People have long recognized that oxygen is commonly the missing ingredient in contaminated systems, which limits the rate that chemicals naturally degrade. Several chemical manufacturers responded to this observation by providing oxygen-rich fertilizers, magnesium dioxide being one such example.
While oxygen is indeed useful to enhance biodegradation of petroleum products and other amenable chemicals, the effectiveness and cost are two factors that have often not been addressed in the application of these fertilizers.
The graphics on this page show a few considerations regarding the delivery of oxygen. The net result is that dispersion of the oxygen into the aquifer or ground environment is very limited, and the oxygen demand is high, resulting in a very high cost-per-pound of treatment.
Do these fertilizers have applications? Yes, limited applications for polishing and other cleanup & management goals. But, in the vast majority of cases, these fertilizers are not the best or most cost effective way to get oxygen and other nutrients into the system. Further, nutrients and redox systems other than oxygen-dominant can be more effective at remediating contaminant impacts.
Contact AVI for more details and examples analyses of oxygen delivery options.