Bioremediation

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Any process that utilizes microorganisms or their enzymes to solve environmental problems such as contaminated soil or groundwater.

Commercial applications of bioremediation in the mining environment include the immobilization and recovery of soluble metals from aqueous wastes and the microbial degradation of cyanide species. Bioremediation processes employ oxidizing or reducing bacteria to treat the contaminants.

The use of bioremediation is increasing as it is an environmentally friendly, low cost method of combating environmental problems. Bioremediation can be carried out in situ by injecting bacteria into ground water contamination or externally by pumping the contaminants to a treatment facility. External treatment systems generally have a higher capital cost but tend to provide much more rapid treatment.

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