The Top Examples of Bioremediation

Jane Marsh - October 31, 2022

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Atmospheric and surface-level pollutants are interfering with Earth’s natural ecosystem management techniques. Environmentalists are searching for effective pollution-reduction methods to prevent adverse climate change impacts. While some individuals target emissions by replacing fossil fuel power sources with renewables, others struggle to access compatible technologies.

Some systems still require pollution-producing energy sources to run. Individuals can reduce ecological contamination deriving from the systems by engaging in bioremediation. There are three major types of pollution filtration that support conservation efforts.

Why Are Individuals Using Bioremediation?

Various forms of pollution derive from manmade systems. Many agricultural production professionals utilize pesticides and synthetic fertilizers to support crop development. When it rains, the additives travel to natural water sources and cause adverse ecological effects.

After the contaminants reach the ocean and other bodies of water, they influence algal blooms. As algae grow, they deplete aquatic oxygen levels and destroy species’ habitats. The pollution effects also minimize biodiversity by displacing marine species away from accessible food and protection sources.

Individuals use bioremediation to filter contaminants in natural water sources and preserve aquatic ecosystems. The purification process also supports atmospheric conditions by filtering greenhouse gas emissions. Greenhouse gases derive from transportation, manufacturing, agriculture, electric and construction processes.

They are the leading cause of climate change and interfere with all global ecosystem functions. Bioremediation can filter contaminants before they reach the atmosphere to prevent global temperature increases. Individuals also use bioremediation as an oil spill cleanup technique.

Oil spills are another cause of biodiversity loss because of their adverse effects on marine life. For example, when sea otters come in contact with oil, they lose the protective heating layer beneath their fur. By expanding an individual’s knowledge of bioremediation, environmentalists can support pollution reduction efforts.

What is Bioremediation?

Before individuals assess the top examples of bioremediation, they must evaluate it as an independent concept. Bioremediation signifies the use of biological components to purify natural spaces. Rather than using chemicals to filter pollutants, the eco-friendly process relies on microorganisms, plants and fungi.

Many biological agents consume pollutants to produce energy and grow. The filtration components take in and process contaminants in the air, water and soil. Three general types of bioremediations contribute to pollution filtration practices.

Three Examples of Bioremediation

1. Microbial

Microbial bioremediation uses microorganisms to neutralize or remove pollutants from various environments. Some contamination reduction professionals use the microbial method to preserve healthy soil conditions.

They place polluted soil into piles and add mature compost and microbes to filter the toxins. The purification process reduces hydrocarbon pollutants by nearly 71% which improves surface-level and atmospheric conditions.

2. Phytoremediation.

Phytoremediation uses plants to extract and filter toxins from the air. Many businesses are engaging in carbon offsetting to shrink their footprints. The phytoremediation process is a form of carbon offsetting that relies on photosynthesis to filter carbon dioxide.

One tree can absorb and filter about 48 pounds of emissions annually. Capturing and purifying airborne contaminants on Earth’s surface prevents atmospheric degradation and the enhanced greenhouse effect.

3. Mycoremediation

Mycoremediationuses fungi to target pollutants. Digestive enzymes in fungi are powerful enough to decompose pesticides and hydrocarbons into non-toxic substances. Environmentalists are using mycoremediation to target surface-level pollution from manufacturing and agricultural processes. Fungi can effectively purify soil and prevent contaminants from reaching major water sources.

The Benefits of Filtering Pollutants

There are various ecological, financial and health benefits individuals may access when using bioremediation to preserve natural environments. Removing pollutants from soil, air and water sources improves biodiversity which also protects humanity’s food supply. Bioremediation directly benefits human health by minimizing air pollution.

When high counts of greenhouse gas emissions cause local pollution, individuals in that area experience adverse respiratory effects. The contaminants increase one’s risk of asthma, respiratory infections and lung cancer. The examples of bioremediation above also improve an individual’s finances by decreasing fines.

Many business owners experience financial penalties for releasing emissions and surface pollution into the environment. When they engage in bioremediation, they can eliminate fines and save money. Companies can also meet eco-consumer demands by engaging in pollution reduction techniques.

Researchers identified a 71% increase in sustainable product searches which signifies the importance of eco-friendly production practices. Businesses can improve their sales when using bioremediation techniques. Individuals can engage with the sustainability practice using a few methods.

How to Engage With the Three Examples of Bioremediation

Business owners can access bioremediation technologies by first receiving a pollution audit. Once individuals determine where the majority of their waste goes, they can create a system budget. After companies determine their system needs and pricing, they may access the most efficient form of bioremediation. 

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About the author

Jane Marsh

Starting from an early age, Jane Marsh loved all animals and became a budding environmentalist. Now, Jane works as the Editor-in-Chief of Environment.co where she covers topics related to climate policy, renewable energy, the food industry, and more.