This paper describes the dramatic success in the eco-restoration of a heavy-metal contaminated open garbage dump. A number of heavy metals (As, Cd, Cu, Co, Pb, Hg, Cr) were detected in the soil and river sediment at the site. The main restoration activities included mulching, surface-addition of compost and fresh soil and phytoremediation using vetiver and other plants. Within three years of the restoration activities, heavy metal concentrations in the contaminated soil reduced drastically. There was relatively low uptake of the heavy metals by the plants; however, they might have been crucially responsible for providing a favorable environment for soil-restoring microrganisms in their rhizosphere. Observable habitat-restoration continues at the site, including the return of birds and insects and other wildlife, making this an ideal site for further research and demonstration for community awareness and education.
Peter Ash, Anju Bist, Dr. Smitha Chandran S., Dan Sullivan, and Nikhil Korthurkar, “Rehabilitating former landfill sites: A case study in habitat restoration”, in IEEE Global Humanitarian Technical Conference (GHTC 2013), San Jose, California USA , 2013.