oyster half shell - GNU licenseMarine scientists, planners and government officials say millions of mollusks planted in polluted waters off New York and other cities could go a long way toward cleaning up America’s urban environment. The oyster and other shellfish can slurp up toxins and eliminate decades of dirt.

The oyster is the perfect aquatic engineer for the job. It pumps water to feed, retains any polluted particles and releases the rest — purified. Each one filters about 50 gallons of water a day.

Although the oysters would not be edible, their colonies would be a “21st-century approach to creating new waterfront infrastructures where long-gone shellfish can be brought back.”

Such a solution is already underway next to a litter strewn riverbank in the Bronx.

(READ the AP story from The State Journal)

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