This activity connects the engineered oil-eating abilities of microbes to large-scale bioremediation efforts. Students will observe microbes break down oil in water over the course of a few days. They will also design and observe experimental conditions that affect the rate/ability of microbes to break down oil. Then students will identify another application of engineered oil-eating microbes and what special properties those microbes will need for that application. This lesson is adapted from Edvotek’s Bioremediation Using Oil-Eating Bacteria and University of Missouri – St. Louis’s Slick Oil Lab.
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