Vermicompost and Biochar Use in Soil Reclamation
“The mixing of both biochar and verimcompost may play a significant role in soil remediation and offer a unique ameliorant that can be used to improve soil quality in marginal land,” said Dr. Abdullah Alshankiti, soil scientist at ICBA, following his meeting with Dr. Bakhytzhan Yelikbayev, professor of soil science and ecology at the Kazakh National Agrarian University (KazNAU). Dr. Yelikbayev visited ICBA to learn more about ICBA research activities and to discuss collaboration opportunities in the area of vermicompost and biochar use in soil reclamation of salt-affected soil in Central Asia.
Vermicompost is the product or process of composting through the utilization of various species of worms, to create a heterogeneous mixture of decomposing vegetable or food waste and vermicast (worms’ execrations) while biochar is a solid fine-grained material obtained from the carbonization of biomass under oxygen-limited conditions. Biochar may be applied directly to soils to improve soil functions.
Dr. Alshankiti concluded that future collaboration between ICBA and KazNAU in setting application rates for the use of the mix of verimcompost and biochar in reclamation of salt-effected soil will support the role of ICBA in finding solutions and innovative approaches to tackle marginal land problems and limitations. ICBA has been working in six Central Asia countries since 2002 and has gained remarkable recognition and success. Dr. Yelikbayev will work closely with Dr. Kristina Toderich from the ICBA Central Asia office and Dr. Alshankiti to develop collaboration plans between KazNAU and ICBA.