréa G.; Schoepf, Verena; Aschaffenburg, Matthew; Baumann, Justin; Bauer, James E.; Warner, Mark E.

    2016-06-01

    Annual coral bleaching events due to increasing sea surface temperatures are predicted to occur globally by the mid-century and as early as 2025 in the Caribbean, and severely impact coral reefs. We hypothesize that heterotrophic carbon (C) in the form of zooplankton and dissolved organic carbon (DOC) is a significant source of C to bleached corals. Thus, the ability to utilize multiple pools of fixed carbon and/or increase the amount of fixed carbon acquired from one or more pools of fixed carbon (defined here as heterotrophic plasticity) could underlie coral acclimatization and persistence under future ocean-warming scenarios. Here, three species of Caribbean coral— Porites divaricata, P. astreoides, and Orbicella faveolata—were experimentally bleached for 2.5 weeks in two successive years and allowed to recover in the field. Zooplankton feeding was assessed after single and repeat bleaching, while DOC fluxes and the contribution of DOC to the total C budget were determined after single bleaching, 11 months on the reef, and repeat bleaching. Zooplankton was a large C source for P. astreoides, but only following single bleaching. DOC was a source of C for single-bleached corals and accounted for 11-36 % of daily metabolic demand (CHARDOC), but represented a net loss of C in repeat-bleached corals. In repeat-bleached corals, DOC loss exacerbated the negative C budgets in all three species. Thus, the capacity for heterotrophic plasticity in corals is compromised under annual bleaching, and heterotrophic uptake of DOC and zooplankton does not mitigate C budget deficits in annually bleached corals. Overall, these findings suggest that some Caribbean corals may be more susceptible to repeat bleaching than to single bleaching due to a lack of heterotrophic plasticity, and coral persistence under increasing bleaching frequency may ultimately depend on other factors such as energy reserves and symbiont shuffling.

  12. Carbon mitigation with biomass: An engineering, economic and policy assessment of opportunities and implications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rhodes, James S., III

    2007-12-01

    Industrial bio-energy systems provide diverse opportunities for abating anthropogenic greenhouse gas ("GHG") emissions and for advancing other important policy objectives. The confluence of potential contributions to important social, economic, and environmental policy objectives with very real challenges to deployment creates rich opportunities for study. In particular, the analyses developed in this thesis aim to increase understanding of how industrial bio-energy may be applied to abate GHG emissions in prospective energy markets, the relative merits of alternate bio-energy systems, the extent to which public support for developing such systems is justified, and the public policy instruments that may be capable of providing such support. This objective is advanced through analysis of specific industrial bio-energy technologies, in the form of bottom-up engineering-economic analyses, to determine their economic performance relative to other mitigation options. These bottom-up analyses are used to inform parameter definitions in two higher-level stochastic models that explicitly account for uncertainty in key model parameters, including capital costs, operating and maintenance costs, and fuel costs. One of these models is used to develop supply curves for electricity generation and carbon mitigation from biomass-coal cofire in the U.S. The other is used to characterize the performance of multiple bio-energy systems in the context of a competitive market for low-carbon energy products. The results indicate that industrial bio-energy systems are capable of making a variety of potentially important contributions under scenarios that value anthropogenic GHG emissions. In the near term, cofire of available biomass in existing coal fired power plants has the potential to provide substantial emissions reductions at reasonable costs. Carbon prices between 30 and 70 per ton carbon could induce reductions in U.S. carbon emissions by 100 to 225 megatons carbon ("Mt

  13. Biochar Systems for Smallholders in Developing Countries : Leveraging Current Knowledge and Exploring Future Potential for Climate-Smart Agriculture

    OpenAIRE

    Scholz, Sebastian M.; Sembres, Thomas; Roberts, Kelli; Whitman, Thea; Wilson, Kelpie; Lehmann, Johannes

    2014-01-01

    Biochar is the carbon-rich organic matter that remains after heating biomass under the minimization of oxygen during a process called pyrolysis. There are a number of reasons why biochar systems may be particularly relevant in developing-country contexts. This report offers a review of what is known about opportunities and risks of biochar systems. Its aim is to provide a state-of-the-art ...

  14. Biochar can be used to capture essential nutrients from dairy wastewater and improve soil physico-chemical properties

    OpenAIRE

    Ghezzehei, T. A.; D. V. Sarkhot; Berhe, A. A.

    2014-01-01

    Recently, the potential for biochar use to recapture excess nutrients from dairy wastewater has been a focus of a growing number of studies. It is suggested that biochar produced from locally available excess biomass can be important in reducing release of excess nutrient elements from agricultural runoff, improving soil productivity, and long-term carbon (C) sequestration. Here we present a review of a new approach that is showing promise for the use of biochar for nutrient...

  15. Technical, economical, and climate-related aspects of biochar production technologies: a literature review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meyer, Sebastian; Glaser, Bruno; Quicker, Peter

    2011-11-15

    For the development of commercial biochar projects, reliable data on biochar production technologies is needed. For this purpose, peer-reviewed scientific articles on carbonization technologies (pyrolysis, gasification, hydrothermal carbonization, and flash carbonization) have been analyzed. Valuable information is provided by papers on pyrolysis processes, less information is available on gasification processes, and few papers about hydrothermal and flash carbonization technologies were identified. A wide range of data on the costs of char production (between 51 US$ per tonne pyrolysis biochar from yard waste and 386 US$ per tonne retort charcoal) and on the GHG balance of biochar systems (between -1054 kg CO(2)e and +123 kg CO(2)e per t dry biomass feedstock) have been published. More data from pilot projects are needed to improve the evaluation of biochar production technologies. Additional research on the influence of biochar application on surface albedo, atmospheric soot concentration, and yield responses is necessary to assess the entire climate impact of biochar systems. Above all, further field trials on the ability of different technologies to produce chars for agricultural soils and carbon sequestration are essential for future technology evaluation. PMID:21961528

  16. Meeting the Demand for Biofuels: Impact on Land Use and Carbon Mitigation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Khanna, Madhu; Jain, Atul; Onal, Hayri; Scheffran, Jurgen; Chen, Xiaoguang; Erickson, Matt; Huang, Haixiao; Kang, Seungmo.

    2011-08-14

    The purpose of this research was to develop an integrated, interdisciplinary framework to investigate the implications of large scale production of biofuels for land use, crop production, farm income and greenhouse gases. In particular, we examine the mix of feedstocks that would be viable for biofuel production and the spatial allocation of land required for producing these feedstocks at various gasoline and carbon emission prices as well as biofuel subsidy levels. The implication of interactions between energy policy that seeks energy independence from foreign oil and climate policy that seeks to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions for the optimal mix of biofuels and land use will also be investigated. This project contributes to the ELSI research goals of sustainable biofuel production while balancing competing demands for land and developing policy approaches needed to support biofuel production in a cost-effective and environmentally friendly manner.

  17. Metal Hydrides, MOFs, and Carbon Composites as Space Radiation Shielding Mitigators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Atwell, William; Rojdev, Kristina; Liang, Daniel; Hill, Matthew

    2014-01-01

    Recently, metal hydrides and MOFs (Metal-Organic Framework/microporous organic polymer composites - for their hydrogen and methane storage capabilities) have been studied with applications in fuel cell technology. We have investigated a dual-use of these materials and carbon composites (CNT-HDPE) to include space radiation shielding mitigation. In this paper we present the results of a detailed study where we have analyzed 64 materials. We used the Band fit spectra for the combined 19-24 October 1989 solar proton events as the input source term radiation environment. These computational analyses were performed with the NASA high energy particle transport/dose code HZETRN. Through this analysis we have identified several of the materials that have excellent radiation shielding properties and the details of this analysis will be discussed further in the paper.

  18. Policies, measures and the monitoring needs of forest sector carbon mitigation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Forest sector mitigation options can be grouped into three categories: (1) management for carbon (C) conservation, (2) management for C storage, and (3) management for C conservation and sequestration worldwide and the average costs of achieving it. It reviews policy measures that have been successfully applied at regional and project levels toward reduction of atmospheric greenhouse gases. It also describes both national programs and jointly implemented international activities. The monitoring methods, and the items to monitor, differ across these categories. Remote sensing is a good approach for the monitoring of C conservation, but not for C substitution, which requires estimation of the fossil fuels that would be displaced and the continued monitoring of electricity generation sources. C storage, on the other hand, includes C in products which may be traded internationally. Their monitoring will require that bi- or multi-lateral protocols be set up for this purpose. 1 fig., 4 tabs., 23 refs

  19. Skin effect mitigation in laser processed multi-walled carbon nanotube/copper conductors

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    In this study, laser-processed multi-walled carbon nanotube (MWCNT)/Cu conductors are introduced as potential passive components to mitigate the skin effect of Cu at high frequencies (0–10 MHz). Suppressed skin effect is observed in the MWCNT/Cu conductors compared to primitive Cu. At an AC frequency of 10 MHz, a maximum AC resistance reduction of 94% was observed in a MWCNT/Cu conductor after being irradiated at a laser power density of 189 W/cm2. The reduced skin effect in the MWCNT/Cu conductors is ascribed to the presence of MWCNT channels which are insensitive to AC frequencies. The laser irradiation process is observed to play a crucial role in reducing contact resistance at the MWCNT-Cu interfaces, removing impurities in MWCNTs, and densifying MWCNT films

  20. Skin effect mitigation in laser processed multi-walled carbon nanotube/copper conductors

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Keramatnejad, K.; Zhou, Y. S.; Gao, Y.; Rabiee Golgir, H.; Wang, M.; Lu, Y. F., E-mail: ylu2@unl.edu [Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Lincoln, Nebraska 68588-0511 (United States); Jiang, L. [School of Mechanical Engineering, Beijing Institute of Technology, Beijing 100081 (China); Silvain, J.-F. [Institut de Chimie de la Matière Condensée de Bordeaux (ICMCB-CNRS) 87, Avenue du Docteur Albert Schweitzer F-33608 Pessac Cedex (France)

    2015-10-21

    In this study, laser-processed multi-walled carbon nanotube (MWCNT)/Cu conductors are introduced as potential passive components to mitigate the skin effect of Cu at high frequencies (0–10 MHz). Suppressed skin effect is observed in the MWCNT/Cu conductors compared to primitive Cu. At an AC frequency of 10 MHz, a maximum AC resistance reduction of 94% was observed in a MWCNT/Cu conductor after being irradiated at a laser power density of 189 W/cm{sup 2}. The reduced skin effect in the MWCNT/Cu conductors is ascribed to the presence of MWCNT channels which are insensitive to AC frequencies. The laser irradiation process is observed to play a crucial role in reducing contact resistance at the MWCNT-Cu interfaces, removing impurities in MWCNTs, and densifying MWCNT films.

  1. Analytical pyrolysis of synthetic chars derived from biomass with potential agronomic application (biochar). Relationships with impacts on microbial carbon dioxide production

    Science.gov (United States)

    A set of 20 biochar samples produced from the pyrolysis of different biomass feedstocks with potential applications as soil amendments were investigated by pyrolysis coupled to gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (Py-GC-MS). The yields of 38 pyrolysis products representative of charred (e.g., benze...

  2. Identification of long-term carbon sequestration in soils with historical inputs of biochar using novel stable isotope and spectroscopic techniques

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hernandez-Soriano, Maria C.; Kerré, Bart; Hardy, Brieuc; Dufey, Joseph; Smolders, Erik

    2013-04-01

    Biochar is the collective term for organic matter (OM) that has been produced by pyrolysis of biomass, e.g. during production of charcoal or during natural processes such as bush fires. Biochar production and application is now suggested as one of the economically feasible options for global C-sequestration strategies. The C-sequestration in soil through application of biochar is not only related to its persistence (estimated lifetime exceeds 1000 year in soil), but also due to indirect effects such as its potential to adsorb and increase OM stability in soil. Historical charcoal production sites that had been in use >200 years ago in beech/oak forests have been localized in the south of Belgium. Aerial photography identified black spots in arable land on former forest sites. Soil sampling was conducted in an arable field used for maize production near Mettet (Belgium) where charcoal production was intensive until late 18th century. Soils were sampled in a horizontal gradient across the 'black soils' that extend of few decametres, collecting soil from the spots (Biochar Amended, BA) as well as from the non-biochar amended (NBA). Stable C isotope composition was used to estimate the long-term C-sequestration derived from crops in these soils where maize had been produced since about 15 years. Because C in the biochar originates in forest wood (C3 plants), its isotopic signature (δ13C) differs from the maize (a C4 plant). The C and N content and the δ13C were determined for bulk soil samples and for microaggregate size fractions separated by wet sieving. Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR) coupled to optical microscopy was used to obtaining fingerprints of biochar and OM composition for soil microaggregates. The total C content in the BA soil (5.5%) and the C/N ratio (16.9) were higher than for NBA (C content 2.7%; C/N ratio 12.6), which confirms the persistence of OM in the BA. The average isotopic signature of bulk soil from BA (-26.08) was slightly

  3. Mineralization of soil organic matter in biochar amended agricultural landscape

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chintala, R.; Clay, D. E.; Schumacher, T. E.; Kumar, S.; Malo, D. D.

    2015-12-01

    Pyrogenic biochar materials have been identified as a promising soil amendment to enhance climate resilience, increase soil carbon recalcitrance and achieve sustainable crop production. A three year field study was initiated in 2013 to study the impact of biochar on soil carbon and nitrogen storage on an eroded Maddock soil series - Sandy, Mixed, Frigid Entic Hapludolls) and deposition Brookings clay loam (Fine-Silty, Mixed, Superactive, Frigid Pachic Hapludolls) landscape positions. Three biochars produced from corn stover (Zea mays L.), Ponderosa pine (Pinus ponderosa Lawson and C. Lawson) wood residue, and switchgrass (Panicum virgatum L.) were incorporated at 9.75 Mg ha-1 rate (≈7.5 cm soil depth and 1.3 g/cm3 soil bulk density) with a rototiller. The changes in chemical fractionation of soil carbon (soluble C, acid hydrolyzable C, total C, and δ13 C) and nitrogen (soluble N, acid hydrolyzable N, total N, and δ14 N) were monitored for two soil depths (0-7.5 and 7.5 - 15 cm). Soluble and acid hydrolyzable fractions of soil C and N were influenced by soil series and were not significantly affected by incorporation of biochars. Based on soil and plant samples to be collected in the fall of 2015, C and N budgets are being developed using isotopic and non-isotopic techniques. Laboratory studies showed that the mean residence time for biochars used in this study ranged from 400 to 666 years. Laboratory and field studies will be compared in the presentation.

  4. USDA Biochar Research: Land Application Advances to Reap Its Multifunctional Abilities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ippolito, J.; Spokas, K.; Novak, J.; Lentz, R. D.; Stromberger, M.; Ducey, T.; Johnson, M.

