RBPGL Helps Identify Crude-oil Metabolites in Subsurface Plumes

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USGS scientists are studying two subsurface crude-oil spill sites in Minnesota measured concentrations of oil breakdown products (metabolites) at greater concentrations than parent compound concentrations.

At sites where there have been crude-oil or petroleum hydrocarbon fuel spills and contaminants have entered groundwater, metabolites from the crude oil form primarily from biodegradation reactions. The metabolites are more soluble than the parent compounds and are transported from the original source, forming a groundwater plume.

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USGS scientists collecting a water sample from a well at the USGS Bemidji Research Site

USGS scientists collect a groundwater sample from a well at the USGS Bemidji Crude-Oil Spill Research Site, Minnesota. The scientists monitored real-time dissolved oxygen, pH, specific conductance, and water temperature as the well was pumped to identify when to collect representative sample. (Credit: Jared Trost, USGS)

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Date published: March 31, 2016
Status: Completed

U.S. Geological Survey Identifies Crude-Oil Metabolites in Subsurface Plumes

U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) scientists studying two subsurface crude-oil spill sites in Minnesota measured concentrations of oil breakdown products (metabolites) at greater concentrations than parent compound concentrations.