Date   

Re: A question about biochar as a decontaminate #contaminate

Harry Groot
 

As a follow-on to this question and the subsequent discussion: what happens to the biochar used in these situations?  Is it left, possibly claimed as a carbon sink, but one to which the contaminate is bound, or buried?  Has there been research which shows how effective that bond is (for the life of the biochar, or not?) Can the contaminate be recovered thru another process (and is THAT worth it?)

H

On Wed, Sep 23, 2020 at 11:43 PM d.michael.shafer@... <d.michael.shafer@...> wrote:
There are lots of articles about the effectiveness of biochar as a heavy metal decontaminate (China/cadmium in rice paddies; Europe/lead at brownfields; US/old mine tailings, mercury). i have three questions: (1) Is it therefore reasonable to suggest the application of biochar soil amendment to urban lawns and playing fields to lock up low level lead contamination? or (2) to suggest the addition of biochar to stormwater drain systems to lock up, for example, low-level lead contamination in drain sediment during the mixing that takes place following a storm? Finally, (3) Is it reasonable to suggest the application of biochar to decontaminate flood mud or areas once covered in flood mud?

I am sure that there are preferred feedstocks, pyrolysis temps, etc. for each contaminate type, but my question is more general. It is really, "Is there any point? Anything to gain?" or would such an exercise be a total waste of money and frivolous?

Michael Shafer


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

+1 732-745-9295 | +66 (0)85 199-2958 | d.michael.shafer@...

www.warmheartworldwide.org | Skype: live:d.michael.shafer53

61 M.8 T.Maepang A.Phrao 50190 Chiang Mai Thailand

    


Re: A question about biochar as a decontaminate #contaminate

d.michael.shafer@gmail.com
 

Nando,

The who will pay question is perhaps the key and goes back to Wayne's observation that cost-benefit is hard to judge. I asked my own question in an effort to determine whether there might be sufficient evidence to convince a town or city council to cough up - especially if there was a pay-back, for example, in reduced fertilizer and watering costs for municipal lawns, gardens and playing fields. At issue, of course, is the issue of how serious the perceived threat of low-level lead contamination is - or that of any other heavy metal/pesticide/industrial chemical. In general, Americans seem to believe that they are safe or at least that that which doesn't kill you immediately shouldn't worry you. We may feel sorry for the one kid who gets cancer, but it takes a great deal to move us to giving serious consideration to a cancer cluster or, beyond that, to action. And with lead, the issue isn't so dramatic. After all, what's a few IQ points lost? Measuring the might have been is tricky.




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

+1 732-745-9295 | +66 (0)85 199-2958 | d.michael.shafer@...

www.warmheartworldwide.org | Skype: live:d.michael.shafer53

61 M.8 T.Maepang A.Phrao 50190 Chiang Mai Thailand

On Thu, Sep 24, 2020 at 9:50 PM Nando Breiter <nando@...> wrote:


I am sure that there are preferred feedstocks, pyrolysis temps, etc. for each contaminate type, but my question is more general. It is really, "Is there any point? Anything to gain?" or would such an exercise be a total waste of money and frivolous?


In practice, I don't think there is a general answer.  For projects like this, a large scale producer or promoter will need to find funding. Funds for such projects do not come easily. Those providing them almost certainly must believe there is a point, there is something to gain. In my experience, most people with control over substantial amounts of money in the private sector have a pretty good head on their shoulders and a very good nose for BS, prevarication, or a thinly researched case. So if the project promoters think it may be frivolous, it is very unlikely they will be able to convince financial backers that it is not. 

That said, the real world is complex and not easy to understand, but I do not think putting our best effort into understanding it and sharing the slivers of knowledge we gain is frivolous, even when the results are certain to be impartial truths.

So even if the char sorbs only some of a toxin, and does not retain it forever, and "only" one case of cancer in a young child is prevented as a result, and we learn something useful along the way to improve our approach, would that be a total waste of money? 

--
Nando Breiter
http://biochar.info
CarbonZero Sagl
Astano, Switzerland


Re: A question about biochar as a decontaminate #contaminate

d.michael.shafer@gmail.com
 

Wayne,

Many thanks for the information. i am familiar with the mercury studies from efforts to contain mercury pollution from artisanal gold mining in Africa.

The question of cost-benefit is always a hard one, especially if you are dealing with costly, high end chars in the US or Europe. The cost-benefit in Africa is pretty straightforward, since there are no alternatives, the costs are high and easily observed and the cost of making char negligible. The char may be just good enough, but if used in sufficient quantity, it is a whole lot better than unmitigated mercury runoff.

M



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

+1 732-745-9295 | +66 (0)85 199-2958 | d.michael.shafer@...

www.warmheartworldwide.org | Skype: live:d.michael.shafer53

61 M.8 T.Maepang A.Phrao 50190 Chiang Mai Thailand

On Thu, Sep 24, 2020 at 4:57 PM Teel, Wayne <teelws@...> wrote:

Michael,


The South River Science Team based in Waynesboro, VA has done a number of longer term studies on mercury contamination in the river which comes in from eroding stream banks and contaminated soil leaching.  They have found that biochar (some sourced from Biochar Now in Colorado) does mitigate a substantial portion of the contamination from these sources.  https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0883292718300428?via%3Dihub  (This is just the abstract.  There might be an Elsevier pay wall, but I have not pursued that.)


While the article is typical of science publications and calls for more studies, a standard practice, biochar is near the top of the mitigation techniques they use.  Of course this is for mercury, not lead, but I would suspect the same is true for that positive ion.  It is not frivolous, but it is also not without cost.  The real question is whether the costs are exceeded by the damage that mitigation would prevent.  We are not always good at answering that question.


