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A field trial for an ex-situ bioremediation of a drilling mud-polluted site

, : A field trial for an ex-situ bioremediation of a drilling mud-polluted site. Chemosphere 66(9): 1595-1600

The remediation of drilling mud-polluted sites in the Southeast of Mexico is a top priority for Mexican oil industry. The objective of this work was to find a technology to remediate these sites. A field trial was performed by composting in biopiles, where four I ton soil-biopiles were established, one treatment in triplicate and one unamended biopile. Amended biopiles were added with nutrients to get a C/N/P ratio of 100/3/0.5 plus a bulking agent (straw) at a soil/straw ratio of 97/3. Moisture content was maintained around 30-35%. Results showed that, after 180 d, total petroleum hydrocarbon (TPH) concentrations decreased from 99 300 +/- 23 000 mg TPH kg(-1) soil to 5500 +/- 770 mg TPH kg(-1) for amended biopiles and to 22900 +/- 7800 mg TPH kg-1 for unamended biopile. An undisturbed soil control showed no change in TPH concentrations. Gas chromatographic analysis showed residual alkyl dibenzothiophene type compounds. Highest bacterial counts were observed during the first 30 d which correlated with highest TPH removal, whereas fungal count increased at the end of the experimentation period. Results suggested an important role of the straw, nutrient addition and water content in stimulating aerobic microbial activity and thus hydrocarbon removal. This finding opens an opportunity to remediate old polluted sites with recalcitrant and high TPH concentration.


PMID: 16997351

DOI: 10.1016/j.chemosphere.2006.08.011

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