Canadian Biochar Initiative  
Canadian Biochar Initiative
About Canadian Biochar Initiative
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Needed Research
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Needed Research

The Canadian Biochar Initiative encourages collaboration between industry, investors and research institutions to undertake biochar research, track its progress and pursue technology development, deployment and investment.

The Canadian Biochar Initiative plans to help facilitate this research and track Canadian projects both across Canada and globally using this web site.

Research activities are needed in order to:

  • Analyze and document the characteristics of various biomass feedstock
  • Describe and create new and improve existing pyrolysis processes for the manufacture of various Biochar products
  • Analyze and document changes to soil characteristics with the introduction of Biochar
  • Analyze and document changes to plants, microbial activity and ecosystems that occur as a result of the introduction of Biochar
  • Analyze and document changes to soils that occur as a result of the introduction of Biochar
  • Other related research activities

Selected Biochar Application Areas of Research include:

Specific applications may be underway with proprietary technology, patents, or patents pending, and therefore a requirement for licensing of the technology for further R&D, a partnership arrangement, and/or a new/unique approach:

  • Soils and Agriculture
    - refer to the following section
  • Carbon Dioxide/Other Gas Absorbent
    - carbon dioxide stack capture
  • Nutrient Extraction & Processes
  • Mulch alternative
  • Non-soil carbon storage
    - abandoned mines…
  • Energy Extraction & Processes
    - Oils, Gases, Heat Recovery
    - from pyrolysis and gasification processes
  • Metallurgical
    - biochar used as a reductant or reducing agent in the production of iron and steel, similar function as coke
  • Filtration
    - remove contaminants
  • Pharmaceutical
    - absorption
  • Construction
    - addition to asphalt/concrete
  • Carbon nanotechnology
    - strengthened carbon-based material from biochar
  • Substrate/growing material
  • Additional R&D.

The International Biochar Initiative provides 'A Guide to Conducting Biochar Trials' that can help you design a scientific trial of biochar. It is available at:


Selected Research topics for Agriculture and Soils include:

  • Complete Lifecycle analysis for Greenhouse Gas Emission reductions
  • Soil Absorbent
    - absorb and slow release of nutrients
    - reduce runoff of nutrients…
  • Potential for biochar to reduce Nitrous Oxide emissions
  • Potential for biochar to reduce Methane Emissions
  • Quantify carbon negative or carbon subtractive
  • Carbon offset potential in Canada
  • Safe level of application of biochar on varying types of Canadian soils
  • How best to apply biochar to soils
  • Reduction of fertilizer requirements
  • Improvement to water quality
  • Soil Remediation potential
  • Biochar production process and liming equivalent for addition to specific acidic soils
  • Increase in Net Primary Production (NPP) potential
    (NPP is a measurement of plant growth obtained by calculating the quantity of carbon absorbed and stored by vegetation. NPP is equal to photosynthesis minus respiration.)
  • Fossil fuel displacement potential
  • Differences in biochar based on varying biomass feedstocks
  • Differences in biochar based on varying pyrolysis process parameters
  • Categorization and characterization of biochar - suitability for soils
  • Stability of biochar
  • Toxicity issues relating to biochar
  • Influence of biochar on microbial activity
  • Dynamics of Cation Exchange Capacity (CEC) of various biochars over time
  • Economic analysis for Canada
  • Standardization and classifications
  • Pyrolysis process equipment features
  • Application equipment features
  • Numerous other R&D initiatives

For more information on Research and funding opportunities, please use our Contact Form

The Canadian Biochar Initiative is in the process of contacting Universities, Colleges, Research and related organizations across Canada. By coordinating Canadian research activities, the Canadian Biochar Initiative anticipates that a wider range of activities can be carried out over a reasonable period of time.

Biochar needs research to quantify and verify the benefits, to develop standards, procedures, and to understand environmental issues and impacts along with potential economic consequences. Please refer to the Disclaimer.



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The Canadian Biochar Initiative