Wayne


Wayne S. Teel
701 Carrier Drive
ISAT MSC 4102
Harrisonburg, VA 22807
Phone: 540-568-2798
Fax: 540-568-2761
 

From: main@Biochar.groups.io <main@Biochar.groups.io> on behalf of d.michael.shafer@... <d.michael.shafer@...>
Sent: Wednesday, September 23, 2020 11:43:00 PM
To: main@biochar.groups.io
Subject: [Biochar] A question about biochar as a decontaminate
 
There are lots of articles about the effectiveness of biochar as a heavy metal decontaminate (China/cadmium in rice paddies; Europe/lead at brownfields; US/old mine tailings, mercury). i have three questions: (1) Is it therefore reasonable to suggest the application of biochar soil amendment to urban lawns and playing fields to lock up low level lead contamination? or (2) to suggest the addition of biochar to stormwater drain systems to lock up, for example, low-level lead contamination in drain sediment during the mixing that takes place following a storm? Finally, (3) Is it reasonable to suggest the application of biochar to decontaminate flood mud or areas once covered in flood mud?

I am sure that there are preferred feedstocks, pyrolysis temps, etc. for each contaminate type, but my question is more general. It is really, "Is there any point? Anything to gain?" or would such an exercise be a total waste of money and frivolous?

Michael Shafer


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

+1 732-745-9295 | +66 (0)85 199-2958 | d.michael.shafer@...

www.warmheartworldwide.org | Skype: live:d.michael.shafer53

61 M.8 T.Maepang A.Phrao 50190 Chiang Mai Thailand

    


Re: biochar from pine needles for lead removal #lead #metal

James Mareck
 

On Thursday, September 24, 2020, 01:31:49 PM CDT, Kim Chaffee <kim.chaffee2@...> wrote:


Hi Muriel,
That looks like an interesting article, but it’s behind a paywall.  If you have a subscription to The Economist, could you copy and paste the article here?  Thanks.
Kim
> On Sep 24, 2020, at 12:57 PM, Muriel Strand <auntym@...> wrote:
>
> in india
>
> https://www.economist.com/science-and-technology/2020/07/18/stopping-pollution-with-pine-needles
>
>
> Muriel Strand, P.E.
>
> Advertising is a private tax.
>  - Andre Schiffrin
>
> www.bio-paradigm.blogspot.com/
> www.work4sustenance.blogspot.com
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>





Re: biochar from pine needles for lead removal #lead #metal

Kim Chaffee
 

Hi Muriel,
That looks like an interesting article, but it’s behind a paywall. If you have a subscription to The Economist, could you copy and paste the article here? Thanks.
Kim

On Sep 24, 2020, at 12:57 PM, Muriel Strand <auntym@earthlink.net> wrote:

in india

https://www.economist.com/science-and-technology/2020/07/18/stopping-pollution-with-pine-needles


Muriel Strand, P.E.

Advertising is a private tax.
- Andre Schiffrin

www.bio-paradigm.blogspot.com/
www.work4sustenance.blogspot.com










Re: The Wonders of Wood Vinegar Webinar #woodvinegar #webinar

mikethewormguy
 

Nando,

Yes... if you asking if..I will give folks a head's up...  

Mike


biochar from pine needles for lead removal #lead #metal

Muriel Strand
 

in india

https://www.economist.com/science-and-technology/2020/07/18/stopping-pollution-with-pine-needles


Muriel Strand, P.E.

Advertising is a private tax.
- Andre Schiffrin

www.bio-paradigm.blogspot.com/
www.work4sustenance.blogspot.com


Re: The Wonders of Wood Vinegar Webinar #woodvinegar #webinar

Nando Breiter
 

Hi Mike,

Will you post again once you have the instructions for the soil drench ready on your website? 







On Wed, Sep 23, 2020 at 4:52 PM mikethewormguy via groups.io <mikethewormguy=aol.com@groups.io> wrote:
Hello All,

Next week I will be participating in a webinar regarding the wonders of wood vinegar.  The webinar is being put on by the Australia/New Zealand Biochar folks (www.anzbig.org)...   I am sure if you contact Don Coyne (execdirect@..., he can provide webinar details.

My contribution will be discussing the practioner work we have been doing with Wood Vinegar, as well as, Walnut Shell Vinegar in combination or seperately for seed, soil, and leaf treatments.

I will be posting our Green Quest website (www.onagreenquest.net), the soil drench recipe that I have used this season for feeding all of our vegetables, as well as, our CBD Hemp planting on ..  Contained in this posting will be details behind the recipe development.

My expectation is that folks use this 'living' recipe and provide feedback to Biochar World.  This current recipe has worked for us but you may need to modify the recipe for it to work for you.  The instructions I am providing can be seen, as a starting point.

This posting will occur next week.   Contact me via email (mikethewormguy@...) if you have questions about the soil drench recipe directions.   I will try to be as clear as possible in my instructions......

Happy Experimenting !

Mike Flynn
Green Quest LLC (www.onagreenquest.net)
BioSpecific LLC (www.biospecific.farm)
" Chance favors the prepared mind"...a.e.


--
Nando Breiter
http://biochar.info
CarbonZero Sagl
Astano, Switzerland


Re: A question about biochar as a decontaminate #contaminate

Nando Breiter
 



I am sure that there are preferred feedstocks, pyrolysis temps, etc. for each contaminate type, but my question is more general. It is really, "Is there any point? Anything to gain?" or would such an exercise be a total waste of money and frivolous?


