The future of weed killer
The development of weed killers has allowed us to grow more crops and feed an increasing population. However, they involve spraying harsh and potentially dangerous chemicals on our plants. The widespread use of them across the world has caused lots of issues. There are increasing concerns over what the overuse of them might be doing to our health. There is also a lot of evidence that suggests that use of them has contributed to the decline of bees which we need to pollinate many of the plants we eat.
Even the use of household weed killers can be dangerous, roundup weed killer was infamously found to cause cancer and lawsuits continue to pile up. Furthermore, many weeds are becoming resistant to traditional weed killers. If we want to survive as a species, we need to make changes to how we deal with pesky weeds. So, what does the future of weed-killing look like?
Everyone is looking for alternatives to harsh chemicals. One technique uses heat to kill weeds using a device that creates a flame, creating heat without setting it on fire. The heat will kill the roots whereas if the plant is simply burned it will regrow. This is currently only used in people’s homes as it takes time to target each weed. However, there is hope that advances in technology will make this an option. Although, it can kill insects such as woodlice, beetles, and earwigs so it is probably not the solution we are all looking for.
Generally, prevention is better than cure. When a weed enters a field, it moves quickly and becomes widespread. There are different methods for protecting the field against different weeds that don’t involve using harsh chemicals. However, whilst at home people can put down mulch or pull out certain weeds, this is time-consuming on large patches of land. When it is performed over large areas big machines are used which can also pollute the atmosphere. So perhaps it is not a futuristic solution either.
The most promising solution seems to be electricity, electricity can kill weeds without the need for dangerous chemicals. It works by targeting a strong current through the weeds. It works on all weeds and in a wide range of conditions including heat and cold. Electric methods have been available for some time; however, they have been difficult for farmers to use over large areas of land and are expensive. The future will see bigger machines that move faster and incorporate AI technology to target weeds.
In conclusion, any new methods for protecting our crops against weeds is going to come at a big cost. However, weeds are becoming resistant and it is not enough to simply find new chemicals to spray them with. People are rising against governments and corporations and demanding change from things that are causing damage to the environment. Weed killer can damage our health and the ecosystem and so we need to find new methods. Electricity seems to be the best technology that is currently being developed and hopefully, over time it will become more widely used. In the meantime, be sure to give all of your fresh produce a good wash before you eat it.