Sustainability, certification, and regulation of biochar

Frank G. A. Verheijen, Luca Montanarella, Ana Catarina Bastos


Biochar has a relatively long half‑life in soil and can fundamentally alter soil properties, processes, and ecosystem services. The prospect of global‑scale biochar application to soils highlights the importance of a sophisticated and rigorous certification procedure. The objective of this work was to discuss the concept of integrating biochar properties with environmental and socioeconomic factors, in a sustainable biochar certification procedure that optimizes complementarity and compatibility between these factors over relevant time periods. Biochar effects and behavior should also be modelled at temporal scales similar to its expected functional lifetime in soils. Finally, when existing soil data are insufficient, soil sampling and analysis procedures need to be described as part of a biochar certification procedure.


serviços ambientais; risco ambiental; tempo de vida funcional; geoengenharia; heterogeneidade; políticas públicas

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