Youness Sharifi - Nutrient and Oxygen Concentrations within the Sediments of an Alaskan Beach Polluted with the Exxon Valdez Oil Spill

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  Publication Details (including relevant citation   information):

    Michel C. Boufadel*,     Youness Sharifi,     Benoit Van Aken,     Brian A. Wrenn,     and Kenneth Lee§ 
      Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Temple       University, 1947 North 12th Street, Philadelphia,       Pennsylvania 19122, National Corn-to-Ethanol Research Center,       Southern Illinois University Edwardsville, 400 University       Park Drive, Edwardsville, Illinois 62025-3604, and Center of       Offshore Oil and Gas Environmental Research, Bedford       Institute of Oceanography, Fisheries and Oceans Canada, 1       Challenger Drive, Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, B2Y 4A, Canada    
    Environ. Sci. Technol., 2010, 44 (19), pp     7418–7424  
    DOI: 10.1021/es102046n  
    Publication Date (Web): September 1, 2010  
    Copyright © 2010 American Chemical Society  

    * Corresponding author phone: (215)204-7871; fax:     (215)204-4696; e-mail:, †    

      Temple University.    

, ‡    

      Southern Illinois University Edwardsville.    

, §    

      Bedford Institute of Oceanography, Fisheries and Oceans       Canada.    



  Measurements of the background concentrations of nutrients,   dissolved oxygen (DO), and salinity were obtained from a beach   that has oil from the Exxon Valdez oil spill in 1989.   Two transects were set across the beach, one passed through an   oil patch while the other transect was clean. Three pits were dug   in each transect, and they ranged in depth from 0.9 to 1.5 m. The   DO was around 1.0 mg L−1 at oiled pits and larger than   5 mg L−1 at clean pits. The average nutrient   concentrations in the beach were 0.39 mg-N L−1 and   0.020 mg-P L−1. Both concentrations are lower than   optimal values for oil biodegradation (2 to 10 mg-N   L−1and 0.40 to 2.0 mg-P L−1), which   suggests that they are both limiting factors for biodegradation.   The lowest nitrate and DO values were found in the oiled pits,   leading to the conclusion that microbial oil consumption was   probably occurring under anoxic conditions and was associated to   denitrification. We present evide

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