Re: Slash pile burning

Apparently not all of the logging companies have gotten the word about pulping or perhaps the cost of transportation makes pulping to expensive to be worth the return.

Which brings us back to Ross.

Two immediate responses:

The regularity and size of the opportunity argue strongly in favor of developing a technology for producing biochar or otherwise dealing with the slash in a more climate friendly fashion.

The observations that public education and government policy change are the way to go argue strongly for nothing happening. Although I have a long history as a community developer, I can tell you from hard experience that it is much easier for special interests to mobilize to stop initiatives like this than it is to mobilize lots of urbanites to take them on.

There is no reason, however, for there to be a problem if you are smart about the problem. 

Remember: as long as the protection of the environment and climate are perceived as costly, nothing good will happen for long. Altruism has very real limits. What is essential is to create really smart business plans that make protecting the environment at the very least an unintended positive externality of an otherwise profitable proposition.

So look hard at where this is happening and ask: Where's the market for biochar - in all it's many, many applications and What else might be done with the slash more or less on site? (How many people live as close as you, for example? If it is any reasonable number, then the local power company may well be a natural ally in the development of biomass gasifier power.)


Michael Shafer Director , Warm Heart
Tel: + 1-732-745-9295 | Mobile: + 66(85)-199-2958
d.michael.shafer@... |

On Mon, Apr 14, 2014 at 11:03 PM, Ross Hunt <rossahunt@...> wrote:


On 2014-04-14, at 7:12 AM, "d.michael.shafer@..." <d.michael.shafer@...> wrote:

Is this a regular event?

Are we talking large numbers of piles?
-Thousands in province of BC Canada alone. I don't know numbers but there are about 10 of them within 8 km of my home.

The potential for large quantities of biochar?
- 1000's of tonnes.

-Is there a potential market for the biochar?
-I dont know about local market. There is huge potential. Especially returned to stripped forest floors.

-What is the context now and going forward?
-public needs education then pressure the forest companies, farmers, developers etc. , to change.

-That is, is there reason to invest time and thought and perhaps money in devising a workable, long-term solution, or is this a one off with no future?
-forever, as long as trees grow.

Or, even if it is a long-term problem, it's not feasible from a business point of view because there is no potential to cover the costs of solving it, paying for labor, etc.?
- its feasible to start on a small scale with huge opportunities to make cash on gasification and power generation on a clean sustainable manner.



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