It is dangerous and expensive to reclaim munition sites (dumping sites for disused ammunition). However, John Huges of George R Brown University in Houston, Texas, us, has unveiled the potential of plants -- parrot feather (Myriophyllum aquaticum) and periwinkle (Catharanthus roseus) to mop up chemical contamination from soil. Huges believes that within 10 years these plants will routinely be used to clean up soil contaminated with explosive chemicals, as they can break them down safely. The plants can degrade and process explosives such as nitroglycerine and trinitrotoluene in their cellular compartments called vacuoles (Environmental Science and Technology, Vol 31).
We are a voice to you; you have been a support to us. Together we build journalism that is independent, credible and fearless. You can further help us by making a donation. This will mean a lot for our ability to bring you news, perspectives and analysis from the ground so that we can make change together.
Comments are moderated and will be published only after the site moderator’s approval. Please use a genuine email ID and provide your name. Selected comments may also be used in the ‘Letters’ section of the Down To Earth print edition.