Canadian scientists have found that a certain kind of bacteria that exists in the Canadian Arctic can biologically degrade oil and diesel.
The results were recently published in the Journal of Applied and Environmental Microbiology. The scientists used the bacteria they found off the coast of Labrador and combined that water in bottles with mud and oil and diesel at a temperature similar to that of the Labrador Sea.
According to Casey Hubert, an associate professor of geomicrobiology at the University of Calgary and co-author of the study:
“These permanently cold waters are seeing increasing industrial activity related to maritime shipping and offshore oil and gas sector activities. . . . As climate change extends ice-free periods and increasing industrial activity takes place in the Arctic, it is important to understand the ways in which the Arctic marine microbiome will respond if there is an oil or fuel spill.”
Check out more about the study’s results here.