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Oil extraction operations as well as equipment failure and infrastructure vandalism have caused serious environmental pollution with crude oil spills world-wide. The remediation of the polluted sites is an environmental problem beckoning for solution. In this study, the possibility of pig droppings and pig bone char mixture (biostimulant) to stimulate and optimize crude oil biodegradation in soil was investigated. Exactly 500g of loamy soil was spiked with 3% (w/w) of crude oil. The spiked soil was amended with varying percentage mixtures of the biostimulant and labelled A – E. The spiked soil without biostimulant served as the Control. Each experiment was setup in six (6) replicates, carried out for six weeks, and destructively sampled and analysed on a weekly basis. The removal efficiencies of the biostimulated and unbiostimulated soils were observed to range from 66.70 to 86.70% and 3.69%, respectively. The biodegradation first-order rate constants ranged from 0.1978 to 0.3391wk-1 and 0.0050wk-1 for the biostimulated and unbiostimulated soils, respectively. Optimum removal of total petroleum hydrocarbon (TPH) was observed for biostimulated soil C comprising 50% bone char and 50% pig droppings. Results from biostimulated soils A, B, D and E indicated that pig droppings is a more effective biostimulant than pig bone char. A first-order kinetic model adequately predicted the removal of TPH with the optimum biostimulant. It is concluded that using agro-organic waste materials such as pig droppings and pig bone char in a ratio of 1:1 can offer a simple, effective, inexpensive and environmentally friendly solution to the problem of soil contamination with crude oil.
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