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60秒科学节目（SSS）是科学美国人网站的一套广播栏目，英文名称：Scientific American – 60 Second Science,节目内容以科学报道为主，节目仅一分钟的时间，主要对当今的科学技术新发展作以简明、通俗的介绍，对于科学的发展如何影响人们的生活环境、健康状况及科学技术，提供了大量简明易懂的阐释。
This is Scientific American — 60-Second Science. I’m Emily Schwing.
On June 3rd, a train loaded with highly volatile crude oil derailed just outside the small town of Mosier in Oregon’s Columbia River Valley. More than 40,000 gallons of crude spilled out of the train. Some burned away in a 14-hour long fire at the scene. Some got into the wastewater treatment system. And some of the spilled crude oil found its way into the nearby groundwater.
Crews with Union Pacific Railroad Company and the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality are now focused on getting that groundwater clean again. They’re using a technique called “biosparging,” which helps the naturally occurring microorganisms at the site consume the oil. The biosparging relies on pumping additional oxygen underground.
“And this additional oxygen will cause the population of microbes to expand very quickly.”
Oregon Department of Environmental Quality project manager Bob Schwarz.
“So the more microbes, the more quickly the oil gets consumed.”
Schwarz says it’s unclear exactly how much oil contaminated the groundwater.
“We’re measuring it in hundreds of parts per billion, with a ‘b,’ so it’s a very small mass. But the levels are still high enough for us to have to clean it up.”
Schwarz says the groundwater treatment system will likely continue for the next year. Meanwhile, trains will resume carrying oil through the area—a move that, according to Oregon Public Broadcasting, local fire chief Jim Appleton called “insane” at the time of the accident.
Thanks for listening for Scientific American — 60-Second Science Science. I’m Emily Schwing.