Established in 2006, the Pioneer Valley Biochar Initiative is a group of farmers, foresters, professors, students and concerned citizens, promoting public awareness that a growing body of soil science affirms that biochar can increase soil productivity and enhance crop health when incorporated into farm, forest and garden soils.

PVBI meets monthly at the New England Small Farm Institute (NESFI) in Belchertown, MA. NESFI has also hosted an annual CHAB  Camp (Combined Heat and Biochar), and PVBI members have organised a Biochar Seminar Series at UMASS Amherst, open to the public, but also offering student credits.

A few years have past since our successful Northeast Biochar Symposium held in 2009 at UMASS Amherst and NESFI, so we are ramping up to present the 2013 North American Biochar Symposium, again to be held at UMASS and NESFI. 

Planning Team

Kathleen Draper

Gloria Flora

Bruce Frankel

Judith Gillan*

Lloyd Helferty

Barry Hollister

Peter King*

Erich Knight

Ron Larson

Hugh McLaughlin

Tom Miles

Alan Page*

Christoph Pollatos

Christian Pulver

Amanda Ravenhill

Karen Ribeiro*

Mike Sheehan

Dick Stein*

Ted Wysocki*

* PVBI Member

Track Chairs

Hugh McLaughlin, Feedstocks & Production
Kathleen Draper, Benefits of Biochar
Amanda Ravenhill, Scale, Sales & Marketing
Erich Knight, Policy & Community Engagement

Prior North American Biochar Conferences