    2014-12-01

    Biochar is the solid byproduct from the pyrolysis of agricultural crop residues, manures, green wastes and wood-based materials. Pyrolyzing biomass causes inorganic and organic compounds to be concentrated within the carbonized remains of the original lignin and cellulose structure. It is through this complex mixture of organic aromatic structures and inorganic elements that potentially imparts biochars with special multi-functional capabilities. Our current research has focused on developing biochar to simultaneously sequester soil carbon and remediate degraded soils. This is accomplished by directly improving soil nutrient and moisture contents, sorbing pollutants, as well as altering microbial signaling. Maintaining these improvements needs to account for biochar physical degradation, which may be overcome by biochar-mineral associations. Additional research is focused on biochar use that minimizes soil microorganism population shifts in order to maintain current ecosystem services. Future USDA research involves more evaluations to understand the multifunctional role of biochar in the agricultural and environmental sectors (e.g., USEPA superfund locations). This presentation will provide highlights of current and future coordinated biochar research efforts from several key laboratory locations across the US.

  5. Inactivation of E. coli O157:H7 in cultivable soil by fast and slow pyrolysis-generated biochar.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gurtler, Joshua B; Boateng, Akwasi A; Han, Yanxue Helen; Douds, David D

    2014-03-01

    An exploratory study was performed to determine the influence of fast pyrolysis (FP) and slow pyrolysis (SP) biochars on enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli O157:H7 (EHEC) in soil. Soil + EHEC (inoculated at 7 log colony-forming units [CFU]/g of soil) + 1 of 12 types of biochar (10% total weight:weight in soil) was stored at 22°C and sampled for 8 weeks. FP switchgrass and FP horse litter biochars inactivated 2.8 and 2.1 log CFU/g more EHEC than no-biochar soils by day 14. EHEC was undetectable by surface plating at weeks 4 and 5 in standard FP switchgrass, FP oak, and FP switchgrass pellet biochars. Conversely, EHEC populations in no-biochar control samples remained as high as 5.8 and 4.0 log CFU/g at weeks 4 and 5, respectively. Additionally, three more SP hardwood pellet biochars (generated at 500°C for 1 h, or 2 h, or generated at 700°C for 30 min) inactivated greater numbers of EHEC than did the no-biochar control samples during weeks 4 and 5. These results suggest that biochar can inactivate E. coli O157:H7 in cultivable soil, which might mitigate risks associated with EHEC contamination on fresh produce. PMID:24328454

  6. Electrochemical Acceleration of Carbonate and Silicate Weathering for CO2 Mitigation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rau, G. H.; Carroll, S.

    2011-12-01

    Carbonate and many silicate minerals dissolve in strong acids, and such acids are commonly generated at the anode of a conventional saline water electrolysis cell. It was therefore reasoned that encasing such an anode with base minerals would lead to enhanced mineral dissolution and hence increased hydroxide (base) generation at the cathode, formed in course of splitting water, generating H2 and OH-. Subsequent exposue of the alkalized solution to CO2 (e.g., as in air) would lead to absorption of the CO2 and formation of stable dissolved or solid (bi)carbonates for carbon sequestration. Previously, it has been demonstrated that mineral carbonate encasement of a seawater electrolysis cell anode indeed generated basic solutions in excess of pH 9 that were subsequently neutralized via contact with air CO2, increasing the carbon content of the initial seawater by 30% (Rau, G.H. 2008. Environ Sci. Techol. 42, 8935-). To test such a weathering/CO2 capture scheme using silicate minerals, either powdered wollastonite or ultramafic rock standard (UM-4) was encased around the anode of an electrolysis cell composed of graphite electrodes and a 0.25M Na2SO4 electrolyte solution. After 0.5 to 1.5 hrs of electricity application (3.5Vdc, 5-10mA), the electrolyte pH rose to as much as 11.1 (initial and blank solution pH's anolyte acid, H2SO4, forming mostly insoluble CaSO4 and MgSO4 at the anode. This then allowed NaOH normally produced at the cathode to accumulate in solution, in turn reacting with air CO2 to form NaHCO3. Longer electrolysis times and/or alternative electrolyte solutions might allow formation and precipitation of Ca or Mg carbonates. Such electrochemistry might ultimately provide a safe, efficient way to harness the planet's: i) large, off-peak or off-grid renewable electricity potential, ii) abundant basic minerals, and iii) vast natural brine electrolytes for large-scale air CO2 mitigation and carbon-negative H2 production.

  7. Effect of Biochar on Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Nitrogen Cycling in Laboratory and Field Experiments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hagemann, Nikolas; Harter, Johannes; Kaldamukova, Radina; Ruser, Reiner; Graeff-Hönninger, Simone; Kappler, Andreas; Behrens, Sebastian

    2014-05-01

    The extensive use of nitrogen (N) fertilizers in agriculture is a major source of anthropogenic N2O emissions contributing 8% to global greenhouse gas emissions. Soil biochar amendment has been suggested as a means to reduce both CO2 and non-CO2 greenhouse gas emissions. The reduction of N2O emissions by biochar has been demonstrated repeatedly in field and laboratory experiments. However, the mechanisms of the reduction remain unclear. Further it is not known how biochar field-weathering affects GHG emissions and how agro-chemicals, such as the nitrification inhibitor 3,4-dimethylpyrazole phosphate (DMPP), that is often simultaneously applied together with commercial N-fertilizers, impact nitrogen transformation and N2O emissions from biochar amended soils. In order investigate the duration of the biochar effect on soil N2O emissions and its susceptibility to DMPP application we performed a microcosm and field study with a high-temperature (400 ° C) beech wood derived biochar (60 t ha-1 and 5 % (w/w) biochar in the field and microcosms, respectively). While the field site contained the biochar already for three years, soil and biochar were freshly mixed for the laboratory microcosm experiments. In both studies we quantified GHG emissions and soil nitrogen speciation (nitrate, nitrite, ammonium). While the field study was carried out over the whole vegetation period of the sunflower Helianthus annuus L., soil microcosm experiments were performed for up to 9 days at 28° C. In both experiments a N-fertilizer containing DMPP was applied either before planting of the sunflowers or at the beginning of soil microcosms incubation. Laboratory microcosm experiments were performed at 60% water filled pore space reflecting average field conditions. Our results show that biochar effectively reduced soil N2O emissions by up to 60 % in the field and in the soil microcosm experiments. No significant differences in N2O emission mitigation potential between field-aged and fresh

  8. The potential of carbon sequestration to mitigate against climate change in forests and agro ecosystems of Zimbabwe

    OpenAIRE

    Mujuru, L.

    2014-01-01

    Climate change adversely affects human livelihoods and the environment through alteration of temperatures, rainfall patterns, sea level rise and ecosystem productivity. Developing countries are more vulnerable to climate change because they directly depend on agriculture and natural ecosystem products for their livelihoods. Mitigation of climate change impacts includes practices that can store carbon (C) in soil and biomass thus, reducing concentrations of atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) and...

  9. Effects of biochar on soil microbial biomass after four years of consecutive application in the north China Plain.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Qing-zhong Zhang

    Full Text Available The long term effect of biochar application on soil microbial biomass is not well understood. We measured soil microbial biomass carbon (MBC and nitrogen (MBN in a field experiment during a winter wheat growing season after four consecutive years of no (CK, 4.5 (B4.5 and 9.0 t biochar ha(-1 yr(-1 (B9.0 applied. For comparison, a treatment with wheat straw residue incorporation (SR was also included. Results showed that biochar application increased soil MBC significantly compared to the CK treatment, and that the effect size increased with biochar application rate. The B9.0 treatment showed the same effect on MBC as the SR treatment. Treatments effects on soil MBN were less strong than for MBC. The microbial biomass C∶N ratio was significantly increased by biochar. Biochar might decrease the fraction of biomass N mineralized (KN, which would make the soil MBN for biochar treatments underestimated, and microbial biomass C∶N ratios overestimated. Seasonal fluctuation in MBC was less for biochar amended soils than for CK and SR treatments, suggesting that biochar induced a less extreme environment for microorganisms throughout the season. There was a significant positive correlation between MBC and soil water content (SWC, but there was no significant correlation between MBC and soil temperature. Biochar amendments may therefore reduce temporal variability in environmental conditions for microbial growth in this system thereby reducing temporal fluctuations in C and N dynamics.

  10. Effects of biochar on soil microbial biomass after four years of consecutive application in the north China Plain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Qing-zhong; Dijkstra, Feike A; Liu, Xing-ren; Wang, Yi-ding; Huang, Jian; Lu, Ning

    2014-01-01

    The long term effect of biochar application on soil microbial biomass is not well understood. We measured soil microbial biomass carbon (MBC) and nitrogen (MBN) in a field experiment during a winter wheat growing season after four consecutive years of no (CK), 4.5 (B4.5) and 9.0 t biochar ha(-1) yr(-1) (B9.0) applied. For comparison, a treatment with wheat straw residue incorporation (SR) was also included. Results showed that biochar application increased soil MBC significantly compared to the CK treatment, and that the effect size increased with biochar application rate. The B9.0 treatment showed the same effect on MBC as the SR treatment. Treatments effects on soil MBN were less strong than for MBC. The microbial biomass C∶N ratio was significantly increased by biochar. Biochar might decrease the fraction of biomass N mineralized (KN), which would make the soil MBN for biochar treatments underestimated, and microbial biomass C∶N ratios overestimated. Seasonal fluctuation in MBC was less for biochar amended soils than for CK and SR treatments, suggesting that biochar induced a less extreme environment for microorganisms throughout the season. There was a significant positive correlation between MBC and soil water content (SWC), but there was no significant correlation between MBC and soil temperature. Biochar amendments may therefore reduce temporal variability in environmental conditions for microbial growth in this system thereby reducing temporal fluctuations in C and N dynamics. PMID:25025330

  11. Effects of biochar produced from different feedstocks on soil properties and sunflower growth

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alburquerque, J. A.; Calero, J. M.; Villar, R.; Barrón, V.; Torrent, J.; del Campillo, M. C.; Gallardo, A.

    2012-04-01

    The use of biochar obtained from biomass pyrolysis as a soil amendment has potential benefits, such as reduction in gas emissions, increase in soil carbon sequestration and improvements in soil fertility and crop yield. These constitute a great incentive for the implementation of biochar-based strategies, which could contribute to improvement of the sustainability of agricultural systems. However, to date, the results of research studies show great variability as a result of differences in both the raw materials and the pyrolysis conditions used to produce biochar, as well as in the experimental setting (crop, soil type, pedo-climatic conditions, etc.). The aim of this study was to evaluate the effects of five types of biochar produced from representative agricultural and forestry wastes (olive husk, almond shell, wheat straw, pine woodchips and olive tree prunings), and applied to soil at different rates, on soil properties and sunflower (Helianthus annuus L.) growth. The biochars had a high organic matter content, alkaline pH, variable soluble salt content and non-phytotoxic properties. The addition of biochar to soil increased pH, electrical conductivity and water retention capacity, and decreased soil bulk density compared to control (unamended soil). However, these effects differed depending on biochar type. In contrast, no consistent effects on sunflower growth variables were observed due to the addition of biochar: increases were observed in some variables (plant dry weight, leaf area and height), but these increases were, in general, not statistically significant when compared to the unamended soil. This can be explained by the nature of biochar, being rich in carbon but relatively poor in nutrients. In summary, our results indicate that biochar is capable of improving soil properties which can impact positively on soil-plant water relations, without negative effects on sunflower growth, and therefore it is suitable for use as a long-term carbon sink in

  12. Parametric studies of carbon erosion mitigation dynamics in beryllium seeded deuterium plasmas

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The characteristic time of protective beryllium layer formation on a graphite target, τBe/C, has been investigated as a function of surface temperature, Ts, ion energy, Ei, ion flux, Γi, and beryllium ion concentration, cBe, in beryllium seeded deuterium plasma. τBe/C is found to be strongly decreased with increasing Ts in the range of 550-970K. This is thought to be associated with the more efficient formation of beryllium carbide (Be2C). By scanning the parameters, a scaling expression for τBe/C has been derived as τBe/C[s]=1.0x10-7cBe-1.9+/-0.1Ei0.9+/-0.3Γi-0.6+/-0.3exp ((4.8+/-0.5)x103/Ts) where cBe is dimensionless, Ei in eV, Γi in 1022m-2s-1 and Ts in K. Should this scaling extend to an ITER scenario, carbon erosion of the divertor strike point region may be reduced with characteristic time of ∼6ms. This is much shorter than the time between predicted ITER type I ELMs (∼1s), and suggests that protective beryllium layers can be formed in between ELMs, and mitigate carbon erosion.

  13. Theoretical Assessment of Algal Biomass Potential for Carbon Mitigation and Biofuel Production

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K. Sudhakar

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available In view of ever increasing global demand for energy, there has been substantial interest in developing renewable biologically produced fuel. Microalgae are one such emerging resource considered as an alternative for biodiesel production. However its realistic potential is often either over estimated or underestimated. In view of this, a rigorous assessment is carried out to evaluate the realistic potential of micro algal biodiesel based on photosynthesis, thermodynamics and physical assumptions. This paper identifies six best regions in each continent for algal biomass cultivation considering both sunlight and local climatic conditions. The mean hourly meteorological data, sunlight, ambient temperature and rainfall information for the identified potential site is combined to estimate annual biomass production, lipid production and carbon mitigation potential. Maximum possible algal biomass yield and oil productivity have been estimated for six global sites at three different scenarios of photosynthetic efficiency 11.42, 6 and 3%. The upper optimistic biomass, oil yield and carbon fixation potential was calculated to be 533 T/ha/yr, 1, 25, 333 L/ha/yr. and 95 Tons CO2/ha/yr. This study provides a baseline data for theoretical maximum, minimum and best estimates of open pond microalgae production systems.

  14. Land use and carbon mitigation in Europe: A survey of the potentials of different alternatives

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This paper surveys studies applied to Europe that analyse carbon emission mitigation alternatives involving the use of land. We analyse a variety of alternatives that include land-use changes, forest management and bioenergy production. Our aim is to approximate the aggregate amount of carbon offsets that can be achieved through these alternatives and to show to what extent the results of the different studies are compatible and take into account the fact that land is a finite resource. Finally, based on the surveyed studies, we estimate the potential contribution of these alternatives to the goals of emission reduction proposed by the European Union for the years 2020 and 2050. Taking into account the results of the different studies analysed in this survey, land-based alternatives can contribute from 13% to 52% of the European proposed target by 2020. The implementation of these alternatives would concurrently require from 8% to 30% of EU-25 agricultural land to be afforested or diverted to bioenergy crops in this period

  15. Biochar strategies as measures for climate protection; Biokohlenstrategien als Massnahmen zum Klimaschutz

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bach, Martin [Giessen Univ. (Germany). Landschaftsoekologie und Ressourcenmanagement; Wilske, Burkhard; Bai, Mo

    2014-07-01

    Biochar is advertised by stakeholders both public and private as an innovative interface in materials stream management which holds potential for added value in the fields of climate protection, energy, agriculture, soil improvement, and waste management. A number of factors must be considered in undertaking a comprehensive assessment and valuation for climate protection purposes of the option of a ''biochar strategy'', meaning carbon sequestration by biomass carbonisation (pyrolysis, HTC): biochar production and uptake capacities, energy and carbon balance, product stability, impact on soil functions and yield effects and, not least, economic aspects. This article addresses the more important of these factors.

