U.S. Army Pursues ‘Biodegradable’ Ammunition

U.S. Army Pursues ‘Biodegradable’ Ammunition

Military bases are among the most toxic sites in the United States.

When you think of bullets, you don’t tend to think “environmentally friendly,” or even “friendly” at all. The U.S. Army is hoping to change that.

The army is seeking a proposal for biodegradable ammunition to replace the existing rounds used in training, including grenade and tank rounds. They say the use of existing rounds require hundreds of years to more to biodegrade and in the process some of the rounds may have the potential to corrode and pollute the soil and nearby water, making military bases among the most toxic sites in the United States.

A brief released by the Department of Defense suggests the new ammunition should contain seeds that product food for animals.

This effort will make use of seeds to grow environmentally friendly plants that remove soil contaminants and consume the biodegradable components developed under this project,” the brief said. “Animals should be able to consume the plants without any ill effects."

The brief claims that army researchers have already succeeded in embedding seeds into biodegradable material, these tend to flower just a couple months after being used.