Additional biochar process could save 619,000 tonnes of CO2 emissions

Reported by Horizon, research by the CarboPlex team as part of a project coordinated by Dr. Jan Mumme, found that biochar has profoundly improved results when used in an additional process first.

Biochar is the result of biomass that is heated to 400-800°C to produce a charcoal-like material.

The CarboPlex team developed a material named CreChar, made from paper waste and combines carbon and mineral nutrients that can be used as an additive in biogas production.

According to CarboPlex, a digestate by-product is formed after the biogas process, which can be used as a renewable organic fertiliser over the conventional mineral fertilisers from fossil fuels.

 "With an annual potential in the UK of 900,000 tonnes of this biofertiliser, I think this could save 60,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide emission just by replacing mineral nitrogen fertilisers," said Dr. Mumme.

Mumme went on to add that upwards of 619,000 tonnes of carbon emissions could be reduced in the UK alone if the nation decided to reuse just 180,000 tonnes of paper waste to create CreChar.

The article details that it will be a ‘few’ years before products like CreChar will be available for mass production.

“We have many places in the world where soil carbon is depleting, worsened by climate change,” Dr. Mumme added.

“There is no golden solution, but there are some solutions that are more viable.”

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