Stop the Smoke - Reduce Global Warming

by Warm Heart Worldwide, Inc
Stop the Smoke -  Reduce Global Warming
Stop the Smoke -  Reduce Global Warming
Stop the Smoke -  Reduce Global Warming
Stop the Smoke -  Reduce Global Warming
Stop the Smoke -  Reduce Global Warming
Stop the Smoke -  Reduce Global Warming
Stop the Smoke -  Reduce Global Warming
Stop the Smoke -  Reduce Global Warming
Biochar for Carbon Removal
Biochar for Carbon Removal

Years of perseverance have paid off as Warm Heart received accreditation from the Ithaka Institute of the European Biochar Certification organization for a new Carbon Removal category of  "Tropical Farmer".

“On March 4, Michael Shafer and Jason Highberger, of Warm Herat, along with Hans-Peter Schmidt of the EBC, presented the Tropical Farmer category at an International Biochar Initiative sponsored Webinar with 195 participants from 35 countries.  IBI Webinar: Verified Carbon Removal by Smallholder Farmers.”.

This is a major achievement to help encourage farmers to stop burning their crop waste, and instead turn it into carbon credits that can be sold on the emerging Carbon Removal market.

It is exciting that biochar is starting to be recognized in the global carbon removal and sustainable agriculture forums as a means to remove carbon from the air.  To date, most carbon removal has been focused at a large commercial level, but there are millions of smallholder farmers who can make a difference in reducing climate temperatures if they do not do open-field burning. 

As we train farmers, they reap the benefits of the biochar in their soils and the world benefits from clean, cooler air.  Now the smallholder farmers can make some additional income through access to the growing global carbon removal market.  

We have partnered with Task.io, and with the help of their phone app we are able to capture the biochar production and usage to verify the carbon removed.  Warm Heart has initiated an impact venture with  Biochar Life, a Public Benefit Corporation, to manage the demand and supply for the carbon markets.

In Kenya, the first order for 50 tons of carbon credits has 32 farmers making and using their biochar for the planting season. They will receive additional  income once their sequestered biochar is verified by our local team.  While it is still a  small amount of money, it is a source of income they did not have before. This is a new concept in a new market, and for now it is a giant step forward for climate action and smallholder farmers.

In Thailand, Aom is gearing up for another year working with the agroforestry program in Mae Chaem.  The first year's planting survived the drought with a 60% survival rate, higher than the expected normal 40% survival rate.  Contributions to this fund will go to help re-plant more trees and train more farmers to make biochar.  Additional rai are under discussion to add to the program, using biochar and framework trees to retain water and reduce flooding.

Thank you for your faithful support of our work as we extend our training and build farmer networks to make biochar, and help stop the smoke.

Agroforestry update
Agroforestry update
Tree with QR code for tracking
Tree with QR code for tracking

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Farmer using biochar
Farmer using biochar

The Stop the Smoke Program has been training farmers to make and use biochar and in the process, we are always looking for new ways to use biochar to improve the livelihoods of smallholder farmers.  We have had renewed interest from a couple of universities that are doing testing and research into the uses and efficacy of biochar.

As we started our pilot to test capturing biochar activity on our blockchain app, Task.io, Maejo University asked to take some biochar to bury in test plots for new crop production techniques.  

Our biochar Program Manager, Aom Kwanpirom Suksri has 5,000 kg of biochar to apply in a test to "use", (meaning bury in the soil or use in animal feed), thus sequestering the carbon. 

The farmers have signed a statement that they will not do further open field burning and provide photos of the biochar as it is being used.  These are recorded on our blockchain application and Stop the Smoke (STS) tokens are created for purchase for anyone looking to offset his/her carbon footprint. 

In order to certify that our farmers are complying with the standards being developed to sequester carbon, Warm Heart is working with the international standards boards to have "Tropical Farmer c-sink biochar" accredited as removing carbon from the atmosphere. 

The biochar lots are tested for their carbon content and to date, our samples are meeting the carbon content standards.  We have tested biochar made from corn cob, corn stalk, and longan fruit tree branches. We have used both the TLUD barrel and trough methods, along with the Trench method commonly used in Africa.

As this program goes forward, smallholder farmers around the world can reap the benefits of biochar renewing their soil while cooling the climate. At the same time, the carbon removal credits will create additional income for the farmers.

Thank you for making this possible!

P.S. #GivingTuesday is almost here. We would greatly appreciate your support of our Harnessing the Power of the Sun campaign on November 30. 

University test for biochar in crop soil filter
University test for biochar in crop soil filter
Biochar carbon test for corn
Biochar carbon test for corn

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Farmer in Thailand adding biochar to crops
Farmer in Thailand adding biochar to crops

Our goal has always been to stop the smoke that comes from the agricultural burning of crop waste. Here in Thailand, we have worked with farmers teaching them how to make biochar instead of smoke.

In Africa, our program is spreading far and wide. Michael announced “Pastor Mahamba Waibera Evariste is the leader of our newest country team in Africa, the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Pastor Waibera reports that he has 46 churches, an agronomist, and a weekly radio show on "Radio Voix du Paysan." I have prepared a 4 part PowerPoint training curriculum that his agronomist is systematically teaching at all of the churches and on the radio. (We will soon have it posted on our website.)

Also, Sister Paulette, who has been a driving force in Malawi and Kenya, now informs me that she has a working connection in Uganda that may turn into a country program there.”  The smallholder farmers are very excited to learn how to make biochar, as putting it in the soil greatly improves their crops. When fed to their animals, the health of the livestock improves. 

