Biochar amendments on physico-chemical and biological properties of soils
Das Shaon Kumar1,*, Ghosh Goutam Kumar2, Avasthe R. K.1
1ICAR-National Organic farming Research Institute, Tadong, Gangtok, India-737102
2Palli-Siksha Bhavan, Visva-Bharati, Sriniketan, West Bengal, India-731236
*Corresponding author: firstname.lastname@example.org
Online published on 5 April, 2018.
The utilization of biochar as an amendment to improve soil health and the environment has been a catalyst for the recent global enthusiasm for advancing biochar production technology and its management. Biochar is simply carbon rich charcoal-like substance which is created by heating biomass (organic matter) in limited oxygen condition, through a process known as pyrolysis. Locally available weed biomass which is not economically important and caused crop loss can be used as an important source of biomass for preparation of biochar. Biochar is able to ameliorate soil acidity as well as it is also able to increase the soil fertility. Biochar reduces leaching of soil nutrients, increases soil structure and pH, reduces dependency on artificial fertilizers, enhances nutrient availability for plants, increases water quality of runoff, reduces toxicity of aluminum to plant roots and microbiota and thus reducing the need for lime, reduces bioavailability of heavy metals, thus works as bioremediation and decreases N O and CH 2 4 emissions from soils, thus further reducing GHG emissions. Employment of biochar as a specialized soil amendment provides a practical approach to address the anticipated problems in the agronomic and environmental sectors. Incorporating huge quantity of biochar into soils provides numerous agricultural benefits, which this special paper examines. But, there is no concrete compilation yet how to apply biochar at farm level. This paper discusses on several factors related to biochar that need to be considered for maximising the soil amelioration and soil quality benefits from the use of biochar.
Amendment, Biochar, Charcoal, GHG Emissions, Soil Nutrients, Water Quality.