Use of Plants to Clean Polluted Air: A Potentially Effective and Low-Cost Phytoremediation Technology

Bojing Zhang, Dian Cao, Shengdong Zhu

Abstract


Air pollution poses a great threat to human health, and it has become a worldwide problem that needs to be urgently dealt with. Many measures have been taken to reduce air pollution and improve air quality. These methods are generally costly and require special equipment. Some plants have the ability to assimilate, degrade, or modify toxic pollutants in air into less toxic ones. It is proposed here to develop plant-based technology to clean polluted air at low cost. This air phytoremediation technology has many potential advantages in contrast with traditional air pollution treatment methods. It is simple, potentially cheap, and easily implemented. Plants to be used for air phytoremediation have the potential to reduce pollutants in air and improve air quality; they also fix carbon dioxide through photosynthesis and help to decrease greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. The selected plants can also be used as raw materials for production of energy and bio-based chemicals. However, little research has been carried out on air phytoremediation technology, especially in the basic research area. This editorial gives a brief discussion about air phytoremediation to stimulate more research on this technology and further improve its effectiveness in practical use.

Keywords


Plants; Air pollution; Air phytoremediation technology

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