New research on microbiology of ETBE biodegradation in European groundwater

GPRG have been awarded a research contract from CONCAWE to investigate the microbiology of ethyl-tertiary-butyl-ether (ETBE) biodegradation in European groundwater. The project, which starts in October 2016, also involves researchers in the Dept of Animal and Plant Sciences at the University of Sheffield, and will examine the interactions between microorganisms which have the capability for biodegradation of this fuel additive in groundwater. The aim of the project is to explore the functional role of these microorganisms in biodegradation processes, such as co-metabolism of ETBE with other gasoline ether oxygenate compounds (GEO) and hydrocarbons when these gasolines enter groundwater. The research will investigate which microorganisms and genes are involved in the biodegradation of ETBE and other GEO in mixtures, identify ETBE-degrading microorganisms as potential markers of ETBE biodegradation potential for site screening, and deduce the optimal conditions for in-situ biodegradation of ETBE. The goal is to provide scientific information to support decisions on risk-management of ETBE-contaminated groundwater in Europe.