Biochar in South America, Bolivia

Fostering regenerative agriculture, empowering local communities, and enhancing air quality.
biochar bolivia people2 1

Since the industrial revolution, human activity has caused the natural carbon cycle to be in disbalance. We have been emitting too much carbon into our atmosphere. While simultaneously drastically changing our habits to decrease emissions, the contemporary excess carbon in the atmosphere also must be sequestered. Biochar is one of the solutions to the need for more permanent carbon capture. This project, situated in Bolivia, not only addresses environmental concerns but also stands as a social project in the heart of this South American nation.

sdg 7 - affordable and clean energy
sdg 8 - decent work and economic growth
sdg 9 - industry, innovation and infrastructure
sdg 12 - responsible consumption and production
sdg 13 - climate action
sdg 15 - life on land
verra verified carbon standard
  • Donation of biochar to local indigenous communities encourages sustainable agricultural practices, reducing deforestation and promoting the sustainable use of forests.
  • Regenerative agriculture training and sustainable land management training for local people contribute to long-term environmental sustainability.
  • Focus on energy efficiency and reducing air pollution leads to improved air quality for local communities.
  • Enhancement of quality of life for over 250,000 regional inhabitants.
  • Generation of green jobs fostering local economic growth.
  • Empowerment of local indigenous communities through free biochar distribution, enabling them to improve agricultural yields.
  • Creation of green tech jobs and upholding of employee benefits, contributing to local employment opportunities and social welfare.
  • Plans to expand impact further, indicating long-term commitment to social development.

About the project

This project is located in Concepción, Bolivia, a picturesque town nestled within the lush valleys of the country’s tropical lowlands, surrounded by vibrant rainforests and diverse ecosystems. In Concepción, indigenous people, primarily belonging to the Guarayos and Trinitario ethnic groups, maintain a traditional way of life deeply rooted in sustainable agriculture, communal living, and a deep connection to the land, preserving their rich cultural heritage for generations.

Biomass Collection and Processing

The project’s process commences at the source, collecting biomass residues from local sawmills, providing an abundant, renewable source of biomass. The biomass goes through a careful sorting and preparation process. It’s dried and ground using eco-friendly machines at a modern pyrolysis plant. During pyrolysis, which happens at around 600 degrees Celsius, the carbon in the biomass is captured. This stops it from becoming carbon dioxide and instead creates biochar, a carbon-rich product that’s great for improving soil.

Carbon removal

Biochar is often referred to as a technically engineered carbon removal. But what does that mean exactly? Carbon offset projects are categorised under either reduction or removal. Reduction projects prevent carbon from being (re)released into the atmosphere and into the (short-term) carbon cycle. Removal projects take out carbon from the atmosphere, and sequester the carbon (permanently) in oceans, soils, or products. Biochar falls under the carbon removal category. Removals can range from nature-based solutions such as afforestation and replantation of trees, which has a carbon sequestration permanence of 50 to 100 years, and more technically based solutions with a carbon sequestration permanence of 100+ to 1000+ years. All projects are necessary to combat climate change, and a balanced offsetting strategy aids the mitigation of climate change the best in our opinion.

Environmental and Social Impact

The project’s vision extends beyond environmental impact, as it strives to enhance the quality of life for over 250,000 regional inhabitants, generate green jobs and therefore foster local economic growth. This is done by donating, giving the biochar away free of charge, to local indigenous communities, empowering them to improve their agricultural yields, reduce deforestation, and ensure the sustainable use of South American forests. Regenerative agriculture training and sustainable land management training for the local people are also part of this programme. The project’s focus on energy efficiency and reducing air pollution contributes to improved air quality for local communities. Socially, the project is creating green tech jobs and upholding employee benefits, with plans to expand its impact further.

Advantages

The project harnesses pyrolysis technology to convert biomass into biochar, a process that generates syngas and bio-oil as by-products, which are reused within the plant as energy sources. This showcases the commitment to sustainable energy practices.

The project creates green jobs both directly and indirectly in the community, adhering to fair work conditions, insurance, and social benefits for our employees. This supports economic growth and provides a decent work environment.

This innovative biochar production process using cutting-edge pyrolysis technology represents a significant contribution to developing a resilient infrastructure and fostering innovation.

By improving air quality and reducing the risk of fires through the responsible management of biomass residues, this biochar project helps make communities safer and more sustainable.

This project embodies the principles of the circular economy, transforming residues into a valuable resource, and minimising our environmental footprint through efficient use of resources.

By converting biomass into biochar, we sequester carbon that would have otherwise been released into the atmosphere, helping mitigate climate change.

By producing a soil conditioner that improves soil health, promotes plant growth, and aids in soil remediation, our project helps protect and restore terrestrial ecosystems.