Using Plants to Remove Foreign Compounds from Contaminated Water and Soil

Depending on the physico-chemical properties of the organic pollutant to be removed or detoxified, as well as on the specific plant physiology and biochemistry, different phytotreatments are available to decontaminate water and soils. For example, aquatic macrophytes or even terrestrial plants can be grown under hydroponic conditions or in constructed wetlands to remove many xenobiotic compounds, e.g. sulphonated anthraquinones and azo dyes present in wastewater from the dye and textile industries. Recent advances have also been made to remediate soils contaminated with hydrophobic compounds like PCBs, highlighting the roles of both plants and rhizospheric microorganisms, and the importance of their interactions. Sequestration of PCB by activated carbon or other adsorbents can be used to improve the phytoremediation of real highly contaminated soils. Activated carbon amendment in combination with mineral fertilizers has been shown to create favourable conditions for the development of soil microorganisms and plants. These examples aim to illustrate the potential of plants for the rhizofiltration, phytoaccumulation and phytodegradation of xenobiotics, as well as their ability to cooperate with bacteria (phytostimulation, rhizospheric interactions)

Schröder, P.
Collins, C. D.
Published in:
Organic Xenobiotics and Plants: From Mode of Action to Ecophysiology, 149-189
Dordrecht, Springer Science+Business Media B.V.

 Record created 2011-01-24, last modified 2018-03-17

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