Navigation Links
Is biochar the answer for ag?
Date:8/1/2010

MADISON, WI, August 2nd, 2010 Scientists demonstrate that biochar, a type charcoal applied to soils in order to capture and store carbon, can reduce emissions of nitrous oxide, a potent greenhouse gas, and inorganic nitrogen runoff from agriculture settings. The finding will help develop strategies and technologies to reduce soil nitrous oxide emissions and reduce agriculture's influence on climate change.

A research team led by Bhupinder Pal Singh from Industry and Investment New South Wales and Balwant Singh from the University of Sydney, tested the effects of four types of biochar on nitrous oxide emission and nitrogen leaching from two different soil varieties. Their results are reported in the July-August 2010 Journal of Environmental Quality, published by the American Society of Agronomy, the Crop Science Society of America, and the Soil Science Society of America.

The study revealed for the first time that interactions between biochar and soil that occur over time are important when assessing the influence of biochar on nitrogen losses from soil. The scientists subjected soils samples to three wetting-drying cycles, to simulate a range of soil moistures during the five-month study period, and measured nitrous oxide emissions and nitrogen runoff.

Initially, biochar application produced inconsistent effects. Several early samples produced greater nitrous oxide emissions and nitrate leaching than the control samples.

However, during the third wettingdrying cycle, four months after biochar application, all biochars reduced nitrous oxide emissions by up to 73%, and reduced ammonium leaching by up to 94%. The researchers suggest that reductions in nitrous oxide emissions and nitrogen leaching over time were due to "ageing" of the biochars in soil.

"The impacts of biochars on nitrous oxide emissions from soil are of interest because even small reductions in nitrous oxide emissions can considerably enhance the greenhouse mitigation value of biochar, which is already proven to be a highly stable carbon pool in the soil environment," according to senior author Bhupinder Pal Singh. "This research highlights that impacts of biochar on nitrogen transformations in soil may change over time and hence stresses the need for long-term studies to assess biochar's potential to reduce nitrogen losses from soil."

In addition to the three wet-dry cycles, the soil samples also received glucose and nutrient applications to supply of carbon and inorganic nutrients for optimal microbial activity. The research team tested biochar from two different sources, wood waste and poultry litter. Biochar is made when organic material is burned at high temperatures in the absence of oxygen.

Research is on-going at Industry and Investment NSW to investigate the causes of the reductions in nitrous oxide emissions by biochars, especially under field conditions, and to determine optimal rate and timing of biochar and fertiliser applications to agricultural soils to maximize the greenhouse mitigation value of biochar.


'/>"/>

Contact: Sara Uttech
suttech@sciencesocieties.org
608-268-4948
American Society of Agronomy
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Answer to saliva mystery has practical impact
2. Microbes answer more questions collectively
3. U of I researchers say foliar fungicides may not be the answer for hail-damaged corn
4. Microbial answer to plastic pollution?
5. An answer to another of lifes big questions
6. Bubble physicist counts bubbles in the ocean to answer questions about climate, sound, light
7. Studying hair of ancient Peruvians answers questions about stress
8. Are sterile mosquitoes the answer to malaria elimination?
9. Avoiding dangerous climate change: Is geo-engineering the answer?
10. Critical Zone Observatory seeks to answer climate change questions
11. All tied up: Tethered protein provides long-sought answer
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:3/9/2017)... Australia , March 9, 2017 4Dx ... prestigious World Lung Imaging Workshop at the University of ... was invited to deliver the latest data to world ... recognised event brings together leaders at the forefront of ... in lung imaging. "The quality of ...
(Date:3/7/2017)... Brandwatch , the leading social intelligence company, today ... to uncover insights to support its reporting, help direct future ... UK,s leading youth charity will be using Brandwatch Analytics social listening ... better understanding of the topics and issues that are a priority ... ...
(Date:3/6/2017)... 6, 2017 Mintigo , the ... announced Predictive Sales Coach TM , its new ... intelligence into Salesforce. This unique AI application will ... organizations with deep knowledge of their customers and ... engagement. Predictive Sales Coach extends Mintigo,s existing customer ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:4/19/2017)... ... 18, 2017 , ... Optofluidics today announced that it's changing ... company changed focus to making analytical tools for biopharmaceutical quality control. “We are ... CEO Robert Hart. Founders Bernardo Cordovez, Robert Hart and David Erickson have steered ...
(Date:4/19/2017)... ... April 19, 2017 , ... WHO: Peggy Lillis Foundation, ... education and advocacy. Founded in 2010 in memory of a single-parent mom and ... has become the most-consulted source for patient-focused information on C. diff infections in ...
(Date:4/19/2017)... , April 19, 2017  As a ... and Heroin Summit ,  Proove® Biosciences, Inc. ... genetics, environmental, and lifestyle factors to accurately predict ... University of Southern California (USC), the Interventional Pain ... Proove publish results showing that Proove Opioid Risk® ...
(Date:4/19/2017)... 19, 2017   Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc ... Procalcitonin MOnitoring SEpsis (MOSES) Study have been published ... Critical Care Medicine . Researchers from the study, ... Patients: Results From the Multicenter Procalcitonin MOnitoring SEpsis ... PCT (procalcitonin) assay to assess risk for 28 ...
Breaking Biology Technology: