Benefits of adding Biochar to Compost

 

“Based on current findings, the benefits of adding biochar to the composting process may include shorter compost times; reduced rates of Green House Gas (GHG) emissions (methane, CH4 and nitrous oxide, N2O); reduced ammonia (NH3) losses; the ability to serve as a bulking agent for compost; and reduced odour1.”

Due to the porosity of biochar it helps to aerate compost and reduces the density of compost. The composting process helps to charge the biochar with nutrients. Biochar itself remains in the compost providing structure and stimulating microbial activity allowing more easy movement and access to biomass throughout the compost (hastening the composting process).

Application rates of Biochar to compost of 1:1 ratio (50%) have been used1. Even 10% addition2 of Biochar has been shown to have substantial benefits to the composting process including: higher readily available P concentration, lower GHG emission and higher retention of nitrogen2.

Composting with biochar does not alter how mature compost is applied to soil. Biochar can also be blended with compost before application.

 

References

  1. http://www.biochar-international.org/compost

  2. http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0301479715303996

 
 
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