Effective microorganisms (EM) are a culture of co-existing beneficial micro-organisms predominantly consisting of lactic acid bacteria, photosynthetic bacteria, yeast, fermenting fungi and actinomycetes that are claimed to enhance the decomposition of organic matter which in turn improves soil fertility and toxic pollutants including petroleum hydrocarbons, among others. In the present study, EM-1 commercial formulation was evaluated for phenol degradation under batch condition with 250, 500, 750 and 1000 mg/l of synthetic phenol. The biomass concentration, residual phenol concentration, speficic growth rate and specific degradation rate was recorded at respective concentration under different time interval. EM-1 could tolerate all the tested concentration of phenol and the maximum specific growth rate and degradation rate was recorded at 250 mg/l of phenol supplemented media followed by 500, 750 and 1000 mg/l.
Key words: Effective microorganism, EM-1, phenol degradation.
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