Bioremediation of Crude Oil Contaminated Soil using wood Ash


O. D. Akan, C. A. Etok and A. A. Adegoke (2013). Journal of Pure and Applied Microbiology 7(3): 1749-1756

The efficiency of two surfactants; wood ash [a domestic/agricultural by-product] and Tween 80 (a chemically synthesized surfactant) was investigated during the bioremediation of crude oil contaminated soil. The soil samples were contaminated with Crude oil at 5% and 10% levels and inoculated with hydrocarbonoclastic organisms.
Microbial analysis of the soil amended with wood ash (2.5%) gave a range of 9.50 x 103 Cfu/g to 1.80 x 105 Cfu/g and 8.00 x103 Cfu/g 1.7 x105 while those amended with Tween 80 (2.) was 6.00 x103 Cfu/g 2.10 x105 Cfu/g and 1.00 x104 Cfu/g 8.50 x104 Cfu/g for 10% and 5% levels of contamination respectively. The pH values for all soils were
observed to increase from acidity (5.63) to near neutrality (averagely 6.75). Other soil physicochemical parameters also showed variations during the period. After 90 days, the soils’ Total Residual Hydrocarbon Content (TRHC) revealed differing reductions as aided by the surfactants. Soil samples with 10% crude oil contamination had background crude oil level of 9,751 mg/Kg, and at the end of the period, soil amended with wood ash recorded a TRHC of 887.22 mg/Kg while that amended with Tween 80 recorded 1,450 mg/Kg representing 90.90% and 85.12% reductions respectively. Soils with 5% levels of contamination had higher reduction rules as wood ash recorded 94.54% while Tween 80 had 90.38% from a background contamination level of 8226 mg/Kg. Wood ash enhanced the degradation of the crude components C8 to C28 more than that achieved by Tween 80.

Prof. Comfort Etok

Professor Comfort Etok is a Professor of Microbiology from University of Uyo. Her area of specialization is Industrial/Food Biology. She has obtained her BSc, MSc. and Ph.D in Microbiology from University of Calabar..

She has been a recipient of several awards, one of which was the Professor Nduka Okafor’s prize for Best Graduating Student in Microbiology. She has served and is still serving in various committees in the University, State and National frontier. She has supervised and is still supervising intelligent undergraduate and postgraduate researches in Microbiology. One of such research worthy of note is “Fermentation And Amino Acid Profile Of Maize Pomace And Rice Husk And Their Dietary Effects On Broilers Chicken”.

She holds Membership in several Professional Bodies like American Society for Microbiolgy, Nigerian Society for Microbiology etc. She has published highly rated Journal Articles, Book Chapters etc. One of such publication shaking her field is “Bdellevibrio and Like Organisms: The much Anticipated “Magic Bullet”.” published by World News of National Science.
Visit her personal knowledgebase at to more about this great scholar.

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