In practice, I don't think there is a general answer.  For projects like this, a large scale producer or promoter will need to find funding. Funds for such projects do not come easily. Those providing them almost certainly must believe there is a point, there is something to gain. In my experience, most people with control over substantial amounts of money in the private sector have a pretty good head on their shoulders and a very good nose for BS, prevarication, or a thinly researched case. So if the project promoters think it may be frivolous, it is very unlikely they will be able to convince financial backers that it is not. 

That said, the real world is complex and not easy to understand, but I do not think putting our best effort into understanding it and sharing the slivers of knowledge we gain is frivolous, even when the results are certain to be impartial truths.

So even if the char sorbs only some of a toxin, and does not retain it forever, and "only" one case of cancer in a young child is prevented as a result, and we learn something useful along the way to improve our approach, would that be a total waste of money? 

--
Nando Breiter
http://biochar.info
CarbonZero Sagl
Astano, Switzerland


Re: Our Dirty Legacy #charcoal

Tom Miles
 

If you look at the 850,000 tons of barbecue charcoal traded in the US you will find different supply chains than Europe. There may be some similarities in the area of imported lump charcoal. We have many sources of imported carbonized materials. 

The major charcoal producers are well aware of the differences between charcoal and biochar. They have been in contact but Not engaged in Biochar markets until the last few years when briquette markets have declined and biochar markets have improved. There has also been consolidation in charcoal production in the last few years, especially in Missouri and Texas. 

T R Miles Technical Consultants Inc.
tmiles@...
Sent from mobile. 

On Sep 24, 2020, at 7:05 AM, ROBERT W GILLETT <themarvalus.wabio@...> wrote:

Kevin,

If a legacy charcoal company markets any of their product as biochar, they should be subjected to close scrutiny for the kinds of behaviors exposed in this breaking analysis of several European charcoal companies. 3-D reflected light microscopy may be the best way. They should also be FSC certified or equal. Meanwhile, the biochar industry should be aware of the environmentally detrimental baggage that accompanies any association (real or perceived) with the charcoal industry.

Best,

Robert


Re: Our Dirty Legacy #charcoal

ROBERT W GILLETT
 

Kevin,

If a legacy charcoal company markets any of their product as biochar, they should be subjected to close scrutiny for the kinds of behaviors exposed in this breaking analysis of several European charcoal companies. 3-D reflected light microscopy may be the best way. They should also be FSC certified or equal. Meanwhile, the biochar industry should be aware of the environmentally detrimental baggage that accompanies any association (real or perceived) with the charcoal industry.

Best,

Robert


Re: A question about biochar as a decontaminate #contaminate

Tom Miles
 

Wayne,

 

There are at least three published papers on the South River project which are all behind a pay wall.

 

Tom

 

From: main@Biochar.groups.io <main@Biochar.groups.io> On Behalf Of Teel, Wayne
Sent: Thursday, September 24, 2020 4:58 AM
To: main@Biochar.groups.io
Subject: Re: [Biochar] A question about biochar as a decontaminate

 

Michael,

 

The South River Science Team based in Waynesboro, VA has done a number of longer term studies on mercury contamination in the river which comes in from eroding stream banks and contaminated soil leaching.  They have found that biochar (some sourced from Biochar Now in Colorado) does mitigate a substantial portion of the contamination from these sources.  https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0883292718300428?via%3Dihub  (This is just the abstract.  There might be an Elsevier pay wall, but I have not pursued that.)

 

While the article is typical of science publications and calls for more studies, a standard practice, biochar is near the top of the mitigation techniques they use.  Of course this is for mercury, not lead, but I would suspect the same is true for that positive ion.  It is not frivolous, but it is also not without cost.  The real question is whether the costs are exceeded by the damage that mitigation would prevent.  We are not always good at answering that question.

 

Wayne

 

Wayne S. Teel

701 Carrier Drive

ISAT MSC 4102

Harrisonburg, VA 22807

Phone: 540-568-2798

Fax: 540-568-2761

E-mail: teelws@...

 


From: main@Biochar.groups.io <main@Biochar.groups.io> on behalf of d.michael.shafer@... <d.michael.shafer@...>
Sent: Wednesday, September 23, 2020 11:43:00 PM
To: main@biochar.groups.io
Subject: [Biochar] A question about biochar as a decontaminate

 

There are lots of articles about the effectiveness of biochar as a heavy metal decontaminate (China/cadmium in rice paddies; Europe/lead at brownfields; US/old mine tailings, mercury). i have three questions: (1) Is it therefore reasonable to suggest the application of biochar soil amendment to urban lawns and playing fields to lock up low level lead contamination? or (2) to suggest the addition of biochar to stormwater drain systems to lock up, for example, low-level lead contamination in drain sediment during the mixing that takes place following a storm? Finally, (3) Is it reasonable to suggest the application of biochar to decontaminate flood mud or areas once covered in flood mud?

 

I am sure that there are preferred feedstocks, pyrolysis temps, etc. for each contaminate type, but my question is more general. It is really, "Is there any point? Anything to gain?" or would such an exercise be a total waste of money and frivolous?

 

Michael Shafer


 

photo

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

+1 732-745-9295 | +66 (0)85 199-2958 | d.michael.shafer@...

www.warmheartworldwide.org | Skype: live:d.michael.shafer53

61 M.8 T.Maepang A.Phrao 50190 Chiang Mai Thailand

 

 

    


Re: A question about biochar as a decontaminate #contaminate

Teel, Wayne
 

Michael,


The South River Science Team based in Waynesboro, VA has done a number of longer term studies on mercury contamination in the river which comes in from eroding stream banks and contaminated soil leaching.  They have found that biochar (some sourced from Biochar Now in Colorado) does mitigate a substantial portion of the contamination from these sources.  https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0883292718300428?via%3Dihub  (This is just the abstract.  There might be an Elsevier pay wall, but I have not pursued that.)


