Phytoremediation: Right Plants for Right Pollutants
Pollutants are not necessarily born as pollutants. On the contrary, they may be resourcesapplied in the wrong places. Incorrect uses, accidental releases and/or technical limits make them harmful to ourenvironment. Following agricultural and industrial development, pollutants have formed a huge stereo-network on earth, existing in the water, soil and air. Many measures were taken successfully to treat the pollution of water or soil, but not so for air pollution.
Furthermore, air pollutants can reach even more widespread locations, including the Antarctic and even the stratospheric ozone layer. Is there a way to potentially remove the pollutantsfrom water, soil and air simultaneously? Phytoremediation is a good option.
Using green plants as weapons, phytoremediation is one of most economical and environment-friendly techniques to target the organic and inorganic pollutants in the water, soil and air simultaneously. Actually, whether we realize it or not, with such a huge biomass on the earth, plants have always affected the concentration of pollutants in our environment. But the challenge is to find and use exactly the right plants for specific pollutants.
Deep roots, luxuriant leaves, specialsorptive properties and the associated bacteria in root zones allow plants to absorb, take-up, accumulate, metabolize and/or degrade the pollutants from water, soil and air. Of course, the ideal way is for plants to use pollutants and/or their metabolites as nutritional elements during the growth and to completely remove the pollutants physically and chemically from the environment. According to various functions of plants, phytoremediation is divided in the different categories, such as phytoextraction, phytostabilization, phytotransformation, rhizoremediation and phytovolatilization. Many plant species have been successfully applied in the removal organic and inorganic pollutants from water and soil.
Journal of Bioremediation and Biodegradation
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