Getting the best from bamboo
Bamboo is a highly useful plant, providing poles and timber for roofs, scaffolding, fencing and furniture, as well as many craft items. But it can also play a very valuable environmental role. Its complex root system, for example, can act as a fantastic water filter, removing nutrients and dangerous poisons such as heavy metals. As such, bamboo could have a lot to offer in slum areas, where it can be used to clean up waste water. And bamboo is also an excellent material for making charcoal. On the shores of Lake Victoria, bamboo charcoal is being used to smoke fish, reducing the pressure on forest resources. Professor Chin Ong has been working on bamboo in Africa for many years. He explains some of the lesser known values of this amazing plant to Susie Emmett.
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