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Vegetable fibre degradation in polluted waterOver the past 25 years large quantities of vegetative matter (particularly gardening waste) have been deposited in engineered landfills. The fibrous nature of this type of waste initially creates a form of 'soil reinforcement' within the refuse mass. With time the fibres will degrade and the reinforcing effect will be lost and this could have a serious effect on the stability of refuse slopes. Laboratory tests have been conducted to investigate the effect of pore water composition on the strength properties of fibrous vegetable matter and individual vegetable fibres. This preliminary assessment of whether the stability of 'as-constructed' landfill slopes is likely to be affected significantly by decomposition of vegetable matter within the refuse was conducted using a 'typical' vegetable fibre.