Tag Archives: carbon sequestration

Making Forests Pay While Benefiting Everybody

Spider against the pines The state of Georgia already finances a Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) to plant longleaf pines with associated native ground cover (partridge pea that the quail like, and bunch grasses such as wiregrass that help fuel periodic fires).

However, CRP payments typically only last 10 years and not more than 15 years, and such trees usually eventually get cut for sawtimber or pulpwood. Now that’s better than cotton: much less pollution involved and far more carbon sequestered.

But even better would be to treat such replanting as real reforestration and sell carbon sequestration rights for such forests. Like what is being planned in Florida: Continue reading

Reforestation for Profit

It seems that reforestation and land restoration produces twice as many jobs as biomass and nine times as many as nuclear.

Nor does any of this have to adversely affect the Georgia lumber industry. It’s well established that the currently popular method of clearcutting isn’t the only way. Pine forests can be managed profitably via selective logging; here’s more about that.

That permits the forest to remain a forest, with native vegetation, wildlife, hunting, recreation, flood control, etc., all for more forests than we have now.

Plus carbon sequestration credits.

Cotton farmers might like growing trees better under such economic conditions.

All this is shovel-ready for stimulus. There’s no new technolgy to develop for forest planting or management. Just implement carbon-sequestration credits for ongoing sustainability, and perhaps use stimulus funding to speed planting trees.

Biochar for CO2 Sequestration and Diesel Fuel

A homegrown Georgia company, Eprida, is developing biochar for carbon sequestration and maybe diesel fuel:
The Eprida process simultaneously creates value in three markets in this order at today’s prices:
  1. Energy: gas-to-liquids diesel, from biomass
  2. Fertilizer: agricultural soil restoration, carbon enriched with nitrogen
  3. Carbon Credits: once an agricultural CDM is completed
Unlike other biomass gasification, the Eprida process can operate at small scale, converting waste biomass into fuel and fertilizer. The diesel produced will ultimately be more valuable than ethanol or methanol, and the Eprida process can convert woody plant materials that cannot be cost effectively fermented. Also, unlike virtually all other approaches for biomass to energy, which deplete soil nutrients, the Eprida process restores and enhances soil mineral, carbon and nitrogen content. As a direct result of this new approach to integrated energy and fertilizer production from biomass, the Eprida process effectively removes net CO2 from the atmosphere, and can do so profitably before the value of any carbon credits are even considered.
I especially like the small scale aspect. Individuals could do this.

(And if, like me, you wondered how to pronounce biochar, the ch is like in charcoal.)

Or municipalities like Valdosta or Lowndes County could do this, instead of the current plans for a conventional biomass power plant that looks like it will release more CO2 per kilowatt than a coal plant. Why not go with a homegrown technology that’s cleaner and may also produce diesel as a side effect?