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Title: Is sustainability certification for biochar the answer to environmental risks?
Contributor(s): Cowie, Annette  (author); Downie, Adriana (author); George, Brendan  (author); Singh, Bhupinder Pal  (author); Van Zwieten, Lukas  (author); O'Connell, Deborah (author)
Publication Date: 2012
Open Access: Yes
DOI: 10.1590/S0100-204X2012000500002Open Access Link
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Abstract: Biochar has the potential to make a major contribution to the mitigation of climate change, and enhancement of plant production. However, in order for biochar to fulfill this promise, the industry and regulating bodies must take steps to manage potential environmental threats and address negative perceptions. The potential threats to the sustainability of biochar systems, at each stage of the biochar life cycle, were reviewed. We propose that a sustainability framework for biochar could be adapted from existing frameworks developed for bioenergy. Sustainable land use policies, combined with effective regulation of biochar production facilities and incentives for efficient utilization of energy, and improved knowledge of biochar impacts on ecosystem health and productivity could provide a strong framework for the development of a robust sustainable biochar industry. Sustainability certification could be introduced to provide confidence to consumers that sustainable practices have been employed along the production chain, particularly where biochar is traded internationally.
Publication Type: Journal Article
Source of Publication: Pesquisa Agropecuaria Brasileira, 47(5), p. 637-648
Publisher: Empresa Brasileira de Pesquisa Agropecuaria
Place of Publication: Brazil
ISSN: 1678-3921
Field of Research (FOR): 050301 Carbon Sequestration Science
050299 Environmental Science and Management not elsewhere classified
050204 Environmental Impact Assessment
Socio-Economic Outcome Codes: 960602 Eco-Verification (excl. Environmental Lifecycle Assessment)
829802 Management of Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Plant Production
829804 Management of Solid Waste from Plant Production
Peer Reviewed: Yes
HERDC Category Description: C1 Refereed Article in a Scholarly Journal
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