The Fourth International Symposium on Bioremediation and Sustainable Environmental Technologies was held May 22-25, 2017 at the Hyatt Regency Miami Hotel. It brought together attendees from 26 countries, including environmental professionals representing universities, government site management and regulatory agencies, research and development, and consulting firms, and commercial service providers. Battelle has organized the biennial conference since 2011. This year’s conference was co-sponsored by AECOM, CDM Smith, EOS Remediation, FRx, OBG and Regenesis.
The technical program, consisting of more than 500 platform and poster presentations split into 55 technical sessions, focused on advances in bioremediation and green and sustainable remediation (GSR) practices. Six major research tracks covered topics ranging from innovative biological bioremediation approaches to munitions response. A series of sessions discussed biodegradation and remediation of crude oil in various environments and the management of petroleum hydrocarbon sites. Another series focused on applying GSR practices to all stages of remediation, from remedy selection and optimization to long-term monitoring and management strategies. The sessions addressed key industry developments and challenges such as the use of advanced tools for assessing and monitoring bioremediation and natural attenuation, as well as the challenges of applying bioremediation at various types of complex sites and under extreme climatic conditions. Other sessions addressed biodegradation of emerging contaminants, biofuels and the evaluation and mitigation of vapor intrusion.
The four-day program was anchored by three panel discussions on current topics in bioremediation, including using combined remedies at a Superfund site, sampling and analysis of per- and polyfluoalkyl substances (PFAS), and using geology to follow groundwater flow. There were also two keynote presentations. Dr. Larry Brand of the University of Miami presented Harmful Algal Blooms in South Florida: Environmental Causes and Humans Health Consequences. Dr. David Tsao of BP presented Evaluating Bioremediation Agents as an Oil Spill Response Alternative.
The conference was co-chaired by Battelle’s Andrew Barton and Stephen Rosansky. In addition, Battelle subject matter experts presented technical work and chaired or moderated several of the sessions. Battelle presentations included:
- Evaluation of Vapor Intrusion Risk from a Shallow Chlorinated Solvent Plume, Former Naval Air Warfare Center Warminster (Andrew Barton)
- Strategy for Site Closure of a Large and Dilute MTBE Groundwater Plume (Pamela Chang)
- PANEL: Sampling and Analysis of PFAS Compounds: Lessons Learned and the State of the Science (Ramona Darlington, Ph.D.)
- Bridging Data Gaps for Ecological Assessment of PFAS (Stephanie Hines)
- Proteomic Tools to Monitor Chlorinated Solvent Bioremediation and Estimate In Situ Degradation Rates (Kate Kucharzyk, Ph.D.)
- The Use of Omic-Based Tools to Aid in the Assessment of Monitored Natural Attenuation of MTBE Contaminated Sites with Biobarrier Oxygen Injection Systems (Kate Kucharzyk , Ph.D.)
- Use of Fungal-Derived Enzymatic Cocktail Encapsulated in Biodegradable Shell for Degradation of Environmental Contaminants (Kate Kucharzyk, Ph.D.)
- GCL Tie and Treating Superfund Site Supplemental Site Characterization (Shawn Majors)
- Finding TCE in All the Wrong Places: Using Multiple Lines of Evidence to Characterize Contamination in a Glacial Till (Sam Moore)
Conference proceedings will be made available to technical program registrants by July 31, 2017.