The important role of microorganisms in cleaning up oil spills along the Arctic seashore

January 30, 2013 • Filed under: News — melanie.rohr

In this week’s WERC seminar, Priyamvada Sharma will discuss the rate of biodegradation in cold climate conditions under varying parameters. Join us this Friday, February 1, 2013!

Friday Seminar Series

  • What: Biodegradation of Crude oil in Cold Climate Terrestrial Environments
  • Who: Priyamvada Sharma
  • When: 3:30-4:30 p.m. Friday, Feb. 1
  • Where: 531 Duckering

This presentation will describe the importance of crude oil degradation by micro-organisms in cold climates. By some accounts, biodegradation is the most cost effective and environmentally friendly method for cleaning up an oil spill. This discussion will focus on my ideas of using biostimulation as an approach to solving problems related to potential oil spills on the arctic seashore. It will focus on creating microcosm studies with varying temperatures (Alaskan seasons), crude oil concentration, soil type and fertilizer treatments. These tests are intended to help characterize the rate of crude oil biodegradation in cold climatic conditions.

Oil slick on an Alaska beach

Photo top: Oil slick on an Alaska beach

(Photo by Priyamvada Sharma)