  16. Controllability of runoff and soil loss from small plots treated by vinasse-produced biochar.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sadeghi, Seyed Hamidreza; Hazbavi, Zeinab; Harchegani, Mahboobeh Kiani

    2016-01-15

    Many different amendments, stabilizers, and conditioners are usually applied for soil and water conservation. Biochar is a carbon-enriched substance produced by thermal decomposition of organic material in the absence of oxygen with the goal to be used as a soil amendment. Biochar can be produced from a wide range of biomass sources including straw, wood, manure, and other organic wastes. Biochar has been demonstrated to restore soil fertility and crop production under many conditions, but less is known about the effects of its application on soil erosion and runoff control. Therefore, a rainfall simulation study, as a pioneer research, was conducted to evaluate the performance of the application of vinasse-produced biochar on the soil erosion control of a sandy clay loam soil packed in small-sized runoff 0.25-m(2) plots with 3 replicates. The treatments were (i) no biochar (control), (ii) biochar (8 tha(-1)) application at 24h before the rainfall simulation and (iii) biochar (8 tha(-1)) application at 48 h before the rainfall simulation. Rainfall was applied at 50 mm h(-1) for 15 min. The mean change of effectiveness in time to runoff could be found in biochar application at 24 and 48 h before simulation treatment with rate of +55.10% and +71.73%, respectively. In addition, the mean runoff volume 24 and 48 h before simulation treatments decreased by 98.46% and 46.39%, respectively. The least soil loss (1.12 ± 0.57 g) and sediment concentration (1.44 ± 0.48 gl(-1)) occurred in the biochar-amended soil treated 48 h before the rainfall simulation. In conclusion, the application of vinasse-produced biochar could effectively control runoff and soil loss. This study provided a new insight into the effects of biochar on runoff, soil loss, and sediment control due to water erosion in sandy clay loam soils. PMID:26410722

  17. Potential dual use of biochar for wastewater treatment and soil amelioration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marschner, Bernd; Werner, Steffen; Alfes, Karsten; Lübken, Manfred

    2013-04-01

    Irrigating crops with wastewater from open drainage channels is a common practice in urban agricultural production in many dry regions of Africa, Asia and Latin America. While the wastewater-borne nutrients reduce the need for inputs of mineral fertilizers or manures and thus reduce production costs, wastewater-borne pathogens and contaminants pose a health risk for the producers and consumers of the crops. Furthermore, the input of nutrients with the irrigation water may greatly exceed crop requirements and thus lead to unproductive leaching losses of nutrients. It is generally acknowledged that biochar additions can increase the soil's sorption and retention capacity for nutrients and water. However, positive effects on crop production are generally only observed, if this is combined with mineral fertilizers or manures due to the low nutrient content of biochars. Biochar possibly also has a high potential for use in water purification, replacing the coal-based activated carbon as a sorbent for contaminants and pathogens. It was therefore hypothesized that biochar can be used for pathogen removal from wastewater while at the same time being loaded with nutrients and contaminants. If contaminants are of minor concern the "loaded" biochar can be used as a soil amendment, providing not only long-term sorption capacity but also nutrients. Experiments were conducted with pyrochar from Miscanthus, rice husks and wood chips, which strongly differed in elemental composition, MIR-DRIFT spectra, surface charge properties and sorption potential for DOC and phosphate. When used as top filter layer in a sand column system, the biochars effectively reduced E. coli concentrations from raw wastewater by up to 2 log units. While biochars from rice husks and Miscanthus accumulated N substantially, wood chip biochar showed no N retention. On the other hand, P accumulation was most pronounced for wood chip biochar. Ongoing incubation experiments with the "loaded" and fresh biochar in

  18. Methodological interference of biochar in the determination of extracellular enzyme activities in composting samples

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K. Jindo

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Biochar application has received increasing attention as a means to trap recalcitrant carbon and enhance soil fertility. Hydrolytic enzymatic assays, such as β-glucosidase and phosphatase activities, are used for the assessment of soil quality and composting process, which are based on use of p-nitrophenol (PNP derivatives as substrate. However, sorption capacity of biochar can interfere colorimetric determination of the hydrolysed PNP, either by the sorption of the substrate or the reaction-product of hydrolysis into biochar surface. The aim of the present work is to study the biochar sorption capacity for PNP in biochar-blended composting mixtures in order to assess its impact on the estimation of the colorimetric-based enzymatic assays. A retention test was conducted by adding a solution of known amounts of PNP in universal buffer solution (pH = 5, 6.5 and 11, corresponding to the β-glucosidase, acid and alkaline phosphatase activity assays, respectively, in samples taken at the initial stage and after maturation stage from 4 different composting piles (two manure composting piles (PM: poultry manure, CM: cow manure and two other similar piles containing 10% of additional biochar (PM + B, CM + B. The results show that biochar blended composts (PM + B, CM + B generally exhibited low enzymatic activities, compared to manure compost without biochar (PM, CM. In terms of the difference between the initial and maturation stage of composting process, the PNP retention in biochar was shown more clearly at maturation stage, caused by an enlarged proportion of biochar inside compost mixture after the selective degradation of easily decomposable organic matter. The retention of PNP was more pronounced at low pH (5 and 6.5 than at high pH (11, 3 reflecting on pH dependency of sorption 49 capacity of biochar and/or PNP 50 solubility.

  19. Effects of Biochar Addition on CO2 and N2O Emissions following Fertilizer Application to a Cultivated Grassland Soil.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jingjing Chen

    Full Text Available Carbon (C sequestration potential of biochar should be considered together with emission of greenhouse gases when applied to soils. In this study, we investigated CO2 and N2O emissions following the application of rice husk biochars to cultivated grassland soils and related gas emissions tos oil C and nitrogen (N dynamics. Treatments included biochar addition (CHAR, NO CHAR and amendment (COMPOST, UREA, NO FERT. The biochar application rate was 0.3% by weight. The temporal pattern of CO2 emissions differed according to biochar addition and amendments. CO2 emissions from the COMPOST soils were significantly higher than those from the UREA and NO FERT soils and less CO2 emission was observed when biochar and compost were applied together during the summer. Overall N2O emission was significantly influenced by the interaction between biochar and amendments. In UREA soil, biochar addition increased N2O emission by 49% compared to the control, while in the COMPOST and NO FERT soils, biochar did not have an effect on N2O emission. Two possible mechanisms were proposed to explain the higher N2O emissions upon biochar addition to UREA soil than other soils. Labile C in the biochar may have stimulated microbial N mineralization in the C-limited soil used in our study, resulting in an increase in N2O emission. Biochar may also have provided the soil with the ability to retain mineral N, leading to increased N2O emission. The overall results imply that biochar addition can increase C sequestration when applied together with compost, and might stimulate N2O emission when applied to soil amended with urea.

  20. Influence of pyrolysis temperature on characteristics and heavy metal adsorptive performance of biochar derived from municipal sewage sludge.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Tan; Zhang, Yaxin; Wang, Hongtao; Lu, Wenjing; Zhou, Zeyu; Zhang, Yuancheng; Ren, Lulu

    2014-07-01

    To investigate systematically the influence of pyrolysis temperature on properties and heavy metal adsorption potential of municipal sludge biochar, biophysical dried sludge was pyrolyzed under temperature varying from 500°C to 900°C. The biochar yield decreased with the increase in pyrolysis temperature, while the ash content retained mostly, thus transforming the biochars into alkaline. The structure became porous as the temperature increased, and the concentrations of surface functional group elements remained low. Despite the comparatively high content of heavy metal in the biochar, the leaching toxicity of biochars was no more than 20% of the Chinese standard. In the batch experiments of cadmium(II) adsorption, the removal capacity of biochars improved under higher temperature, especially at 800°C and 900°C even one order of magnitude higher than that of the commercial activated carbon. For both energy recovery and heavy metal removal, the optimal pyrolysis temperature is 900°C. PMID:24835918

  1. The effect of biochar amendment on the soil microbial community - PLFA analyses and 13C labeling results

    Science.gov (United States)

    Watzinger, A.; Feichtmair, S.; Rempt, F.; Anders, E.; Wimmer, B.; Kitzler, B.; Zechmeister-Boltenstern, S.; Horacek, M.; Zehetner, F.; Kloss, S.; Richoz, S.; Soja, G.

    2012-04-01

    , decreased CO2 emission after biochar addition and little 13C signature from the biochar in the respired CO2. The uptake of the labeled biochar into the microbial PLFAs was analysed and will provide an evidence if biochar was used as a carbon source. In addition, the long term effect of biochar amendment (beyond 100 days) on the soil microbial community is currently investigated. These results will be also presented in the oncoming meeting.

  2. Beyond pure offsetting: Assessing options to generate Net-Mitigation-Effects in carbon market mechanisms

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The current project-based carbon market mechanisms such as the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) and the Joint Implementation (JI) do not have a direct impact on global greenhouse gas emission levels, because they only replace or offset emissions. Nor do they contribute to host country's national greenhouse gas emission reduction targets. Contributions to net emission reductions in host countries is likely to become mandatory in new mechanisms under development such as in the framework for various approaches, a new market-based mechanism and even in a reformed JI. This research analysed the question if approaches for carbon market-based mechanisms exist that allow the generation of net emission reductions in host countries while keeping project initiation attractive. We present a criteria-based assessment method and apply it for four generic options in existing mechanisms and derive implications for future mechanism frameworks. We identified the application of “discounts” on the amount of avoided emissions for the issuance of carbon credits and “standardisation below business as usual” as most promising options over “limiting the crediting period” and “over-conservativeness”. We propose to apply these options differentiated over project types based on internal rate of return to ensure cost-efficiency and attractiveness. - Highlights: • Options for net emission reductions of market-based mechanisms are assessed. • Research combines past and current views for project and sector-based mechanisms. • Implementation ensures initiation of mitigation activities is not discouraged. • Important insights for methodological design of new market-based mechanisms. • Profitability-based approach for project-based mechanisms suggested

  3. Potentials and costs of carbon dioxide mitigation in the world's buildings

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Buildings are responsible for over a third of global energy-related carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. A significant share of these emissions can be avoided cost effectively through improved energy efficiency, while providing the same or higher level of energy services. How large is this emission reduction potential globally and how much will it cost for society to unlock it? This paper provides answers to these questions, presenting the results of bottom-up research conducted for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), based on the assessment of 80 country- or regional-level mitigation studies throughout the world. First, the paper analyses the findings of these studies in a common framework. Then, it aggregates their results into a global estimate of CO2 mitigation potential. The paper concludes that by 2020 it is possible to cut cost effectively approximately 29% of buildings-related global CO2 emissions, the largest among all sectors reported by the IPCC, representing a 3.2 GtCO2eq. reduction. Developing countries house the largest cost-effective potential with up to 52% of building-level emissions, whereas transition economies and industrialised countries have cost-effective potentials of up to 37% and 25%, respectively. Energy-efficient lighting was identified as the most attractive measure worldwide, in terms of both reduction potential and cost effectiveness. If this potential is realised, the building-related CO2 emissions would stay constant over 2004-2030. These stabilisation levels (if achieved by all other sectors) would cancel about 3oC temperature increase over the projected period of time

  4. Activation of Cassava Stem Biochar by Physico-Chemical Method for Stimulating Cadmium Removal Efficiency from Aqueous Solution

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Songkrit Prapagdee

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Removal of Cadmium (Cd from aqueous solution using biochar was considered a cost effective sorbent. Biochar quality and specification depend on its carbonization processes. In this study, the cassava stem biochars were produced at temperature of 300, 400 and 500 °C with slow pyrolysis technique. The biochar in each carbonization temperature was activated with physico-chemical treatments, pre-activated by 1.63M KOH solution then activated with second pyrolysis as same as first pyrolysis conditions. Adsorption study by using biochar adsorb Cd ion from Cd(NO32 solution by batch static method. The results indicated that the removal efficiency of activated biochar produced at pyrolysis temperature 300 °C can be increased from 10.46 to 24.88 mg/g and was selected for adsorption characteristic and biochar properties. Adsorption isotherm of non-activated and activated biochar were fitted both Langmuir and Freundlich isotherm (r2>0.95. The BET surface area of activated biochar was increased from 6.8818 to 9.4964 m2/g, while, pore size and chemical properties could be preserved. In summary, our results suggest that KOH pre-activated and second pyrolysis could increase Cd removal efficiency from aqueous solution.

  5. Carbon sequestration in soils - has the potential for climate change mitigation been over-stated?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Powlson, David

    2013-04-01

    The term "carbon sequestration" is commonly used to describe any increase in soil organic carbon (SOC) content caused by a change in land management, with the implication that increased soil carbon (C) storage mitigates climate change. But this only true if the management practice causes additional net transfer of C from atmosphere to land. Limitations of C sequestration for climate change mitigation include: (1) the quantity of C stored in soil is finite; (2) the process is reversible; (3) even if SOC is increased there may be changes in the fluxes of other greenhouse gases especially nitrous oxide (N2O). Removing land from annual cropping and converting to forest, grassland or perennial crops will remove C from atmospheric CO2 and genuinely contribute to climate change mitigation. However, indirect effects such as conversion of land elsewhere under native vegetation to agriculture could negate the benefit due to increased CO2 emission. Re-vegetating degraded land, of limited value for food production, avoids this problem. Adding organic materials such as crop residues or animal manure to soil, whilst increasing SOC, generally does not constitute an additional transfer of C from atmosphere to land - it depends on the alternative fate of the residue. Increases in SOC from reduced tillage now appear to be much smaller than previously claimed, at least in temperate regions, and in some situations increased nitrous oxide emission may outweigh any increase in stored C. The climate change benefit of increased SOC from enhanced crop growth (e.g. from the use of fertilizers) must be balanced against greenhouse gas emissions associated with manufacture and use of fertilizer. For soils under long-term grassland there is less scope for increasing soil C stock than in arable soils because these already have a higher SOC content. A key issue with grasslands is to ensure good management practices that maintain the high SOC content. Any form of soil degradation, such as

  6. Effect of biochar amendment on yield and photosynthesis of peanut on two types of soils.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Cheng-Yuan; Hosseini-Bai, Shahla; Hao, Yanbin; Rachaputi, Rao C N; Wang, Hailong; Xu, Zhihong; Wallace, Helen

