Friday, July 2, 2010

Oil Eating Bacteria

Oil eating microbes are getting a lot of attention in the news. They are being toted as the eco-friendly and easy way to clean up residue in the gulf. They would need some help though, in the way of phosphorus and nitrogen, to get them to flourish. Would these microbes not then deplete the oxygen levels in the gulf where the water is being fertilized? We already have a dead zone due to agricultural run-off from the Mississippi River. Would this exacerbate the problem?

We are already seeing wildlife flee the oil laden areas.

Are the naturally occuring bacteria already at work? Is this (see below) because of fertilizer run-off? What would happen if we fertilized the area more... less oxygen? If the fish are already leaving, should we just clean it up with microbes anyway?

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