Logging slash becomes biochar for local farms

By Emily Hoard
The News-Review
October 20, 2017
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: United States, US West

Drew, Oregon …Wildland firefighters with the U.S. Forest Service stood in a clearing, breaking up the charcoal inside a kiln before piling on more logs and sticks. Umpqua Biochar Education Team, a committee of the South Umpqua Rural Community Partnership, partnered with the Umpqua National Forest Tiller Ranger District to transform 40 piles of logging slash into biochar, a form of charcoal used in soil to hold in nutrients and moisture. Though the team’s biochar production has often gone toward small gardens, this was its first large-scale project to be used for agriculture. At the end of the day, the crews poured buckets of water into the sizzling kilns to mix it in and cool off the smoldering char. Once the product had cooled, the crews piled it into white plastic bags to be shipped to small farms in Douglas, Jackson and Josephine counties.

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