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  • Application of microbial enumeration technique to evaluate the occurrence of natural bioremediation.

Application of microbial enumeration technique to evaluate the occurrence of natural bioremediation.

Water research (2001-05-08)
C M Kao, S C Chen, J K Liu, Y S Wang
ABSTRACT

Natural bioremediation is believed to be the major processes that account for both containment of the petroleum-hydrocarbon plume and reduction of the contaminant concentrations. In this study, the feasibility of applying the microbial enumeration technique was assessed for natural biodegradation evaluation at three selected gasoline spill sites. At each site, two monitor wells were installed along the groundwater flow, and one multilevel sampler (MLS) was installed to delineate the vertical distribution of the contaminant plume. Two continuous soil cores were collected at each site to evaluate the horizontal distribution of the microbial activity. Soil samples were used for microbial enumeration, grain-size distribution analysis, and sediment extraction. In situ tracer study was performed using 1,2,4-trimethylbenzene (1,2,4-TMB) as the tracer to study the efficiency of contaminant biodegradation. Investigation results demonstrate the agreement between microbial enumeration and other evaluation techniques for natural bioremediation (e.g., geochemical indicator analysis, tracer study). Results suggest that the microbial enumeration is useful in assessing the occurrence, efficiency, and status of the bioremediation. Because this technique provides insight into factors controlling contaminant biodegradation, it could be performed as the supplemental method for natural bioremediation evaluation at petroleum-hydrocarbon spill sites.

MATERIALS
Product Number
Brand
Product Description

Supelco
1,2,4-Trimethylbenzene, analytical standard
Sigma-Aldrich
1,2,4-Trimethylbenzene, 98%