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More about the Reston Biogeochemical Processes in Groundwater Laboratory

The Reston Biogeochemical Processes in Groundwater Laboratory (RBPGL) research team conducts long-term investigations on the fate and geochemical effects of organic contaminants in surface and subsurface environments.

Our focus is on understanding how transformations of organic anthropogenic contaminants impact aquifer, soil, and surface-water chemistry, targeting transformations with potential ecological and health impacts.

The RBPGL studies the influence of contaminant transformation processes on aquifer, soil, wetland, and surface water chemistry. Major contributions have been enhancing understanding of:

  1. hydrocarbon and biofuel biodegradation reactions in groundwater
  2. landfill leachate chemistry, migration and impacts on groundwater, surface water and wetlands
  3. fate and effects of unconventional oil and gas (UOG) development and wastes on environmental health
  4. urban wastewater composition and fate
  5. secondary water-quality effects of natural attenuation of contaminants

RBPGL research supports the priorities of the USGS Water Resources Mission Area and the USGS Ecosystems Mission Area. Our research aligns with the objectives of the USGS Environmental Health Programs and the overall USGS mission of providing earth science information on toxic substances in the Nation’s surface water and groundwater. Our research products provide a basis for land and water resources managers to make science-based decisions when developing effective remediation strategies and to preventing further contamination.