Science of The Total Environment

Published by Elsevier
Print ISSN: 0048-9697
During the past several decades, the public has given increasing attention to environmental problems and increased their demands that these problems be solved. During this period, the difficulty and costs of solving the problems have become apparent. Environmental abatement programs must be effective in achieving the desired goals and efficient in achieving them at low cost. Risk analysis is necessary to quantify the benefits of proposed solutions in order to make them effective and efficient. The necessity for performing risk assessment stems from a presidential executive order, from a Supreme Court Decision, and from the public's demand for information about the extent of possible danger from a hazard, rather than knowing simply that it is a hazard. The science of risk analysis is an an early stage and so there are many uncertainties concerning interpretation of the estimates. This approach has sharpened the scientific questions and hastened improvements in scientific understanding. Risk analysis is most helpful when the analysis reflects the science, without intrusion of the risk assessor's values or attempts to force a risk management outcome by skewing the risk analysis.
Information about the possible human health effects of dioxin is available from studies of chemical plant workers, sprayers of dioxin-contaminated herbicides, and other exposed people. No human illness, other than the skin disease chloracne, which has occurred only in highly exposed people, has been convincingly associated with dioxin. Some epidemiologic studies have suggested associations between dioxin and stomach cancer, soft tissue sarcomas, and lymphomas, but other studies, powerful enough to detect excesses of those diseases, if they exist, have not done so. With the exception of one study of chemical plant workers that reported an excess of stomach cancer, all the suggested associations of increased cancer risks and dioxin exposures are from studies of herbicide applicators. Both direct measurements of the concentrations of dioxin in the body fat of chemical plant workers and the occurrence of chloracne in those men support the conclusion that they were exposed to far greater amounts of dioxin than herbicide applicators. Therefore, if the cancers found in herbicide users were associated with dioxin, even more of those cancers would be expected among the chemical plant workers; the expected increases are not found. In short, epidemiologic studies in which dioxin exposures are known to have been high, either because of the appearance of chloracne or from measurements of dioxin in exposed people, have failed to reveal any consistent excess of cancer. In those studies that have reported associations between exposure and disease, no chloracne was reported, and there are no measurements of higher-than-background levels of dioxin in the people who are classified as exposed.
Leaves of 9 different plant species (terrestrial moss represented by: Hylocomium splendens and Pleurozium schreberi; and 7 species of vascular plants: blueberry, Vaccinium myrtillus; cowberry, Vaccinium titis-idaea; crowberry, Empetrum nigrum; birch, Betula pubescens; willow, Salix spp.; pine, Pinus sylvestris and spruce, Picea abies) have been collected from up to 9 catchments (size 14-50 km2) spread over a 1500000 km2 area in Northern Europe. Soil samples were taken of the O-horizon and of the C-horizon at each plant sample site. All samples were analysed for 38 elements (Ag, Al, As, B, Ba, Be, Bi, Ca, Cd, Co, Cr, Cu, Fe, Hg, K, Li, Mg, Mn, Mo, Na, Ni, P, Pb, Rb, S, Sb, Sc, Se, Si, Sn, Sr, Th, Tl, U, V, Y, Zn and Zr) by ICP-MS, ICP-AES or CV-AAS (for Hg-analysis) techniques. The concentrations of some elements vary significantly between different plants (e.g. Cd, V, Co, Pb, Ba and Y). Other elements show surprisingly similar levels in all plants (e.g. Rb, S, Cu, K, Ca, P and Mg). Each group of plants (moss, shrubs, deciduous and conifers) shows a common behaviour for some elements. Each plant accumulates or excludes some selected elements. Compared to the C-horizon, a number of elements (S, K, B, Ca, P and Mn) are clearly enriched in plants. Elements showing very low plant/C-horizon ratios (e.g. Zr, Th, U, Y, Fe, Li and Al) can be used as an indicator of minerogenic dust. The plant/O-horizon and O-horizon/C-horizon ratios show that some elements are accumulated in the O-horizon (e.g. Pb, Bi, As, Ag, Sb). Airborne organic material attached to the leaves can thus, result in high values of these elements without any pollution source.
