Natural attenuation of petroleum hydrocarbons—a study of biodegradation effects in groundwater (Vitanovac, Serbia)
- 249 Downloads
The role of natural attenuation processes in groundwater contamination by petroleum hydrocarbons is of intense scientific and practical interest. This study provides insight into the biodegradation effects in groundwater at a site contaminated by kerosene (jet fuel) in 1993 (Vitanovac, Serbia). Total petroleum hydrocarbons (TPH), hydrochemical indicators (O2, NO3−, Mn, Fe, SO42−, HCO3−), δ13C of dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC), and other parameters were measured to demonstrate biodegradation effects in groundwater at the contaminated site. Due to different biodegradation mechanisms, the zone of the lowest concentrations of electron acceptors and the zone of the highest concentrations of metabolic products of biodegradation overlap. Based on the analysis of redox-sensitive compounds in groundwater samples, redox processes ranged from strictly anoxic (methanogenesis) to oxic (oxygen reduction) within a short distance. The dependence of groundwater redox conditions on the distance from the source of contamination was observed. δ13C values of DIC ranged from − 15.83 to − 2.75‰, and the most positive values correspond to the zone under anaerobic and methanogenic conditions. Overall, results obtained provide clear evidence on the effects of natural attenuation processes—the activity of biodegradation mechanisms in field conditions.
KeywordsGroundwater Petroleum hydrocarbons Natural attenuation Biodegradation Stable isotopes
This study was supported by the Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Development of the Republic of Serbia under Grant No. III 43004 and Grant No. OI 176018.
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that there is no conflict of interest.
- Alvarez, J. P., & Illman, A. W. (2006). Bioremediation and natural attenuation: process fundamentals and mathematical models. New York: Willey.Google Scholar
- APHA. (1995). Standard methods for the examination of water and wastewater. Washington, DC: American Public Health Association.Google Scholar
- Bossert, I. D., Shor, L. M., & Kosson, D. S. (2002). Methods for measuring hydrocarbon biodegradation in soils. Washington, DC: ASM Press.Google Scholar
- Das, N., & Chandran, P. (2011). Microbial degradation of petroleum hydrocarbon contaminants: an overview. Biotechnology Research International. https://doi.org/10.4061/2011/941810.
- ISO. (2009a). Determination of alkalinity (EN ISO 9963-1:07). Belgrade: Institute for Standardization of Serbia.Google Scholar
- ISO. (2009b). Determination of hydrocarbon oil index, method using solvent extraction and gas chromatography (EN ISO 9377-:2:09). Belgrade: Institute for Standardization of Serbia.Google Scholar
- Jurgens, B.C., McMahon, P.B., Chapelle, F.H., & Eberts, S.M. (2009). An Excel workbook for identifying redox processes in ground water: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2009–1004 8p. Available at http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2009/1004/.
- Kaćanski, A. (1995). Hydrogeological problems of the groundwater contamination in alluvial deposits of Zapadna Morava in Vitanovac (Kraljevo). Belgrade: Faculty of Mining and Geology [in Serbian].Google Scholar
- Lang, F. S., Destain, J., Delvigne, F., Druart, P., Ongena, M., & Thonart, P. (2016). Characterization and evaluation of the potential of a diesel-degrading bacterial consortium isolated from fresh mangrove sediment. Water, Air, & Soil Pollution, 227, 58. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11270-016-2749-7.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Lawniczak, A. E., Zbierska, J., Nowak, B., Achtenberg, K., Kowiak, A. G., & Kanas, K. (2016). Impact of agriculture and land use on nitrate contamination in groundwater and running waters in central-west Poland. Environmental Monitoring and Assessment, 188, 172. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10661-016-5167-9.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Marić, N. (2016). Natural attenuation and enhanced bioremediation of groundwater contaminated by petroleum hydrocarbons. Ph.D. thesis. University of Belgrade, Faculty of Mining and Geology, pp. 1–181. [in Serbian].Google Scholar
- Marić, N., & Nikić, Z. (2016). Potential of natural attenuation processes in environmental contamination by petroleum hydrocarbons. Proceedings of the 3 rd Conference of the World Association of Soil and Water Conservation. Belgrade: Faculty of Forestry, pp. 63–64.Google Scholar
- Marić, N., Ilić, M., Miletić, S., Gojgić-Cvijović, G., Beškoski, V., Vrvić, M. M., & Papić, P. (2015). Enhanced in situ bioremediation of groundwater contaminated by petroleum hydrocarbons at the location of the Nitex textiles, Serbia. Environmental Earth Sciences, 74(6), 5211–5219.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Matić, I. (1994). Research activities on the monitoring of accidental groundwater contamination by kerosene in Vitanovac (Kraljevo). Belgrade: Faculty of Mining and Geology [in Serbian].Google Scholar
- Scheutz, C., Durant, N. D., Hansen, M. H., & Bjerg, P. L. (2011). Natural and enhanced anaerobic degradation of 1,1,1-trichloroethane and its degradation products in the subsurface—a critical review. Water Resources, 45, 2701–2723.Google Scholar
- SMEWW. (1995). Standard methods for examination of water and wastewater, titrimetric determination of dissolved CO 2 (4500-CO 2 С). Washington, DC: American Public Health Association/American Water Works Association/Water Environment Federation.Google Scholar
- US EPA. (1999). Use of monitored natural attenuation at superfund, RCRA corrective action, and underground storage tank sites, OSWER directive 9200.4-17P. Washington, DC: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Solid Waste and Emergency Response.Google Scholar
- US EPA 200.7 Rev. 5. (1998). Determination of metals and trace elements in water and wastes by inductively coupled plasma-atomic emission spectrometry. Cincinnati: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.Google Scholar
- US EPA 300.1. (1997). Determination of inorganic anions in drinking water by ion chromatography. Cincinnati: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.Google Scholar
- US NRC. (1993). In situ bioremediation, when does it work? Washington, DC: National Academy Press.Google Scholar
- US NRC. (1994). Alternatives for ground water cleanup. Washington, DC: National Academy Press.Google Scholar