Scientists Discover Hazardous Waste-Eating Bacteria
Any discoveries that could aid in the disposal and control of nuclear waste are useful, but it must be remembered that nuclear waste cannot be “destroyed” in the traditional sense of the word. This means that, promising as this work seems, bacteria that can “eat” nuclear waste become nuclear waste themselves. Keeping the nuclear waste from migrating into the water supply and elsewhere would be a good thing, but the waste eating bacteria would still be nuclear waste.
Darrel Moore, CIWM Online Journal l
Scientists at the University of Manchester have discovered microbes that can survive in the very harsh conditions expected in radioactive waste disposal sites. The discovery could aid in the disposal of nuclear waste.
Although bacteria with waste-eating properties have been discovered in relatively pristine soils before, this is the first time that microbes that can survive in the very harsh conditions expected in radioactive waste disposal sites have been found.
The findings are published in the ISME (Multidisciplinary Journal of Microbial Ecology) journal.