Assessment of soil hazardous contamination and remediation actions in Burgan’s oil field - Kuwait

  • Khaled Ali Alkhaledi Kuwait university
  • Hossam Mostagab Alghanim International Company


The environment in Kuwait had suffered a massive damage by the Iraqi tropes during the 1990 - 1991 military invasion. 734 oil wells were damages and burned causing huge amount of oil spill on the soil surface and sub-surface. The majority of the soil around the oil fields were effected by hazardous contamination. This study was conducted to measure the extent of contaminated soil and to determine the contaminant composition, then choose a suitable remediation action for rehabilitation of Kuwait’s desert environment and ecosystem. Site soil samples taken from five well heads located in Burgan’s field were investigated to measure the depth level and compositions of the contaminated soil. The results showed that the contaminated soil was identified, and well head number three had the deepest contamination of 4.3 meter and the lowest depth was in the well head pit number one of 1.2 meter. The amount of the petroleum hydrocarbons resided in the soil can cause a series health risk. The necessary remediation actions were made using different quantities and mixing of nutrients. Furthermore Epidemiology studies are needed to monitor the long term positive impacts of remediation actions of the pollutants on the ecology, environment and human health.

Author Biographies

Khaled Ali Alkhaledi, Kuwait university

Khaled Alkhaledi is an associate professor at Department of Industrial Managements and Systems Eng., Kuwait University.

Alkhaledi research interest is Occupational Safety and Health, Environment and Human Factors.


Hossam Mostagab, Alghanim International Company

Hossam Mostagab is an Engineer at Alghanim International Company



Alawadhi, N., Quinn, M., Mukhopadhyay, A., Hauser, A., Akber, A., Alhaddad, A., and Alrashedi, M., 2009. Extent and nature of hydrocarbon occurrence in the groundwater of Kuwait. Environmental geology, 56(05), 877-889.

Alawadhi, N., Al‐Daher, R., EInawawy, A. & Salba, M. T., 1996. Bioremediation of oil‐contaminated soil in Kuwait. I. land farming to remediate oil‐contaminated soil, Journal of soil contamination, 5(3), 243-260.

Albesharah, J., 1991. The Kuwaiti oil fires and oil lakes—Facts and numbers. In Proceedings of the international symposium on environmental and health impact of Kuwaiti oil fires, University of Birmingham, ed. A.K.S. Alshati and J. M. Harrington.

Alkhaledi, K. and Means, K., 2018. A study on the use of propane (R-290) in vending machines as a substitute for R-134a to minimize the global warming potential.

International Journal of Global Warming, 14(1), 131-141

Alkhaledi, K., Means, K., Bendak, S., Arnold, A., Jones, J., 2017. Evacuated Solar Tube Performance Enhancement Evaluation. Journal of Engineering Research, 5(2), 207-222

Alkhaledi, K., 2015. Evaluating the operational and environmental benefits of a smart roundabout. S. Afr. J. Ind. Eng, 26(2), 191-202

Alkhaledi, K., Alrushaid, S., Almansouri, J., Alrashed, A., 2015. Using fault tree analysis in the Al-Ahmadi town gas leak incidents. Safety science, 79, 184-192

Alsarawi, M., Massoud, M. S., and Wahba, S. A., 1998. Physical properties as indicators of oil penetration in soils contaminated with oil lakes in the greater Burgan oil fields, Kuwait. Water, Air, and Soil Pollution, 102 (1-2), 1-15.

Alsarawi, M., 1996. Surface geomorphology of Kuwait. Geo Journal, 35(4), 493-503

Alsarawi, M., 1980. Tertiary faulting beneath Wade AlBatin (Kuwait). Bull Geol Soc Am, 9(1), 610–618.

Bufarsan, A., 1999. Study process degreasing spilled oil in south west Kuwait (Doctoral dissertation). University of Tulsa, USA.

Carman, G. J., 1996. Structural elements of onshore Kuwait. GeoArabia, 1(02), 239-266.

Husain, T., 1994. Kuwaiti oil fires—Source estimates and plume characterization. Atmospheric Environment, 28(13), 2149-2158.

Khalaf, F. I., Gharib, I. M., and Alhashash, M. Z., 1984. Types and characteristics of the recent surface deposits of Kuwait, Arabian Gulf. Journal of Arid Environments, 7(01), 9-33.

Kim, K. H., Jahan, S. A., Kabier, E., Brown, R., J., 2013. A Review of airborne Polycyclic Hydrocarbons (PAHs) and their health effects. Environment international, 10, 71-80.

Kuwait Metrological Department. 2017. Climate of Kuwait. Retrieved from

Mostagab, H. D., Senosy, M., Alrashed, A., & Salem, M. E., 2018. The Impact of Hydrocarbon Pollution on Soil Degradation Using GIS Techniques and Soil Characterization in Burgan Oil field, South Kuwait. Journal of Environmental Protection, 9(06), 699 – 713.

Viswanathan, M., Alsenafy M., Mukhopadhyay, A., Kodituwakku, K., Alfahad, K., 1996. Assessment of long-term pollution potential for the groundwater of Raudhatain and Umm Al-Aish areas (Phase I). Kuwait Institute for Scientific Research, Kuwait, Report No. KISR5006

Industrial Engineering