In August 2022, bioenergy producer Restoration Bioproducts announced plans to build the first-ever biochar production facility in Sussex County, Virginia. With an investment of $5.8 million, the company will be creating a number of new jobs and buying over 34,000 tons of wood products grown within the state.
By establishing this new facility, biochar and bioenergy production is sure to ramp up significantly in Virginia, helping preserve and enrich land as well as the environment. As part-owner of Restoration Bioproducts, we at FDCE are excited to announce this new avenue into biochar production.
What is Restoration Bioproducts?
Restoration Bioproducts is a company based in Lynchburg, Virginia, that converts biomass into products like biochar, a charcoal-like substance, and syngas, a type of natural gas. Through pyrolysis, a method of heating organic material without the use of oxygen, they turn agricultural waste and biomass like switchgrass and wood waste into useful biochar.
In partnership with Restoration Bioproducts, FDCE is the primary biomass feedstock supplier and purchaser of the biochar they produce. By establishing this new facility, the production of biochar will increase significantly, allowing for important applications and projects in the bioenergy sector to flourish.
The Benefits of Using Biochar
By increasing biochar production, Restoration Bioproducts, FDCE, and our partners can make major advancements toward conservation efforts and climate change mitigation. As a highly beneficial biomass product, biochar can help improve your land and the environment in numerous ways.
Sequesters carbon in the soil
Carbon sequestration is one of the most promising environmental benefits of biochar. The highly porous texture of biochar is able to trap carbon, removing it from the atmosphere.
This helps reduce the overall level of harmful carbon in the environment, which contributes greatly to climate change mitigation efforts. In fact, if biochar was used globally, 300-600 million tons of carbon dioxide could be eliminated by 2050.
Increases health and fertility of soil
In addition to carbon sequestering, biochar can also improve the health of your soil. Studies have shown that adding biochar to soil can boost soil’s physical, chemical, and microbial properties.
The same porous-like structure that sequesters carbon also retains nutrients within the soil and provides a habitat for beneficial microorganisms and fungi to thrive. Through these benefits, biochar can help restore highly sensitive, overworked, and vulnerable land.
Improves crop yields
Biochar can also increase crop yields from 10% to 42% when used in agricultural production. Its ability to retain nutrients as well as moisture in the soil allows for better growing conditions. In addition, its reaction with the soil can improve root systems, triggering plant germination and growth.
While this can be a major benefit to crop producers, it can also enhance conservation projects that rely on practices like cover crops to protect vulnerable soil.
Start Your Biochar Project
Incorporating biochar into your soil can have a major positive impact on your farmland, as well as on the climate. As the new biochar production facility gets built and more biochar becomes available, FDCE is ready to help you start incorporating this beneficial bioproduct into your agricultural and conservation practices.
At FDCE, we have decades of experience in the bioenergy sector, producing biomass for biofuels and other environmentally beneficial projects. Our team has the expertise to help you integrate biochar into your land to improve your soil and crop yields while saving the planet at the same time. Ready to learn how FDCE can partner with you on a biochar or bioenergy project? Contact us today!