Editing Comments:Oil-eating microbe found in the Gulf of Mexico

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Seems to me that this isn't as miraculous as some people might think. Ok so we've found a new species of oil eating bacteria... but it's been known for a long time that many, many species of ocean bacteria act this way.

Most oil spills like this tend to disappear quite quickly, much quicker than we could possibly clear them up ourselves, and bacteria that eats / breaks down the oil has been known to be the cause for a long time. Sorry Greenpeace but these things actually do mostly take care of themselves.

Encouraging these bacteria that aid in the clean up is actually one of the more effective methods for cleaning up oil spills.

Not that we don't need to be careful about these things because it does take time and damage is done while the balance is being restored.

Obviously... "Major Oil Spill expected to sort itself out shortly. Don't worry!" and "Bacteria foils oil spill as usual. Nothing to read here" don't make for good news though :) And you'll never hear the government admit that all of its efforts actually play a very small and ineffective part in putting the situation right.

194.72.120.131 (talk)09:15, 31 August 2010

Well... the bit about this not being news is certainly true (many species of bacteria eat oil and (especially) natural gas, so one more is nothing spectacular), but as to the rest... that's kinda true, kinda not. First off, the bacteria only eat certain components of the oil readily, while the more difficult to digest components sit around for a long time until something gets desperate enough to eat them. Second, oil on the surface is eaten much faster than oil that's floating deep under the water at ~4 degrees C. So surface oil disappears quite quickly, while underwater oil can take quite a while. Thirdly, those bacteria only live in the water for the most part. Once the oil hits the shores, it can sit for very, very, very long periods of time (10's of thousands of years in the worst conditions, decades in good conditions).

Gopher65talk16:52, 5 October 2010
 

Deepwater Horizon

Sorry if I missed this, but has/will this help clean up the Deepwater Horizon oil spill?

Mono (talk)18:13, 28 August 2010

Comments from feedback form - "it could have been presented i..."

it could have been presented in more detail

27.107.9.92 (talk)10:46, 2 September 2010

Comments from feedback form - "to long didnt read."

to long didnt read.

203.100.2.69 (talk)03:38, 2 September 2010

Comments from feedback form - "Big BP bribe,that oil is still..."

Big BP bribe,that oil is still there waiting on the bottom for the next storm,try getting someone other than BP to fund the testing and we'll be convinced to the truth of this article...

74.248.52.99 (talk)19:41, 31 August 2010

Comments from feedback form - "Sound to good to be true? All ..."

Sound to good to be true? All of the oil is miraculously gone? Maybe that is because the Energy Biosciences Institute is primarily funded by BP.

BP estimates they captured 800,000 out of 4.9 million barrels spilled. That leaves about 4 million barrels for the microbes to eat. Do we really think bacteria have eaten 4.1 million barrels of oil? Since no one but BP is allowed to run submersible cameras underwater, how will we know whether or not it is just settling onto the bottom or being carried around the Gulf or out to sea?

I have heard from friends of mine in the gulf that: the waters reek of oil and dispersants, tar balls, sheen and oil under the sand are everywhere, it is not safe to fish or swim in spite of assurances to the contrary, and fishermen are refusing to fish because the shrimp, crabs and fish are also ingesting oil making them unsafe to eat. Although government inspectors who 'sniff' the seafood are declaring it safe.

So hey, no worries, it's all over..move along, nothing to see here folks... enjoy your cheap gas and drill baby drill!

76.0.131.18 (talk)23:49, 30 August 2010

Surface oil is eaten by bacteria far faster than underwater oil or oil that reaches the shore, both of which are slow to degrade. It's entirely possible that all the surface oil has been eaten already.

Gopher65talk02:32, 31 August 2010
 

Comments from feedback form - "How is a research which is mai..."

How is a research which is mainly funded by BP and which is analysing the effects of the oil spill caused by BP meant to be trustworthy. I strongly doubt that these bacteria even exist.

194.39.218.10 (talk)15:29, 30 August 2010

Comments from feedback form - "do I smell lies and coverups?"

do I smell lies and coverups?

122.168.97.250 (talk)06:58, 29 August 2010

I'm assuming the researchers haven't given this species a scientific binomial name yet?

124.188.171.7 (talk)01:43, 28 August 2010

Usually they give the binomial name some days after the discover.--Siciliano Edivad (talk) 11:29, 28 August 2010 (UTC)

Siciliano Edivad (talk)11:29, 28 August 2010