23 Apr '11, 3am

Japanese researchers believe growing sunflowers will clean up the radioactive soil at Fukushima

After the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear disaster, sunflowers and rape blossoms were used to decontaminate soil in Ukraine. -- PHOTO: JOHN TAN JAPANESE researchers who study space agriculture believe growing sunflowers will remove radioactive caesium from contaminated soil around the Fukushima No.1 nuclear power plant, and are planning a project to plant as many of the yellow flowers as possible this year. They have invited people to sow sunflower seeds near the Fukushima Prefecture power station, hoping the sunflower will become a symbol of recovery in the areas affected by the nuclear crisis. After the sunflowers are harvested, they will be decomposed with bacteria, according to a plan by a Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency group led by Professor Masamichi Yamashita. After the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear disaster, sunflowers and rape blossoms were used to decontaminate soil in Ukrai...

Full article: http://www.straitstimes.com/BreakingNews/Asia/Story/STISt...

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