Current Environmental news that matters
The new year brings forth the promise of new success in our efforts to educate enough people about Biochar to have an impact. This month’s issue is focused on one such success from 2018. Help us make “biochar” a common, everyday word when talking about reversing climate change!
Biochar in Africa
We were absolutely delighted when we received this video! Watch this short video to see a Biochar oven at work. (What you won’t see is any smoke!)
This video is from Malawi, Africa where Warm Heart’s influence has sparked interest in biochar to clear the air, restore the soil and provide smokeless cooking charcoal. Sister Miriam Paulet is the force behind bringing Biochar to Malawi. She became interested in Biochar after viewing our website. She watched our videos on how to make a biochar oven, and has had great success! Her most recent letter brings us up-to-date:
“Here are some pictures & videos of the biochar progress which I had promised to send you.
At first I had planned to present how to make a barrel and the procedure of making biochar since I noticed that they are the most frequently asked questions.
But I changed my mind after having seen how excellently you had presented everything step by step in your website especially the video training.
I then felt I should change to a different kind of presentation.
It’s exactly 5 months since I learned about biochar and started training Farmers as well as my fellow nuns from different parts of Africa on the benefits of biochar.
Therefore I thought of gathering reports from my students and from my own Community by trying to analyze the impacts of biochar to both crops and animals. And the results are quite amazing.
I am also facing various challenges in trying to introduce people to biochar since it is a new thing or rather a new teaching to many people here in Africa.
First of all I have noticed that some people are doubtful and are not ready to venture into a new thing.
Secondly some farmers especially here in Malawi are not willing to spend even a little money to buy a drum for making barrels and so they expect to be given everything for the start.
Nevertheless I am trying my best to convince many poor Farmers to use biochar and I can say that a good number are responding positively.
I am just sending some few pictures and photos but I hope to send others later on since right now it’s raining and farmers are busy planting.
I have also requested some of the farmers to try using biochar on some farms and leave a portion of the farm where they can plant without biochar so that they can compare the produce at harvest time, this will apply to those keeping domestic animals too.
The staff of the nuns not only help make biochar for the nuns but they do it also for their own use in their own farms. They also help with the training of those who would like to learn biochar.
Plants without Biochar
These vegetables we neglected by not putting biochar in the soil there fore they were eaten up with pests
“There is one way we could save ourselves and that is through the massive burial of charcoal. It would mean farm ers turning all their agricultural waste – which contains carbon that the plants have spent the summer sequestering – into non-biodegradable charcoal, and burying it in the soil. Then you can start shifting really hefty quantities of carbon out of the system and pull the CO2 down quite fast. ” ~ Dr. James Lovelock, Founder of “Gaia Theory”
Sister Miriam included in her report how they are using biochar to impact their livestock:
These rabbits are kept by some nuns in Kenya. They had shared with me that their rabbits were getting sick and a number of them were dying so I told them about biochar and asked them to try mixing their feeds with biochar which they did, and right now the rabbits are very healthy and have gained weight. Thanks to biochar!
Pigs fed biochar
Cows fed biochar
After feeding the cows with biochar the nuns have also put biochar on the ground and this has helped to reduce smell and flies so one can move comfortably in the cow shed.
Plants with biochar
This video is of the garden that was planted with biochar.
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To understand more about Global Warming read “Climate Change Primer” or download a copy below.
We love to hear stories about people and communities that are using biochar. Send us your stories, and pictures! Send to email@example.com
In “How to Make a Biochar Machine” we show you how to make a basic Top Lit Up Draft biochar machine. Warm Heart have been teaching hundreds of farmers in the Northern Thailand how to make these machines in order to help reduce the smoke produced in the area.
One of the many benefits of using a biochar oven is the end product you create, biochar, which can be made into a powerful natural fertilizer.