The Nebraska Forest Service (NFS) wants more people to produce and use biochar.
Biochar is a carbon-rich, organic product with multiple uses, such as erosion control, water filtration, and cattle feed.
Heather Nobert, NFS forest product marketing specialist, says they are offering grants to help boost biochar.
“We’re really hoping that folks will come up with creative projects in a bunch of different areas,” Nobert tells Nebraska Radio Network, “so that we can get some on the ground data collected or demonstrations of how people are using biochar and find out if it was successful for them.”
Nobert says grants of up to $5,000, offered through the Great Plains Biochar Initiative, are available to individuals, businesses and organizations to either produce or use bio-char.
Nobert says it is mostly being used in small-scale garden operations now in Nebraska, but she says it has many more uses.
“Biochar can be used for a soil amendment,” she says. “It can be used in water filtration, odor control in feed lots and poultry operations.”
NFS is pushing for biochar made from wood.
“Biochar is a really good outlet for the eastern red cedar. We’re going to have a lot of ash trees coming down with the discovery of the emerald ash borer, so it’s a really good opportunity,” Nobert says.
The grant application is available HERE.
AUDIO: Mike Loizzo reports [:42]