While the article is typical of science publications and calls for more studies, a standard practice, biochar is near the top of the mitigation techniques they use.  Of course this is for mercury, not lead, but I would suspect the same is true for that positive ion.  It is not frivolous, but it is also not without cost.  The real question is whether the costs are exceeded by the damage that mitigation would prevent.  We are not always good at answering that question.


Wayne


Wayne S. Teel
701 Carrier Drive
ISAT MSC 4102
Harrisonburg, VA 22807
Phone: 540-568-2798
Fax: 540-568-2761
 


From: main@Biochar.groups.io <main@Biochar.groups.io> on behalf of d.michael.shafer@... <d.michael.shafer@...>
Sent: Wednesday, September 23, 2020 11:43:00 PM
To: main@biochar.groups.io
Subject: [Biochar] A question about biochar as a decontaminate
 
There are lots of articles about the effectiveness of biochar as a heavy metal decontaminate (China/cadmium in rice paddies; Europe/lead at brownfields; US/old mine tailings, mercury). i have three questions: (1) Is it therefore reasonable to suggest the application of biochar soil amendment to urban lawns and playing fields to lock up low level lead contamination? or (2) to suggest the addition of biochar to stormwater drain systems to lock up, for example, low-level lead contamination in drain sediment during the mixing that takes place following a storm? Finally, (3) Is it reasonable to suggest the application of biochar to decontaminate flood mud or areas once covered in flood mud?

I am sure that there are preferred feedstocks, pyrolysis temps, etc. for each contaminate type, but my question is more general. It is really, "Is there any point? Anything to gain?" or would such an exercise be a total waste of money and frivolous?

Michael Shafer


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

+1 732-745-9295 | +66 (0)85 199-2958 | d.michael.shafer@...

www.warmheartworldwide.org | Skype: live:d.michael.shafer53

61 M.8 T.Maepang A.Phrao 50190 Chiang Mai Thailand


Re: Sterilize Biochar Charged with Urine #urine

Kim Chaffee
 

Kevin,

Thanks for offering to reach out to the Rich Earth folks about joining our biochar chat group.  

I just came across this posting on Rich Earth’s website.  They are setting up a “National Gold Ribbon Committee for Urine Reuse”.  As they say in the introduction, "Our project goal is to create rules and policies for a national urine reuse standard, so it can be further adopted into state and local site development and building codes. They are asking anyone who is interested to fill out a form.  Anyone on this list who is interested and has the time may want to fill out the form. Please let the rest of us know if you join their Committee. See link below.

Kim

  

On Sep 24, 2020, at 12:14 AM, Kevin McLean <info@...> wrote:

I'll be happy to reach out to them, upon receiving permission from Tom.  There is a lot of overlap.

On Thu, Sep 24, 2020 at 12:05 AM Kim Chaffee <kim.chaffee2@...> wrote:
Kevin,

Thanks to you and Frank for your posts.  I saw on Rich Earth's website that they had held a Virtual Summit recently.  Glad you presented, so their audience could learn about biochar.  Their website says that about 120 people from all over the world attend their first online Summit, (which was their 6th Summit overall).  

If you know the people at Rich Earth, what do you think of inviting some of them to join this list serve group, assuming Tom Miles is okay with that?  I think we could learn a lot from them and vice versa.  If you’d rather, I’d be happy to reach out to them.  (Many years ago, I used to live a few miles from Brattleboro, Vermont, where they’re headquartered.)

Kim    


On Sep 23, 2020, at 11:06 PM, Kevin McLean <info@...> wrote:

Kim, the Rich Earth Institute does excellent work with urine.  It held its three-day virtual summit last week, at which I briefly presented on this topic.  The summit was recorded and can be viewed here.

On Wed, Sep 23, 2020 at 10:44 PM Kim Chaffee <kim.chaffee2@...> wrote:
All,

Just in case you haven’t heard of them, there is an organization here in the US that promotes the use of human urine in agriculture.  It’s called the Rich Earth Institute and they are headquartered in Brattleboro, Vermont (in New England).  If you’re curious, here is their website:  http://richearthinstitute.org/ .  They are trying to develop standards for urine use in agriculture.  I don’t know whether there are similar organizations in other countries.    

Kim Chaffee

http://richearthinstitute.org/ 

On Sep 23, 2020, at 9:41 AM, Kevin McLean <info@...> wrote:

Thanks, Frank.  We are moving toward this model which allows poor smallholder farmers to collect, charge and store biochar year round:

Put an empty charcoal/rice bag in a hole in the ground.  These inexpensive PP bags are porous.  As the char is made, add it and urine to the bag.  When the bag is full, the char should be charged and excess liquid will have drained away.  Put the bag of biochar out and store it for the planting season.  Put another empty bag in the hole and start the process again.

Most smallholder farmers have little or no manure and don't know how to compost.  We will recommend they add whatever manure they have to the biochar.

