IBI has encountered strong criticism as a “new threat to people, land and ecosystem” in a declaration signed by more than 155 non-profit organisations worldwide .But patent applications have been made, and companies formed for commercial exploitation of biochar production.During this time, oxidation produces carboxylic groups increasing its nutrient-holding capacity.
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IBI is also working with the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification to promote biochar in the post-Kyoto climate agreement.
And the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change has already included biochar in a section entitled: “Enhanced Action on Mitigation” to serve as basis for negotiations during pre-Copenhagen meetings .
Terra preta contains up to 70 times more black carbon (BC) than the surrounding soils.
Due to its polycyclic aromatic structure, black carbon is believed to be chemically and microbiologically inert (but see later) and persists in the soil for centuries, if not thousands of years.
Intense lobbying is taking place for biochar to be included in the Kyoto Protocol’s Clean Development Mechanism for mitigating climate change [9, 10], so people implementing that technology would be able to sell certified emission reduction (CER) credits.
Things have moved forward so fast with so little public awareness and debate that critics are alarmed, especially over the proposal from some prominent advocates that 500 million hectares or more of ‘spare land’ could be used to grow crops for producing biochar [11, 12], mostly to be found in developing countries; the same as was proposed in the biofuels initiative several years earlier.
Biofuels proving disastrous The biofuels ‘boom’ has already exacerbated climate change by speeding up deforestation and peatland destruction, loss of habitats and biodiversity, depletion of water and soil, and increased the use of agro-chemicals.
Above all, it has generated poverty, land grab, land conflicts, human rights abuses, labour abuses, starvation and food insecurity as documented by Biofuels Watch and 10 other groups [13, 14] (see also  (Biofuels: Biodevastation, Hunger & False Carbon Credits, Si S 33).
A lifecycle analysis published in 2008  by John Gaunt and Johannes Lehmann, principal biochar proponent at Cornell University, New York, in the United States, considered both purpose grown bioenergy crops (BEC) and crop wastes (CW) as feedstock.