Remediation Treatments and Economic Assessment of Oil Residual Sludge from the Bottom of Tunisian Refinery Crude Oil Storage Tanks

  • Olfa Ben SaidEmail author
  • Rihab Belgacem
  • Boudour Ben Gaffar
  • Hamouda Beyrem
  • James R Kahn
Conference paper
Part of the Advances in Science, Technology & Innovation book series (ASTI)


The residual sludge from the bottom of refinery crude oil storage tanks causes major environmental and societal problems in Tunisia. Due to its high viscosity, it must be removed from the storage tanks in order to utilize the crude oil. However, its disposal in the environment leads to the infiltration of toxic metals into groundwater and eventual contamination of surface water bodies. The aim of this work was to characterize and treat sludge from Tunisian refinery by two different approaches (chemical and biological) and evaluate the economic efficiency of sludge remediation. Our results showed that both approaches are useful in terms of reducing the metal content of the sludge. However, the biological approach is more economically efficient and leads to better ecological outcomes.


Sludge Petroleum Biological treatment Chemical treatment Metals 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Olfa Ben Said
    • 1
    Email author
  • Rihab Belgacem
    • 1
  • Boudour Ben Gaffar
    • 1
  • Hamouda Beyrem
    • 1
  • James R Kahn
    • 2
  1. 1.Bizerte Faculty of SciencesEnvironment Biomonitoring Laboratory LBEBizerteTunisia
  2. 2.Department of EconomicsWashington and Lee UniversityLexingtonUSA

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