    2015-04-01

    Biochar has significant potential to improve crop performance. This study examined the effect of biochar application on the photosynthesis and yield of peanut crop grown on two soil types. The commercial peanut cultivar Middleton was grown on red ferrosol and redoxi-hydrosol (Queensland, Australia) amended with a peanut shell biochar gradient (0, 0.375, 0.750, 1.50, 3.00 and 6.00%, w/w, equivalent up to 85 t ha(-1)) in a glasshouse pot experiment. Biomass and pod yield, photosynthesis-[CO2] response parameters, leaf characteristics and soil properties (carbon, nitrogen (N) and nutrients) were quantified. Biochar significantly improved peanut biomass and pod yield up to 2- and 3-folds respectively in red ferrosol and redoxi-hydrosol. A modest (but significant) biochar-induced improvement of the maximum electron transport rate and saturating photosynthetic rate was observed for red ferrosol. This response was correlated to increased leaf N and accompanied with improved soil available N and biological N fixation. Biochar application also improved the availability of other soil nutrients, which appeared critical in improving peanut performance, especially on infertile redoxi-hydrosol. Our study suggests that application of peanut shell derived biochar has strong potential to improve peanut yield on red ferrosol and redoxi-hydrosol. Biochar soil amendment can affect leaf N status and photosynthesis, but the effect varied with soil type. PMID:25395326

  7. Plant growth improvement mediated by nitrate capture in co-composted biochar

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kammann, Claudia I.; Schmidt, Hans-Peter; Messerschmidt, Nicole; Linsel, Sebastian; Steffens, Diedrich; Müller, Christoph; Koyro, Hans-Werner; Conte, Pellegrino; Stephen, Joseph

    2015-06-01

    Soil amendment with pyrogenic carbon (biochar) is discussed as strategy to improve soil fertility to enable economic plus environmental benefits. In temperate soils, however, the use of pure biochar mostly has moderately-negative to -positive yield effects. Here we demonstrate that co-composting considerably promoted biochars’ positive effects, largely by nitrate (nutrient) capture and delivery. In a full-factorial growth study with Chenopodium quinoa, biomass yield increased up to 305% in a sandy-poor soil amended with 2% (w/w) co-composted biochar (BCcomp). Conversely, addition of 2% (w/w) untreated biochar (BCpure) decreased the biomass to 60% of the control. Growth-promoting (BCcomp) as well as growth-reducing (BCpure) effects were more pronounced at lower nutrient-supply levels. Electro-ultra filtration and sequential biochar-particle washing revealed that co-composted biochar was nutrient-enriched, particularly with the anions nitrate and phosphate. The captured nitrate in BCcomp was (1) only partly detectable with standard methods, (2) largely protected against leaching, (3) partly plant-available, and (4) did not stimulate N2O emissions. We hypothesize that surface ageing plus non-conventional ion-water bonding in micro- and nano-pores promoted nitrate capture in biochar particles. Amending (N-rich) bio-waste with biochar may enhance its agronomic value and reduce nutrient losses from bio-wastes and agricultural soils.

  8. Release of soluble elements from biochars derived from various biomass feedstocks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Hailu; Che, Xiaodong; Ding, Zhuhong; Hu, Xin; Creamer, Anne Elise; Chen, Hao; Gao, Bin

    2016-01-01

    Biochar as soil amendment can increase soil carbon (C) sequestration and mineral nutrients; however, some of its soluble elements may also be unintentionally released during the application. In this work, eight types of biochars were derived from herbaceous, woody, and waste (tailing, manure, sludge) biomass feedstocks through slow pyrolysis at 600 °C in N2. The elemental composition, specific surface area, morphology, crystalline phases, thermal stability, surface functional groups, and pH of the point of zero charge of the biochars were determined using various methods. These properties varied significantly among the tested biochars, suggesting that feedstock type played an important role in controlling their properties. Laboratory release and toxicity characteristic leaching procedure extraction experiments were conducted to evaluate the potential release of nutritious and toxic element from biochars. Results showed that all the biochars released nutritious elements and thus, may be beneficial to plants when amended in soils. In general, biochars produced from herbaceous and woody biomass feedstocks showed low risks of releasing toxic elements. Biochar derived from sludge, however, might present ecotoxicological challenges for its environmental applications due to the release of toxic elements, such as heavy metals. PMID:26408115

  9. Carbon mitigation potential and costs of forestry options in Brazil, China, India, Indonesia, Mexico, the Philippines and Tanzania

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sathaye, J.; Makundi, W.; Andrasko, K.; Boer, R.; Ravindranath, N.; Sudha, P.; Rao, S.; Lasco, R.; Pulhin, F.; Masera, O.; Ceron, A.; Ordonez, J.; Deying, X.; Zhang, X.; Zuomin, S.

    2001-01-01

    This paper summarizes studies of carbon (C) mitigation potential and costs of about 40 forestry options in seven developing countries. Each study uses the same methodological approach - Comprehensive Mitigation Assessment Process (COMAP) - to estimate the above parameters between 2000 and 2030. The approach requires the projection of baseline and mitigation land-use scenarios. Coupled with data on a per ha basis on C sequestration or avoidance, and costs and benefits, it allows the estimation of monetary benefit per Mg C, and the total costs and carbon potential. The results show that about half (3.0 Pg C) the cumulative mitigation potential of 6.2 Petagram (Pg) C between 2000 and 2030 in the seven countries (about 200 x 106 Mg C yr-1) could be achieved at a negative cost and the remainder at costs ranging up to $100 Mg C-1. About 5 Pg C could be achieved, at a cost less than $20 per Mg C. Negative cost potential indicates that non-carbon revenue is sufficient to offset direct costs of these options. The achievable potential is likely to be smaller, however, due to market, institutional, and sociocultural barriers that can delay or prevent the implementation of the analyzed options.

  10. Glyceryl trinitrate and caprylic acid for the mitigation of the Desulfovibrio vulgaris biofilm on C1018 carbon steel.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Y; Zhang, P; Cai, W; Rosenblatt, J S; Raad, I I; Xu, D; Gu, T

    2016-02-01

    Microbiologically influenced corrosion (MIC), also known as biocorrosion, is caused by corrosive biofilms. MIC is a growing problem, especially in the oil and gas industry. Among various corrosive microbes, sulfate reducing bacteria (SRB) are often the leading culprit. Biofilm mitigation is the key to MIC mitigation. Biocide applications against biofilms promote resistance over time. Thus, it is imperative to develop new biodegradable and cost-effective biocides for large-scale field applications. Using the corrosive Desulfovibrio vulgaris (an SRB) biofilm as a model biofilm, this work demonstrated that a cocktail of glyceryl trinitrate (GTN) and caprylic acid (CA) was very effective for biofilm prevention and mitigation of established biofilms on C1018 carbon steel coupons. The most probable number sessile cell count data and confocal laser scanning microscope biofilm images proved that the biocide cocktail of 25 ppm (w/w) GTN + 0.1% (w/w) CA successfully prevented the D. vulgaris biofilm establishment on C1018 carbon steel coupons while 100 ppm GTN + 0.1% CA effectively mitigated pre-established D. vulgaris biofilms on C1018 carbon steel coupons. In both cases, the cocktails were able to reduce the sessile cell count from 10(6) cells/cm(2) to an undetectable level. PMID:26745983

  11. Microbial effects on two tropical soils amended with different types of biochar

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paz, Jorge; Méndez, Ana; Fun, Shenglei; Gascó, Gabriel

    2013-04-01

    There is an increasing interest in using biochar as soil amendment due to its potential to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from soils and to mitigate heavy metal pollution. In addition, sometimes biochar has been found to increase soil productivity due to its favourable effect on soil aggregation and water holding capacity. However, results obtained can differ greatly depending on the type of biochar utilised. On the other hand, the response of the microbial community to biochar addition is not so well understood. In our experiment we have sampled two soils, differing in their fertility status. A greenhouse pot experiment was established to see the effect of adding four different biochars, differing on their feedstock (Miscanthus, sewage sludge, paper mill waste and pinewood). Additionally, half of the samples excluded soil earthworms, while the other half had 3 individuals of the earthworm Pontoscolex corethrurus. Pots, containing 400 g of soil, were planted with proso millet. Assessed parameters included millet height, soil microbial biomass and soil enzymatic activity related to different biogeochemical cycles (invertase, B-glucosaminidase, B-glucosidase, urease, phosphomonoesterase, arylsulphatase) The effects of biochar on soil biological properties depended on the type of feedstock used for biochar production and pre-existent soil parameters such as soil fertility status. Earthworm presence generally had a positive effect on soil microbial properties.

  12. Biochar amendment affects leaching potential of copper and nutrient release behavior in contaminated sandy soils.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bakshi, Santanu; He, Zhenli L; Harris, Willie G

    2014-11-01

    Copper (Cu) contamination to soil and water is a worldwide concern. Biochar has been suggested to remediate degraded soils. In this study, column leaching and chemical characterization were conducted to assess effects of biochar amendment on Cu immobilization and subsequent nutrient release in Cu-contaminated Alfisol and Spodosol. The results indicate that biochar is effective in binding Cu (30 and 41%, respectively, for Alfisol with and without spiked Cu; 36 and 43% for Spodosol) and reducing Cu leaching loss (from ∼47 to 10% for the Cu-spiked Alfisol and from 48 to 9% for the Cu-spiked Spodosol). Copper was likely retained on biochar surfaces through complexation, as suggested by Fourier-transform infrared spectra. Biochar amendment converts a portion of Cu from available pool to more stable forms, thus resulting in decreased activities of free Cu and increased activity of organic Cu complexes in leachate. Reduction of >0.45-μm solids and nanoparticles concentrations in leachate was also observed. In addition, biochar application rate was correlated negatively with P, Ca, Mg, Zn, Mn, and NH-N concentration ( < 0.05) but positively with K and Na concentration ( < 0.05) in leachates. These results documented the potential of biochar as an effective amendment for Cu immobilization and mitigation of leaching risk for some nutrients. PMID:25602206

  13. Biochar-based bioenergy and its environmental impact in Northwestern Ontario Canada:A review

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Krish Homagain; Chander Shahi; Nancy Luckai; Mahadev Sharma

    2014-01-01

    Biochar is normally produced as a by-product of bioenergy. However, if biochar is produced as a co-product with bioenergy from sustainably managed forests and used for soil amendment, it could pro-vide a carbon neutral or even carbon negative solution for current envi-ronmental degradation problems. In this paper, we present a comprehen-sive review of biochar production as a co-product of bioenergy and its implications. We focus on biochar production with reference to biomass availability and sustainability and on biochar utilization for its soil amendment and greenhouse gas emissions reduction properties. Past studies confirm that northwestern Ontario has a sustainable and sufficient supply of biomass feedstock that can be used to produce bioenergy, with biochar as a co-product that can replace fossil fuel consumption, increase soil productivity and sequester carbon in the long run. For the next step, we recommend that comprehensive life cycle assessment of bio-char-based bioenergy production, from raw material collection to biochar application, with an extensive economic assessment is necessary for making this technology commercially viable in northwestern Ontario.

  14. A study on the hydrogen embrittlement mitigation for carbon steel welds by using electro-transport treatment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hydrogen Embrittlement(HE) mitigation on weld was developed by using electro-transport theory. This method can be applied to evaluate weld integrity and reduce HE susceptibility. To demonstrate the validation of the developed method, it applied to carbon steel weld. It shows that the results of electro-transport treatment were in good agreement with those of the previous theoretical study. Based on these results, the electro-transport treatment which can substitute for conventional post weld heat treatment was proposed as a potential method for mitigating the HE susceptibility

  15. Adsorption of selected endocrine disrupting compounds and pharmaceuticals on activated biochars

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jung, Chanil [Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC 29208 (United States); Park, Junyeong [Department of Forest Biomaterials, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC 27695 (United States); Lim, Kwang Hun [Department of Chemistry, East Carolina University, Greenville, NC 27858 (United States); Park, Sunkyu [Department of Forest Biomaterials, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC 27695 (United States); Heo, Jiyong [Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Korea Army Academy at Young-Cheon, PO Box 135-1, Changhari, Gogyeongmeon, Young-cheon 770-849, Gyeongbuk (Korea, Republic of); Her, Namguk [Department of Chemistry and Environmental Sciences, Korea Army Academy at Young-Cheon, PO Box 135-1, Changhari, Gogyeongmeon, Young-cheon 770-849, Gyeongbuk (Korea, Republic of); Oh, Jeill; Yun, Soyoung [Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Chung-Ang University, Dongjak-Ku, Seoul 156-756 (Korea, Republic of); Yoon, Yeomin, E-mail: yoony@cec.sc.edu [Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC 29208 (United States)

    2013-12-15

    Highlights: • Biochars were prepared at different gas environments. • The competitive adsorption among EDCs/PhACs were investigated. • Aromaticity of adsorbent plays a significant role for EDCs/PhACs adsorption. -- Abstract: Chemically activated biochar produced under oxygenated (O-biochar) and oxygen-free (N-biochar) conditions were characterized and the adsorption of endocrine disrupting compounds (EDCs): bisphenol A (BPA), atrazine (ATR), 17 α-ethinylestradiol (EE2), and pharmaceutical active compounds (PhACs); sulfamethoxazole (SMX), carbamazepine (CBM), diclofenac (DCF), ibuprofen (IBP) on both biochars and commercialized powdered activated carbon (PAC) were investigated. Characteristic analysis of adsorbents by solid-state nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) was conducted to determine better understanding about the EDCs/PhACs adsorption. N-biochar consisted of higher polarity moieties with more alkyl (0–45 ppm), methoxyl (45–63 ppm), O-alkyl (63–108 ppm), and carboxyl carbon (165–187 ppm) content than other adsorbents, while aromaticity of O-biochar was higher than that of N-biochar. O-biochar was composed mostly of aromatic moieties, with low H/C and O/C ratios compared to the highly polarized N-biochar that contained diverse polar functional groups. The higher surface area and pore volume of N-biochar resulted in higher adsorption capacity toward EDCs/PhACs along with atomic-level molecular structural property than O-biochar and PAC. N-biochar had a highest adsorption capacity of all chemicals, suggesting that N-biochar derived from loblolly pine chip is a promising sorbent for agricultural and environmental applications. The adsorption of pH-sensitive dissociable SMX, DCF, IBP, and BPA varied and the order of adsorption capacity was correlated with the hydrophobicity (K{sub ow}) of adsorbates throughout the all adsorbents, whereas adsorption of non-ionizable CBM, ATR, and EE2 in varied pH allowed adsorbents to interact with hydrophobic property

  16. Carbon sinks in mitigating climate change. Evaluation with models of varying scope

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pohjola, J.

