Daily Archives: March 24, 2016

101 East – The Orangutan Whisperer

E120, e130,

Military approach to terror ‘will destroy our country’ – transit union chief

E120, e130,

Inventor Ray Kurzweil sees immortality in our future

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World’s Lakes Are Warming Up

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The Biochar Debate: Charcoal’s Potential to Reverse Climate Change and Build Soil Fertility (Schumacher Briefings): James Bruges, David Friese-Greene

The Biochar Debate is the first book to introduce both the promise and concerns surrounding biochar (fine-grained charcoal used as a soil supplement) to nonspecialists. Charcoal making is an ancient technology. Recent discoveries suggest it may have a surprising role to play in combating global warming. This is because creating and burying biochar removes carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. Furthermore, adding biochar to soil can increase the yield of food crops and the ability of soil to retain moisture, reducing need for synthetic fertilizers and demands on scarce fresh-water supplies.

While explaining the excitement of biochar proponents, Bruges also gives voice to critics who argue that opening biochar production and use to global carbon-credit trading schemes could have disastrous outcomes, especially for the world’s poorest people. The solution, Bruges explains, is to promote biochar through an alternative approach called the Carbon Maintenance Fee that avoids the dangers. This would establish positive incentives for businesses, farmers, and individuals to responsibly adopt biochar without threatening poor communities with displacement by foreign investors seeking to profit through seizure of cheap land.

The Biochar Debate covers the essential issues from experimental and scientific aspects of biochar in the context of global warming to fairness and efficiency in the global economy to negotiations for the future of the Kyoto Protocol.

Food-Matters
Global Climate Change
Environment Ethics
Environment Justice

Biochar for Environmental Management: Science, Technology and Implementation: Johannes Lehmann, Stephen Joseph

Biochar is the carbon-rich product which occurs when biomass (such as wood, manure or crop residues) is heated in a closed container with little or no available air. It can be used to improve agriculture and the environment in several ways, and its persistence in soil and nutrient-retention properties make it an ideal soil amendment to increase crop yields. In addition to this, biochar sequestration, in combination with sustainable biomass production, can be carbon-negative and therefore used to actively remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, with potentially major implications for mitigation of climate change. Biochar production can also be combined with bioenergy production through the use of the gases that are given off in the pyrolysis process.

The first edition of this book, published in 2009, was the definitive work reviewing the expanding research literature on this topic. Since then, the rate of research activity has increased at least ten-fold, and biochar products are now commercially available as soil amendments. This second edition includes not only substantially updated chapters, but also additional chapters: on environmental risk assessment; on new uses of biochar in composting and potting mixes; a new and controversial field of studying the effects of biochar on soil carbon cycles; on traditional use with very recent discoveries that biochar was used not only in the Amazon but also in Africa and Asia; on changes in water availability and soil water dynamics; and on sustainability and certification. The book therefore continues to represent the most comprehensive compilation of current knowledge on all aspects of biochar.

Food-Matters
Global Climate Change
Environment Ethics
Environment Justice

The Biochar Revolution: Transforming Agriculture & Environment: Paul Taylor, Hugh McLaughlin, Tim Flannery

The Biochar Revolution
Transforming Agriculture & Environment

A friendly, informative, inspiring and break-through reference guide for anyone interested in biochar or concerned about environmental issues.

This book has contributions from 18 biochar experts and authors

You’ll Discover
Ancient Solutions to Modern Problems
How to Produce Biochar
How to Test and Use Biochar
How to Change the World with Biochar
The Financial Benefits of Biochar
How to Garden and Farm with Biochar

Who should read this book?
Gardeners, biochar enthusiasts, small property owners, community gardeners, small and large farmers, sugar cane farmers
People who want to do something about climate change
Waste management districts, foresters, councils, government agencies
Policy makers in Australia, NZ, US, UK, and other developed and undeveloped countries

Food-Matters
Global Climate Change
Environment Ethics
Environment Justice