J. Bio. Env. Sci.17( 1), 130-143, July 2020
In arid and semi-arid regions limited water inputs, lower soil organic matter and carbon decreases the soil moisture retention which make soils of these regions difficult to sustain healthy crop. Moreover, intensive agricultural practices are depleting the soil of its organic matter and nutrients which is reducing the soil fertility even further. Pakistan has high rainfall variability during different seasons. The regions which remain dry in all seasons due to low precipitation are greatly vulnerable to drought. Organic farming provides a solution to mitigate this problem to some extent but in this case the yield is less as compared to the conventional agriculture system. Biochar serves as a novel method for increasing soil carbon content due to its enhanced carbon stability. Biochar being highly porous material has large surface area and it causes significant changes in soil physical properties such as water holding capacity, porosity, drainage and bulk density. Adding the biochar in soil have many advantages from reduction of pollutants and heavy metals concentration in soil, increasing soil carbon sequestration as a strategy to mitigate climate change and increased soil microbial diversity due to substrate enhancement. The incorporation of biochar in soil has a great impact on the soil texture, density, particle size distribution, and soil density and can be used as fertilizer to increase the crop yield due to its ability to slow release of the nutrients in soil.
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