Biochar is one of six negative emissions technologies recognised by the IPCC. It has the ability to stabilise carbon, via pyrolysis, that has been captured from the air by growing plants such as trees or agricultural crops, or even weeds such as gorse or prickly box.


Organic material which has not been stabilised will eventually degrade and decompose, releasing CO2 back into the atmosphere. The pyrolysis process which stabilises the carbon from organic waste also produces heat energy, which in the right settings can be used to displace fossil fuel forms of energy.


Once stabilised as biochar, the carbon can be put to beneficial use in agriculture, horticulture, animal husbandry, filtration, bioremediation, building and so on. It is a long-lived form of carbon, and will eventually find its way into soil, or be incorporated into dwellings, roads, and other long term infrastructure.


So biochar offers the chance to divert organics from landfill, reduce emissions from the degradation of that waste, create useful products that enhance soil, plant and human health, and store carbon long term.