Abstract

We investigated magnetic susceptibility (MS) variations in hydrocarbon contaminated sediments. Our objective was to determine if MS can be used as an intrinsic bioremediation indicator due to the activity of iron-reducing bacteria. A contaminated and an uncontaminated core were retrieved from a site contaminated with crude oil near Bemidji, Minnesota and subsampled for MS measurements. The contaminated core revealed enriched MS zones within the hydrocarbon smear zone, which is related to iron-reduction coupled to oxidation of hydrocarbon compounds and the vadose zone, which is coincident with a zone of methane depletion suggesting aerobic or anaerobic oxidation of methane is coupled to iron-reduction. The latter has significant implications for methane cycling. We conclude that MS can serve as a proxy for intrinsic bioremediation due to the activity of iron-reducing bacteria iron-reducing bacteria and for the application of geophysics to iron cycling studies.

Department(s)

Geosciences and Geological and Petroleum Engineering

Keywords and Phrases

Anoxic Sediments; Bacteria; Biodegradation; Bioremediation; Biotechnology; Contamination; Crude Oil; Magnetic Susceptibility; Methane; Organic Compounds; Pollution; Anaerobic Oxidation Of Methanes; Bemidji, Minnesota; Contaminated Sediment; Hydrocarbon Compounds; Iron Reducing Bacteria; Iron Reduction; Methane Depletion; Vadose Zone; Iron; Contaminated Land; Geophysics; Iron-reducing Bacterium; Microbial Activity; Oxidation; Sediment Pollution; Bemidji; Minnesota; United States

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

0094-8276

Document Type

Article - Journal

Document Version

Final Version

File Type

text

Language(s)

English

Rights

© 2011 American Geophysical Union (AGU), All rights reserved.

Included in

Geology Commons

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