Legislators in the NYS Assembly recently introduced the ‘Carbon Farming Act’ (A3281) which seeks to reward farmers for practices that maximize carbon sequestration in New York. The bill acknowledges that ‘soil & vegetation management can significantly enhance soil & carbon sequestration’ while at the same time improving soil health, crop yield and water quality.
A one day workshop is being held on May 20th to provide further education on carbon farming methods, including a focus on biochar (i.e. carbonized organic material). The workshop will review the proposed legislation and its potential impact on farmers and will include sessions led by students and faculty from Cornell University on carbon farming. An overview of biochar benefits and uses will be provided by Kathleen Draper, owner of Finger Lakes Biochar and other researchers and entrepreneurs in the biochar field. Demonstrations on how to make biochar at home, on farm and industrial scale will also be on display.
The event will be hosted at the Boathouse Beer Garden (6128 State Route 89, Romulus, NY 14541) from 10am to 4pm on Saturday May 20th. The cost of the workshop is $32 for pre-registration or $40 at the door. Lunch and a local beverage (e.g. beer, wine or non-alcoholic) are included and a portion of the proceeds will be used to purchase organic produce from local farmers for the local Food Pantry. Free biochar samples will be available to those interested in collaborating on small scale biochar trials.
Current sponsors of the event include the Boathouse Beer Garden, Finger Lakes Biochar, and Citizens Climate Lobby of Ithaca. Technology vendors that will be present include America Sequesters, Biomass Controls, and Acorn Biochar.