Eighty-one Japanese silicosis patients and 66 healthy volunteers were analyzed for autoantibodies by ELISA, and HLA-genotyping using the PCR-RFLP method was performed. Anti-topoisomerase I (anti-topo I) autoantibodies were detected in seven patients without any clinical features of autoimmune diseases such as progressive systemic sclerosis (PSS), although anti-topo I have been mostly reported in PSS patients. Antibodies directed to RNP, ssDNA, dsDNA and cent-B were not detected among the anti-topo I positive patients. The indirect immunofluorescent staining pattern of Hep-2 cells with the sera of anti-topo I positive silicosis patients demonstrated the typical mode of anti-topo I autoantibodies observed in the patients with PSS. The allelic frequency of HLA-DQB1*0402 was significantly higher in anti-topo I positive patients (28.6%) than in anti-topo I negative patients (1.5%, P < 0.001) or healthy controls (0.8%, P<0.001). HLA-DQB1*0301, DQB1*0601 and DPB1*1801 alleles were more frequently detected in anti-topo I positive patients than in the patients without anti-topo I or in healthy volunteers, but no significant difference was observed. DQB1 allele is associated with the induction of anti-topo I autoantibodies in Japanese silicosis patients, but the allele is not the same as in Caucasian PSS patients. Another allele (DQB1*0402) plays an important role in Japanese silicosis patients. The most important factor to induce anti-topo I autoantibodies seems not to be the type of alleles themselves, but the position of some specific amino acid residues in the DQ beta first domain. These findings will be useful for preventing occupational autoimmune diseases.
-Samples with detected chlorinated organic compounds by food group in the IQSA surveillance program, by period. Barcelona, 1989-2000 and 2001-06.
details the specific compounds found. In the first period, compounds detected included 17 residues of HCB, 8 of lindane, 2 of DDT-DDE, and 21 of endosulfan α, β or sulphate; in the second period lindane was detected in a sample (0.01 mg/kg), and endosulfan α, β or sulphate in six samples (values ranged between 0.03 and 0.91 mg/kg).
-Samples with detected chlorinated organic compounds by type of pesticide in the IQSA surveillance program, by period. Barcelona, 1989-2000 and 2001-06.
Samples with detected chlorinated organic compounds by food group and maximum residues levels (MRL) by type of pesticide in the IQSA surveillance program
This paper reports concentration levels of 22 chlorinated organic compounds (both primary compounds and metabolites) in food marketed in the city of Barcelona (Catalonia, Spain) in 2001-06. Samples included meat products, fish and seafood, eggs, milk and dairy, vegetal oils, cereal products and derivates, vegetables, fresh fruits, dry fruits, spices, formula and baby food, tea and wine. Levels of chlorinated organic compounds were determined by gas chromatography with selective detectors: electron capture (ECD), flame photometric (FPD) and confirmation with mass-spectrometry. Chlorinated organic pesticides were detected in 7 of the 1,484 samples analyzed in the 2001-06 period (0.5%): 1 dairy product, 1 fruit, 1 olive oil and 4 vegetables. Specific pesticides detected are lindane and endosulfan alpha, beta or sulphate. A decrease in both the proportion of samples with detectable residues and in the variety of chlorinated pesticides found is visible when comparing these results with those of the previous 1989-2000 period. These results suggest the gradual disappearance of regulated chlorinated organic pesticides as a consequence of the growing worldwide implementation of current regulatory agreements.
The significant contribution of road-transport to air pollution within the urban arena is widely acknowledged, and traditionally explored in relation to health outcomes across a temporal scale. However, the structure of the urban environment is also of importance in dictating the existence of extremely variable traffic pollutant levels, which often tend to be linked with social disparities. Nevertheless 'Environmental Justice' studies have rarely tackled the adverse health implications of exposures from mobile sources (Chakraborty, 2009), or have applied statistical techniques that are appropriate for such spatial data (Gilbert and Chakraborty, 2011). This article addresses these gaps by spatially examining the distribution of respiratory hospitalisation incidents of children aged 0-15 years in relation to social circumstances and residential exposures of annual PM(10) road-transport emissions within Leicester during 2000-09. Continuing upon the theme of 'Environmental Justice', the research explores the intra-urban spatial distribution of those who produce and residentially experience the majority of road-transport emissions. The findings indicate significant global relationships to exist between children's hospitalisation rates and social-economic-status, ethnic minorities, and PM(10) road-transport emissions within Leicester. Local Indicators of Spatial Association (LISA) and Geographically Weighted Regression (GWR) identified important localised variations within the dataset, specifically relating to a double-burden of residentially experienced road-transport emissions and deprivation effecting inner city children's respiratory health. Furthermore, affluent intra-urban communities tended to contribute the highest levels of emission from private transport, while residentially experiencing relatively low exposure of transport emissions. This would suggest that environmental injustices prevail across the model British multicultural city of Leicester.
