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Bioremediation

How does bioremediation restore stability or clean up toxic pollutants?
How does bioremediation control levels of pollution?

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Bioremediation and its Environmental Benefits

Bioremediation refers to any natural process that is used to clean up harmful chemicals in the environment. Though bioremediation often refers to the use of microorganisms, it can also include phytoremediation (plants), bioventing, bioleaching, landfarming, composting, bioaugrmentation, rhizofiltration and more. In essence, any process in which natural means are used to convert a contaminant into a harmless compound can be considered bioremediation (Jayakrishnan & Dan, 2011).

The first bioremediation project took place in 1992 in Hanahan, South Carolina. In 1975, 80,000 gallons of kerosene-based jet fuel leaked from a military fuel storage facility and though most of the leak was contained, the sandy soil in the area allowed a good deal of the fuel to reach the underlying water table. The result was that ground water became contaminated with benzene and other high toxic and carcinogenic chemicals. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) implemented a new method in which microorganisms were given the nutrients they needed to consume the toxic compounds and turn them into carbon dioxide. ...

Solution Summary

This solution looks at the process of bioremediation and explores both how and why it works.

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