Mineralization of [U-14C] methyl t-butyl ether (MTBE) to 14CO2 without accumulation of t-butyl alcohol (TBA) was observed in surface-water sediment microcosms under denitrifying conditions. Methanogenic activity and limited transformation of MTBE to TBA were observed in the absence of denitrification. Results indicate that bed sediment microorganisms can effectively degrade MTBE to nontoxic products under denitrifying conditions.
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Methyl t-Butyl Ether Mineralization in Surface-Water Sediment Microcosms under Denitrifying Conditions