On Wed, Sep 23, 2020 at 6:33 AM Frank Strie <frank.strie@...> wrote:

Yes Kevin,
your description of reasoning , methodology, time allowed and credible considerations  are all aiming at best practice and superb developments.
If you make the biochar you may like to quench and soak the char in the urine at the earliest (hot, warm, ultra-dry) stage. The follow the process as you outlined.
Have lots of productive fun and please take photos of the effects your Biochar process has on the production in the garden and on the land to share here with the network/ discussion group.
Best regards and thanks for sharing
Frank



From: main@Biochar.groups.io <main@Biochar.groups.io> On Behalf Of jim karnofski
Sent: Wednesday, September 23, 2020 6:17 PM
To: main@Biochar.groups.io
Subject: Re: [Biochar] Sterilize Biochar Charged with Urine

 

Kevin,

 

Urine charged biochar:

 

The purpose of using urine-soaked biochar is to recycle nutrients and charge the dry, sterile biochar.

 

First, I mix in active compost with the sterile char so there are hungry microbes lurking when the urine is poured through the mix.

 

Second, the container is large and has small holes in the bottom allowing the excess liquid to slowly drip out the bottom.  You will find contaminated water strained through charcoal comes out mostly pure as the nutrients are stripped from aqueous solution to reside within the biochar.

 

Third, this charged biochar is then mixed into the rough side of my compost pile which helps preserve the detritus from gassing off as it rots while also integrating with the other soil microbes.

 

Fourth, the working raw pile of compost is turned into a finished pile of compost to sit until cool.

 

By the time this material is applied to the garden soil, the microbiology has done its magic. No worries. Aerobic compost has a healthy smell with dominant non-pathogenic bacteria that have their way with the bad bacteria.

 

If plated and isolated very carefully, healthy soil probably contains something of everything in its makeup. Immerse into this biological cloud sans mask and gloves. Eat the occasional raw beet, carrot, or potato fresh from the garden with a patina of dirt. It's all good.

 

Just do it because it is the right thing to do.

 

Jim

 

 

 

 

 


From: main@Biochar.groups.io <main@Biochar.groups.io> on behalf of Kevin McLean <info@...>
Sent: Saturday, September 5, 2020 5:09 AM
To: Biochar Listserv <biochar@groups.io>
Subject: [Biochar] Sterilize Biochar Charged with Urine

 

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

 

Kevin McLean, President

Sun24

Tampa, Florida, USA

+1 (813) 505-3340

 

                     











Re: Sterilize Biochar Charged with Urine #urine

Kevin McLean
 

I'll be happy to reach out to them, upon receiving permission from Tom.  There is a lot of overlap.

On Thu, Sep 24, 2020 at 12:05 AM Kim Chaffee <kim.chaffee2@...> wrote:
Kevin,

Thanks to you and Frank for your posts.  I saw on Rich Earth's website that they had held a Virtual Summit recently.  Glad you presented, so their audience could learn about biochar.  Their website says that about 120 people from all over the world attend their first online Summit, (which was their 6th Summit overall).  

If you know the people at Rich Earth, what do you think of inviting some of them to join this list serve group, assuming Tom Miles is okay with that?  I think we could learn a lot from them and vice versa.  If you’d rather, I’d be happy to reach out to them.  (Many years ago, I used to live a few miles from Brattleboro, Vermont, where they’re headquartered.)

Kim    


On Sep 23, 2020, at 11:06 PM, Kevin McLean <info@...> wrote:

Kim, the Rich Earth Institute does excellent work with urine.  It held its three-day virtual summit last week, at which I briefly presented on this topic.  The summit was recorded and can be viewed here.

On Wed, Sep 23, 2020 at 10:44 PM Kim Chaffee <kim.chaffee2@...> wrote:
All,

Just in case you haven’t heard of them, there is an organization here in the US that promotes the use of human urine in agriculture.  It’s called the Rich Earth Institute and they are headquartered in Brattleboro, Vermont (in New England).  If you’re curious, here is their website:  http://richearthinstitute.org/ .  They are trying to develop standards for urine use in agriculture.  I don’t know whether there are similar organizations in other countries.    

Kim Chaffee

http://richearthinstitute.org/ 

On Sep 23, 2020, at 9:41 AM, Kevin McLean <info@...> wrote:

Thanks, Frank.  We are moving toward this model which allows poor smallholder farmers to collect, charge and store biochar year round:

Put an empty charcoal/rice bag in a hole in the ground.  These inexpensive PP bags are porous.  As the char is made, add it and urine to the bag.  When the bag is full, the char should be charged and excess liquid will have drained away.  Put the bag of biochar out and store it for the planting season.  Put another empty bag in the hole and start the process again.

Most smallholder farmers have little or no manure and don't know how to compost.  We will recommend they add whatever manure they have to the biochar.

On Wed, Sep 23, 2020 at 6:33 AM Frank Strie <frank.strie@...> wrote:

Yes Kevin,
your description of reasoning , methodology, time allowed and credible considerations  are all aiming at best practice and superb developments.
If you make the biochar you may like to quench and soak the char in the urine at the earliest (hot, warm, ultra-dry) stage. The follow the process as you outlined.
Have lots of productive fun and please take photos of the effects your Biochar process has on the production in the garden and on the land to share here with the network/ discussion group.
Best regards and thanks for sharing
Frank



From: main@Biochar.groups.io <main@Biochar.groups.io> On Behalf Of jim karnofski
Sent: Wednesday, September 23, 2020 6:17 PM
To: main@Biochar.groups.io
Subject: Re: [Biochar] Sterilize Biochar Charged with Urine

 

Kevin,

 

Urine charged biochar:

 

The purpose of using urine-soaked biochar is to recycle nutrients and charge the dry, sterile biochar.

 

First, I mix in active compost with the sterile char so there are hungry microbes lurking when the urine is poured through the mix.

 

Second, the container is large and has small holes in the bottom allowing the excess liquid to slowly drip out the bottom.  You will find contaminated water strained through charcoal comes out mostly pure as the nutrients are stripped from aqueous solution to reside within the biochar.

