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Biofuel components change the ecology of bacterial volatile petroleum hydrocarbon degradation in aerobic sandy soil

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Arvind Singh, Professor Russell Davenport, Professor Ian Head, Professor David Werner

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Abstract

We tested the hypothesis that the biodegradation of volatile petroleum hydrocarbons (VPHs) in aerobic sandy soil is affected by the blending with 10 percent ethanol (E10) or 20 percent biodiesel (B20). When inorganic nutrients were scarce, competition between biofuel and VPH degraders temporarily slowed monoaromatic hydrocarbon degradation. Ethanol had a bigger impact than biodiesel, reflecting the relative ease of ethanol compared to methyl ester biodegradation. Denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) of bacterial 16S rRNA genes revealed that each fuel mixture selected for a distinct bacterial community, each dominated by Pseudomonas spp. Despite lasting impacts on soil bacterial ecology, the overall effects on VHP biodegradation were minor, and average biomass yields were comparable between fuel types, ranging from 0.40 +/- 0.16 to 0.51 +/- 0.22 g of biomass carbon per gram of fuel carbon degraded. Inorganic nutrient availability had a greater impact on petroleum hydrocarbon biodegradation than fuel composition. (C) 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


Publication metadata

Author(s): Elazhari-Ali A, Singh AK, Davenport RJ, Head IM, Werner D

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Environmental Pollution

Year: 2013

Volume: 173

Pages: 125-132

Print publication date: 01/02/2013

ISSN (print): 0269-7491

ISSN (electronic): 1873-6424

Publisher: Elsevier

URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.envpol.2012.10.010

DOI: 10.1016/j.envpol.2012.10.010


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