Farming the pollution

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Farming the pollution is a project by: Giacomo Piovan

A field practice to turn soil contamination into a resource This research project focuses on soil, pollution, plants and on the opportunities that the relationship between these elements gives to our everyday lives. The research starts with an analysis made in collaboration with scientific universities (Wageningen University) and civil services (AbdK Eindhoven).

“Farming the pollution” is a project of soil remediation that develops scenarios about exploiting specific plants to clean heavy metals from soil. A study of this methodology called phytoremediation has been tested in an area of Eindhoven. The area has been polluted by heavy metals and remediated with the use of specific plants for a period of 6 months.

The unit facilitates four clean-up stages:
1) Analysis, 2) Remediation, 3) Disposal and 4) Storage.

When plants have absorbed enough metal they are shredded and pressed into dense blocks. The blocks can stored in a stable environment for future mining. After all, each block contains about one gramme of industrial metal such as lead, zinc or cadmium. The entire cycle costs less than traditional soil decontamination and you can upcycle valuable metals currently lost.

Giacomo Piovan project site

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