Fun & Easy Science for Kids
Sponsored Links :

Cleaning an Oil Spill Video for Kids


                                             Cleaning an Oil Spill

An oil spill occurs when crude oil is accidentally released into a water body by an oil tanker, refinery, underwater pipeline etc. The oil floats and forms a millimeter thick layer on the water surface. These oil spills can be extremely threatening for our environment. It needs to get cleaned as soon as possible. There are various methods of cleaning an oil spill. Determining the most appropriate method depends on various factors like location of the spill, weather conditions, waves, and currents. There are four basic methods: –

  • Surface dispersants: – Chemical dispersants can be used to break the oil down faster. These dispersants speed up the natural biodegradation of oil. They can be applied over a large area. These chemicals make the oil significantly less toxic.
  • Leave it to break down naturally: – The oil could be left to disperse naturally if there is no risk of marine life being affected. It will be dispersed by the Sun, wind, waves, and currents. Heavy oils take more time.
  • Add biological agents: – Oil breaks down through a process called biodegradation. It occurs when bacteria and other micro-organisms break down the oil into substances like CO2 and fatty acids that are less harmful or not harmful at all.
  • Use buoyant booms: – Booms are solid or inflatable tubes that surround and isolate the oil slick. These long and buoyant booms rise about 3 feet above water level. They are attached to a skirt that remains underwater. Skimmers on surface suck the oil and transfer it into vessels.

Fast Facts about oil spills:

  • Exxon Valdez catastrophe in 1989 was one of the most disastrous oil spills in the history. It released more than 11 million gallons of crude oil.
  • Controlled burns are also a way of cleaning an oil spill. This process removes large portions of oil from the water surface.


Cite This Page

You may cut-and-paste the below MLA and APA citation examples:

MLA Style Citation

Declan, Tobin. " Fun Facts for Kids about Cleaning an Oil Spill ." Easy Science for Kids, Aug 2020. Web. 13 Aug 2020. < >.

APA Style Citation

Tobin, Declan. (2020). Fun Facts for Kids about Cleaning an Oil Spill. Easy Science for Kids. Retrieved from

Cite this Page

Sponsored Links :