What unites Malcolm Turnbull, Tim Flannery and James Lovelock? Enthusiasm for biochar: one of the most intriguing solutions to global warming and a possible boon for investors.
Biochar, the charcoal-like residue when biomass (such as agricultural or council waste) undergoes pyrolysis (combustion at 400-550 degrees, without oxygen), has the potential to pull large amounts of carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere.
There is no commercial biochar production in Australia yet but there is palpable excitement; about 200 people attended a biochar conference on the Gold Coast last week. Others were turned away.
According to Philip Sutton and David Spratt's Climate Code Red, published last year, when Joe Herbertson of sustainability consultancy Crucible Carbon first read about biochar technology "the hairs went up on the back of my neck. This is the best news on climate change I've ever heard."
Crucible Carbon is the unlisted, private ...