    2010-07-01

    This dissertation examines the economywide and sectoral impacts of emissions reduction targets and policy measures implemented to mitigate climate change. The special attention is given to analysis of carbon sinks and their role in achieving the emission limits. The analysis is based on applying numerical methods. The emphasis of the methods is on the computable general equilibrium modeling, while the stand level model describing the behavior of the forest owner is applied in one of the essays. The first essay describes the computable general equilibrium (CGE) model for Finland built by the author. The novelty of the model is to include endogenous carbon sequestration with timber supply and incentives to increase carbon sinks in a CGE framework. This enables the evaluation of the importance of forest carbon sequestration in achieving the given emission target. The marginal cost curves for reducing fossil fuel emissions and emissions from wood are calculated in the study. The results suggest that with small reductions of net emissions it is cost-efficient to reduce only the emissions from fossil fuels, while when stabilizing the net emissions to the level of year 1990 nearly half of the emission reduction is achieved by increasing the carbon sink. Although the reduction is larger in terms of net emissions than gross emissions, the carbon tax needed to achieve the reduction is lower in case of net emission reduction. The welfare loss is of similar magnitude in both cases. The study provides the sensitivity analysis related to the parameter values and assumptions in the model.The second essay provides the detailed analysis on economywide, sectoral and trade impacts of inclusion of carbon sinks in the Kyoto protocol. The focus of the analysis is on the special treatment for Canada and Japan that allows them larger sinks. The analysis is performed with the multi-region computable general equilibrium model GTAP-E. Carbon sinks are modeled exogenously by adjusting the

  17. Comparison of TLUD and atmospherically-controlled retort methods of preparing biochar using corn stover and wheat straw feedstocks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biochar is a very versatile and useful material in many applications beyond carbon sequestration in soils. Rubber composite filler, sorptive media for toxic or other undesirable species in water, and peat moss replacement are just three examples of biochar applications we have studied at our laborat...

  18. Organically treated biochar increases plant production and reduces N2O emissions: mechanistic insights by 15N tracing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kammann, Claudia; Messerschmidt, Nicole; Clough, Tim; Schmidt, Hans-Peter; Marhan, Sven; Koyro, Hans-Werner; Steffens, Diedrich; Müller, Christoph

    2014-05-01

    Pyrogenic carbon (biochar) offers considerable potential for carbon capture and soil storage (CCSS) compared to other, less recalcitrant soil-C additives. Recent meta-analysis demonstrated that it can significantly reduce agricultural N2O emissions. Freshly produced biochars, however, do not always have yield-improving effects, i.e. there is no immediate economic incentive for using it. Hence, combining biochar with organic nutrient-rich amendments may be a promising agricultural strategy to accelerate CCSS, but it is unclear if biochar still reduces N2O emissions, in particular when it may act as nutrient carrier. We explored the potential of biochar to improve the GHG-cost/yield ratio and thereby its socio-economic value as soil amendment in two subsequent studies under controlled conditions: (1) A proof-of-concept study where the effects of untreated biochar were compared to those of co-composted biochar combined with stepwise improved nutritional regimes (+/- compost; +/- mineral-N application), and (2) a 15N-labeling-tracing study to unravel N exchange on biochar particles and N2O production and reduction mechanisms. Both studies were carried out in nutrient-poor sandy soils, the most likely initial target soils for biochar-CCSS strategies. While the untreated biochar reduced plant growth under N-limiting conditions, or at best did not reduce it, the co-composted biochar always significantly stimulated plant growth. The relative stimulation was largest with the lowest nutrient additions (305% versus 61% of control with untreated biochar). Electro-ultra-filtration analyses revealed that the co-composted but not the untreated biochar carried considerable amounts of easily extractable as well as more strongly sorbed plant nutrients, in particular nitrate and phosphorus. The subsequent 15N labelling-tracing study revealed that the co-composted biochar still (i) acted as a mineral-N exchange site for nitrate and ammonium despite its N-preloading, (ii) reduced N2O

  19. Impact of biochar on nitrous oxide emissions from upland rice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petter, Fabiano André; de Lima, Larissa Borges; Marimon Júnior, Ben Hur; Alves de Morais, Leidimar; Marimon, Beatriz Schwantes

    2016-03-15

    The objective of this research was to assess the emission of nitrous oxide (N2O) from soil amended with biochar in the culture of upland rice. The experiment was conducted in the field in a Cerrado Haplic Plinthosol under randomized block experimental design. The treatments consisted of fertilization with 100 kg N ha(-1) split into two applications, 60% at sowing and 40% at 45 days after crop emergence, combined with four doses of biochar (0, 8, 16 and 32 Mg ha(-1)), with four replications. The application of N and the emission of N2O, moisture retention and soil temperature, respiration (C-CO2), microbial biomass carbon in the soil (C-SMB), total nitrogen (TN), pH and agronomic efficiency in N use (AENu) were evaluated five years after the application of biochar. There was a significant correlation of the application of biochar with moisture retention (r = 0.94**), N2O emission (r = 0.86**) and soil pH (r = 0.65*), and N2O emissions showed a positive correlation (p < 0.05) with soil moisture (r = 0.77**) and pH (r = 0.66*). Thus the highest N2O emissions were observed shortly after N fertilization and in the treatments with 32 Mg ha(-1) of biochar. Despite the higher N2O emissions from the application of 32 Mg ha(-1) of biochar, the emission factor was lower (0.81%) than the maximum recommended by the IPCC. The higher N2O emissions with application of biochar are offset by more efficient use of N and consequently the possibility of reduction of applied doses. PMID:26716573

  20. Treatment of sites contaminated with perfluorinated compounds using biochar amendment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kupryianchyk, Darya; Hale, Sarah E; Breedveld, Gijs D; Cornelissen, Gerard

    2016-01-01

    Per- and polyfluorinated compounds (PFCs) have been attracting increasing attention due to their considerable persistence, bioaccumulation, and toxicity. Here, we studied the sorption behavior of three PFCs, viz. perfluorooctanesulfonic acid (PFOS), perfluorooctanecarboxylic acid (PFOA), perfluorohexanesulfonic acid (PFHxS), on one activated carbon (AC) and two biochars from different feedstocks, viz. mixed wood (MW) and paper mill waste (PMW). In addition, we explored the potential of remediating three natively PFC contaminated soils by the addition of AC or biochar. The sorption coefficient i.e. Freundlich coefficients LogKF, (μg/kg)/(μg/L)(n), for the two biochars were 4.61±0.11 and 4.41±0.05 for PFOS, 3.02±0.04 and 3.01±0.01 for PFOA, and 3.21±0.07 and 3.18±0.03 for PFHxS, respectively. The AC sorbed the PFCs so strongly that aqueous concentrations were reduced to below detection limits, implying that the LogKF values were above 5.60. Sorption capacities decreased in the order: AC>MW>PMW, which was consistent with the material's surface area and pore size distribution. PFC sorption to MW biochar was near-linear (Freundlich exponent nF of 0.87-0.90), but non-linear for PMW biochar (0.64-0.73). Addition of the AC to contaminated soils resulted in almost complete removal of PFCs from the water phase and a significant (i.e. 1-3 Log unit) increase in soil-water distribution coefficient LogKd. However, small to no reduction in pore water concentration, and no effect on LogKd was found for the biochars. We conclude that amendment with AC but not biochar can be a useful method for in situ remediation of PFC-contaminated soils. PMID:25956025

  1. Assessing biochar ecotoxicology for soil amendment by root phytotoxicity bioassays.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Visioli, Giovanna; Conti, Federica D; Menta, Cristina; Bandiera, Marianna; Malcevschi, Alessio; Jones, Davey L; Vamerali, Teofilo

    2016-03-01

    Soil amendment with biochar has been proposed as effective in improving agricultural land fertility and carbon sequestration, although the characterisation and certification of biochar quality are still crucial for widespread acceptance for agronomic purposes. We describe here the effects of four biochars (conifer and poplar wood, grape marc, wheat straw) at increasing application rates (0.5, 1, 2, 5, 10, 20, 50% w/w) on both germination and root elongation of Cucumis sativus L., Lepidium sativum L. and Sorghum saccharatum Moench. The tested biochars varied in chemical properties, depending on the type and quality of the initial feedstock batch, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) being high in conifer and wheat straw, Cd in poplar and Cu in grape marc. We demonstrate that electrical conductivity and Cu negatively affected both germination and root elongation at ≥5% rate biochar, together with Zn at ≥10% and elevated pH at ≥20%. In all species, germination was less sensitive than root elongation, strongly decreasing at very high rates of chars from grape marc (>10%) and wheat straw (>50%), whereas root length was already affected at 0.5% of conifer and poplar in cucumber and sorghum, with marked impairment in all chars at >5%. As a general interpretation, we propose here logarithmic model for robust root phytotoxicity in sorghum, based on biochar Zn content, which explains 66% of variability over the whole dosage range tested. We conclude that metal contamination is a crucial quality parameter for biochar safety, and that root elongation represents a stable test for assessing phytotoxicity at recommended in-field amendment rates (<1-2%). PMID:26884353

  2. Carbon emission and mitigation cost comparisons between fossil fuel, nuclear and renewable energy resources for electricity generation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    A study was conducted to compare the electricity generation costs of a number of current commercial technologies with technologies expected to become commercially available within the coming decade or so. The amount of greenhouse gas emissions resulting per kWh of electricity generated were evaluated. A range of fossil fuel alternatives (with and without physical carbon sequestration), were compared with the baseline case of a pulverised coal, steam cycle power plant. Nuclear, hydro, wind, bioenergy and solar generating plants were also evaluated. The objectives were to assess the comparative costs of mitigation per tonne of carbon emissions avoided, and to estimate the total amount of carbon mitigation that could result from the global electricity sector by 2010 and 2020 as a result of fuel switching, carbon dioxide sequestration and the greater uptake of renewable energy. Most technologies showed potential to reduce both generating costs and carbon emission avoidance by 2020 with the exception of solar power and carbon dioxide sequestration. The global electricity industry has potential to reduce its carbon emissions by over 15% by 2020 together with cost saving benefits compared with existing generation

  3. Interactions of aluminum with biochars and oxidized biochars: implications for the biochar aging process.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qian, Linbo; Chen, Baoliang

    2014-01-15

    Interactions of aluminum with primary and oxidized biochars were compared to understand the changes in the adsorption properties of aged biochars. The structural characteristics of rice straw-derived biochars, before and after oxidation by HNO3/H2SO4, were analyzed by element composition, FTIR, and XPS. The adsorption of Al to primary biochars was dominated by binding to inorganic components (such as silicon particles) and surface complexation of oxygen-containing functional groups via esterification reactions. Oxidization (aging) introduced carboxylic functional groups on biochar surfaces, which served as additional binding sites for Al(3+). At pH 2.5-3.5, the Al(3+) binding was significantly greater on oxidized biochars than primary biochars. After loading with Al, the -COOH groups anchored to biochar surfaces were transformed into COO(-) groups, and the negative surface charge diminished, which indicated that Al(3+) coordinated with COO(-). Biochar is suggested as a potential adsorbent for removing Al from acidic soils. PMID:24364719

  4. Use of phytoremediation and biochar to remediate heavy metal polluted soils: a review

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paz-Ferreiro, J.; Lu, H.; Fu, S.; Méndez, A.; Gascó, G.

    2014-02-01

    Anthropogenic activities are resulting in an increase of the use and extraction of heavy metals. Heavy metals cannot be degraded and hence accumulate in the environment, having the potential to contaminate the food chain. This pollution threatens soil quality, plant survival and human health. The remediation of heavy metals deserves attention, but it is impaired by the cost of these processes. Phytoremediation and biochar are two sound environmental technologies which could be at the forefront to mitigate soil pollution. This review provides an overview of the state of the art of the scientific research on phytoremediation and biochar application to remediate heavy-metal-contaminated soils. Research to date has attempted only in a limited number of occasions to combine both techniques, however we discuss the potential advantages of combining both, and the potential mechanisms involved in the interaction between phytoremediators and biochar. We identified specific research needs to ensure a sustainable use of phytoremediation and biochar as remediation tools.

  5. A multi-period optimization model for planning of China's power sector with consideration of carbon dioxide mitigation—The importance of continuous and stable carbon mitigation policy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    A great challenge China's power sector faces is to mitigate its carbon emissions whilst satisfying the ever-increasing power demand. Optimal planning of the power sector with consideration of carbon mitigation for a long-term future remains a complex task, involving many technical alternatives and an infinite number of possible plants installations, retrofitting, and decommissioning over the planning horizon. Previously the authors built a multi-period optimization model for the planning of China's power sector during 2010–2050. Based on that model, this paper executed calculations on the optimal pathways of China's power sector with two typical decision-making modes, which are based on “full-information” and “limited-information” hypothesis, and analyzed the impacts on the optimal planning results by two typical types of carbon tax policies including a “continuous and stable” one and a “loose first and tight later” one. The results showed that making carbon tax policy for long-term future, and improving the continuity and stability in policy execution can effectively help reduce the accumulated total carbon emissions, and also the cost for carbon mitigation of the power sector. The conclusion of this study is of great significance for the policy makers to make carbon mitigation policies in China and other countries as well. - Highlights: • A multi-stage optimization model for planning the power sector is applied as basis. • Difference of ideal and actual decision making processes are proposed and analyzed. • A “continuous and stable” policy and a “loose first and tight later” one are designed. • 4 policy scenarios are studied applying the optimal planning model and compared. • The importance of “continuous and stable” policy for long term is well demonstrated

  6. Applications of Advanced Technology for Monitoring Forest Carbon to Support Climate Change Mitigation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Birdsey, R.; Hurtt, G. C.; Dubayah, R.; Hagen, S. C.; Vargas, R.; Nehrkorn, T.; Domke, G. M.; Houghton, R. A.

    2015-12-01

    Measurement, Reporting, and Verification (MRV) is a broad concept guiding the application of monitoring technology to the needs of countries or entities for reporting and verifying reductions in greenhouse gas emissions or increases in greenhouse gas sinks. Credibility, cost-effectiveness, and compatibility are important features of global MRV efforts that can support implementation of climate change mitigation programs such as Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation and Sustainable Forest Management (REDD+). Applications of MRV technology may be tailored to individual country circumstances following guidance provided by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change; hence, there is no single approach that is uniquely viable but rather a range of ways to integrate new MRV methods. MRV technology is advancing rapidly with new remote sensing and advanced measurement of atmospheric CO2, and in situ terrestrial and ocean measurements, coupled with improvements in data analysis, modeling, and assessing uncertainty. Here we briefly summarize some of the most application-ready MRV technologies being developed under NASA's Carbon Monitoring System (CMS) program, and illustrate how these technologies may be applied for monitoring forests using several case studies that span a range of scales, country circumstances, and stakeholder reporting requirements. We also include remarks about the potential role of advanced monitoring technology in the context of the global climate accord that is expected to result from the 21st session of the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, which is expected to take place in December 2015, in Paris, France.

  7. Low Secondary Electron Yield Carbon Coatings for Electron Cloud Mitigation in Modern Particle Accelerators

    CERN Document Server

    Yin Vallgren, Christina; Taborelli, Mauro

    2011-01-01

    In order to upgrade the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) performance to be oriented towards higher energies and higher intensities in the future, a series of improvements of the existing LHC injectors is planned to take place over the next few years. Electron cloud effects are expected to be enhanced and play a central role in limiting the performance of the machines of the CERN complex. Electron cloud phenomena in beam pipes are based on electron multiplication and can be sufficiently suppressed if the Secondary Electron Yield (SEY) of the surface of the beam pipes is lower than unity. The goal of this work is to find and study a thin film coating with reliably low initial Secondary Electron Yield (SEY), which does not require bake-out or conditioning in situ with photons, is robust again air exposure and can easily be applied in the beam pipes of accelerators. In this work, amorphous carbon (a-C) thin films have been prepared by DC magnetron sputtering for electron cloud mitigation and antimultipactor applicatio...

