International Journal of Environmental Bioremediation & Biodegradation
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International Journal of Environmental Bioremediation & Biodegradation. 2019, 7(1), 41-48
DOI: 10.12691/ijebb-7-1-3
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Biostimulation - A Sustainable Remediation of Crude Oil Pollution in the Tropics

Ekpobari Neebee1, and Emmanuel Emeka Oguzie1

1Department of Environmental Management, School of Environmental Science, Federal University of Technology Owerri, Nigeria

Pub. Date: October 28, 2019

Cite this paper:
Ekpobari Neebee and Emmanuel Emeka Oguzie. Biostimulation - A Sustainable Remediation of Crude Oil Pollution in the Tropics. International Journal of Environmental Bioremediation & Biodegradation. 2019; 7(1):41-48. doi: 10.12691/ijebb-7-1-3


The autochthonous microorganisms in hydrocarbon polluted soil are aroused for biodegradation by introduction of external nutrient factors. This research aims to show the sustainability of biostimulation in enhancing crude oil degradation in a tropical soil. The contaminated soils (A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, and I) were treated simultaneously with a combination of NPK fertilizer and saw dust amendment in designed proportions to offer nutrient and a permeable medium suitable for microbial growth and hydrocarbon degradation. The unpolluted soil, control and the treated soil were monitored for total petroleum hydrocarbon (TPH), soil pH, total organic carbon, total nitrogen, total phosphorus, soil texture, hydrocarbon degrading bacteria (HDB) and hydrocarbon degrading fungi (HDF) using standard analytical method and procedures to establish soil restoration efficiency and kinetics of the bioremediation process. The percentage utilization of nitrogen and phosphorus by microorganism were B (85.1%/81.5%), C (82.2%/83.8%), E (88.7%/90.0%), H (92.3%/92.8%) and I (91.5%/92.2%) and culminated in corresponding HDB growth rate of B (0.1840), C (0.1844), E (0.1882), H (0.1921) and I (0.1931). The resultant optimum TPH degradation efficiency of 99% in treatment H at a degradation rate of -0.0479 day-1 in 105 days indicated the effectiveness of the process. The biodegradation process followed first order kinetics with biomass doubling time 3.61 days and a degradation half-life of 14.5 days. Biostimulation is therefore applied to fuel the medium, sustain microbial growth, improve biodegradation rate and ultimately restore the impacted media without any adverse ecological effect.

biostimulation nutrient factors microorganisms biodegradation impacted media ecological effect

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