MUSHROOMS

Mushroom Bioremediation: Benefit the Environment through Mushroom Mycelia  

This component of applied mushroom biology deals mainly with the aspects of benefits to the Earth from the activities of mushroom mycelium. Environmental contamination can be ameliorated by the application of mushroom mycelial technologies. For example, (1) the use of bioconversion processes to transform the polluting substances into valuable foodstuffs, e.g., the proper treatment and reutilization of spent substrates/composts in order to eliminate pollution problems (Beyer, 2005, Noble, 2005).  One of the most intriguing opportunities offered by mushroom mycelia in the area of bioconversion is the exploitation of their ability to degrade pollutants, many of which are highly carcinogenic,  released into the environment as a consequence of human activity. And (2) the use of fungi/mushroom mycelia as tools for healing soil, what Stamets (2005) called “mycorestoration”, which is the use of fungi/mushrooms to repair or restore the weakened or damaged biosystems of environment. The processes of mycorestoration include the selective use of mushrooms for mycofiltration, to filter water; mycoforestry, to enact ecoforestry policy; mycoremediation, to denature toxic wastes; and mycopesticides, to control insect pests. Mycoresoration recognizes the primary role fungi/mushrooms can play in determining the balance of biological populations. 

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