Anthropogenic activities, such as mining/smelting, result in the release and accumulation of heavy metal(loid)s in soil, posing serious human health and ecological risks. Due to the persistence of metal(loid)s, not undergoing any chemical and biological degradation, they can only be either immobilized or removed by, bioremediation and phytoremediation. Biochar is increasingly being recognized as a promising, effective material that can be used to remediate various contaminations including excessive heavy metals in soil. This chapter provides an overview of the state of the art on biochar resources, production processes and result of pyrolysis, surface characteristics of biochar, interactions of biochar with soil, and associated biota (microbes and plant). Furthermore, the understanding of characteristics of biochar and the interactions of biochar with soil and biota is necessary to assess the impacts of biochar on bioremediation and phytoremediation of heavy metal contaminated soil.
Part of the book: Advances in Bioremediation and Phytoremediation