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ARTi Team Sequesters +10 Tons of CO₂ in One Trip!

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ARTi Team Sequesters +10 Tons of CO₂ in One Trip!

From Farm Residue to Biochar

 

 

We all know we need to mitigate our carbon dioxide emissions to the atmosphere to fight climate change. It has been a great challenge to accept that climate change is a real and serious problem. It has then been a great challenge to accept that humanity’s activities, that have made life easier in many ways, are by far the largest contributors to global warming. Well, we have good news!

 

Now, we know how to sequester atmospheric carbon into soil carbon, the solution to both climate heating and soil erosion problems! We are launching iTRAp CO₂, a carbon sequestration program that unites those of us who want to help mitigate climate change with farmers who help us restore the soil!

 

Biochar is a very porous and high carbon form of charcoal that has plenty of beneficial effects on soil, but what is even better is that it is a carbon negative technology!

ARTi has developed the iTRApCO₂ initiative as a practical and large-scale solution. It is necessary to not only massively reduce our CO₂ emissions, we need to start thinking about carbon sequestration as an absolute priority against climate change. iTRApCO₂ has an effective, reliable, affordable and scalable carbon sequestration technology that sequesters CO₂ for centuries. To illustrate this, we wish to share with you the process of converting 15 tons of Oat Hulls into Biochar. This starts by measuring the emissions of the entire process, from feedstock collection transport to the ARTi facility, emissions from the pyrolysis to create Biochar to transport to its final destination in soils. Biochar is a carbon negative, cost effective, long-term and scalable technology! The health of our soil and the health of our plant are connected. And the material and technology that makes this connection best is: Biochar

Biochar is a valuable soil amendment that improves soil structure, aids in water retention, and can help in productivity. But most importantly for iTRApCO₂ and you is that it captures carbon dioxide. Our biochar is made from biomass from agricultural and forestry residues.

If you sequester your carbon then what you do will contribute less to climate change. Indeed, it would be best if these represent an affordable, scalable and proven method. We will take you through the whole process of how ARTi’s technology and skill sets support our iTRApCO₂ enterprise and put all the pieces together.

First, we have to take into account the resource usage during the process that generates CO₂. This is to ensure that our contribution really is carbon negative or at least neutral. Energy consumption in both the process and transport of the feedstock and biochar product output must be taken into account. Also, the system needs to be large-scale. In some ways, biochar’s contribution to the climate change fight works as a relatively simple ratio. The more biomass, or agricultural residue we can prevent from decomposing and releasing CO₂ by transforming it into biochar, the more carbon we sequester and the greater impact we can make on reducing climate change.

ARTi has been presented with the opportunity to process 15 tons of oat hulls into biochar for the purpose of carbon sequestration. And yes, also for aiding soil and agricultural output. Oat hulls are the outer covering of oat grain after it has been treated to separate the groat (kernel) from the hull. In a nutshell, the whole process starts from picking up the biomass (oat hulls), transporting the biomass to ARTi, then by processing the biomass into the production of biochar, and finally by selling the biochar to our clients to improve soil health while sequestering CO₂

So, a number of key questions must be addressed:

    • How much biochar can we obtain from 15 tons of oat hull biomass?
    • How much energy (fossil or other) is used and how much CO₂ is released during biochar production? 
    • How much CO2 can we sequester by turning into biochar?

     

 

Processing 15 tons of oat hulls (biomass) will produce about 5 tons of oat hulls biochar. CO₂  equivalent is the amount of metric tons of CO₂ emissions equivalent to one metric ton of another greenhouse gas in terms of global warming potential. It’s used to standardize the effects of various greenhouse gasses on the climate. After taking into consideration the manufacturing process for biochar and the inputs used for this particular situation/case study, we are sequestering a net of 2.5 tons of CO₂ eq per ton of Biochar produced (12.5 tons of CO2eq in total) on a net basis. For illustration purposes, the biomass will need to be transported to our site in a truck that emits CO₂ emissions. The truck used in the transportation travels 50 miles in total. This includes the movement of the feedstock and the transport of the biochar afterwards meaning (50 miles / 6.5 miles/ gallons x 8.887 kg CO₂/gallon= 68kg CO₂eq or 0.068 tons CO₂eq). To transform the biomass to biochar, we will  use resources such as electricity, propane, and labor that will also release 0.175 tons of CO₂. Finally, our product will need to be packed and transported to its final destination soils. All the CO2 emitted (generally small amounts) will be offset by the carbon sink that biochar will create sequestering 2.5 ton of CO₂eq (without considering the additions by the process). Moreover, biochar will sequester more carbon than what was emitted during production thereby achieving net negative emissions. 

All the emissions and accounting are obtained through performing a Life Cycle Assessment (LCA). This helps in obtaining a carbon ratio after considering all the carbon emissions and the carbon sequestered in the biochar per ton of biochar produced. In this particular case, a ratio of 2.5 was obtained, meaning that per every ton of biochar produced we will sequester 2.5 tons of CO₂. In other words, by producing 5 tons of biochar we will end up producing 2.5 x 5 tons of biochar = 12.5 tons of CO₂ eq. resulting in a Net carbon reduction (sequestration) of 2.5 Tons of CO₂.

 

Oat Hull feedstock ready to be transported

Ready for departure

ARTi factory team ready for the arrival of the oat hulls feedstock.

ARTi

ARTi was founded by students in 2013 composed of multiple disciplines and nationalities. Our goal is to develop and implement biorenewable technologies.

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