Publisher: Bachudo Science Co. Ltd

Influence of Electrical Conductivity On Microorganisms and Rate of Crude Oil Mineralization In Niger Delta Ultisol

J. P. Essien, A. Y. Itah, S. I. Eduok
KEYWORDS: Electrical conductivity, crude oil, hydrocarbonoclastic microorganismineralization.


The effect of salinity on the population density of hydrocarbonoclastic microorganisms and oil degradation in a tropical ultisol was determined. Soils were simulated with 50gkg -1 of Qua lboe Light (OIL) crude oil Salt treatments included NaCl amendments to adjust the soil solution electrical conductivities (EC) to 40. 120 and 200 dSm-1. Treated soils were incubated at 26oC. Oil degradation was estimated from the gravimetric determinations of remaining oil. The results showed that amending the ultisol with crude oil stimulated the growth of oil degrading microorganisms, while salt concentration inducing an EC of 200 dSm-1 in oil amended ultisol resulted in a decrease in the amount oil mineralized. A significant positive correlation was found between the number of hydrocarbonoclastic microorganisims and levels of 011 mineralization at EC 40 dsm-1 (r = 0.980, P =0.05) and EC 120 dsm-1 (r = 0.976, P = 0.05) except at EC 200 dsm-1 (r = 0.855, P = 0.05). This is an indication that desalting of soils contaminated with oil and salts is required for a speedy bloremediation of an ultisol.  

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