A pilot scale field study was initiated to evaluate the feasibility of bioremediating hydrocarbon-contaminated soils at production sites in the southern Permian Basin in West Texas and New Mexico. Soils were contaminated with crude oil which had leaked into the soils from tank batteries and wellheads during production operations. Soils were characterized as fine to medium sands and loamy fine sands, well drained, low water holding capacity, and alkaline. Native soils at the sites contained an indigenous microbial population capable of degrading hydrocarbon contaminants. It was not necessary to add commercial bacteria to achieve acceptable biodegradation rates. Bioremediation is a viable technology to remediate hydrocarbon contaminated soils at production sites in the Permian Basin.

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