State Water Resources Research Institute Program

Project ID: 2008AK72B
Title: Transport and biodegradation of Hydrocarbons in Soil Contaminated with Conventional or Alternative Fuel
Project Type: Research
Start Date: 3/01/2008
End Date: 2/28/2009
Congressional District: AK-1
Focus Categories: Treatment, Models, Solute Transport
Keywords: fuel spills, bioremediation, contaminant transport, modeling
Principal Investigator: Schiewer, Silke (University of Alaska Fairbanks, WERC (Water & Environmental Research Center))
Federal Funds: $ 34,881
Non-Federal Matching Funds: $ 13,796
Abstract: This study focuses on the fate of hydrocarbons in the soil after the occurrence of fuel spills. Since conventional diesel fuel is a nonrenewable resource and can lead to the pollution of ecosystems and groundwater supply, increased focus is directed towards biofuel from renewable resources. However, the environmental impact of biofuel spills is unknown. Therefore, the present research aims to assess the fate of biofuel in the soil taking into account a broad range of processes that naturally occur, including volatilization, biodegradation, and subsurface transport. The overall goal is to better understand the fate of hydrocarbons in the environment, comparing alternative fuel to conventional fuel. Mathematical models calibrated by experimental tests conducted in soil columns will be used to predict the transport of hydrocarbons in saturated and unsaturated soil.

Progress/Completion Report, PDF

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