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Biochar Draft Methodology Approaches Final Phase Prior to Approval

Published: January 22, 2014 by Teresa Koper, The Climate Trust

The Climate Trust is leading the team effort funded by blue moon fund to develop the emission reductions from biochar projects. Partnering with The Prasino Group, the International Biochar Initiative, and Carbon Consulting, The Climate Trust is pleased to announce that methodology completed the public comment phase in November 2013, with a tremendous response. The next and final phase before approval is the scientific peer review.

This methodology provides a way to quantify the carbon that can be captured in biomass during the process of burning in a low-oxygen environment, referred to as pyrolysis. Biochar has the potential to contain the carbon that would otherwise be released in the atmosphere in the form of carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas. Under this methodology, the biochar is intended for use as a soil amendment, which when combined with a high nutrient material such as compost, can not only trap carbon long term (over 100 years) in the soil, but also greatly improve soil fertility, and even water holding capacity.

Once the methodology is approved, this market-ready protocol will serve as a resource for project developers to qualify their biochar production projects for carbon financing (in the form of carbon credits) and then quantify their emission reduction benefits to bring much needed investment to the sector.

Projects using this methodology must comply with all requirements of the ACR Standard, submit a Greenhouse Gas Project Plan for certification, and secure independent validation and verification by an ACR-approved third-party verification body.