 

Third, this charged biochar is then mixed into the rough side of my compost pile which helps preserve the detritus from gassing off as it rots while also integrating with the other soil microbes.

 

Fourth, the working raw pile of compost is turned into a finished pile of compost to sit until cool.

 

By the time this material is applied to the garden soil, the microbiology has done its magic. No worries. Aerobic compost has a healthy smell with dominant non-pathogenic bacteria that have their way with the bad bacteria.

 

If plated and isolated very carefully, healthy soil probably contains something of everything in its makeup. Immerse into this biological cloud sans mask and gloves. Eat the occasional raw beet, carrot, or potato fresh from the garden with a patina of dirt. It's all good.

 

Just do it because it is the right thing to do.

 

Jim

 

 

 

 

 


From: main@Biochar.groups.io <main@Biochar.groups.io> on behalf of Kevin McLean <info@...>
Sent: Saturday, September 5, 2020 5:09 AM
To: Biochar Listserv <biochar@groups.io>
Subject: [Biochar] Sterilize Biochar Charged with Urine

 

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

 

Kevin McLean, President

Sun24

Tampa, Florida, USA

+1 (813) 505-3340

 

                     








Re: Sterilize Biochar Charged with Urine #urine

Kim Chaffee
 

Kevin,

Thanks to you and Frank for your posts.  I saw on Rich Earth's website that they had held a Virtual Summit recently.  Glad you presented, so their audience could learn about biochar.  Their website says that about 120 people from all over the world attend their first online Summit, (which was their 6th Summit overall).  

If you know the people at Rich Earth, what do you think of inviting some of them to join this list serve group, assuming Tom Miles is okay with that?  I think we could learn a lot from them and vice versa.  If you’d rather, I’d be happy to reach out to them.  (Many years ago, I used to live a few miles from Brattleboro, Vermont, where they’re headquartered.)

Kim    


On Sep 23, 2020, at 11:06 PM, Kevin McLean <info@...> wrote:

Kim, the Rich Earth Institute does excellent work with urine.  It held its three-day virtual summit last week, at which I briefly presented on this topic.  The summit was recorded and can be viewed here.

On Wed, Sep 23, 2020 at 10:44 PM Kim Chaffee <kim.chaffee2@...> wrote:
All,

Just in case you haven’t heard of them, there is an organization here in the US that promotes the use of human urine in agriculture.  It’s called the Rich Earth Institute and they are headquartered in Brattleboro, Vermont (in New England).  If you’re curious, here is their website:  http://richearthinstitute.org/ .  They are trying to develop standards for urine use in agriculture.  I don’t know whether there are similar organizations in other countries.    

Kim Chaffee

http://richearthinstitute.org/ 

On Sep 23, 2020, at 9:41 AM, Kevin McLean <info@...> wrote:

Thanks, Frank.  We are moving toward this model which allows poor smallholder farmers to collect, charge and store biochar year round:

Put an empty charcoal/rice bag in a hole in the ground.  These inexpensive PP bags are porous.  As the char is made, add it and urine to the bag.  When the bag is full, the char should be charged and excess liquid will have drained away.  Put the bag of biochar out and store it for the planting season.  Put another empty bag in the hole and start the process again.

Most smallholder farmers have little or no manure and don't know how to compost.  We will recommend they add whatever manure they have to the biochar.

On Wed, Sep 23, 2020 at 6:33 AM Frank Strie <frank.strie@...> wrote:

Yes Kevin,
your description of reasoning , methodology, time allowed and credible considerations  are all aiming at best practice and superb developments.
If you make the biochar you may like to quench and soak the char in the urine at the earliest (hot, warm, ultra-dry) stage. The follow the process as you outlined.
Have lots of productive fun and please take photos of the effects your Biochar process has on the production in the garden and on the land to share here with the network/ discussion group.
Best regards and thanks for sharing
Frank



From: main@Biochar.groups.io <main@Biochar.groups.io> On Behalf Of jim karnofski
Sent: Wednesday, September 23, 2020 6:17 PM
To: main@Biochar.groups.io
Subject: Re: [Biochar] Sterilize Biochar Charged with Urine

 

Kevin,

 

Urine charged biochar:

 

The purpose of using urine-soaked biochar is to recycle nutrients and charge the dry, sterile biochar.

 

First, I mix in active compost with the sterile char so there are hungry microbes lurking when the urine is poured through the mix.

 

Second, the container is large and has small holes in the bottom allowing the excess liquid to slowly drip out the bottom.  You will find contaminated water strained through charcoal comes out mostly pure as the nutrients are stripped from aqueous solution to reside within the biochar.

 

Third, this charged biochar is then mixed into the rough side of my compost pile which helps preserve the detritus from gassing off as it rots while also integrating with the other soil microbes.

 

Fourth, the working raw pile of compost is turned into a finished pile of compost to sit until cool.

 

By the time this material is applied to the garden soil, the microbiology has done its magic. No worries. Aerobic compost has a healthy smell with dominant non-pathogenic bacteria that have their way with the bad bacteria.

 

If plated and isolated very carefully, healthy soil probably contains something of everything in its makeup. Immerse into this biological cloud sans mask and gloves. Eat the occasional raw beet, carrot, or potato fresh from the garden with a patina of dirt. It's all good.

 

Just do it because it is the right thing to do.

