Navigation Links
Simple approach could clean up oil remaining from Exxon Valdez spill
Date:9/29/2010

Traces of crude oil that linger on the shores of Alaska's Prince William Sound after the Exxon Valdez oil spill remain highly biodegradable, despite almost 20 years of weathering and decomposition, scientists are reporting in a new study. Their findings, which appear in ACS' semi-monthly journal Environmental Science & Technology, suggest a simple approach for further cleaning up remaining traces of the Exxon Valdez spill the largest in U.S. waters until the 2010 Deepwater Horizon episode.

Albert D. Venosa and colleagues note that bacteria, evaporation, sunlight, and other items in Mother's Nature's clean-up kit work together to break down the oil and make it disappear. Scientists have known for years that adding nitrogen and phosphorus fertilizer to oil-contaminated soil can speed the growth of bacteria that decompose, or biodegrade, oil. But it has been uncertain whether oil that has lingered in the environment for almost 20 years still is biodegradable, leaving questions on whether further clean-up efforts might be worthwhile.

The scientists collected oil-contaminated soil from different beaches in Prince William Sound and treated the samples with phosphorus and nitrogen fertilizer in the presence of excess oxygen from the air. Oil in the fertilized samples biodegraded up to twice as fast as oil in the unfertilized control samples, but significant biodegradation occurred even in the unfertilized controls. The results showed that oxygen supply was the major bottleneck, or limiting factor, in the field that prevented further decomposition of the oil. The scientists used data from the research to postulate a simple treatment scheme that would involve applying simple nitrate salts to possibly break down the natural organic matter in the sediment. That would cause an increase in sediment porosity that would allow dissolved oxygen in seawater to penetrate to the oiled zone and create oxygen-rich conditions that might stimulate more rapid biodegradation.


'/>"/>

Contact: Michael Bernstein
m_bernstein@acs.org
202-872-6042
American Chemical Society
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Caltech chemists develop simple technique to visualize atomic-scale structures
2. Health diagnosis made simpler
3. The secret of life may be as simple as what happens between the sheets -- mica sheets
4. Research develops simple recipe for fungus-free horseradish
5. Study finds that simple 2-question survey can better identify hungry children
6. Cheap, simple, noninvasive blood test may replace invasive diagnostic techniques in early pregnancy
7. New study documents use of hormone progesterone in simple microscopic aquatic animals
8. Pitt researcher says simple polymer-based filter successfully cleans water, recovers oil in Gulf of Mexico tests
9. Coral transplantation the simple and cheap solution to reef restoration
10. Sari cloth a simple sustainable protector from cholera
11. Transportation governed by simple rules
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:3/22/2017)... , March 21, 2017 Vigilant Solutions ... serving law enforcement agencies, announced today the appointment of ... director of public safety business development. Mr. ... enforcement experience, including a focus on the aviation transportation ... most recent position, Mr. Sheridan served as the Aviation ...
(Date:3/16/2017)... CeBIT 2017 - Against identity fraud with DERMALOG solutions "Made in Germany ... ... one project, multi-biometric solutions provide a crucial contribution against identity fraud. (PRNewsFoto/Dermalog Identification Systems) ... Used combined in one project, multi-biometric solutions provide a crucial contribution ... ...
(Date:3/9/2017)... MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. , March 9, ... Simple," and 23andMe , the leading personal genetics ... choices.  Zipongo can now provide customers with personalized nutrition ... goals and biometrics, but also genetic markers impacting how ... Zipongo,s personalized food decision support platform uses biometrics ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:4/27/2017)... , April 27, 2017  Pendant Biosciences, Inc. ... innovative surface modification and drug delivery technologies, today announced ... Innovation, JLABS @ Toronto . ... Officer of Pendant Biosciences, noted, "We are excited to ... community, and are honored to be the ...
(Date:4/26/2017)... Myrtle Beach, SC (PRWEB) , ... April 26, ... ... for the mind, has teamed up with NASA to showcase the future of ... NASA’s Space Launch System (SLS) rocket and Orion spacecraft and includes a guest ...
(Date:4/26/2017)... ... April 26, 2017 , ... Baltimore ... Bioflash MailGuardtm mail security screening solution at the National Postal Forum 2017 in ... provides a fast, highly accurate, easy to use and low cost threat detection ...
(Date:4/26/2017)... 2017  Genisphere LLC, provider of the 3DNA ... collaborative and sponsored research agreement with the University ... The overall goal of the partnership is to ... designs and formulations after in vivo ... vasculature as well as inflammatory responses, demonstrating various ...
Breaking Biology Technology: