Use of geochemical biomarkers in bottom sediment to track oil from a spill, San Francisco Bay, California

Marine Pollution Bulletin
By: , and 

Links

Abstract

In April 1988, approximately 1500 m3 of a San Joaquin Valley crude oil were accidentally released from a Shell Oil Co. refinery near Martinez, Californa. The oil flowed into Carquinez Strait and Suisun Bay in northern San Francisco Bay Sediment and oil samples were collected within a week and analysed for geochemical marker compounds in order to track the molecular signature of the oil spill in the bottom sediment. Identification of the spilled oil in the sediment was complicated by the degraded nature of the oil and the similarity of the remaining, chromatographically resolvable constituents to those already present in the sediments from anthropogenic petroleum contamination, pyrogenic sources, and urban drainage. Ratios of hopane and sterane biomarkers, and of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons and their alkylated derivatives best identified the oil impingement. They showed the oil impact at this early stage to be surficial only, and to be patchy even within an area of heavy oil exposure.

Study Area

Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Use of geochemical biomarkers in bottom sediment to track oil from a spill, San Francisco Bay, California
Series title Marine Pollution Bulletin
DOI 10.1016/0025-326X(92)90311-S
Volume 24
Issue 1
Year Published 1992
Language English
Publisher Elsevier
Contributing office(s) California Water Science Center, Pacific Regional Director's Office, San Francisco Bay-Delta, Toxic Substances Hydrology Program
Description 6 p.
First page 15
Last page 20
Country United States
State California
Other Geospatial San Francisco Bay
Online Only (Y/N) N
Additional Online Files (Y/N) N