Solutions journalism is news about how communities and organizations are responding to social and environmental problems. This collection contains solutions stories that explore the promising uses of biochar. Stockholm has launched a program to convert old Christmas trees into biochar, simultaneously reducing waste, improving the soil, and greening and powering the city. Politicians in the UK have similarly begun to consider the potential benefits of biochar. Farmers in Australia are considering biochar as a way to reduce their cow herds' methane emissions. In recent years, new attention has been given to this ancient practice as a solution to modern environmental challenges.
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Biochar is the product of baking biomass - plant and animal matter - without exposure to oxygen. Used as an ancient method of waste disposal, biochar's ability to trap carbon underground for centuries makes it a promising carbon sink. According to Project Drawdown, biochar could sequester billions of tons of carbon dioxide every year. Additionally, the production of biochar separates the gas and oil from the carbon solids, leaving fuel as a potential source of energy. Primarily as a carbon sink, and to a lesser extent as an energy source, Project Drawdown lists biochar as a possible solution to climate change. Join the Earth Month Ecochallenge to learn more and take action on this climate solution.