Marijuana crops are proven to be one of the most efficient bioremediation alternative to cleanse the soil
There are over 300,000 contaminated soil and water sites just in the United States that require hazardous waste treatment. The process of phytoremediation uses plants to clean up contaminated soil, air, or water and it turns out that hemp has been used to clean up deadly pollutants for decades. Researchers have found that hemp is extremely effective in the removal of heavy metals and radioactive toxins deeply rooted in soil.
Hemp is perhaps the most versatile and controversial plants in the world, yet it can be used to make a plenty of things that go from beyond useful to environmentally friendly. The truth is that nobody has been able to deny its healing and regenerative qualities. Not only can marijuana have notable positive effects in treating the human body, but it can also have an incredible impact in the environment. Scientists have proven that cannabis is immune to nuclear radiation and can even cleanse it of its surroundings.
In 1998, Consolidated Growers and Processors (CGP), the company Phytotech, and the Institute of Bast Crop of Ukraine began experimenting with around 400 different species of hemp plant species, in order to remove metal pollution in soils, near the Chernobyl disaster. The experiment was designed to test if certain plants could eliminate radioactive metals through the process called phytoremediation, which is the process of using living plants for removal, degradation or containment of contaminants in soil, mud or water is known as phytoremediation. It can also be used to clean pesticides, solvents, explosives, crude oil, and the leaching of toxins from landfills.
The roots of certain plants can absorb a series of metals (radioactive or not) so that the plants act as a filter or trap for elements as dangerous to human health as Uranium, Caesium-137 or Strontium-90. These elements accumulate in the leaves. Later on, the leaves from the harvest are incinerated and the ashes are treated as nuclear waste. The plants that offered the best results were Sunflower and Cannabis, which can decontaminate 80% of the soil of an affected area. Additional studies made in Belarus in 2009, proved that the ashes could be distilled into ethanol for use as a biofuel. By using hemp to create biofuels, scientists believe they can take advantage of the large amounts of contaminants hemp removes from soil.
In the Italian region Taranto, the contamination generated by the Ilva Steel Plant, affected the surrounding agricultural fields. Highly toxic substances were detected in 2008, they were released into the atmosphere and reabsorbed by the ground. This contaminated all the local livestock, from eating grass grown in toxic soil. Now, farmers are turning to hemp to reclaim their soil. In just five years, Taranto’s experiment with hemp grew to almost 100 farmers, who have collectively planted about 300 hectares of hemp, making the soil cleaner with each crop. The farmers are certain that they will continue to plant cannabis, to make the soil viable for future generations to come.
According to a study conducted by the Colorado State University, much of the land across the globe is polluted with cadmium. Cadmium is a highly toxic, heavy metal used in frequently in the industrial world for items like batteries, televisions, cement, fertilizers, fossil fuels, tobacco and much more. The metal is considered an environmental hazard in many parts of the world, and it is banned by the E.U. for its link to cancer and cardiovascular problems.
The United States currently spends billions to clean up contaminated soil each year. Industry, farming, waste disposal and further practices continue to damage the ecosystem, which has pressed many researchers to find alternative methods for land restoration.
The cannabis crop is considered one of the best phyto-palliative alternatives to take into account for the future and as a serious solution to many problems derived from catastrophes such as those experienced in Fukushima. Unfortunately, cannabis is still a prohibited