  8. Impact of Soil Biochar Applications on Nutrient Leaching

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soil applications of biochar, a co-product of lignocellulosic bioenergy production using the pyrolysis platform, has been proposed as a potential means of sequestering carbon, improving soil quality and of returning plant nutrients removed from soils by the harvesting of biomass crops. We used soil ...

  9. Bacterial Mobilization of Nutrients From Biochar-Amended Soils.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmalenberger, A; Fox, A

    2016-01-01

    Soil amendments with biochar to improve soil fertility and increase soil carbon stocks have received some high-level attention. Physical and chemical analyses of amended soils and biochars from various feedstocks are reported, alongside some evaluations of plant growth promotion capabilities. Fewer studies investigated the soil microbiota and their potential to increase cycling and mobilization of nutrients in biochar-amended soils. This review is discussing the latest findings in the bacterial contribution to cycling and mobilizing nitrogen, phosphorus, and sulfur in biochar-amended soils and potential contributions to plant growth promotion. Depending on feedstock, pyrolysis, soil type, and plant cover, changes in the bacterial community structure were observed for a majority of the studies using amplicon sequencing or genetic fingerprinting methods. Prokaryotic nitrification largely depends on the availability of ammonium and can vary considerably under soil biochar amendment. However, denitrification to di-nitrogen and in particular, nitrous oxide reductase activity is commonly enhanced, resulting in reduced nitrous oxide emissions. Likewise, bacterial fixation of di-nitrogen appears to be regularly enhanced. A paucity of studies suggests that bacterial mobilization of phosphorus and sulfur is enhanced as well. However, most studies only tested for extracellular sulfatase and phosphatase activity. Further research is needed to reveal details of the bacterial nutrient mobilizing capabilities and this is in particular the case for the mobilization of phosphorus and sulfur. PMID:26917243

  10. Estimating urban trees and carbon stock potentials for mitigating climate change in Lagos: Case of Ikeja Government Reserved Area (GRA)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elias, P. O.; Faderin, A.

    2014-12-01

    Urban trees are a component of the urban infrastructure which offers diverse services including environmental, aesthetic and economic. The accumulation of carbon in the atmosphere resulting from the indiscriminate distribution of human populations and urban activities with the unsustainable consumption of natural resources contributes to global environmental change especially in coastal cities like Lagos. Carbon stocks and sequestration by urban trees are increasingly recognized to play significant roles for mitigating climate change. This paper focuses on the estimation of carbon stock and sequestration through biomass estimation and quantification in Ikeja GRA, Lagos. Ikeja possesses a characteristic feature as a microcosm of Lagos due to the wide range of land uses. A canopy assessment of tree population was carried out using itree canopy software. A GPS survey was used to collect an inventory of all trees showing their location, spatial distribution and other attributes. The analysis of the carbon storage and sequestration potential of both actual and potential tree planting sites involved biomass estimations from tree allometry equations. Trees were identified at species level and measurements of their dendrometric values were recorded and integrated into the GIS database to estimate biomass of trees and carbon storage. The trees in the study area were estimated to have a biomass of 441.9 mg and carbon storage of 221.395 kg/tree. By considering the potential tree planting sites the estimated carbon stored increased to 11,352.73 kg. Carbon sequestration value in the study area was found to be 1.6790 tonnes for the existing trees and 40.707 tonnes for the potential tree planting sites (PTPS). The estimation of carbon storage and sequestration values of trees are important incentives for carbon accounting/footprints and monitoring of climate change mitigation which has implications for evaluation and monitoring of urban ecosystem.

  11. A hybrid energy-economy model for global integrated assessment of climate change, carbon mitigation and energy transformation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Highlights: • This paper introduces the design of a hybrid energy-economy model, GTEM-C. • The model offers a unified tool to analyse the energy-carbon-environment nexus. • Results are presented on global energy transformation due to carbon mitigation. • Electrification with renewable energies can contain the spiking of carbon prices. - Abstract: This paper introduces the design of the CSIRO variant of the Global Trade and Environment model (GTEM-C). GTEM-C is a hybrid model that combines the top-down macroeconomic representation of a computable general equilibrium model with the bottom-up engineering details of energy production. The model features detailed accounting for global energy flows that are embedded in traded energy goods, and it offers a unified framework to analyse the energy-carbon-environment nexus. As an illustrative example, we present simulation results on global energy transformation under the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s representative carbon pathways 4.5 and 8.5. By testing the model’s sensitivity to the relevant parameter, we find that the pace of electrification will significantly contain the spiking of carbon prices because electricity can be produced from carbon-free or less carbon-intensive technologies. The decoupling of energy use and carbon footprint, due to the uptake of clean electricity technologies, such as nuclear, wind, solar, and carbon capture and storage, allows the world to maintain high level of energy consumption, which is essential to economic growth

  12. Compared Biochar and Compost effects on plant growth and soil factors as reported for three consequent greenhouse trial setups

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schulz, H. S.; Glaser, B. G.

    2012-04-01

    Since ten years there is a major increase in research concerning biochar applications to soils trying to mimic effects known from Terra Preta do Indio (Glaser 2002). We conducted a preliminary study in which we analyzed the synergistic effects of biochar in combination with conventional and with organic fertilizers, whereas our latter experiments use biochar which was blended with fresh organic material and underwent the whole composting procedure leading to the first known composted biochars. Our first pot experiment (with two consequent growth periods without additional fertilization) helped to distinguish the effects from conventional and organic fertilizers in combination with biochar, where biochar revealed abilities for stabilizing carbon content (Total Organic and Black Carbon) and reducing nitrification. Plant weights were highest with pure compost, but biochar combined with compost (50:50) showed a sustained progression comparing second growth period's results. Those outcomes let us focus on biochar-compost-mixes. Our second greenhouse experiment concentrated on the question of the minimal biochar content to enhance plant growth and soil properties and was performed on a very poor sandy and on a richer loamy soil with rising concentrations between 0% and 1% biochar per compost. We could not find significant differences between the pure compost and the biochar amended pots. For our third experiment we tried to elevate the biochar share as high as possible and tested treatments with up to 200 Mg ha-1(eq.) in steps with up to 50% biochar content, again in poor sandy and richer loamy soil pots. The measured seed weight of applied Avena sativa L. plants showed very different results on sandy soil compared to the loamy soil. Whereas compost on loam showed a seed weight 2 times higher than on pure loam control and seed weights 1.6 times higher compared to compost with highest biochar amounts, on sand the pure compost was even slightly less productive than pure

  13. Contrasting agronomic response of biochar amendment to a Mediterranean Cambisol: Incubation vs. field experiment

    Science.gov (United States)

    De la Rosa, José M.; Paneque, Marina; De Celis, Reyes; Miller, Ana Z.; Knicker, Heike

    2015-04-01

    The application of biochar to soil is being proposed as a novel approach to establish a significant long-term sink for atmospheric carbon dioxide in terrestrial ecosystems. In addition, biochars offer a simple, sustainable tool for managing organic wastes and to produce added value products. Numerous research studies pointed out that biochar can act as a soil conditioner enhancing plant growth by supplying and, more importantly, retaining nutrients and by providing other services such as improving soil physical and biological properties [1]. However, the effectiveness of biochar in enhancing plant fertility is a function of soil type, climate, and type of crop [2] but also of the biochar properties. The inherent variability of biochars due to different feedstock and production conditions implies a high variability of their effect on soil properties and productivity. Furthermore, due to the irreversibility of biochar application, it is necessary to perform detailed studies to achieve a high level of certainty that adding biochar to agricultural soils, for whatever reason, will not negatively affect soil health and productivity. The major goals of this research were: i) understanding how the properties of 5 different biochars produced by using different feedstock and pyrolysis conditions are related to their agronomic response, and ii) assessing the agronomic effect of biochar amendment under field conditions of a typical Mediterranean non-irrigated plantation. Four of the used biochars were produced by pyrolysis from wood (2), paper sludge (1) and sewage sludge (1), at temperatures up to 620 °C. The fifth biochar was produced from old grapevine wood by applying the traditional kiln method. Biochars were analysed for elemental composition (C, H, N), pH, WHC and ash contents. The H/C and O/C atomic ratios suggested high aromaticity of all biochars, which was confirmed by 13C solid-state NMR spectroscopy. The FT-IR spectra indicated the presence of lignin residues in

  14. Integrating biorefinery and farm biogeochemical cycles offsets fossil energy and mitigates soil carbon losses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adler, Paul R; Mitchell, James G; Pourhashem, Ghasideh; Spatari, Sabrina; Del Grosso, Stephen J; Parton, William J

    2015-06-01

    Crop residues are potentially significant sources of feedstock for biofuel production in the United States. However, there are concerns with maintaining the environmental functions of these residues while also serving as a feedstock for biofuel production. Maintaining soil organic carbon (SOC) along with its functional benefits is considered a greater constraint than maintaining soil erosion losses to an acceptable level. We used the biogeochemical model DayCent to evaluate the effect of residue removal, corn stover, and wheat and barley straw in three diverse locations in the USA. We evaluated residue removal with and without N replacement, along with application of a high-lignin fermentation byproduct (HLFB), the residue by-product comprised of lignin and small quantities of nutrients from cellulosic ethanol production. SOC always decreased with residue harvest, but the decrease was greater in colder climates when expressed on a life cycle basis. The effect of residue harvest on soil N2O emissions varied with N addition and climate. With N addition, N2O emissions always increased, but the increase was greater in colder climates. Without N addition, N2O emissions increased in Iowa, but decreased in Maryland and North Carolina with crop residue harvest. Although SOC was lower with residue harvest when HLFB was used for power production instead of being applied to land, the avoidance of fossil fuel emissions to the atmosphere by utilizing the cellulose and hemicellulose fractions of crop residue to produce ethanol (offsets) reduced the overall greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions because most of this residue carbon would normally be lost during microbial respiration. Losses of SOC and reduced N mineralization could both be mitigated with the application of HLFB to the land. Therefore, by returning the high-lignin fraction of crop residue to the land after production of ethanol at the biorefinery, soil carbon levels could be maintained along with the functional benefit of

  15. Life cycle assessment of biochar application in Vietnam using two pyrolysis technologies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mohammadi, Ali; Cowie, Annette; Mai, Thi Lan Anh; Anaya de la Rosa, Ruy; Kristiansen, Paul; Brandão, Miguel; Joseph, Stephen

    2016-04-01

    This study presents a comparative analysis of the environmental impacts of biochar systems in Vietnam using household scale and district scale pyrolysis technologies. At the household scale, pyrolytic cook-stoves were assumed to be used by households to produce biochar. The pyrolytic cook-stoves burn pyrolysis gases and use the heat for cooking. At the district scale, the BIGchar 2200 unit, a continuous operation system, is utilised to convert rice husk to biochar. This unit allows for easy capture of produced gases, which can be used to generate energy products, adding value to biochar production and decreasing environmental costs through the displacement of fossil fuels. The biochar produced from each system was assumed to be applied to paddy rice fields. Results from Life Cycle Assessment showed that biochar production at the both scales for application to the soil significantly improved environmental performance of 1 Mg of rice husk relative to the reference scenario (open burning of husk) across a range of impacts including climate change (CC), particulate matter and non-renewable energy (NRE) use. Net carbon abatement of biochar systems ranged from 355 to 427 kg CO2-eq Mg‑1 of spring rice husk at the household scale and district scale, respectively. The district scale offered greater carbon abatement primarily due to the higher rate of LPG displaced by this unit.

  16. Biochar: A review of its impact on pesticide behavior in soil environments and its potential applications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Safaei Khorram, Mahdi; Zhang, Qian; Lin, Dunli; Zheng, Yuan; Fang, Hua; Yu, Yunlong

    2016-06-01

    Biochar is produced from the pyrolysis of carbon-rich plant- and animal-residues under low oxygen and high temperature conditions and has been increasingly used for its positive role in soil compartmentalization through activities such as carbon sequestration and improving soil quality. Biochar is also considered a unique adsorbent due to its high specific surface area and highly carbonaceous nature. Therefore, soil amendments with small amounts of biochar could result in higher adsorption and, consequently, decrease the bioavailability of contaminants to microbial communities, plants, earthworms, and other organisms in the soil. However, the mechanisms affecting the environmental fate and behavior of organic contaminants, especially pesticides in biochar-amended soil, are not well understood. The purpose of this work is to review the role of biochar in primary processes, such as adsorption-desorption and leaching of pesticides. Biochar has demonstrable effects on the fate and effects of pesticides and has been shown to affect the degradation and bioavailability of pesticides for living organisms. Moreover, some key aspects of agricultural and environmental applications of biochar are highlighted. PMID:27266324

  17. Biochar production and applications in sub-Saharan Africa: opportunities, constraints, risks and uncertainties.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gwenzi, Willis; Chaukura, Nhamo; Mukome, Fungai N D; Machado, Stephen; Nyamasoka, Blessing

    2015-03-01

    Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) experiences soil degradation, food and livelihood insecurity, environmental pollution and lack of access to energy. Biochar has gained international research attention, but few studies have investigated the potential of biochar to address the challenges in SSA. This paper seeks to identify and evaluate generic potential opportunities and constraints associated with biochar application in sub-Saharan Africa using Zimbabwe as case study. Specific objectives were to; (1) identify and quantify feedstocks for biochar production; (2) review literature on the biochar properties, and evaluate its potential applications in agriculture, environmental remediation and energy provision, and (3) identify research gaps, risks and constraints associated with biochar technology. Biochar feedstocks in Zimbabwe were estimated to be 9.9 Mton yr(-1), predominantly derived from manure (88%) and firewood (10%). This will yield 3.5, 1.7 and 3.1 Mton yr(-1) of biochar, bio-oil and synthetic gas, respectively. Land application of the 3.5 Mton yr(-1) of biochar (≈63% C) would sequester approximately 2.2 Mton yr(-1) of soil carbon in Zimbabwe alone, while simultaneously minimizing the environmental and public health risks, and greenhouse gas emissions associated with solid organic wastes. Biochar potentially enhances soil and crop productivity through enhanced nutrient and soil moisture availability, amelioration of acidic soils and stimulation of microbial diversity and activity. Due to its excellent adsorption properties, biochar has potential applications in industrial and environmental applications including water and wastewater treatment, remediation and revegetation of contaminated soils and water. Biochar products have energy values comparable or higher than those of traditional biomass fuels; thereby making them ideal alternative sources of energy especially for poor households without access to electricity. Before the benefits of biochar can be

  18. Reduction of the efficacy of biochar as soil amendment by soil erosion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fister, Wolfgang; Heckrath, Goswin; Greenwood, Philip; Kuhn, Nikolaus J.

