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Biochar composition-dependent impacts on soil nutrient release, carbon mineralization, and potential environmental risk: A review

Biochar application has multiple benefits for soil fertility improvement and climate change mitigation.‎ Biochar can act as a source of nutrients and sequester carbon (C) in the soil.‎ The nutrient release capacity of biochar once applied to the soil varies with the composition of the biochar, which is a function of the feedstock type and pyrolysis condition used for biochar production.‎ Biochar has a crucial influence on soil C mineralization, including its positive or negative priming of microorganisms involved in soil C cycling.‎ However, in various cases, biochar application to the soil may cause negative effects in the soil and the wider environment.‎ For instance, biochar may suppress soil nutrient availability and crop productivity due to the reduction in plant nutrient uptake or reduction in soil C mineralization.‎ Biochar application may also negatively affect environmental quality and human health because of harmful compounds such as polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), polychlorinated dibenzodioxins, and dibenzofurans (PCDD/DF).‎ In this review, we discuss the linkage between biochar composition and function, evaluate the role biochar plays in soil fertility improvement and C sequestration, and discuss regulations and concerns regarding biochar's negative environmental impact.‎ We also summarize advancements in biochar production technologies and discuss future challenges and priorities in biochar research.‎

Authors: 
Ali El-Naggar⁠, Ahmed Hamdy El-Naggar, Sabry M.‎ Shaheen⁠, Binoy Sarkar, Scott X.‎ Chang⁠, Daniel C.W.‎ Tsang, Jörg Rinklebe, Yong Sik Ok⁠
Year: 
۲۰۱۹
Publication type: 
Research article
Publication Source: 
Journal of Environmental Management