Topics

Biochar and Stormwater Runoff #stormwater #green infrastructure #stormwater #green


Tom Miles
 

Biochar at the Transportation Research Board Annual Meeting, Washington DC, January 12-16, 2020

 

Reducing Stormwater Runoff Volumes with Biochar Addition to Highway Soils

Final report, December 2019

 

Stormwater runoff from roadways is a major source of pollution, but current stormwater treatment technologies, such as bioretention cells, do not efficiently remove contaminants. New technologies are needed that can both remove more pollutants and reduce the volume of stormwater discharge. Such technologies will not only improve water quality but result in significant cost savings for state departments of transportation. Biochar, made by pyrolyzing biological material such as wood chips, may increase water infiltration when used as an amendment in stormwater bioretention cells. Here, the authors examined how biochar contributes to soil aggregation, which in turn improves water infiltration in soil. The authors show that biochar changes production of adhesive macromolecules (proteins and polysaccharides), and that particles in biochar-amended soil are, on average, larger in diameter than those in un-amended soil. These macroaggregates likely form on time scales of months to years, suggesting that biochar may be an amendment that increases in effectiveness over time.

 

https://trid.trb.org/view/1674317

 

 

Tom Miles

Executive Director

U.S. Biochar Initiative

"Promoting the Sustainable Production and Use of Biochar"

www.biochar-us.org

@USbiochar

Facebook US Biochar Initiative

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mikethewormguy
 

Tom,

These results are encouraging and reinforcing for both stormwater management and agricultural management.

Do you see stormwater management folks seeing these results as executable and affordable....?

Mike



Sent from my Verizon, Samsung Galaxy smartphone


Tom Miles
 

We see good market potential in stormwater. Biochars are currently being used in several commercial stormwater applications. Companies like Gulleywasher and Stormwaterbiochar.com have been using biochar in filtration systems for more than 10 years. Biological Carbon LLC, Rexius and others sell biochar media for stormwater systems and filtration hardware. Biochars and biochar based products are excellent for capturing and remediating metals and bacteria. Civil engineers are finding cost benefits compared with activated carbon in some applications.  Large scale “facilities” (stormwater structures, filters, swales ) incorporating biochar have been in place for several years. Biochar has been included in at least one state stormwater manual. It needs to be included in more state and national design guides for Best Management Practices (BMPs) for landscaping (ASLA), and civial engineering so that it can be specified as an approved media for stormwater. Biochar and media suppliers tell us that public contractors allow “approved equal” so that contractors sometimes find cheaper alternatives to more expensive biochars.  

 

Several university groups working on stormwater have reported on their progress each year at biochar and stormwater conferences. Dupont reported n their use of biochar to remediate mercury using products from BiocharNow.  A consortium of universities (UC Berkeley, Stanford, Colorado School of Mines) has been working on biochar and stormwater for several years. They recently installed a system for cleaning water to recharge an aquifer using biochar from Oregon Biochar Solutions. University of Idaho Cool Terra biochar in a prize winning phosphorous removal system. Several universities (e.g. University of Florida) have developed biochar based media for metals removal.

 

Several companies have developed biochar based biotic soil amendments for erosion control and revegetation. Permamatrix was an early entry. It quickly joined Profile Products and their Proganics products. Mirimichi Green incorporates their CarbonPN product. They supply a well-known fertilizer company, LESCO, which introduced their granulated and liquid biotic soil amendments called CarbonPro at this year’s Golf Superintendent Associationof America conference. They distribute through a company that distributes to stormwater, erosion control and landscape contractors nationwide.  

 

If it depended just on compliance with EPA NPDES water discharge permits the market would be limited but green infrastructure for water quality is growing and the household, local, state and regional level.

 

Tom

 

Tom Miles

Executive Director

U.S. Biochar Initiative

"Promoting the Sustainable Production and Use of Biochar"

www.biochar-us.org

@USbiochar

Facebook US Biochar Initiative

USBI Logo - Copy (420x176) 

 

  

 

From: main@Biochar.groups.io <main@Biochar.groups.io> On Behalf Of mikethewormguy via Groups.Io
Sent: Sunday, December 29, 2019 6:54 AM
To: main@Biochar.groups.io
Subject: Re: [Biochar] Biochar and Stormwater Runoff

 

Tom,

 

These results are encouraging and reinforcing for both stormwater management and agricultural management.

 

Do you see stormwater management folks seeing these results as executable and affordable....?

 

Mike

 

 

 

Sent from my Verizon, Samsung Galaxy smartphone