Petroleum Related Contamination
USGS scientist measuring hydrogen gas in groundwater samples in the onsite laboratory at the Bemidji Crude Oil Spill Research Site, Minnesota. Hydrogen is an important intermediate compound that is both produced and consumed during biodegradation. The hydrogen gas concentrations can help identify the types of microbial communities that are degrading contaminants -- from the Bemidji Site
Bibliography 449 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:
Fate and Effects of Wastes from Unconventional Oil and Gas Development
Crude Oil Contamination in a
Shallow Outwash Aquifer -- Bemidji, Minnesota
Oxygenated Gasoline --
Laurel Bay, South Carolina [Completed]
Produced Water -- Osage-Skiatook
Petroleum Environmental Research Project, Oklahoma [Completed]
Gasoline -- Galloway Township, New
Other Program Petroleum Related Research
Program Science Feature Articles on Petroleum Related Research
- Crude oil metabolites in groundwater at two spill sites: Bekins, B.A., Cozzarelli, I.M., Erickson, M.L., Steenson, R.A., and Thorn, K.A., 2016, Groundwater, doi:10.1111/gwat.12419 (Advanced Web release).
- Rates of As and trace element mobilization caused by Fe-reduction in mixed BTEX-ethanol experimental plumes: Ziegler, B.A., McGuire, J.T., and Cozzarelli, I.M., 2015, Environmental Science and Technology, v. 49, no. 22, p. 13179-13189, doi:10.1021/acs.est.5b02341.
- Comparison of source zone natural attenuation rates at crude oil and ethanol-blended fuel release sites: Sihota, N.J., and Mayer, K.U., 2015, Bioremediation Journal, v. 19, no. 3, p. 218-230, doi:10.1080/10889868.2014.995373.
- Microbial communities associated with zones of elevated magnetic susceptibility in hydrocarbon-contaminated sediments: Beaver, C.L., Williams, A.E., Atekwana, E.A., Mewafy, F.M., Aal, G.A., Slater, L.D., and Rossbach, S., 2015, Geomicrobiology Journal, p. 00-00, doi:10.1080/01490451.2015.1049676.
- Relating subsurface temperature changes to microbial activity at a crude oil-contaminated site: Warren, E., and Bekins, B.A., 2015, Journal of Contaminant Hydrology, doi:10.1016/j.jconhyd.2015.09.007.
- Reactive transport modeling of geochemical controls on secondary water quality impacts at a crude oil spill site near Bemidji, MN: Ng, G.H.C., Bekins, B.A., Cozzarelli, I.M., Baedecker, M.J., Bennett, P.C., Amos, R.T., and Herkelrath, W.N., 2015, Water Resources Research, v. 51, no. 6, p. 4156-4183, doi:10.1002/2015WR016964.
- Organic contaminant transport and fate in the subsurface--Evolution of knowledge and understanding: Essaid, H.I., Bekins, B.A., and Cozzarelli, I.M., 2015, Water Resources Research, v. 51, no. 7, p. 4861-4902, doi:10.1002/2015WR017121.