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Full cycle — Nutrients Cycled back to the forest

Karl Domes and crew carrying ash into the initial research plots (2015)

In 2015 UNBC and the ALRF initiated our wood ash soil amendment research.  Wood ash, including the various nutrients remaining in the ash, were returned to the forest.  The ash is a product generated from the burning of wood residues (e.g. wood chips) for heat and/or electrical energy and is produced at numerous locations throughout the province.  The UNBC bioenegy plant is an excellent example of this process where the burning of wood reduces reliance on fossil fuels for heating the university by 85 %.

Congratulations to the research team for publishing their initial results in the Canadian Journal of Soil Science:

Domes, K.A., de Zeeuw, T., Massicotte, H.B., Elkin, C., McGill, W.B., Jull, M.J., Chisholm, C.E., Rutherford, P.M., 2018. Short-term changes in spruce foliar nutrients and soil properties in response to wood ash application in the sub-boreal climate zone of British Columbia. Canadian Journal of Soil Science. https://doi.org/10.1139/CJSS-2017-0115