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Prestige Oil spill III, the fate of a heavy oil in the marine environment

AuthorsDíez, Sergi ; Jover Comas, Eric; Bayona Termens, Josep María ; Albaigés Riera, Joan
KeywordsPrestige oil spill
Heavy oil
Dissolution processes
Ballast waters
Issue Date21-Mar-2007
PublisherAmerican Chemical Society
CitationEnvironmental Science & Technology 41(9): 3075-3082 (2007)
AbstractMore than 200 oil samples were collected along the Northern Spanish coast, from December 2002 to December 2003, as part of the extensive monitoring program carried out by the Spanish Marine Safety Agency after the Prestige heavy oil spill (November 13, 2002). The GC FPD/FID and comprehensive GC x GC/TOFMS sample profiles revealed the main characteristics of the oil residues. Chemical fingerprinting of the aliphatic and aromatic fractions by GC/MS was performed to determine the source of the oil as well as to follow its weathering at sea. The (n-C13 + n-C14)/(n-C25 + n-C26), n-C18/phytane, and methylnaphthalene [(N + N1)/N2] ratios were found to be useful for assessing the evaporation, biodegradation, and dissolution processes, respectively. Other indicators of more advanced degradation processes, including photo-oxidation, were unaltered, showing the low incidence of natural weathering processes on the spilled heavy oil 1 year after the accident. The survey also demonstrated the occurrence of continued discharges of ballast waters at sea and the need for a more stringent surveillance of the area, beyond accidental oil spills.
Description8 pages, 5 figures.-- PMID: 17539507 [PubMed].-- Printed version published on May 1, 2007.
Publisher version (URL)http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/es0629559
Appears in Collections:(IDAEA) Artículos
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