In our research, three fall places of first stages of Proton rockets have been studied for the presence and distribution of transformation products of 1,1-dimethylhydrazine (1,1-DMH). Results of identification of transformation products of 1,1-DMH in real soil samples polluted due to rocket fuel spills allowed to detect 18 earlier unknown metabolites of 1,1-DMH being formed only under field conditions. According to the results of quantitative analyses, maximum concentrations of 1-methyl-1H-1,2,4-triazole made up 57.3, 44.9 and 13.3 mg kg(-1), of 1-ethyl-1H-1,2,4-triazole - 5.45, 3.66 and 0.66 mg kg(-1), of 1,3-dimethyl-1H-1,2,4-triazole - 24.0, 17.8 and 4.9 mg kg(-1) in fall places 1, 2 and 3, respectively. 4-Methyl-4H-1,2,4-triazole was detected only in fall places 2 and 3 where its maximum concentrations made up 4.2 and 0.66 mg kg(-1), respectively. The pollution of soils with transformation products of 1,1-DMH was only detected in epicenters of fall places having a diameter of 8 to10 m where rocket boosters landed. The results of a detailed study of distribution of 1,1-DMH transformation products along the soil profile indicate that transformation products can migrate down to the depth of 120 cm, The highest concentrations of 1,1-DMH transformation products were detected, as a rule, at the depth 20 to 60 cm. However, this index can vary depending on the compound, humidity and physical properties of soil, landscape features and other conditions. In the surface layer, as a rule, only semi-volatile products of transformation were detected which was caused by fast evaporation and biodegradation of volatile metabolites.
During the summer of 1989 and the winter 1989-1990, we initiated measurements of 1,1,1-trichloroethane concentrations in indoor, outdoor, and 'personal' air, in urban and rural sites. In the Piedmont region (North-Western Italy) we have carried out an atmospheric monitoring study: in the centre of Turin city (urban site), in Cuorgnè (rural site), and in Banchetta (remote site). First results confirm a higher winter contamination (11.67 vs. 2.79 micrograms/m3) and a higher contamination at the urban site, compared to rural and remote sites. Excluding Cuorgnè in the summer, all indoor/outdoor ratios are greater than 1 and, in all cases, the 'personal' air shows higher 1,1,1-trichloroethane levels than indoor and outdoor air. In Turin the relationships between winter and summer all show a higher winter contamination, while, in Cuorgnè no differences are proven.