 

Jim

 

 

 

 

 


From: main@Biochar.groups.io <main@Biochar.groups.io> on behalf of Kevin McLean <info@...>
Sent: Saturday, September 5, 2020 5:09 AM
To: Biochar Listserv <biochar@groups.io>
Subject: [Biochar] Sterilize Biochar Charged with Urine

 

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

 

Kevin McLean, President

Sun24

Tampa, Florida, USA

+1 (813) 505-3340

 

                     








Re: Dwelling on Drawdown #drawdown

d.michael.shafer@gmail.com
 

Kathleen,

Nothing re your question, but a related one: have you found a replacement for cement? I know about using biochar in cement, but the entire process is so energy and carbon intensive (extensive?) that no amount of biochar will offset its foot print. But is there an alternative for slabs, columns, etc. that is routinely available? Where we are, cutting trees is banned and composite wood products are not available.

M




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

+1 732-745-9295 | +66 (0)85 199-2958 | d.michael.shafer@...

www.warmheartworldwide.org | Skype: live:d.michael.shafer53

61 M.8 T.Maepang A.Phrao 50190 Chiang Mai Thailand

On Wed, Sep 23, 2020 at 10:30 PM Kathleen Draper <biocharro2@...> wrote:
Hello all- 
I've been on a bit of a biochar hiatus for the past few months due to building my own personal c-sink sanctuary. I've dubbed my project Dwelling on Drawdown as I'm trying to incorporate different sequestration techniques and avoiding, to the extent possible, high embodied carbon products. I've learned this is NOT easy and though there are some VERY interesting biochar based building materials in the pipeline, they are not commercially available yet for the most part. 

The first 1st biochar sink I used (maybe discovered?) was applying it as pipe bedding in my very rocky soils - normally regulations in New York call for 6 - 12" of sand for pipe bedding. I didn't have enough to do it as deep as I would have liked, but still managed to sequestered probably 1 ton of CO2e. I calculated that if I had put biochar 1' deep along the whole trench it could have sequestered 6 - 8 tons.  The current biochar sink that I am working on is in the dripline trenches and the next will be in my leach field. Does anyone know of others that have done anything like this and if so, do they have any advice especially on application methods, amounts and particle size? Photos in the attached show our unique application method - not the greatest, but it worked!

Cheers
Kathleen


A question about biochar as a decontaminate #contaminate

d.michael.shafer@gmail.com
 

There are lots of articles about the effectiveness of biochar as a heavy metal decontaminate (China/cadmium in rice paddies; Europe/lead at brownfields; US/old mine tailings, mercury). i have three questions: (1) Is it therefore reasonable to suggest the application of biochar soil amendment to urban lawns and playing fields to lock up low level lead contamination? or (2) to suggest the addition of biochar to stormwater drain systems to lock up, for example, low-level lead contamination in drain sediment during the mixing that takes place following a storm? Finally, (3) Is it reasonable to suggest the application of biochar to decontaminate flood mud or areas once covered in flood mud?

I am sure that there are preferred feedstocks, pyrolysis temps, etc. for each contaminate type, but my question is more general. It is really, "Is there any point? Anything to gain?" or would such an exercise be a total waste of money and frivolous?

Michael Shafer


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

+1 732-745-9295 | +66 (0)85 199-2958 | d.michael.shafer@...

www.warmheartworldwide.org | Skype: live:d.michael.shafer53

61 M.8 T.Maepang A.Phrao 50190 Chiang Mai Thailand


Re: Sterilize Biochar Charged with Urine #urine

Frank Strie
 

Thanks for that interesting link Kim Chaffee,
always more to learn!
I shall check it out and will discuss it with our collaborators / networkers of BIT = Biochar Initiative Tasmania
best regards
Frank

 

From: main@Biochar.groups.io <main@Biochar.groups.io> On Behalf Of Kim Chaffee
Sent: Thursday, September 24, 2020 12:44 PM
To: main@Biochar.groups.io
Subject: Re: [Biochar] Sterilize Biochar Charged with Urine

 

All,

 

Just in case you haven’t heard of them, there is an organization here in the US that promotes the use of human urine in agriculture.  It’s called the Rich Earth Institute and they are headquartered in Brattleboro, Vermont (in New England).  If you’re curious, here is their website:  http://richearthinstitute.org/ .  They are trying to develop standards for urine use in agriculture.  I don’t know whether there are similar organizations in other countries.    

 

Kim Chaffee

 

http://richearthinstitute.org/ 



On Sep 23, 2020, at 9:41 AM, Kevin McLean <info@...> wrote:

 

Thanks, Frank.  We are moving toward this model which allows poor smallholder farmers to collect, charge and store biochar year round:

 

Put an empty charcoal/rice bag in a hole in the ground.  These inexpensive PP bags are porous.  As the char is made, add it and urine to the bag.  When the bag is full, the char should be charged and excess liquid will have drained away.  Put the bag of biochar out and store it for the planting season.  Put another empty bag in the hole and start the process again.

 

Most smallholder farmers have little or no manure and don't know how to compost.  We will recommend they add whatever manure they have to the biochar.

 

On Wed, Sep 23, 2020 at 6:33 AM Frank Strie <frank.strie@...> wrote:

Yes Kevin,
your description of reasoning , methodology, time allowed and credible considerations  are all aiming at best practice and superb developments.
If you make the biochar you may like to quench and soak the char in the urine at the earliest (hot, warm, ultra-dry) stage. The follow the process as you outlined.
Have lots of productive fun and please take photos of the effects your Biochar process has on the production in the garden and on the land to share here with the network/ discussion group.
Best regards and thanks for sharing
Frank

 

From: main@Biochar.groups.io <main@Biochar.groups.io> On Behalf Of jim karnofski
Sent: Wednesday, September 23, 2020 6:17 PM
To: main@Biochar.groups.io
Subject: Re: [Biochar] Sterilize Biochar Charged with Urine

 

Kevin,

 

Urine charged biochar:

 

The purpose of using urine-soaked biochar is to recycle nutrients and charge the dry, sterile biochar.