    2014-05-01

    Biochar is primarily used as soil amendment to improve soil quality and to sequester more carbon (C) to increase both medium- and long-term soil C stocks. These positive effects are obviously diminished if biochar is eroded and transported out of the field. Due to its low bulk density, the preferential mobilization and redistribution of biochar in the landscape seems probable. Therefore, the question has been raised in recent years of how vulnerable biochar actually is to soil erosion. This is especially relevant on soils which are regularly cultivated and are vulnerable to soil erosion themselves. However, so far few studies about the erodibility of biochar exist and the answer to this question is still unknown. It is therefore important to further our knowledge about mobilization and transport behaviour of biochar. Moreover, such knowledge could have profound economic implications for farmers committed to its use, as a high net annual loss of biochar by erosion could exceed any net annual economic gain. The overall objective of this study was, therefore, to investigate the erodibility of biochar, when erosion events occur directly or soon after its application. The estimation of the financial value of the eroded biochar and its cost-effectiveness were scaled up from plot to field scale. In this investigation, the biochar was applied to the soil surface of three plots on a recently cultivated sandy field near Viborg in northern Jutland, Denmark at concentrations equivalent to 1.5-2.0 kg m-2. After application, the biochar was manually incorporated into the till-zone (20cm). With the Portable Wind and Rainfall Simulator erosion events of a duration of 30 minutes and with a rainfall intensity of approx. 90 mm h-1 were conducted on both biochar and reference plots. The erodibility of biochar by wind erosion was due to very rainy wet soil surface conditions, tested with dried soil in the laboratory, in order to be able to at least reflect the worst case scenario. The

  19. Interactive effect of biochar and plant growth-promoting bacterial endophytes on ameliorating salinity stress in maize

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Saleem Akhtar, Saqib; Andersen, Mathias Neumann; Naveed, Muhammad;

    2015-01-01

    The objective of this work was to study the interactive effect of biochar and plant growth-promoting endophytic bacteria containing 1-aminocyclopropane-1-carboxylate deaminase and exopolysaccharide activity on mitigating salinity stress in maize (Zea mays L.). The plants were grown in a greenhouse...... of maize, whereas both biochar and inoculation mitigated the negative effects of salinity on maize performance either by decreasing the xylem Na+ concentration ([Na+]xylem) uptake or by maintaining nutrient balance within the plant, especially when the two treatments were applied in combination....... Moreover, in biochar-amended saline soil, strain FD17 performed significantly better than did PsJN in reducing [Na+]xylem. Our results suggested that inoculation of plants with endophytic baterial strains along with biochar amendment could be an effective approach for sustaining crop production in salt...

  20. Biochar and denitrification in soils: when, how much and why does biochar reduce N2O emissions?

    OpenAIRE

    Maria Luz Cayuela; Miguel Angel Sánchez-Monedero; Asunción Roig; Kelly Hanley; Akio Enders; Johannes Lehmann

    2013-01-01

    Agricultural soils represent the main source of anthropogenic N2O emissions. Recently, interactions of black carbon with the nitrogen cycle have been recognized and the use of biochar is being investigated as a means to reduce N2O emissions. However, the mechanisms of reduction remain unclear. Here we demonstrate the significant impact of biochar on denitrification, with a consistent decrease in N2O emissions by 10–90% in 14 different agricultural soils. Using the 15N gas-flux method we obser...

  1. Acceleration of Biochar Surface Oxidation during Composting?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiedner, Katja; Fischer, Daniel; Walther, Sabine; Criscuoli, Irene; Favilli, Filippo; Nelle, Oliver; Glaser, Bruno

    2015-04-22

    Biochar composting experiments were performed to determine whether composting is a suitable method to accelerate biochar surface oxidation for increasing its reactivity. To assess the results, surface properties of Terra Preta (Brazil) and ancient charcoal pit (Northern Italy) biochars were additionally investigated. Calculation of O/C ratios by energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy demonstrated the anticipated increasing values from fresh biochars (0.13) to composted biochars (0.40), and finally charcoal pit biochars (0.54) and ancient Terra Preta biochars (0.64). By means of Fourier transformation infrared microscopy, formation of carboxylic and phenolic groups on biochars surface could be detected. Carboxylic acids of three composted biochars increased up to 14%, whereas one composted biochar showed a 21% lower proportion of carboxylic acids compared to the corresponding fresh biochar. Phenolic groups increased by 23% for the last mentioned biochar, and on all other biochars phenolic groups decreased up to 22%. Results showed that biochar surface oxidation can be accelerated through composting but still far away from ancient biochars. PMID:25802948

  2. Antagonistic effects of humic acid and iron oxyhydroxide grain-coating on biochar nanoparticle transport in saturated sand.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Dengjun; Zhang, Wei; Zhou, Dongmei

    2013-05-21

    Biochar land application may result in multiple agronomic and environmental benefits (e.g., carbon sequestration, improving soil quality, and immobilizing environmental contaminants). However, our understanding of biochar particle transport is largely unknown in natural environments with significant heterogeneity in solid (e.g., patches of iron oxyhydroxide coating) and solution chemistry (e.g., the presence of natural organic matter), which represents a critical knowledge gap in assessing the environmental impact of biochar land application. Transport and retention kinetics of nanoparticles (NPs) from wheat straw biochars produced at two pyrolysis temperatures (i.e., 350 and 550 °C) were investigated in water-saturated sand columns at environmentally relevant concentrations of dissolved humic acid (HA, 0, 1, 5, and 10 mg L(-1)) and fractional surface coverage of iron oxyhydroxide coatings on sand grains (ω, 0.16, 0.28, and 0.40). Transport of biochar NPs increased with increasing HA concentration, largely because of enhanced repulsive interaction energy between biochar NPs and sand grains. Conversely, transport of biochar NPs decreased significantly with increasing ω due to enhanced electrostatic attraction between negatively charged biochar NPs and positively charged iron oxyhydroxides. At a given ω of 0.28, biochar NPs were less retained with increasing HA concentration due to increased electrosteric repulsion between biochar NPs and sand grains. Experimental breakthrough curves and retention profiles were well described using a two-site kinetic retention model that accounted for Langmuirian blocking or random sequential adsorption at one site. Consistent with the blocking effect, the often observed flat retention profiles stemmed from decreased retention rate and/or maximum retention capacity at a higher HA concentration or smaller ω. The antagonistic effects of HA and iron oxyhydroxide grain-coating imparted on the mobility of biochar NPs suggest that

  3. Multiscale visualization of the structural and characteristic changes of sewage sludge biochar oriented towards potential agronomic and environmental implication.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Jining; Lü, Fan; Zhang, Hua; Shao, Liming; Chen, Dezhen; He, Pinjing

    2015-01-01

    Sewage sludge biochars were obtained at different pyrolysis temperatures from 300°C to 900°C and their macro- and microscale properties were analyzed. The biochar's plant-available nutrients and humus-like substances in the water-extractable phase and fixed nutrients in the solid fraction were evaluated for their potential agronomic implications. FT-IR, Raman, XRD, XPS, and SEM techniques were used to investigate the chemical structure, functional groups, and microcrystal structure on the surface of the biochar. The results revealed minor chemical changes and dramatic mass loss in the biochar obtained at 300-500°C, whereas significant chemical changes in the biochar were obtained at 600-900°C. The concentrations of plant-available nutrients as well as fulvic- and humic-acid-like materials decreased in the biochar samples obtained at higher temperatures. These results implied that the biochar samples pyrolyzed at 300-500°C could be a direct nutrient source and used to neutralize alkaline soil. The surface area and porosity of the biochar samples increased with temperature, which increased their adsorption capacity. Rearrangement occurred at higher temperature 600-900°C, resulting in the biochar becoming increasingly polyaromatic and its graphite-like carbon becoming organized. PMID:25802185

  4. Multiscale visualization of the structural and characteristic changes of sewage sludge biochar oriented towards potential agronomic and environmental implication

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Jining; Lü, Fan; Zhang, Hua; Shao, Liming; Chen, Dezhen; He, Pinjing

    2015-01-01

    Sewage sludge biochars were obtained at different pyrolysis temperatures from 300°C to 900°C and their macro- and microscale properties were analyzed. The biochar's plant-available nutrients and humus-like substances in the water-extractable phase and fixed nutrients in the solid fraction were evaluated for their potential agronomic implications. FT-IR, Raman, XRD, XPS, and SEM techniques were used to investigate the chemical structure, functional groups, and microcrystal structure on the surface of the biochar. The results revealed minor chemical changes and dramatic mass loss in the biochar obtained at 300–500°C, whereas significant chemical changes in the biochar were obtained at 600–900°C. The concentrations of plant-available nutrients as well as fulvic- and humic-acid-like materials decreased in the biochar samples obtained at higher temperatures. These results implied that the biochar samples pyrolyzed at 300–500°C could be a direct nutrient source and used to neutralize alkaline soil. The surface area and porosity of the biochar samples increased with temperature, which increased their adsorption capacity. Rearrangement occurred at higher temperature 600–900°C, resulting in the biochar becoming increasingly polyaromatic and its graphite-like carbon becoming organized. PMID:25802185

  5. Variation in sorption of propiconazole with biochars: The effect of temperature, mineral, molecular structure, and nano-porosity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Ke; Kang, Mingjie; Ro, Kyoung S; Libra, Judy A; Zhao, Ye; Xing, Baoshan

    2016-01-01

    Sorption behavior of propiconazole (PROPI) by plant-residue derived biochars (PLABs) and animal waste-derived biochars (ANIBs) obtained at three heating treatment temperatures (HTTs) (300, 450 and 600 °C) (e.g., BCs300, BCs450, and BCs600) and their corresponding de-ashed BCs450 was investigated. PLABs belonged to high- or medium-C biochars and ANIBs were low-C biochars. Surface C concentrations of the tested biochars were generally higher than their corresponding bulk C. Surface polar groups were mainly composed of O-containing groups of minerals within biochars. The nonlinearity coefficients (n) of propiconazole (PROPI) sorption isotherms ranged from 0.23 to 0.64, which was significantly and negatively related to organic carbon (OC)-normalized CO2-surface area (CO2-SA/OC) of biochars. This correlation along with the positive relationship between CO2-SA/OC and aromaticity indicates that pore-filling in nanopores within aromatic C dominate nonlinear PROPI sorption. HTTs or C contents do not necessarily regulate PROPI sorption. Removal of minerals from BCs450 elevated PROPI sorption because minerals may exert certain influence on sorption via impacting spatial arrangement of polar groups and/or organic matter (OM)-mineral interactions. This study helps to better understand sorption behavior of PROPI to biochars and evaluate the potential role of biochar in water treatment systems. PMID:26206746

  6. The Biochar Option to Improve Plant Yields: First Results From Some Field and Pot Experiments in Italy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Silvia Baronti

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available The pyrolysis conversion of agricultural residues into biochar and its incorporation in agricultural soil, avoids CO2 emissions providing a safe long-term soil carbon sequestration. Furthermore, biochar application to soil seems to increase nutrient stocks in the rooting zone, to reduce nutrient leaching and to improve crop yields. This study reports some preliminary results obtained using biochar in two typical Italian agricultural crops. Two field experiments were made on durum wheat (Triticum durum L. in Central Italy and maize (Zea mays L. in Northern Italy. In both the field experiments, an increase in yields (+ 10% and + 6% in terms of grain production, respectively was detected after a biochar application of 10 t ha-1. A further increase in grain production (+24% was detected when biochar was added with maize residues. The biochar dose-effect curve was studied on perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne L. in a pot experiment. The highest increase of dry matter (+120% was obtained at a biochar rate of 60 t ha-1 and above this threshold, a general reduction of biomass was observed. Results demonstrate the potential of biochar applications to improve in terms of dry matter production, while pointing out the needs for long-term field studies to better understand the effects of biochar on soil.

  7. Simultaneous immobilization of lead and atrazine in contaminated soils using dairy-manure biochar.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cao, Xinde; Ma, Lena; Liang, Yuan; Gao, Bin; Harris, Willie

    2011-06-01

    Biochar produced from waste biomass is increasingly being recognized as a green, cost-effective amendment for environmental remediation. This work was to determine the ability of biochar to immobilize heavy metal Pb and organic pesticide atrazine in contaminated soils. Biochar prepared from dairy manure was incubated with contaminated soils at rates of 0, 2.5, and 5.0% by weight for 210 d. A commercial activated carbon (AC) was included as a comparison. The AC was effective in immobilizing atrazine, but was ineffective for Pb. However, biochar was effective in immobilizing both atrazine and Pb and the effectiveness was enhanced with increasing incubation time and biochar rates. After 210 d, soils treated with the highest rate of 5.0% biochar showed more than 57% and 66% reduction in Pb and atrazine concentrations in 0.01 M CaCl(2) extraction, respectively. Lead and atrazine concentrations in the toxicity characteristic leaching procedure solutions were reduced by 70-89% and 53-77%, respectively. Uptake of Pb and atrazine by earthworms (Eisenia fetida) was reduced by up to 79% and 73%. Phosphorus originally contained in biochar reacted with soil Pb to form insoluble hydroxypyromorphite Pb(5)(PO(4))(3)(OH), as determined by X-ray diffraction, which was presumably responsible for soil Pb immobilization, whereas atrazine stabilization may result from its adsorption by biochar demonstrated by the significant exponential decrease of extractable atrazine with increasing organic C in biochar (r(2) > 0.97, p biochar as a unique amendment for immobilization of both heavy metal and organic contaminants in cocontaminated soils. PMID:21542567

  8. Sorption of simazine to corn straw biochars prepared at different pyrolytic temperatures

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Simazine sorption to corn straw biochars prepared at various temperatures (100-600 deg. C) was examined to understand its sorption behavior as influenced by characteristics of biochars. Biochars were characterized via elemental analysis, BET-N2 surface area (SA), FTIR and 13C NMR. Freundlich and dual-mode models described sorption isotherms well. Positive correlation between log Koc values and aromatic C contents and negative correlation between log Koc values and (O + N)/C ratios indicate aromatic-rich biochars have high binding affinity to simazine (charge transfer (π-π*) interactions) and hydrophobic binding may overwhelm H-bonding, respectively. Dual-mode model results suggest adsorption contribution to total sorption increases with carbonization degree. Positive correlation between amounts of adsorption (Qad) and SA indicates pore-filling mechanism. Comparison between our results and those obtained with other sorbents indicates corn straw biochars produced at higher temperature can effectively retain simazine. These observations will be helpful for designing biochars as engineered sorbents to remove triazine herbicides. - Highlights: → Biochars were characterized via elemental analysis, BET-N2, FTIR and 13C NMR. → Freundlich and dual-mode models described sorption isotherms well. → Biochar produced at higher temperature had larger sorption capacity for simazine. → Aromatic-rich biochars have high binding affinity to simazine. → Dual-mode model results suggest adsorption contribution to total sorption. - The corn straw biochar prepared at higher temperature with stronger hydrophobicity, more aromatic C and larger surface area had higher sorption capacity for simazine.

