BASELINE STUDY FOR BIOREMEDIATION OF DIESEL CONTAMINATED SOIL SITE OF ANAND, GUJARAT, INDIA
The present study encompasses the evaluation of aged refined diesel contaminated soils for physico-chemical characterization, heavy metal content and fungal population (with 18S rRNA) compared to uncontaminated garden soil collected from different locations of Anand, Gujarat, India. The total petroleum hydrocarbon (TPH) concentrations encountered were 17,949 mg/kg for diesel, and 142.65 mg/kg for garden soil. The changes created by Diesel contamination resulted in the reduction of pH and fungal growth but elevated the soil organic carbon and nitrogen. Variation in individual concentrations of physicochemical properties in the contaminated soil samples affected the overall conductivity and soil fertility indices. Increased concentration of heavy metals like Cobalt, Copper, Iron, Zinc and Lead were encountered, where Cu in the diesel soil was found to be higher than the permissible limits ofÂ Â WHO/ APHA. Heavy metal soil contamination was assessed on the basis of geo accumulation index, enrichment factor and contamination factor. Ten native fungal species belonging to a total of five genera includeÂ Aspergillus (A. terreus, A. versicolor , A. niger);Â FusariumÂ oxysporum.;Â Penicillium Â janthinellum,Â from the uncontaminated garden soil , as compared with Diesel soil including Sympodiomycopsis paphiopedili, Penicillium (P.Â janthinellum, P. decumbens), Aspergillus niger and Rhizopus oryzae isolated and identified based on 18S rRNA,which the nucleotide sequences submitted to the NCBI, Gen Bank database. Biodegradation ability of all isolates was confirmed by shake flask culture and vapour phase transfer method. The results showed that indigenous fungal isolatesÂ R. oryzae, P. decumbensÂ and P. janthinellum displayed greater capability of biodegradation of the diesel. Hence, these fungal species can be effectively utilized for remediation of diesel contaminated sites.