Life Reforest: mycotechnosoils developed from waste, could bring burnt forest areas back to life

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LIFE REFOREST is a project funded by the LIFE Programme that aims to mitigate the soil loss associated with post-fire episodes in forest areas, by developing and validating a system based on mycotechnosols.

The mycotechnosol solution allows the recovery of key functional parameters from burnt soil (organic matter content, microbial activity, etc.) back to its initial values. The mycotechnosols are produced through the development of organic wastes and byproducts, innoculated with fungal species contained in a tube-shaped biodegradable net.

The composition and the activity of the mycotechnosols and the fast vegetation recovery minimise the pollution in water bodies downstream from the burnt area and promote soil water retention. The mycotechnosol also supplies organic matter and nutrients to the soil, and local plant seeds to accelerate the restoration of the vegetation cover and promotes water retention.

Main results

LIFE REFOREST technique reduces soil erosion by 70%, compared to untreated zones. It shows also better scores than other available mitigation methods. The system retains soil structure from streamflow and accelerates the ecosystem recovery thanks to the fast fungal mycelium development present in the technosol.