biochar market development projects

The Biochar Bonus

Earth Foundries’ Biochar Projects aim to demonstrate how biochar benefits the bottom line.  Building market pull for biochar ultimately lowers the cost of forest management projects.  Lower cost means more projects.  More projects mean healthier forests.

Picture of biochar
Poultry Manure
Poultry Manure
Stormwater Remediation/Bioswale
Dairy Manure
Dairy Manure

About Our Market Development Projects

There’s already significant research suggesting biochar is beneficial to plant growth and water retention when amended in soil.  These projects, funded by the US Forest Service and CAL FIRE, aim to demonstrate the techno-economic benefits of incorporating biochar into high volume applications that have the potential to consume large volumes of biochar. These applications are green composting, stormwater remediation/bioswales and manure management. 

Our Projects

These project areas were chosen because they represent high volume applications that could consume a lot of biochar, and significant previous research points to biochar improving their outcomes.

Green Waste/Biochar Co-Composting​
We will combine green waste with biochar in Napa Recycling's C.A.S.P. composting system in Napa, CA and measure composting performance to understand composting rates and VOC emissions in particular. Our hypothesis is that by adding biochar to green compost we will increase throughput and reduce VOC off-gassing in addition to providing an improved compost.​
Click Here for More Information(Future)
Stormwater Management: Biochar-Amended Bioswale​
With ReScape as our design/install partner, we will incorporate biochar into the construction of a bioswale at Veggielution Farms in San Jose, CA and measure the water-holding and filtration capabilities of the upgraded bioswale. Our hypothesis is that the biochar-amended bioswale will reduce runoff, filter impurities and lead to more robust plant growth.
Click Here for More Information(Future)
Poultry Manure Management
We will combine biochar with poultry manure at Weber Family Farms in Petaluma, CA, and monitor the nitrogen retention and ammonia off-gassing. Our hypothesis is that adding biochar to poultry manure will increase throughput, reduce ammonia emissions and allow the manure mixture to retain more nitrogen.
Click Here for More Information(Future)
Dairy Manure Mangement
We will add biochar to the dairy manure at a farm in Petaluma, CA and monitor the methane emissions from the pile. After, we will spread the manure on the fields. Our hypothesis is that the addition of biochar will reduce the methane emissions, reduce nitrogen leaching, and the fields where the biochar-amended manure is spread will exhibit better water holding capacity and healthier soil which will lead to longer grazing periods.
Click Here for More Information(Future)

Grant Partners

US Forest Service

US Forest Service Wood Innovation Grant

These projects are funded in part by a USFS Wood Innovation Grant.


CAL FIRE Business Development Grant

These projects are funded in part by a grant from CAL FIRE Wood Products & Bioenergy

Check back soon!

Project Partners & Contributors

Since 1990, Agromin has been producing rich, chemical-free compost and mulch products from organic waste collected from consumers and businesses.

Because of Agromin’s efforts, millions of tons of green waste has been kept out of landfills. Instead, these materials are turned into healthy soil products used in landscaping and agriculture.

The Guadalupe-Coyote Resource Conservation District (GCRCD) is an independent special district of the state of California dedicated to the conservation of natural resources in Santa Clara County.

The mission of the District is to provide education and technical assistance to constituents and watershed stakeholders to sustainably manage soil, water and wildlife with the best available science.   

Napa Recycling & Waste Services and Napa County Recycling & Waste Services are local full-service companies with parent companies that have served the region for over a century.

We are happy to provide all of the City of Napa and southern unincorporated Napa County with efficient, economical & sustainable services.

ReScape is a nonprofit organization that educates about and advocates for a whole-systems regenerative approach to landscaping that works in harmony with the natural world and addresses the changing environment.

Foundational to our work is a whole systems watershed framework that acknowledges that one landscaping input affects the whole ecosystem.

Sonoma Ecology Center works to address challenges related to water supply and quality, open space, rural character, biodiversity, community engagement and social equity, energy, climate change, and a better quality of life for all residents.

Its mission is to work with communities and other organizations to identify and lead actions that achieve and sustain ecological health in Sonoma Valley and throughout California.

The mission of Veggielution is to connect people from diverse backgrounds outdoors through food and farming to build community in East San José.

We utilize a unique community farm model that mobilizes volunteers to cultivate and grow healthy crops, which are then made available to our program participants and other local residents.

Weber Family Farms is a fourth generation Sonoma County family farm that has been producing fresh eggs since 1912. Today we are one of a handful of Petaluma egg producers whose fresh eggs are consumed by families throughout Northern California.

 We proudly serve the local organic farming community with our line of Petaluma’s Finest certified organic fertilizers. More Info.

Useful Links