This takes us to the next phase of our Stop the Smoke. What to do with all the biochar the farmers are making?

The answer is simple - put it back into the earth! When biochar is put back in the earth it is sequestering carbon and helps bring down our carbon levels. Corporations and businesses, even individuals, buy “carbon credits” to offset their own impact on the environment.

We are extremely happy to announce Biochar Trust as the next phase of our Stop the Smoke campaign.

To be able to sell our “carbon” we must provide a detailed account of from where and how the biochar was made,  and proof of the sequester of the carbon. We are working with farmers in Thailand and Africa to follow the steps required to qualify, teaching them how to document their process.

We use a blockchain process, which you can view and see the progress we are making on our Task.io  site. We encourage you to visit and understand how the process works. 

Michael further shared "As Biochar Trust develops and establishes itself in Africa, all of the implied production capacity of these new country teams bodes well for us and will certainly make a difference for some of the poorest people in the world, to say nothing of finally beginning to reach a scope that will make a difference to the climate itself."

We are very excited about this next phase of our Stop the Smoke campaign, and appreciate that you have been with us every step of the way. Thank you for your continued support!

Warm hugs,

Dana, Michael, and Evelind

Manager Aom with our biochar stock
Manager Aom with our biochar stock
Graduate students take biochar for test farm
Graduate students take biochar for test farm
Farmer using biochar with orchard trees
Farmer using biochar with orchard trees
Farmer adding biochar to soil
Farmer adding biochar to soil

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Moving the biochar to the farmers
Moving the biochar to the farmers

When we started working in the Mae Chaem District, our focus was to stop the burning of the huge piles of corn waste so that we could stop the smoke forcing us to breathe through masks many miles away.

In addition to the PM2.5 pollution, the large-scale cultivation of corn has also created a number of devastating local environmental problems.

  • Huge areas of forests have been cleared to make room for growing corn.
  • Biodiversity has suffered as animal and bird habitats are destroyed.
  • Soils have become depleted. They absorb less and less rainwater as forest trees that once allowed water to penetrate the soil are removed. Corn is planted thinly and – unlike the trees it replaces – provides no protection for the soil, which becomes brick-hard when wetted and sun-dried.
  • This has destroyed watersheds, as the rainwater that once soaked into the ground now runs off rapidly, eroding fields and causing flooding downstream in the Center and South of Thailand.

We've talked with the farmers in the villages where we have been working and they are looking for alternative crops to grow.  But the risks of starting new crops are high and farmers have failed in the recent past with programs suggested by outside parties. Farmers commonly have a "show me" mentality, to reduce risk.  

Based on our past approach - working closely with the village council, we have an initial set of farmers, who have clear title to their mountain fields.  After a review of several alternative crops, the farmers and our staff have decided to test native shade trees with coffee, cocoa, tea, and other trees recommended by experts familiar with the local terrain. The farmers will be able to plant shorter-term crops around the edges of the new forests.

Your donations to support this year's Stop the Smoke! Campaign will get these farmers started.  This year they will prepare the land - creating swales with biochar embedded in the soil to start collecting water. An initial set of trees is being purchased and will go into the ground to take advantage of the upcoming rainy season.

With gratitude for your enduring support of our work!

Dana, Michael, Evelind, and the Warm Heart Family

De-Forested Terrain
De-Forested Terrain

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 Warm Heart’s Stop the Smoke campaign focuses on removing the source of the smoke before it becomes a problem.

Our solution has been to provide farmers a way to benefit from their crop waste by turning it into a profitable product, biochar.

The process of turning crop waste into biochar is smoke-free and produces a product that has a multitude of beneficial uses.

The farmers we have worked with in the past will continue this year to convert their crop waste into biochar. They have reaped the benefits of adding biochar to their fields to improve soil conditions and increase crop yields.

Our goal this year is to continue to reach out to more farmers to increase the amount of crop waste that is turned into biochar, helping to eliminate more smoke from being generated through open field burning.

We are also developing a comprehensive project that will have even bigger, long term impacts on cleaning our air by reducing the amount of crop waste generated every year from corn crops.

Warm Heart will be leading a joint effort to restore forest land that has been used primarily for corn production with crops that produce far less waste and provide sustainable economic growth for the farming communities. 

Our partners in this project include Shangri-La Hotel of Chiang Mai, Pacific Basin Economic Council, Kad Kokoa, and Monsoon Tea. 

We will be putting forth a plan of agroforestry that will include rebuilding our forest lands with the following crops:

o Thai select cocoa

o Thai coffee

o Forest tea

o Pic Thai, green and black peppers

o Rattan

o Hardwoods

o Traditional tree fruits

Biochar will play a big role in preparing the soils. We will be working directly with select farmers to establish models to demonstrate how agroforestry can restore biodiversity, improve our water systems, create sustainable economic value, and yes, stop the smoke.

We hope you will join us again this year with your continuing financial support and help us Stop the Smoke!

Michael, Evelind, Dana, and the Stop the Smoke team

Planting trees using biochar
Planting trees using biochar
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Organization Information

Warm Heart Worldwide, Inc

Location: Phrao, Chiang Mai - Thailand
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @WarmHeartOrg
Project Leader:
Evelind Schecter
Phrao, Chiang Mai Thailand
$60,902 raised of $75,000 goal
 
711 donations
$14,098 to go
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