Trichloropropanes have been identified as environmental contaminants in sediments of the Great Lakes region of North America. Since these chemicals had the potential to find their way into drinking water, a 90-day feeding study was carried out in order to determine their subchronic toxicity. Groups of 10 male and 10 female weanling Sprague-Dawley rats were supplied drinking water ad libitum, containing 1,2,3- or 1,1,2-trichloropropane at concentrations of 1, 10, 100 or 1000 mg/L for 13 weeks. Emulphor (0.5%) was used to solubilize the chemicals. At the end of the study, the animals were killed and examined for gross and microscopic changes. Heart, liver, brain, kidney and spleen were excised and weighed. Blood was collected and subjected to a comprehensive hematological analysis. Serum was collected and profiled for changes in 12 biochemical parameters and a portion of liver was used to determined mixed function oxidase activity. Although three animals died during the study, their deaths could not be related to treatment. Decreased growth rate was observed in both sexes of the group receiving 1000 mg/L 1,2,3-trichloropropane. There was an increase in liver, kidney and brain weights (relative to body weight) in rats of both sexes fed 1000 mg/L 1,2,3-trichloropropane. Fatty livers were observed in some of the treated animals but a clear dose-relationship was not evident. An elevation in serum cholesterol was observed in female rats fed the highest dose of 1,2,3-trichloropropane.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)
Mechanical soil aeration is an effective and low cost ex-situ remediation technique suitable for large sites contaminated by volatile organic compounds. However, this technique is still in the testing and development phase. To understand the effectiveness of this remediation technique and the main factors influencing its efficacy, an abandoned typical chlor-alkali chemical industry site was remediated using this technology on a pilot-scale. The results showed that this technology is effective for the remediation of volatile organic compounds, with a removal efficiency of greater than 99%. During the experiment, a better result was observed in the first 120 h than the last 120 h. Both temperature and agitation affected the remediation. Higher environmental or soil temperatures resulted in more rapid attenuation of 1,2-dichloroethane (1,2-DCA). Agitation had an obvious effect during the first 120 h. A preliminary dynamic characteristic study showed that the volatilization process can be described by a function similar to y=a+be((-kt)). Temperature (both environmental and soil temperature) had a greater effect on the reaction rate constant and the half-life of 1,2-DCA compared with agitation. This study aims to improve the remediation of contaminated sites, especially large areas contaminated by volatile organic contaminants.
1,2,4-Trichlorobenzene (1,2,4-TCB) and tetrachloroethene (PCE) were chosen to study their competitive effect on 1,2,4,5-tetrachlorobenzene (1,2,4,5-TeCB) sorption by three soils/sediments from South China with different fractions of natural organic matter (NOM) employing a batch technique. Results showed that cosolutes 1,2,4-trichlorobenzene and tetrachloroethene exhibited apparent competition against 1,2,4,5-tetrachlorobenzene in all of the three sediments. 1,2,4-Trichlorobenzene was more effective competitor than tetrachloroethene because the structure of 1,2,4-TCB is very close to that of 1,2,4,5-TeCB. Furthermore, the extent of competition depended on the rigidity of sediment NOM matrixes. The more reduced and condensed the matrixes are, the larger extent of competitive effect would the corresponding sediment show at a given sorbed volume of competitor.
The objective of this study was to compare the toxicokinetics of inhaled 1,2,4-trimethylbenzene (1,2,4-TMB) in man after exposure to white spirit with that observed after exposure to 1,2,4-TMB alone. TMBs occur mainly in petroleum products and the TMBs or their metabolites have been suggested as suitable biomarkers of exposure to white spirit and other distillation products. The toxicokinetics were studied in 9 male, healthy volunteers exposed to solvent vapours in an exposure chamber for 2 h during a work load of 50 W. The subjects were exposed to 11 mg/m3 of 1,2,4-TMB on two occasions; during exposure to 1,2,4-TMB vapour alone and during exposure to 300 mg/m3 of white spirit. The 1,2,4-TMB isomer was analyzed in blood and exhaled air by gas chromatography. In addition, a major urinary metabolite of 1,2,4-TMB, 3,4-dimethylhippuric acid (3,4-DMHA), was analyzed by high performance liquid chromatography. Further the occurrence of acute effects was studied by means of a questionnaire. Irritation and central nervous system symptoms were recorded by ratings on a 100-mm visual analogue scale. Blood levels of 1,2,4-TMB and excretion rates of 3,4-DMHA in urine were markedly elevated both during and after exposure to white spirit as compared to exposure to TMB alone. Thus, it appears that components in white spirit inhibit the metabolic elimination of 1,2,4-TMB. This should be considered in biological exposure monitoring as well as in risk assessment. No irritation or central nervous system effects were reported at these conditions.
Mineralization and volatilization of 14 C-1,2,4-TCB during the period of the OCPs degradation experiment. 
List of OCPs in the cocktail and some physical-chemical properties.
Principal response curve (first component) and loadings for the OCPs during the first phase of the experiment. Continuous line = control, Dotted line = Samples treated with microbes. 
Changes in concentrations of Log transformed heptachlor concentrations during the first (left curve) and second (right curve) experimental phases. Continuous line= control, dotted line= samples treated with microbes. 
Cell counts during the first and second phases of the OCPs degradation experiment. 
