Ecological and socio-economic utilization of water hyacinth (Eichhornia crassipes Mart Solms)
Around the world, there is an increasing trend in areas of land, surface waters and groundwater affected by contamination from industrial, military and agricultural activities due to either ignorance, lack of vision, or carelessness. In the last three decades a special interest in the world is aroused by the potential of using the biological methods in the waste water treatment. Water hyacinth (Eichhornia crassipes) constitutes an important part of an aquatic ecosystem. Water hyacinth as a very promising plant with tremendous application in wastewater treatment is already proved. Water hyacinth is used to treat waste water from dairies, tanneries, sugar factories, pulp and paper industries, palm oil mills, distilleries, etc. All the efforts of scientists and technocrats all over the world to eliminate these weeds by chemical and biological means have met with little success. The water hyacinth have been found to have potential for use as phytoremediation, paper, organic fertilizer, biogas production, human food, fiber, animal fodder.