Department or Program

Environmental Studies


Biochar is a charcoal-like product that is created by putting organic matter through a process known as pyrolysis. Biochar is capable of indefinitely sequestering the carbon originally contained in the organic material. The product itself has a variety of applications including wastewater and soil remediation. With the impacts of climate change becoming more imminent, mitigation strategies are being developed to lower atmospheric carbon concentrations. Biochar can be an effective form of climate change mitigation through carbon sequestration. In the state of Maine, biochar can be produced using residual wood products, such as sawdust and woodchips, from Maine lumber mills. This study seeks to analyze the potential for biochar production in Maine using residual lumber mill wood products as feedstock. It was discovered that in an agricultural setting, biochar can be profitable under certain carbon offset pricing scenarios. This study aims to prove that an increase in carbon offset pricing to accurately reflect social cost of carbon estimates would make biochar production in Maine profitable. It was determined that at a carbon offset price of $62.85, biochar is economically incentivized over a close substitute, agricultural lime.

Level of Access

Restricted: Campus/Bates Community Only Access

Date of Graduation


Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts

Number of Pages


Components of Thesis

1 pdf file


Available to Bates community via local IP address or Bates login.