Author(s): Dorn PB, Salanitro JP
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Abstract Ecotoxicity methods were used to assess different soil and oil combinations before, during and after laboratory bioremediation with associated hydrocarbon analysis. Heavy, medium and light crude oil (API gravity 14, 30, and 55) was spiked (ca. 5\% w/w) into two sandy soils in the laboratory having organic carbon concentrations of 0.3 (Norwood) and 4.7\% (Norwood/Baccto). The earthworm (Eisenia fetida) 14-d lethality assay, the modified Microbics Microtox Solid-Phase assay, and the 14-d plant seed germination and growth assays using corn, wheat and oats, were spiked and tested during a 360-d laboratory remediation. Eisenia was the most sensitive of the three methods utilized with survival increasing throughout bioremediation with fastest toxicity reduction in the high carbon Norwood/Baccto soils where LC50's were 100\% or greater at the end of 90-d whereas, > 150-d were required to achieve a similar result in the low carbon soil. Analysis of the undiluted treatments with oily soil alone showed that earthworm survival was high after 90-d in all high organic carbon soils, and after eight months in the low carbon soils, except for the Norwood soil-light oil treatment, which required 360-d to achieve 100\% survival. The Microtox assay was less sensitive with EC50's 100\% or greater observed after 90-d in high carbon soils and after 240-d for all low carbon soils. After bioremediation, no effects on seed germination were observed, although some plant growth inhibition effects remained. There was no direct correlation between total petroleum hydrocarbon concentrations and toxicity.
This article was published in Chemosphere
and referenced in Journal of Petroleum & Environmental Biotechnology