Re: Sterilize Biochar Charged with Urine #urine

Nando Breiter

The question: "I want to know if urine can be sterilized by adding char and/or ash.  I am not seeking alternative methods of sterilization." 

The simple answer is no. Sterilization means all microbiota will be killed. Biochar doesn't do that. Speculation about how pH may affect microbes or pathogens isn't sufficient to come to the conclusion that an assumed higher pH will "sterilize" urine. I say "assumed" because pH is dependent on pyrolysis conditions.

Once a mixture of biochar and urine are exposed to the environment, microbiota will grow on the mixture, even if it was sterilized by other means beforehand.

So I think your question is actually something along the lines of "Can the use of biochar interrupt the transmission of pathogens that cause disease in humans? If so, how?"

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On Mon, Sep 7, 2020 at 11:56 AM d.michael.shafer@... <d.michael.shafer@...> wrote:
So, David, if I read you correctly, the notion is that there is no need to worry because in a complete system of bacteria, the "bad guys" will be reduced in number to such a minority that they will not be a problem?

Q: While this may work in the soil on the same model as "forests don't get sick," what about the poor schmuck whose personal biome is not balanced in a way to deal successfully with an unlucky dose of something he ought not be ingesting?


Dr. D. Michael Shafer
Founder and Director, Warm Heart

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On Sun, Sep 6, 2020 at 10:19 PM David Yarrow <dyarrow5@...> wrote:
there are a few hidden false assumptions embedded in this question.
the first is the very idea of "sterilization."
pee & poop should not be stripped of biotic activity, or treated to kill anything.
proper, natural degradation & stabilization of these "wastes" requires (indeed, is mostly) a biologic process driven by micro-organisms.  any talk of "sterilization" moves the discussion and any solution in the wrong direction.  "inoculation," "oxygenation" & "nutrient/ion balances" are better concepts to discuss this sanitation scenario.

another hidden assumption is it's all about bacteria.
microbes, too, exist in ecosystems made of families, species & classes.  fungi and other more complex microbes are crucial to stabilize "sanitary wastes" and not only render them safe, but return them to the "Soil Fertility Cycle" (now there's a lost concept!)

for a green & peaceful planet,
david yarrow

On Sat, Sep 5, 2020 at 9:40 AM Kevin McLean <info@...> wrote:
Does biochar charged with urine need to be stored for a month before application?

The WHO recommends that urine to be applied as fertilizer on food crops that are processed should be stored for a month to kill pathogens.  Urine should be stored for six months for crops that are eaten raw.  Is there a similar storage requirement for biochar charged with urine (or manure)?

Thank you,

Kevin McLean, President
Tampa, Florida, USA
+1 (813) 505-3340


Nando Breiter
CarbonZero Sagl
Astano, Switzerland

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