Thursday 13 September 2012

The Wilberforce Award (& Prosperity without Growth)

At the risk of getting a little off track, maybe this program by Dick Smith can attract some young biochar entrepreneurs ... (
"It has become obvious to me that my generation has over exploited our wonderful world – and it’s younger people who will pay the price. Like many people my age, I’ve benefited from a long period of constant economic and population growth – we are addicted to it. But sooner or later this consumption growth will have an end. We appear to be already bumping against the limits of what our planet can sustain and the evidence is everywhere to see.
Right now I believe we could be sleepwalking to catastrophe because we are failing to both acknowledge that there are limits to growth in a finite world and to prepare for a more sustainable way of organising our economy. In the 19th Century, empires were built on the labour of slaves, and it was believed economies would collapse if slavery was abolished. But brave people like William Wilberforce fought to end the slave trade – and economies still flourished. We need brave people like Wilberforce today, and I want to encourage a new generation of clear-thinking and inspiring young leaders."
Linked to the webpage above, is recording of a lecture by Professor Tim Jackson entitled, “Prosperity without Growth”. This touches on carbon negative aspirations without specific mention of biochar.

Monday 10 September 2012

Dilmah biochar trials in Sri Lanka

More news from Sri Lanka on the potential benefits of biochar for the tea industry...

This follows on from previous posts linked here...

Tuesday 4 September 2012

TESS to lead $1 million compost-biochar CFI project

This work in tropical Queensland may have future application and interest in SEA...
"TESS researcher Michael Bird will lead a consortium that will field trial compost, biochar and compost-biochar (COMBI) mixes on nine farms in North Queensland. The project is funded by the Federal Governments DAFF Carbon Farmin INitiative - Filling the Research Gap program.

Compost and biochar are used separately for improving soil condition and sequestering carbon, and have been shown to be of particular benefit in tropical agricultural soils. This project will mix biochar with organic waste prior to composting (COMBI-mix) to synergistically enhance the acknowledged benefits of both materials. We will (i) trial business as usual, compost alone, biochar alone, COMBI-mix and compost mixed with biochar at nine field sites across North Queensland, (ii) determine the impact of each on carbon sequestration, GHG fluxes and crop performance (iii) provide inputs to better model soil carbon in agricultural systems and (iv) model costs/benefits at the farm/regional/industry scale.
Funding body: DAFF - Carbon Farming Futures - Filling the Research Gap Programme"

Professor Michael Bird FRSE
Federation Fellow
Director, Centre for Tropical Environmental and Sustainability Science
School of Earth and Environmental Sciences
James Cook University
PO Box 6811 Cairns
Queensland, 4870, Australia
Phone:  +61-7-4042-1137
Fax: +61-7-4042-1284
location: building A2 room 219


Saturday 1 September 2012

August edition of the IBI newsletter

 A huge amount of news in the August IBI newsletter with links to output from the 2012 conference.
Only one reference to our region Co/ again, to activities in the Philippines.
I know there is a lot of regional activity... how about some interim reports & updates?

Research interest in biochar continues at an exponential pace... there are now 871 listings in the IBI biblio.