A soil-borne microbial community isolated from a contaminated site was previously shown to mineralize 1,2,4-trichlorobenzene (1,2,4-TCB) under aerobic conditions. The key degrader in this community was identified as Bordetella sp. F2. The objective of the study was to test the capacity of the microbial community to degrade a complex mixture of 27 organochlorine compounds and pesticides (OCPs) commonly detected in the environment. The hypothesis was that the microbes would utilize the OCPs as carbon sources at the low concentrations of these compounds, found in natural waters and soil solution. The study was carried out in liquid culture and the changes in concentration of the OCPs were monitored using GC-MS. Data analysis was done using a multivariate analysis method similar to Principal Response Curve (PRC) analysis. Contrary to expectations, the data analysis showed a general trend where higher concentrations were observed in the microbially treated samples relative to the controls. The observed trend was attributed to decreased volatilization due to sorption of the chemicals by microbes since most of the compounds in the cocktail had high Kow values. Nevertheless, when using adequate statistical methods for analysing the very complex data set, correlation of Kow and K(H) values with the loadings of the PRCs showed that three chlorinated mono-aromatics - pentachlorobenzene, pentachloroanisole and octachloroanisole - were amenable to degradation. This provided indications that the community could hold promise for the degradation of higher-chlorinated mono-aromatic OCPs.
The rate of transformation of the soil fumigant (Z)-and (E)-1,3-dichloropropene in moist soil layers was measured at incubation temperatures of 5 degrees C, 10 degrees C and 20 degrees C. 'DD95' was added to four characterized soil layers, in amounts corresponding to realistic field contents after fumigation. Rapid transformation immediately after application was observed in layers with low initial contents (30-300 micrograms/kg dm) and could well be described with a first-order rate model. Incubation at higher doses (5-15 mg/kg dm respectively) showed distinctly different transformation pathways. Degradation curves could well be computed using a microbiological interspective competition (MIC) model for moist soil. The transformation rate is inversely correlated to microorganism population size and growth. Transformation curves described by MIC are characterized by a lag-time, a period of accelerated transformation and a period of decreasing transformation rates. At low temperatures, DT50 values of more than 20 days could be observed. First-order rate computations did not exceed 8 days. The use of different mathematical discriptions for various soil layers and soil temperatures permits simulation of DD95-transformation by microorganisms in the soil profile throughout the growing season.
The objective of this study was to determine benzene and 1,3-butadiene exposure through ambient air and personal air monitoring, as well as through biomarkers of exposure, and to evaluate the potential health risk of exposure through the use of biomarkers of early biological effects in central Bangkok traffic policemen. Ambient air concentrations of benzene and 1,3-butadiene at the roadsides were significantly higher than in police offices used as control sites (p<0.001). Traffic policemen had a significantly higher exposure to benzene (median 38.62 microg/m(3)) and 1,3-butadiene (median 3.08 microg/m(3)) than office policemen (median 6.17 microg/m(3) for benzene and 0.37 microg/m(3) for 1,3-butadiene) (p<0.001). Biomarkers of benzene exposure, blood benzene, and urinary metabolite, trans, trans-muconic acid were significantly higher in traffic policemen than office policemen (p<0.001). No significant difference between traffic and office policemen was found in urinary benzene metabolite, S-phenyl mercapturic acid, or in urinary 1,3-butadiene metabolite, monohydroxy-butenyl mercapturic acid. Biomarkers of early biological effects, 8-hydroxy-2'-deoxyguanosine in leukocytes (8-OHdG), DNA-strand breaks, and DNA-repair capacity, measured as an increase in gamma ray-induced chromosome aberrations were significantly higher in traffic policemen than controls (p<0.001 for 8-OHdG, p<0.01 for tail length, p<0.001 for olive tail moment, p<0.05 for dicentrics and p<0.01 for deletions). Multiple regression model including individual exposure, biomarkers of exposure, ages and years of work as independent variables showed that only the levels of individual 1,3-butadiene exposure were significantly associated with 8-OHdG and olive tail moment at p<0.0001 indicating more influence of 1,3-butadiene on DNA damage. These results indicated that traffic policemen, who are exposed to benzene and 1,3-butadiene at the roadside in central Bangkok, are potentially at a higher risk for development of diseases such as cancer than office policemen.
