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Sampling site information, well construction details, and data dictionaries for data sets associated with the National Crude Oil Spill Fate and Natural Attenuation Site near Bemidji, Minnesota

September 30, 2019

This U.S. Geological Survey data release provides detailed sampling site information, hole and well construction details, and data dictionaries necessary to interpret historical and future physical, chemical, and biological data sets derived from samples collected and measurements made in association with the National Crude Oil Spill Fate and Natural Attenuation Research Site. In 1979, a high-pressure pipeline carrying crude oil burst near the city of Bemidji, Minnesota and spilled approximately 1.7 million liters (10,700 barrels) of crude oil into glacial outwash deposits (Essaid and others, 2011). Since 1983, scientists with the U.S. Geological Survey, in collaboration with scientists from academic institutions, industry, and the regulatory community have conducted extensive investigations of multiphase flow and transport, volatilization, dissolution, geochemical interactions, microbial populations, and biodegradation with the goal of providing an improved understanding of the natural processes limiting the extent of hydrocarbon contamination. Long-term field studies at Bemidji have illustrated that the fate of hydrocarbons evolves with time, and a snap-shot study of a hydrocarbon plume may not provide information that is of relevance to the long-term behavior of the plume during natural attenuation. The research at the site has been supported primarily by the U.S. Geological Survey's Toxic Substances Hydrology Program.