Bioremediation: Its a natural

Issue 7 and Volume 99.

Bioremediation: It`s a natural

Bugs can be pests around the house or garden, but for utilities with chemical wastes to dispose of, they can be a cost-efficient tool, saving disposal expenses and man-hours, according to Donnie White, president of Southeastern Biotechnics.

OInjecting bugs down into your sumps, drains, ponds, digesters, clarifiers, ditches or wherever an area has been a clean-up expense and removing 75 to 80 percent less product for pennies a day?it?s unbelievable,O White said.

White?s ObugsO are naturally-occurring bacteria, marketed under the registered name Munox, which eat petroleum, sewage, oils or carbon-based chemicals. Once they have eaten all the food in a contaminated site, they eat each other, leaving almost no trace of the contamination or of their presence.

The bacteria can be effective on a broad range of products including diesel fuel, 2-chlorotoluene, butyl acetate, naphthalene, heptane, methylene chloride, camphor, benzoate, methanol, Bunker C oil, 1- or 2-Dichloroethane, phenol, cresols, octane, waste oil and ethylbenzene.

OYou can take a spoonful of dirt from anywhere in America and you will have eight to nine different kinds of bacteria. Of these nine bacteria, Southeastern selects the one strain that is the pollution eater. Of that one, we only take the athletes. We motivate them. We feed them nutrients and then we freeze them. When we bring them out of the refrigerator and add water, they?re ready to go,O White said. The bacteria have a shelf life of approximately five years.

One advantage to this product is its concentration. Once the bacteria are placed inside a water jetter or acid circulator and water is added, they begin to multiply, creating more and more bacteria product.

One limitation is time. Munox takes more time to work than some other clean-up techniques, averaging two to four weeks to clean up a contaminated area. The bacteria also cannot be contained in open water and will not work with chlorine, sodium or other substances not based on the carbon atom. Chlorine kills Munox, just as it kills other germs.

OMost industrial cleaning contractors are great at what they do. They have the ability to clean almost anything. But, what do you do with that product after it?s removed? Usually, the plant would call in another company to truck it out to a special landfill. Now Southeastern Biotechnics will bioremediate it for a minimum fee while we?re still on the premises,O White said. OIt?s also not a bad business decision for the customer who can end up spending substantially less money on cleanup and with less interruption in the day-to-day business schedule, especially if the bacteria are used in regular maintenance.O

The tough bugs can survive and eat pollution up to 110 F and down to nearly freezing without dying.