The distribution of 1,4-dioxane was investigated in surface and groundwater in relation to possible sources. Water samples from river, coastal sea, and groundwater were collected and examined in Kanagawa Prefecture, Japan, from 1995 to 1998. Almost all samples were contaminated by 1,4-dioxane. On annual changes, the concentrations did not vary significantly in river water. However, some samples were still heavily polluted in groundwater. The highest correlation was between the concentration of 1,4-dioxane and 1,1,1-trichloroethane in the polluted groundwater samples. Soil and groundwater that was polluted by 1,1,1-trichloroethane in the past is still a possible source of 1,4-dioxane. In regard to a survey of other sources, effluents from the combined collection treatment from apartment houses, river basin sewage systems, and chemical plants were examined. The load unit of 1,4-dioxane from the treated effluent of domestic wastewater was assumed to be approximately 0.25 mg/person/day. This was derived from commonly used household chemicals, which contained 1,4-dioxane as a by-product. In river basin sewage systems, the concentrations in effluents varied significantly. High concentration inflows were probably not degraded and released. Although 50-60% of removal was recognized in acclimatized activated sludge from a chemical plant, 1,4-dioxane was easily desorbed with water from sludge.
1,4-Dioxane is a groundwater contaminant and probable human carcinogen. In this study, two well-studied degradative bacteria Mycobacterium vaccae JOB5 and Rhodococcus jostii RHA1 were examined for their 1,4-dioxane degradation ability in the presence and absence of its co-contaminant, trichloroethylene (TCE), under different oxygenase-expression conditions. These two strains were precultured with R2A broth (complex nutrient medium) before supplementation with propane or 1-butanol to induce the expression of different oxygenases. Both propane- and 1-butanol-induced JOB5 and RHA1 were able to degrade 1,4-dioxane, TCE, and mixtures of 1,4-dioxane/TCE. Complete degradation of 1,4-dioxane/TCE mixture was observed only in propane-induced strain JOB5. Inhibition was observed between 1,4-dioxane and TCE for all cells. Furthermore, product toxicity caused incomplete degradation of 1,4-dioxane by 1-butanol-induced JOB5. In general, the more TCE degraded, the greater extent of product toxicity cells experienced; however, susceptibility to product toxicity was found to be both strain- and inducer-dependent. The findings of this study provide fundamental basis for developing an effective in-situ remediation method for 1,4-dioxane-contaminated ground water and the first known study of 1,4-dioxane degradation by wild-type strain RHA1. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
The mutagenic and morphologic effects of 1.8GHz Global System for Mobile Communications (GSM) modulated RF (radiofrequency) radiation alone and in combination with Ginkgo biloba (EGb 761) pre-treatment in human peripheral blood lymphocytes (hPBLs) were investigated in this study using Sister Chromatid Exchange (SCE) and electron microscopy. Cell viability was assessed with 3-(4, 5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2, 5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide (MTT) reduction assay. The lymphocyte cultures were exposed to GSM modulated RF radiation at 1.8GHz for 6, 8, 24 and 48h with and without EGb 761. We observed morphological changes in pulse-modulated RF radiated lymphocytes. Longer exposure periods led to destruction of organelle and nucleus structures. Chromatin change and the loss of mitochondrial crista occurred in cells exposed to RF for 8h and 24h and were more pronounced in cells exposed for 48h. Cytoplasmic lysis and destruction of membrane integrity of cells and nuclei were also seen in 48h RF exposed cells. There was a significant increase (p<0.05) in SCE frequency in RF exposed lymphocytes compared to sham controls. EGb 761 pre-treatment significantly decreased SCE from RF radiation. RF radiation also inhibited cell viability in a time dependent manner. The inhibitory effects of RF radiation on the growth of lymphoctes were marked in longer exposure periods. EGb 761 pre-treatment significantly increased cell viability in RF+EGb 761 treated groups at 8 and 24h when compared to RF exposed groups alone. The results of our study showed that RF radiation affects cell morphology, increases SCE and inhibits cell proliferation. However, EGb 761 has a protective role against RF induced mutagenity. We concluded that RF radiation induces chromosomal damage in hPBLs but this damage may be reduced by EGb 761 pre-treatment.
