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Transcript of Phytoremediation
by Caitlyn Clark
and Megan Baglien
What is phytoremediation?
How does it work?
How is it used?
Is it practical?
Degradation: fosters microbial breakdown
Extraction: facilitates toxin movement into biomass
Containment: chemically bonds to contaminants to render them nonbioavailable or debilitating their mechanisms of motion
US Dedicated Phytoremediation Companies
Applied Natural Sciences
Phytotech Division of Edenspace Systems Corporation
Thomas Consultants, Inc.
Verdant Technologies, Inc.
Viridian Environmental LLC
United States Diversifying Specialty Companies
Bitterroot Restoration, Inc.
GreenGold International, Inc.
Living Technologies, Inc.
The Bioengineering Group, Inc.
Wolverton Environmental Services, Inc.
US Diversified Consulting/Engineering Companies
Alliant Tech Systems
ARCADIS Geraghty & Miller
ARM Group, Inc.
August Mack Environmental, Inc.
Braun Intertec Corporation
Dames & Moore
Geomatrix Consultants, Inc.
MSE Technology Applications, Inc.
Parsons Engineering Science, Inc.
Roy F. Weston, Inc.
SoilQuest International, Inc.
Individual Company Research Activities
Industry Research Consortia
Who's On Board?
What is phytoremediation?
the process by which plants remove harmful chemicals from the soil through their roots
the chemicals can be stored within the plant, turned into harmless chemicals and stored, or turned into gases and released as the plant transpires
chemicals can also be held by the roots for bacteria to ingest and change
What toxins can phytoremediation be used for?
high zinc concentrations
aluminum in acidic soils
Most toxins can be taken care of through phytoremediation in low or moderate concentrations. Pyhtoremediation depends on the kind of plants used. The plants must be able to thrive, but when the toxicity levels are too high for plant survival phytoremediation will not be successful. Also some forms of radiation may still be harmful once a plant has processed the toxins. In these cases the problem would worsen if the plant were to transpire the gaseous toxin.
Where and how is phytoremediation used?
the United States, Canada, and much of Europe
rural and urban areas
municipal and industrial wastewater streams
cleaning up chemical spills
sequestering contaminants in wastewater
cleaning up after nuclear disasters (Chernobyl)
in constructed wetlands
as vegetative caps
soil conditioning for agriculture
low capital and operating costs
offers a permanent solution; no need for disposal sites
less disruptive to the environment
has potential to treat for multiple polutants
can take multiple seasons of tree growth before it works
sometimes the first group of trees needs to be replaced
its success depends on plant tolerance to the chemicals
plant choice and success is dependent on climate