Use of Biochar for Sustainable Agriculture

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Biochar is the by-product of pyrolysis of organic biomass in an oxygen-free to
the oxygen-limited environment. Biochar application to soil has been considered as a way to sequester carbon. Biochar research has become considerably innovative with important key findings on agronomic benefits, greenhouse gas emissions, soil remediation, soil fertility, soil health, etc.This review discusses the potential use of biochar in sustainable agriculture for improving crop yields, soil fertility, and nutrient cycling, along with potential risks involved with biochar application and strategies to avoid these risks. Biochar has the potential to improve crop productivity mainly by increasing nutrient and water use efficiency. However, improvements to crop production are often observed in nutrient-poor soils, while its application to fertile soils does not always improve crop yield. Production of biochar from good quality biomass sources at the proper temperature is a prerequisite for its use as a soil amendment to improve soil health, plant growth and crop production. The longterm effects of biochar on soil functions and its fate in different soil types require more research. Biochar may change the soil biological community composition and abundance, and the retention of pesticides applied. The key findings of biochar research have continually progressed, but more research is required before definitive
recommendations can be made to end users regarding the effects of biochar
application across a range of soil, climate and land management practices.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)8-17
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Integrated Field Science
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2018


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