Urban et al. (2009) presented a human health risk assessment for the Lower Passaic River that very narrowly defines fish consumption, ignores crab consumption, and is not consistent with current NJ or EPA risk assessment procedures and guidance. The restrictively defined consumption then leads to inappropriate conclusions on the risk of eating fish from this highly contaminated estuarine river. The paper underestimates angler exposure to contaminated fish, does not evaluate exposure to contaminated crab, and underestimates the cancer risks and non-cancer health hazards associated with these exposure pathways. The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection along with the NJ Department of Health and Senior Services issues fish and crab consumption advisories for all state waters; these advisories should be followed for the Passaic River and surrounding waters:
Leaf-level microscopical symptom structure and physiological responses were investigated in seedlings experimentally exposed to ozone (O3) in indoor chambers (150 ppb, 8 hd(-1) per 7 weeks), and field trees of Manna ash (Fraxinus ornus) exposed to ambient O3 (max 93 ppb per one growing season). Ozone-induced leaf injury, including leaf reddening and stippling, was observed in both seedlings and mature trees, but the morphology of injury in the stipples differed, being hypersensitive-like (HR-like) in the chamber seedlings and accelerated cell senescence (ACS) in the field trees. In both exposure conditions, the main structural impact of O3 was on the mesophyll and especially the upper assimilating cell layers. The main physiological impact was on carbon assimilation and on stomatal sluggishness. These effects were not due to stomatal structural injury and were more severe in juvenile compared to mature trees because of environmental (water availability, light) and constitutional (gas exchange capacity) factors and differences in the cell physiology processes (HR-like vs. ACS) triggered by ozone stress. Given the plasticity of plant responses to ozone stress, dose/response relationships for tree seedlings in the indoor chambers cannot be extrapolated to mature trees unless ambient conditions are closely simulated.
Urban et al. (2009) presented a human health risk assessment for the Lower Passaic River that is not consistent with the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) risk assessment guidance for Superfund cited in the article, because it is based on a fish ingestion rate that underestimates angler exposure to contaminated fish, does not evaluate exposure to contaminated crab, and underestimates the cancer risks and non-cancer health hazards associated with these exposure pathways. USEPA recommends that people follow the health advisories for the Lower Passaic River, available online at
The status of nitrate (NO3-), nitrite (NO2-) and ammonium (NH4 +) contamination in the water systems, and the mechanisms controlling their sources, pathways, and distributions were investigated for the Southeast Asian cities of Metro Manila, Bangkok, and Jakarta. GIS-based monitoring and dual isotope approach (nitrate delta15N and delta18O) suggested that human waste via severe sewer leakage was the major source of nutrient contaminants in Metro Manila and Jakarta urban areas. Furthermore, the characteristics of the nutrient contamination differed depending on the agricultural land use pattern in the suburban areas: high nitrate contamination was observed in Jakarta (dry fields), and relatively lower nutrients consisting mainly of ammonium were detected in Bangkok (paddy fields). The exponential increase in NO3--delta15N along with the NO3- reduction and clear delta18O/delta15N slopes of NO3- (approximately 0.5) indicated the occurrence of denitrification. An anoxic subsurface system associated with the natural geological setting (e.g., the old tidal plain at Bangkok) and artificial pavement coverage served to buffer NO3- contamination via active denitrification and reduced nitrification. Our results showed that NO3- and NH4+ contamination of the aquifers in Metro Manila, Bangkok, and Jakarta was not excessive, suggesting low risk of drinking groundwater to human health, at present. However, the increased nitrogen load and increased per capita gross domestic product (GDP) in these developing cities may increase this contamination in the very near future. Continuous monitoring and management of the groundwater system is needed to minimize groundwater pollution in these areas, and this information should be shared among adjacent countries with similar geographic and cultural settings.