  9. Sorption of simazine to corn straw biochars prepared at different pyrolytic temperatures

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zhang Guixiang [State Key Laboratory of Water Environment Simulation, School of Environment, Beijing Normal University, Beijing 100875 (China); Zhang Qing [Persistent Organic Pollutants Research Center, Tsinghua University, Beijing 100084 (China); Sun Ke [State Key Laboratory of Water Environment Simulation, School of Environment, Beijing Normal University, Beijing 100875 (China); Liu Xitao, E-mail: liuxt@bnu.edu.cn [State Key Laboratory of Water Environment Simulation, School of Environment, Beijing Normal University, Beijing 100875 (China); Zheng Wenjuan; Zhao Ye [State Key Laboratory of Water Environment Simulation, School of Environment, Beijing Normal University, Beijing 100875 (China)

    2011-10-15

    Simazine sorption to corn straw biochars prepared at various temperatures (100-600 deg. C) was examined to understand its sorption behavior as influenced by characteristics of biochars. Biochars were characterized via elemental analysis, BET-N{sub 2} surface area (SA), FTIR and {sup 13}C NMR. Freundlich and dual-mode models described sorption isotherms well. Positive correlation between log K{sub oc} values and aromatic C contents and negative correlation between log K{sub oc} values and (O + N)/C ratios indicate aromatic-rich biochars have high binding affinity to simazine (charge transfer ({pi}-{pi}*) interactions) and hydrophobic binding may overwhelm H-bonding, respectively. Dual-mode model results suggest adsorption contribution to total sorption increases with carbonization degree. Positive correlation between amounts of adsorption (Q{sub ad}) and SA indicates pore-filling mechanism. Comparison between our results and those obtained with other sorbents indicates corn straw biochars produced at higher temperature can effectively retain simazine. These observations will be helpful for designing biochars as engineered sorbents to remove triazine herbicides. - Highlights: > Biochars were characterized via elemental analysis, BET-N{sub 2}, FTIR and {sup 13}C NMR. > Freundlich and dual-mode models described sorption isotherms well. > Biochar produced at higher temperature had larger sorption capacity for simazine. > Aromatic-rich biochars have high binding affinity to simazine. > Dual-mode model results suggest adsorption contribution to total sorption. - The corn straw biochar prepared at higher temperature with stronger hydrophobicity, more aromatic C and larger surface area had higher sorption capacity for simazine.

  10. Household perceptions of climate change and preferences for mitigation action: the case of the Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme in Australia

    OpenAIRE

    Akter, Sonia; Bennett, Jeffrey W.

    2009-01-01

    The study aims to reveal Australian households’ perceptions of climate change and their preferences for climate change mitigation actions. A web-based survey was conducted in November 2008 in which about 600 New South Wales households were asked for their willingness to bear extra household expenditure to support the ‘Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme (CPRS)’ as proposed by the Australian government. The Contingent Valuation Method (CVM), a widely used non-market valuation technique, was appl...

  11. Regional differences in the factors that influence China’s energy-related carbon emissions, and potential mitigation strategies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Energy-related carbon emissions in China have increased significantly. To mitigate these emissions, it is necessary to estimate the trends (increase or decrease) and the magnitudes of the influences (tons of carbon emitted) as a result of four causal factors that affect emissions: GDP, economic structure, energy intensity, and fuel mix. To do so, we have divided the study period into three intervals (from 1995 to 2009) based on China’s three most-recent 5-year plans. We then divided China’s 30 provinces into four categories based on the individual and net effects of these factors on carbon emissions. On this basis, we discuss potential strategies for reducing China’s carbon emissions. Increasing GDP caused the largest increase in carbon emissions, whereas decreasing energy intensity significantly decreased emissions. Changes in the economic structure increased emissions, with the economic structure becoming more carbon-intensive; efforts to optimize the fuel mix slightly decreased emissions during the first and third periods, but increased emissions during the second period. Our analysis also revealed differences between provinces and regions, allowing local managers to focus on the most important problems for their area. To reduce future energy-related carbon emissions, China’s economic structure, energy intensity, and fuel mix must all be improved. - Highlights: ► We developed a model to decompose carbon emissions into four causal factors. ► We estimated the directions and magnitudes of the influences of four factors. ► China’s 30 provinces were classified based on the effects of these factors. ► We discussed potential strategies for mitigating China’s carbon emissions.

  12. Gasification of Biochar from Empty Fruit Bunch in a Fluidized Bed Reactor

    OpenAIRE

    M. A. Mohd Salleh; Nsamba Hussein Kisiki; H. M. Yusuf; W. A. Wan Ab Karim Ghani

    2010-01-01

    A biochar produced from empty fruit bunches (EFB) was gasified in a fluidized bed using air to determine gas yield, overall carbon conversion, gas quality, and composition as a function of temperature. The experiment was conducted in the temperature range of 500–850 °C. It was observed that biochar has the potential to replace coal as a gasification agent in power plants. Hydrogen gas from biochar was also optimized during the experiment. High temperatures favor H 2 and CO formation. There...

  13. Strengthening Carbon Sinks in Urban Soils to Mitigate and Adapt to Climate Change (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lorenz, K.

    2010-12-01

    long industrial history and devastations during World War II. In most surface soils in Stuttgart, however, OM was dominated by plant litter derived compounds but in one urban soil anthropogenic OM and black carbon (BC) dominated soil organic carbon (SOC) as indicated by bloch decay solid-state 13C nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy. Artifacts such as municipal solid waste, construction waste, and fragments of charcoal, coal and glass were also found in urban forest soil profiles to 1-m depth in Columbus, OH. To this depth, about 150 Mg SOC ha-1 were stored and, thus, more than in urban forest soils of Baltimore, MD, and New York City, NY. However, the contribution of litter derived vs. artifact derived OM compounds such as BC has not been assessed for urban soils in the U.S.. In summary, studies on biogeochemical cycles in urban ecosystems must include the entire soil profile as anthropogenic activities may create Technosols with properties not encountered in soils of natural ecosystems. As urban ecosystems are major sources of atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2), Technosols may be tailor-made to imitate natural soils with high SOC pools and long carbon mean residence times. Thus, the C sink in urban soils must be strengthened to mitigate and adapt urban ecosystems to abrupt climate change.

  14. Inconsistent Changes in Microbial Community Structure and Abundance with Biochar Amendment in Rice Paddy Soils from South China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, J.; Qu, J.; Liu, X.; Zheng, J.; Li, L.; Pan, G.

    2012-04-01

    Effects of biochar amendment on soil microbiota had not yet been well understood. We conducted a cross site field study on biochar amendment to rice paddies from south China in 2010. The experiment was performed with four treatments including N fertilization only (C0N), N fertilization plus biochar at 20t/ha (C1N) and at 40t/ha (C2N) as well as a control without N fertilization and biochar (C0N0) consistently with three sites. Biochar was spread at soil surface and incorporated into soil and thoroughly mixed to depth of about 12cm before padding for rice seedling transplantation. Rice production was conducted with conventional water and nutrient management practices adapting to local climate and cultivar conditions. Topsoil samples were collected from each treatment plot across sites for chemical properties and molecular analysis after rice harvest in autumn of 2010. Contents of organic carbon, total N as well as soil microbial biomass carbon were determined with recommended methods. Quantitative real-time PCR coupled with 16S rRNA gene and 18S rRNA gene denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) were respectively employed to trace changes in abundance and structure of bacteria and fungi community with biochar amendment. Increase in microbial biomass carbon (SMBC) was not observed in one site but by 10-20% in other two sites while SOC contents were increased by 25-45% in all sites under biochar treatments. Copy numbers of bacterial genes were different between the sites but no changes with biochar treatment in a single site. However, cluster analysis revealed a more or less decreased similarity of bacterial community to the control (ranging from 75% to 85%) by biochar treatment in a single site. Nevertheless, a number of special bands appeared both in bacterial and fungal DGGE patterns under biochar treatments, though varying with site also. While the fungi copy numbers markedly varied both with sites and with biochar treatments, lower similarity and greater

  15. Dissolved organic carbon interferences in UV nitrate measurements and possible mitigation methods

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas, R. G.; Foster, C. R.; Cohen, M. J.; Martin, J. B.; Delfino, J. J.

    2010-12-01

    Nitrate can be the limiting nutrient in many aquatic ecosystems and has been implicated in the degradation of surface and ground water quality. Understanding its fate and transport requires measurements at high temporal resolution in situ for extended periods of time to observe a range of natural and anthropogenic inputs. These measurements are most efficiently made by in situ sensors, preferably without chemical manipulation. The development of in situ ultraviolet spectrometers with high spectral resolution (0.8 nm) and short response time (1 s) have provided the ability to make in situ measurements of nitrate concentration by measuring its absorbance in the UV wavelengths (200nm-400nm). Like many other regions, springs in Florida have shown increasing nitrate levels in recent years. Because many spring runs in Florida ultimately enter highly colored rivers with high humic DOC content, UV nitrate analyzers cannot operate according to specifications under such light limiting conditions and can result in erroneous or even unattainable readings. Here we present an analysis of interferences caused by dissolved organic carbon (DOC) on the measured nitrate concentration by the Satlantic SUNA (Submersible Ultraviolet Nitrate Analyzer). Dissolved organic carbon absorption of UV irradiation is well documented in the literature and the results of this study clearly demonstrate that high DOC concentrations impact in situ sensor nitrate concentration measurements. Interferences caused by DOC were estimated through bench tests of natural water collected from the upper reaches of the Santa Fe River (USGS Monitoring Station 2322700) and found to have DOC concentration of approximately 50 mg/L and N03 concentration of 0.04 mg/L. The SUNA was operated in a continuous sample mode (about 1 sample per second) to measure nitrate concentrations in this water that was diluted to DOC concentrations of 2.5, 5.0, 10.0, and 12.5 mg/L DOC and nitrate concentrations of 0.05, 0.10, 0.20, 0

  16. Biochar's effect on soil nitrous oxide emissions from a maize field with lime adjusted pH treatment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hüppi, Roman; Leifeld, Jens; Felber, Raphael; Neftel, Albrecht; Six, Johan

    2015-04-01

    Biochar is a carbon-rich, porous product from pyrolysis of organic residues. Especially tropical soils have shown positive response in yield to biochar addition. Its high stability in soil makes biochar a potent carbon sequestration option at the same time. A number of laboratory incubations have shown significantly reduced nitrous oxide (N2O) emissions from soil when mixed with biochar. Emission measurements from the field show the same trend but are much more scarce. One of the hypothesized mechanisms for reduced N2O emissions from soil is owing to the increase in soil pH from the application of alkaline biochar. To test the effect of biochar on N2O emissions from a temperate maize system, we set up a field trial with a 20 t/ha biochar treatment, a limestone treatment adjusted to the same pH as with biochar and a control without addition. An automated static chamber greenhouse gas measurement system measured N2O emissions for each replicated (n=3) every 3.6 hours. The field was conventionally fertilised at a rate of 160 kg-N/ha in 3 doses of 40, 80 and 40 kg-N/ha. Cumulative emissions show a significant reduction for N2O in the biochar treatment by about 55 % relative to the control. The limed treatment shows similar emissions than control but with higher variability. This suggests that the N2O reduction effect of biochar is not mainly due to its liming effect. In conclusion, we confirm that biochar is a promising material to reduce N2O emissions from intensively managed agricultural soils.

  17. 生物质炭输入减少稻田痕量温室气体排放%Biochar input to reduce trace greenhouse gas emission in paddy field

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    李松; 李海丽; 方晓波; 史惠祥

    2014-01-01

    2O cumulative emission decreased significantly with biochar application (P0.05). CH4 and N2O emission fluxes and cumulative emissions showed the similar changes according to the preliminary experiment results of 2014. In this experiment, considering the effect and cost comprehensively, biochar application amount at 20 t/hm2 could be a technical option to reach low carbon emission intensity and stable rice producitivity in the rice paddy agriculture. It also provided a viable way to realize the enhancement of carbon sequestration and the mitigation of greenhouse emissions in the Tiaoxi Watershed of Tai Lake region.%为揭示不同水平生物质炭输入对稻田土壤理化性质、水稻产量及温室气体排放的影响,采用自制竹炭在4种不同施用水平下(0、10、20、40 t/hm2)输入稻田土壤,开展了水稻一个生长周期的田间试验。结果表明,生物质炭输入可显著提高土壤pH值和有机碳含量(P0.05)。CH4累积排放量与生物质炭施用量呈负相关性(相关系数为-0.24,P0.05)。相比对照处理(不输入生物质炭),生物质炭输入后一周内可显著性降低N2O排放通量(P0.05)。该试验条件下,生物质炭施用量为20 t/hm2时可实现稻田稳产和固碳减排目标,该研究可为太湖地区苕溪流域稻田增汇和温室气体减排提供参考。

  18. OPTIMIZATION OF SYNTHESIS AND CHARACTERIZATION OF PALM SHELL-BASED BIO-CHAR AS A BY-PRODUCT OF BIO-OIL PRODUCTION PROCESS

    OpenAIRE

    Arash Arami-Niya,; Mohammad Saleh Sahfeeyan,; Faisal Abnisa,; W. M. A. Wan Daud,; Jaya Narayan Sahu

    2011-01-01

    In this study the optimum preparation conditions of bio-char were achieved as a by-product of the bio-oil production process from oil palm shell as an agricultural waste material. To investigate the possibility of utilizing bio-char as an adsorbent for wastewater treatment and other applications, a central composite design was applied to investigate the influence of carbonization temperatures, nitrogen flow rates, particle sizes of precursor, and duration on the bio-char yield and methylene b...

  19. Metal leaching in mine tailings: short-term impact of biochar and wood ash amendments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beauchemin, Suzanne; Clemente, Joyce S; MacKinnon, Ted; Tisch, Bryan; Lastra, Rolando; Smith, Derek; Kwong, John

    2015-01-01

    Biochar is perceived as a promising amendment to reclaim degraded, metal-contaminated lands. The objective of this study was to compare the potential of biochar and wood ash amendments to reduce metal(loid) leaching in mine tailings. A 2-mo leaching experiment was conducted in duplicate on acidic and alkaline tailings, each mixed with 5 wt.% of one of the following amendments: three wood-derived, fast-pyrolysis biochars (OC > 57 wt.%) and two wood ash materials (organic carbon [OC] ≤ 16 wt.%); a control test with no carbon input was also added. The columns were leached with water after 1, 2, 4, 8, 16, 32, and 64 d, and the leachates were monitored for dissolved metals, OC, and pH. For the acidic and alkaline tailings, the most significant impact on metal mobility was observed with wood ash materials due to their greater neutralization potential (>15% CaCO eq.) compared with biochar (≤3.3% CaCO eq.). An increase of 1 pH unit in the wood ash-treated alkaline tailings led to an undesirable mobilization of As and Se. The addition of biochar did not significantly reduce the leaching of the main contaminants (Cu and Ni in the acidic tailings and As in the alkaline tailings) over 2 mo. The Se attenuation noted in some biochar-treated acid tailings may be mainly due to a slight alkaline effect rather than Se removal by biochar, given the low capacity for the fresh biochars to retain Se under acidic conditions (pH 4.5). The increased loss of dissolved OC in the biochar-amended systems was of short duration and was not associated with metal(loid) mobilization. PMID:25602343

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