Self-financed ongoing Projects

ENOCHAR evaluates the effects of the application to soil of biochar or its mixtures with compost, in field conditions in the medium to long term (5-7 years).

The goal of ENOCHAR is to acquire knowledge to be transferred to farmers and operators in vineyards and in the wine chain regarding:
• long-standing evidence about the effectiveness of the application of biochar in viticulture, with particular attention to carbon sink and nutrients recovery, to demonstrate the ability to close  material loops in vineyards;
• finding evidences/proof of i) reduction of nutrient leaching, ii) mitigation of dry periods thanks to the greater water retention capacity, iii) soil workability of clayey soils thanks to the reduction of the bulk density;
• certifications, with internationally recognized tools such as LCA, Carbon Footprint and PEF, of the sustainability of the new matrices and of the agricultural practices tested in the field;
• specialized know-how about biochar production techniques, methods and doses of administration in the field, as well as methods and machinery for distribution;
• dissemination of the knowledge on biochar and the systematic analysis of quality production of biochar starting from the residues of vine cultivation and then, once treated, return them to the soil, as a soil improver enriched with the nutrients recovered in the industrial processes of the supply chain;

To achieve these objectives, ENOCHAR has developed and prepares the following activities:
• application of the matrices to a new vineyard (about 1 hectare) planted at the experimental station of the CRPV located in Tebano (Ra) started in late 2018; the experimental design foresees the comparison between 5 treatments: non-amended control, biochar, 2 biochar and compost blends and 1 compost only treatments;
• evaluate the effect of conditioning on soil properties (e.g. water retention capacity, structure, workability, etc.) as well as on the response of plants (nutritional status, productivity and quality of wines);
• monitoring of biochar and compost transformation in the soil, decomposition and aging also by means of modeling software;
• laboratory experiments by means of column tests to verify the absorbent and nutrient retention capacities of soils amended with the different matrices;
• laboratory experiments to evaluate the processes that are triggered by the co-maturation phase of compost and biochar;
• development and organization of communication activities and dissemination of results (e.g. visits to the experimental field, scientific and popular publications).

This project is the primer for a more ambitious program to meet the biochar research roadmap drawn by Amonette and co-workers (2021). Starting from ENOCHAR together with CAVIRO we launched "Black to the Future" an innovation project, co-funded by the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT), European Union, to develop an advanced mixture of biochar and compost called “CBmix” with the goal to reduce soil depletion, increase carbon capture, and plant yield improvement.