Phytoremediation Research on TNT Degradation
Medina, Victor F.
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Phytoremediation is a remediation technology in which plants are used to treat contaminated soil, groundwater or wastewater. Plants can be used the following ways to assist in remediation; By enhanced bacterial and fungal activity in the root zone (Anderson et al., 1993; Cunningham et al., 1995; Schwab et al., 1995). By accumulating the contaminant in the stems of the plants which can be harvested (Dushenkov et al. 1995; Nanda Kumar et al., 1995; Moffat, 1995; Kelley and Guerin 1995; Cornish et al., 1995; Wang et al., 1995), As an organic "pump" to control groundwater migration (Gatliff, 1994; Licht, 1995), By destruction by plant enzymes and other plant proteins (Dec and Bollag, 1994, Terry, 1995, Strand et al., 1995, Carreira and Wolfe, 1997, Medina, et al., 1997). Plants and microorganisms often have symbiotic relationships, making the root zone, or rhizosphere, a very active area of microbiological activity. Plants can help moderate the environment in the root zone, providing ideal conditions for bacteria and fungi to degrade organic pollutants. Certain plants hyperaccumulate metals, radionuclides or organic compounds. These plants can be placed in areas of contamination where they remove the contaminant. Afterwards, the plants can be harvested and the contaminant can be disposed, destroyed or recovered.