Report 2: Synopsis and Evaluation of Biochar Activities in Ethiopia - Schemes for Potential Biochar Systems

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Potential Analysis of Biochar-Systems for Improved Soil and Nutrient Management in Ethiopian Agriculture


Several actors have been involved, and are currently or prospectively involved in the introduction of biochar systems to Ethiopian cropping systems. Among these actors are the universities of Jimma (ETH), Haramaya (ETH), Injibara (ETH), Hawassa (ETH), Bahir Dar (ETH), Addis Abeba (ETH), Dilla (ETH), Cornell (USA) and James Cook University (AUS). One of the most comprehensive activities was probably the joint research programme of Jimma and Cornell Universities, that have developed a set of “indigenous biofertilizers” on the basis of biochar and bone char (charred residues of animal bones). Apart from universities, also the Amhara Regional Agriculture Research Institute (ARARI) and the Mekelle Agricultural Research Centre have contributed to biochar research in Ethiopia. Some of these research activities have identified promising feedstock sources to produce biochar, such as, coffee husks, Prosopis juliflora, or animal bones. But none of them could present a well-suited technology to convert this biomass to biochar.

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Report 2: Synopsis and Evaluation of Biochar Activities in Ethiopia - Schemes for Potential Biochar Systems


This work was made possible through the generous financial support of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) through the Bundesanstalt für Geowissenschaften und Rohstoffe (BGR, The German Federal Institute for Geosciences and Natural Resources). We thank the Soil Fertility Improvement Directorate of Ethiopia’s Ministry of Agriculture and Natural Resources (MOANR), the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH Ethiopia country office, Jimma University, Cornell University, and Biochar Europe UG for the excellent support and encouragement during the preparation of this report. We also express our special gratitude to Andreas Möller and Anja Volk from BGR and to Tefera Solomon and Kassaye Tilahun from the Soil Fertility Improvement Directorate of Ethiopia’s MOANR for their leadership, guidance and support without whom this work would not have been possible.

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socio-economic scenario; Ethiopia; Climate smart biochar systems; biomass resource assessment; soil fertility improvement


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