Microbes To The Rescue? | Chemical & Engineering News
 
 
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Web Date: July 28, 2010

Microbes To The Rescue?

Oil Spill: The fate of spilled oil in the Gulf rests with the hydrocarbon-digesting microbes colonizing underwater plumes
Department: Science & Technology | Collection: Disaster in Gulf
News Channels: Environmental SCENE
Keywords: oil spill, microbes, Gulf of Mexico, dead zone, hypoxia

Millions of gallons of oil now drift throughout the Gulf of Mexico in massive, underwater plumes. Last week, scientists from the University of South Florida confirmed that this submerged oil came from BP's leaking well more than 5,000 feet below the ocean's surface. Over the past three months, the high pressure at the wellhead has pulverized the oil, while chemical dispersants have broken it into microscopic droplets. Unlike surface oil slicks, which physical forces such . . .

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