Burning for nitrous

Might biochar be a useful material to ameliorate release of the potent greenhouse gas nitrous oxide from agricultural sources? Researchers at Lincoln University in New Zealand have carried out a three-month test over the spring-summer period to determine what effect incorporating biochar into soil on land grazed by cattle might have. Nitrous oxide emissions from bovine urine is an important source of atmospheric nitrous oxide. Arezoo Taghizadeh-Toosi and colleagues found that the presence of biochar led to a a 70% reduction in nitrous oxide flux over the course of the study. Details are published in The Journal of Environmental Quality.