Pollution Fighting Plants

Here’s an interesting post from a blog referencing pollution fighting plants……

http://scienceyoucanlove.tumblr.com/post/70348882500/pollution-fighting-plants-scientists-at-the

Once the plant uptakes the contaminants what do you do with the organic matter of the plant?  Do you harvest it and landfill it?  Is the organic material contaminated (it says harmless byproducts above but what are they)?  Is phytoremediation a remedial plan that is used like a barrier to prevent contaminant groundwater migration beyond where the plants are uptaking the chemicals?  Trichloroethylene (TCE) is a dense non-aqueous phase liquid (DNAPL) and will likely reside deep into the aquifer…how deep do plant root systems go that can uptake the contaminants?  Can they extend through confining layers in the subsurface and reach the confined aquifer where DNAPLs might exist?  Or are they very limited to the shallow unconfined aquifer?

Cool idea as a long term attenuation approach to remediation or maybe as a risk mitigation measure…but might not be a practical solution for fully remediating a contaminated property.

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