1/26/17 – Biodegradable Bullets

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The Army might get bullets that turn into plants.

Here’s what’s happening behind the headlines.

The federal government has solicited new ammunition that might have some people scratching their heads. But it actually makes sense.

The Small Business Innovation Research agency is behind the proposal. IKt wants small arms and artillery ammo made from biodegradable material. It would also include seeds that could grow into environmentally beneficial plants. Here’s the caveat.

This ammo would only be used for training and not in battle.

Millions of rounds are used in training each year. Expended ammo left behind in an off-limits firing range doesn’t pose much of a problem. Until a base is closed and the property is turned over to local government. Nearly 150 military facilities have been shuttered in the last 30 years. Properties that contain hazardous material and contaminants are called brownfields. Clean-up costs run into the millions.

So, as long the environmentally-conscious ammunition properly simulates real ammo. And as long as it isn’t ridiculously expensive then, why not?

This is what the SBIR will find out with its proposal.

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I’m Mark Hyman.

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