The Biochar Economy

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Image titled "Biochar Economy" (source: Flickr user Lou Gold)

Concept: Broadly, this refers to various products and processes dealing with biochar, either in its production, transport or end use. Biochar is a carbon-negative product, i.e. its production takes carbon out of the atmosphere and puts it into a form that is stable in soil for a long time ("recalcitrant"). This is an exothermic process: while it does not yield as much energy as full gasification or combustion, it still gives off a lot of useful energy. The idea behind the "Biochar Economy" is to try to embed biochar production into other processes (e.g. co-production, see below). This may or may not make economic sense, depending on the market price achievable for biochar and carbon removal from the atmosphere. If the price for biochar and carbon negativity is very low, then this is less efficient and too expensive, considering only the energy yield per unit of biomass.

Co-Production Concepts

Co-production concept (see page‎): combination of lime burning and biochar production. Pyrolysis gases from biochar production are captured and burned in the lime kiln, turning limestone into quicklime.
Co-production concept (see page): combination of Vertical Shaft Brick Kiln and biochar production. Pyrolysis gases from biochar production are captured and used to fire bricks in a VSBK.

Co-production can can mean that the energy/heat released during the biochar process is integrated with another process. Examples include:

Related Products

Future Dedicated Wiki

The number of applications for such a new ecomomy is vast. Therefore, a dedicated wiki is needed. Many pages could be transwikified from the OSE wiki, from Appropedia and Wikipedia. Any interested participants please step forward, contact Rasmus Kiehl.


Quote was found on the Blog "The Biochar Economy". It is an example of how financial and regulatory matters can also be aspects of the biochar economy.
 ? (most likely rural/developing areas with little fuel/electricity infastructure)