Biochar and Sustainability Goals

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The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals aim to tackle global issues like poverty, inequality, climate change, environmental degradation, peace, and justice. Biochar can help tackle many of these goals.

2015 saw the adoption of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by all UN Member States. The 17 Sustainable Development Goals, which constitute an urgent call to action, are at the center of the agreement. The understanding is that combating poverty and other forms of deprivation requires policies that enhance health and education, lessen inequality, promote economic growth, combat climate change, and fight to protect our oceans and forests. 

The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals provide a comprehensive framework aimed at addressing global challenges such as poverty, inequality, climate change, environmental degradation, peace, and justice. Within this context, biochar—a form of charcoal produced from organic waste materials—emerges as a multifaceted solution that aligns with and supports the achievement of several SDGs. By improving soil health, enhancing agricultural productivity, sequestering carbon, and reducing greenhouse gas emissions, biochar technology can play a pivotal role in promoting sustainable agricultural practices, combating climate change, and fostering economic development in rural communities. Biochar is a highly porous and stable material that can be used for soil amendment, energy production, water filtration, and carbon sequestration. Thus, integrating biochar into development strategies can significantly contribute to the realization of the UN’s vision for a sustainable and equitable future.

The UN SDGs aim to tackle poverty, inequality, climate change, environmental degradation, peace, and justice by 2030, aiming for a sustainable future.


By taking a look at the SDGs it looks like biochar has the potential to support several of the United Nations’ sustainability goals, including:

Goal 2: Zero Hunger – Biochar can be used as a soil amendment to increase crop yields and improve food security. Biochar enhances soil fertility and can also reduce nutrient leaching, thereby reducing the need for synthetic fertilizers. 

Goal 3: Good Health and Well-being – Biochar’s potential to help mitigate climate change can aid in improving air quality, reduce the risk of extreme weather events, and ultimately benefit public health. 

Goal 6: Clean Water and Sanitation – Biochar has been shown to effectively remove pollutants and contaminants from water. It can be used in filtration systems to improve water quality, particularly in areas where access to clean water is limited. Plus, biochar can be made from previously unwanted biomass thereby transforming a waste product into one with great value. 

Goal 13: Climate Action – Here is an area where biochar shines and is also where the most interest in it has been generated. Biochar can help mitigate climate change by sequestering carbon in soil. When used as a soil amendment, biochar can also increase soil organic matter, which can improve soil structure and water retention, thereby reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

Goal 15: Life on Land – Biochar can improve soil quality and support biodiversity by providing a habitat for microorganisms that play important roles in nutrient cycling and soil health.

Overall, through supporting sustainable agriculture, enhancing environmental quality and public health, and reducing climate change, biochar has the potential to help a number of UN sustainability goals. 

You are welcome to view the United Nations Sustainable Development website here at this (link)

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