USGS - science for a changing world

Environmental Health - Toxic Substances

Research Projects

Petroleum Related Contamination

conceptual model
Conceptual model of the subsurface contaminant plume's microbial geochemistry -- from the Bemidji Site

Bibliography 428 Publications

Subsurface spills of petroleum compounds (crude oil, gasoline, and gasoline additives) may be the most frequently cited cause of ground-water contamination. USGS scientists and their partners are developing information and tools essential for effective remediation and long-term management of fuel spills. A major theme of this research is the effectiveness and practical limitations of Natural Attenuation for treatment of sites with petroleum related contamination. Research has been conducted at 4 research sites:

Crude Oil Contamination in a Shallow Outwash Aquifer -- Bemidji, Minnesota

Oxygenated Gasoline -- Laurel Bay, South Carolina

Produced Water -- Osage-Skiatook Petroleum Environmental Research Project, Oklahoma

Gasoline -- Galloway Township, New Jersey [Completed]

Other Program Petroleum Related Research

Program Headlines on Petroleum Related Research

Fact Sheets

New Publications

Upcoming Publications

  • Comparison of surficial CO2 efflux to other measures of subsurface crude oil degradation: Warren, E., Sihota, N., Hostettler, F.D., and Bekins, B.A., Journal of Contaminant Hydrology (IN PRESS).
  • Adaptations of indigenous bacteria to karst aquifers in south-Central Kentucky contaminated with fuel: Byl, T.D., Metge, D.W., Agyman, D.T., Bradley, M., Hileman, G., and Harvey, R.W., Journal of Cave and Karst Studies (IN PRESS).

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