Bacterial-induced mineralization (BIM) for soil solidification and heavy metal stabilization: A critical review

Lijun Han, Jiangshan Li, Qiang Xue, Zhen Chen, Yaoyu Zhou, Chi Sun Poon

Research output: Journal article publicationReview articleAcademic researchpeer-review

85 Citations (Scopus)


Solidification and stabilization (S/S) treatment via cement is common and effective for improving soil strength and stabilizing heavy metals in contaminated soils, but has certain drawbacks, such as high fossil energy consumption, big carbon footprint, poor chemical compatibility, and ambiguous long-term stability. This paper innovatively proposes bacterial-induced mineralization (BIM) as an eco-friendly and efficient S/S method. In the BIM-S/S treatment, life activities of bacteria produce minerals to cement the soil particles and fix the heavy metals. This review firstly summarizes the basic theories of BIM technology followed by the evaluation on remediation effects and long-term stability in terms of soil solidification and heavy metal stabilization. Then the factors in BIM-S/S application are reviewed. Emphasis is put on the comparison of the BIM-S/S effect with that of cement-based-S/S technology. It is concluded that BIM-S/S technology is promising with outstanding performance in sustainability. On the other hand, current limitations and deficiencies with this technology are identified finally, hereby the directions for future research are pointed to make a major advancement in the BIM-S/S technology.

Original languageEnglish
Article number140967
JournalScience of the Total Environment
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2020


  • Bacterial induced mineralization (BIM)
  • Green remediation
  • Heavy metals contaminated soil
  • Solidification and stabilization (S/S)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Pollution


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