Phil Dennis (Ontario) will present “Are Nitrogen Compounds Attenuating at Your Site? Implications for Site Remediation and Climate Change” and “In Situ Bioaugmentation for Anaerobic Benzene, Toluene and Xylene Remediation” at AquaConSoil at the Czech University of Life Sciences in Prague, Czech Republic. 

Phils coauthors for the paper on nitrogen compounds are Jeff Roberts of SiREM, Savannah Volkoff and Eric Nesbit of Geosyntec Consultants, and Anko Fischer and Kevin Kuntze of Isodetect. For the second paper (on in situ bioaugmentation), his coauthors are Sandra Dworatzek and Jennifer Webb of SiREM; Elizabeth Edwards, Nancy Bawa, Shen Guo, and Courtney Toth of the University of Toronto; and Kevin Kuntze and Anko Fischer of Isodetect. 

Phil is a Principal Molecular Biologist with more than 20 years of experience focused environmental microbiology, molecular genetic testing, enhanced bioremediation, and technology commercialization. He directs molecular testing services and next-generation sequencing at SiREM and is the innovation lead for the company’s research and development program. He has also played a leading role in developing relationships with university partners and serves on the Board for University of Waterloo Center for Microbial Research. 

Every two years, AquaConSoil brings together scientists, policymakers, and other decision-makers to share knowledge and help develop innovative solutions regarding sustainable use and management of soil, water, and sediment. In 2023, AquaConSoil will take place in Prague, Czech Republic. It will be hosted by the Czech University of Life Sciences. 

Are Nitrogen Compounds Attenuating at Your Site? Implications for Site Remediation and Climate Change. Wednesday, September 13, 2023, 11 a.m. CEST 

Nitrogen compound contamination of surface water and groundwater can come from many sources including fertilizer application and production, human and livestock waste, and mining operations. Nitrate and nitrite are toxic to humans; they are regulated in drinking water in the European Union, where more than onethird of groundwater sources exceed regulatory guidelines. Ammonium and nitrate contribute to eutrophication of natural water bodies, and nitrous oxide, produced by partial denitrification, comprises approximately 6 percent of global warming emissions. 

Microbial processes can convert problematic nitrogen compounds into inert nitrogen gas, primarily by denitrification and anammox. Nitrification is also critical, functioning in tandem with denitrification to remove nitrogen mass. Dissimilatory nitrate reduction to ammonium (DNRA) can reduce nitrogen mass in water or soil via volatilization of ammonia. A holistic testing approach combining chemical, isotopic and molecular biological methods could help with decisionmaking and be used to optimize remediation at nitrogen sites. 

In Situ Bioaugmentation for Anaerobic Benzene, Toluene and Xylene Remediation. Tuesday, September 12, 2023, 2 p.m. CEST 

Anaerobic microbes have been identified that completely degrade benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene, and xylene (BTEX) into carbon dioxide and methane. The ability to function in the absence of molecular oxygen is what makes these microbes unique and useful for anoxic field applications where aerobic remediation approaches are impracticable or impossible to implement due to challenges involved with introducing and distributing oxygen. SiREM has a consortium of cultures, collectively referred to as DGG-PlusTM that include a methanogenic benzene enrichment culture (DGG-BTM), a toluene degrading culture (DGGTTM), and an o-xylene degrading culture (DGG-XTM), all of which have been enriched and scaled up and have been tested in the laboratory and field. The purpose of this ongoing work was to better understand the mechanisms and take lessons learned from lab studies to maximize field success. 

More Information

About the event: AquaConSoil 2023 

About AquaConSoil 

For consultation regarding nitrogen compounds and in situ bioaugmentation, contact Phil at 

Learn more about Phil: Phil Dennis | LinkedIn