 

First, I mix in active compost with the sterile char so there are hungry microbes lurking when the urine is poured through the mix.

 

Second, the container is large and has small holes in the bottom allowing the excess liquid to slowly drip out the bottom.  You will find contaminated water strained through charcoal comes out mostly pure as the nutrients are stripped from aqueous solution to reside within the biochar.

 

Third, this charged biochar is then mixed into the rough side of my compost pile which helps preserve the detritus from gassing off as it rots while also integrating with the other soil microbes.

 

Fourth, the working raw pile of compost is turned into a finished pile of compost to sit until cool.

 

By the time this material is applied to the garden soil, the microbiology has done its magic. No worries. Aerobic compost has a healthy smell with dominant non-pathogenic bacteria that have their way with the bad bacteria.

 

If plated and isolated very carefully, healthy soil probably contains something of everything in its makeup. Immerse into this biological cloud sans mask and gloves. Eat the occasional raw beet, carrot, or potato fresh from the garden with a patina of dirt. It's all good.

 

Just do it because it is the right thing to do.

 

Jim

 

 

 

 

 


From: main@Biochar.groups.io <main@Biochar.groups.io> on behalf of Kevin McLean <info@...>
Sent: Saturday, September 5, 2020 5:09 AM
To: Biochar Listserv <biochar@groups.io>
Subject: [Biochar] Sterilize Biochar Charged with Urine

 

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

 

Kevin McLean, President

Sun24

Tampa, Florida, USA

+1 (813) 505-3340

 

                     

 

 

 


Re: Sterilize Biochar Charged with Urine #urine

Kevin McLean
 

Kim, the Rich Earth Institute does excellent work with urine.  It held its three-day virtual summit last week, at which I briefly presented on this topic.  The summit was recorded and can be viewed here.

On Wed, Sep 23, 2020 at 10:44 PM Kim Chaffee <kim.chaffee2@...> wrote:
All,

Just in case you haven’t heard of them, there is an organization here in the US that promotes the use of human urine in agriculture.  It’s called the Rich Earth Institute and they are headquartered in Brattleboro, Vermont (in New England).  If you’re curious, here is their website:  http://richearthinstitute.org/ .  They are trying to develop standards for urine use in agriculture.  I don’t know whether there are similar organizations in other countries.    

Kim Chaffee

http://richearthinstitute.org/ 

On Sep 23, 2020, at 9:41 AM, Kevin McLean <info@...> wrote:

Thanks, Frank.  We are moving toward this model which allows poor smallholder farmers to collect, charge and store biochar year round:

Put an empty charcoal/rice bag in a hole in the ground.  These inexpensive PP bags are porous.  As the char is made, add it and urine to the bag.  When the bag is full, the char should be charged and excess liquid will have drained away.  Put the bag of biochar out and store it for the planting season.  Put another empty bag in the hole and start the process again.

Most smallholder farmers have little or no manure and don't know how to compost.  We will recommend they add whatever manure they have to the biochar.

On Wed, Sep 23, 2020 at 6:33 AM Frank Strie <frank.strie@...> wrote:

Yes Kevin,
your description of reasoning , methodology, time allowed and credible considerations  are all aiming at best practice and superb developments.
If you make the biochar you may like to quench and soak the char in the urine at the earliest (hot, warm, ultra-dry) stage. The follow the process as you outlined.
Have lots of productive fun and please take photos of the effects your Biochar process has on the production in the garden and on the land to share here with the network/ discussion group.
Best regards and thanks for sharing
Frank



From: main@Biochar.groups.io <main@Biochar.groups.io> On Behalf Of jim karnofski
Sent: Wednesday, September 23, 2020 6:17 PM
To: main@Biochar.groups.io
Subject: Re: [Biochar] Sterilize Biochar Charged with Urine

 

Kevin,

 

Urine charged biochar:

 

The purpose of using urine-soaked biochar is to recycle nutrients and charge the dry, sterile biochar.

 

First, I mix in active compost with the sterile char so there are hungry microbes lurking when the urine is poured through the mix.

 

Second, the container is large and has small holes in the bottom allowing the excess liquid to slowly drip out the bottom.  You will find contaminated water strained through charcoal comes out mostly pure as the nutrients are stripped from aqueous solution to reside within the biochar.

 

Third, this charged biochar is then mixed into the rough side of my compost pile which helps preserve the detritus from gassing off as it rots while also integrating with the other soil microbes.

 

Fourth, the working raw pile of compost is turned into a finished pile of compost to sit until cool.

 

By the time this material is applied to the garden soil, the microbiology has done its magic. No worries. Aerobic compost has a healthy smell with dominant non-pathogenic bacteria that have their way with the bad bacteria.

 

If plated and isolated very carefully, healthy soil probably contains something of everything in its makeup. Immerse into this biological cloud sans mask and gloves. Eat the occasional raw beet, carrot, or potato fresh from the garden with a patina of dirt. It's all good.

 

Just do it because it is the right thing to do.

 

Jim

 

 

 

 

 


From: main@Biochar.groups.io <main@Biochar.groups.io> on behalf of Kevin McLean <info@...>
Sent: Saturday, September 5, 2020 5:09 AM
To: Biochar Listserv <biochar@groups.io>
Subject: [Biochar] Sterilize Biochar Charged with Urine

 

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

 

Kevin McLean, President

Sun24

Tampa, Florida, USA

+1 (813) 505-3340

 

                     




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