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Gewählte Master / Diploma Thesis:

Lisa Pum (2015): Potential methane production and oxidation in soil reclamation covers of an oil sands mining site in Alberta, Canada.
Master / Diploma Thesis - Institut für Bodenforschung (IBF), BOKU-Universität für Bodenkultur, pp 101. UB BOKU obvsg

Data Source: ZID Abstracts
Methane (CH4) is a significant greenhouse gas and was found at oil sands mining sites in Alberta, Canada. Two processes of the global CH4 cycle are microbial CH4 production and oxidation. Little is however known about CH4 production and oxidation in oil sands reclamation covers. The purpose of this study was therefore to investigate potential CH4 production and oxidation in reclamation covers, oil sands tailings and wetlands of an oil sands mining site in Alberta, Canada. CH4 production and oxidation potential were investigated in laboratory scale microcosms through headspace analysis using gas chromatography. Samples from 6 reclamation covers were collected at 3 different depths. In addition, oil sands tailings and soil from two reclaimed wetlands were studied for CH4 production. Samples were dried, crushed and sieved to 4 mm, incubated in microcosms and monitored for 8 weeks. Microcosm headspace gas was analysed for CH4, CO2 and N2O. All experiments were carried out in triplicates, including controls. SF6 and Helium were used as internal standards. The results showed significant differences for CH4 production potential between the soil depths, oil sands tailings and wetlands. Moreover, there were significant differences in the CH4 oxidation potential of the substrate from the three depths and between the two main substrates used as reclamation material. For both assays, the upper layer showed highest microbial activity, which was correlated with nutrient supply, in particular with total organic carbon (TOC), phosphate (PO4) and sulphate (SO4). In conclusion, the present study showed that reclamation covers of oil sands mining sites have the potential to oxidize on-site produced CH4 to the less harmful greenhouse gas CO2.Furthermore, other microbial processes, in particular heterotrophic respiration were detected during incubation. Field investigations thus are suggested as the next step for gaining information about methane oxidation and production rates on-site.

1.Mitwirkender: Huber-Humer Marion

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