July 22, 2010
Excellent video explaining “bioremediation” — the use of naturally occurring microbes to decompose spilled oil.
Was used in Galveston Bay spill to clean the marshes and aquatic breeding grounds. 6 weeks later, in the areas the microbes were used, the “grasses flourished”. The results were cut and dry — the areas where microbes were used were visually clean and wildlife had returned – the others not.
Do not understand why they aren’t being used since they exist in nature for this exact purpose and do not have any side effects and eventually serve as food for the returning marine life and die once they run out of food – oil.
Wonder if they have ever been used with dispersants and whether they would work on them as well. Wonder if anyone is working on a microbe that can specifically degrade the dispersants.
Video produced by the Texas General Land Office
As oil flowed into the marshy areas, clean up was begun. But workers quickly found standard skimmers, booms, and sorbent materials hardly worked at all. And, just walking through the wetlands can harm the grasses almost as much as the toxic oil.
Dispersants could not be used because they also were toxic to wildlife and plants.
He references the Texas Oil Spill Response Act of 1991:
The legislation gives Texas authority to protect coastal waters and adjacent shorelines through prevention of spills and discharges by monitoring and planning, to promptly respond in the event of spills and discharges, and to provide funding for activities and collection of claims from oil spills and discharges.