Buchanan et al. assert that our recent fish ingestion risk assessment for a section of the Lower Passaic River (LPR) (Urban et al., 2009a) utilizes inappropriate ingestion rates and is inconsistent with state and USEPA guidelines and risk assessment procedures, and therefore underestimates the human health risks associated with angler exposure along this stretch of the river. However, they fail to support these assertions with evidence; indeed, in a recent response to similar allegations, we demonstrated that the utilized ingestion rates are, in fact, the most appropriate for this parameter (Urban et al., 2009b). Our reliance on data from a comprehensive, independently validated, peer-reviewed, and site-specific creel angler survey (CAS) in order to define fish and crab ingestion rates for this region of the LPR is fully compliant with USPEA guidelines. In fact, the crab ingestion survey and risk assessment cited by Buchanan et al. as evidence of crabbing activity and crab ingestion for this region was less comprehensive than the CAS in question, was not overseen by an independent panel, has yet to be peer-reviewed, and does not provide any activity or consumption data for this section of the LPR. Contrary to the implications of Buchanan et al., our effort provides a transparent, comprehensive, and scientifically legitimate human health risk assessment of fish ingestion for the lowest 6miles of the LPR. Thus we adamantly disagree with the characterization and assertions put forth by Buchanan et al., and stand by the conclusions presented in Urban et al. (2009a) and defended in Urban et al. (2009b).
A newly developed instrument, the 'fast response differential mobility spectrometer (DMS500)', was deployed to measure the particles in the 5-1000 nm range in a Cambridge (UK) street canyon. Measurements were taken for 7 weekdays (from 09:00 to 19:00 h) between 8 and 21 June 2006 at three heights close to the road level (i.e. 0.20 m, 1.0 m and 2.60 m). The main aims of the measurements were to investigate the dependence of particle number distributions (PNDs) and concentrations (PNCs) and their vertical variations on wind speed, wind direction, traffic volume, and to estimate the particle number flux (PNF) and the particle number emission factors (PNEF) for typical urban streets and driving conditions. Traffic was the main source of particles at the measurement site. Measured PNCs were inversely proportional to the reference wind speed and directly proportional to the traffic volume. During the periods of cross-canyon flow the PNCs were larger on the leeward side than the windward side of the street canyon showing a possible effect of the vortex circulation. The largest PNCs were unsurprisingly near to road level and the pollution sources. The PNCs measured at 0.20 m and 1.0 m were the same to within 0.5-12.5% indicating a well-mixed region and this was presumably due to the enhanced mixing from traffic produced turbulence. The PNCs at 2.60 m were lower by 10-40% than those at 0.20 m and 1.0 m, suggesting a possible concentration gradient in the upper part of the canyon. The PNFs were estimated using an idealised and an operational approach; they were directly proportional to the traffic volume confirming the traffic to be the main source of particles. The PNEF were estimated using an inverse modelling technique; the reported values were within a factor of 3 of those published in similar studies.
The presence of 170 pharmaceuticals, personal care products, priority substances according to the 2008/105EU Directive and four metals (Cd, Ni, Hg, Pb) have been investigated at the Llobregat delta, south of Barcelona (Spain). In the area, reclaimed water is destined to satisfy environmental uses, irrigation and the construction of a hydraulic barrier against seawater intrusion in the deep aquifer of the delta. A monitoring survey was undertaken of water samples from a tertiary wastewater treatment plant (Depurbaix), treated waste water with an additional treatment of ultrafiltration, reverse osmosis, and UV disinfection (WWATP, for the hydraulic barrier injection). Groundwater samples from the aquifer receiving recharge were also investigated. The pharmaceutical group of substances was detected in sampled waters at concentrations rarely exceeding a few mug/L, among the compounds Caffeine, Nicotine and Galaxolide (musk fragrance) were found to be present in more than 60% of the samples. Diuron was the only priority substance detected. The four metals were always present in a variable concentration. After the WWATP treatment the majority of analytes are removed from tertiary treated wastewater or their concentration is reduced below 0.1mug/L. Monitoring revealed a widespread occurrence of analysed compounds in groundwater. Among them Codeine (analgesic), Ibuprofen (anti-inflammatory), Iopamidol, Iopromide (contrast agent) and Paraxanthine (metabolite of caffeine) have only been detected in groundwater, and are not present in water currently being injected in the deep aquifer.
Total heavy metal deposition was monitored at seven rural sites across New Zealand to determine the rate of atmospheric deposition of heavy metals to soils and to evaluate any regional and temporal variations in metal deposition. Heavy metal deposition was collected monthly in Warren Spring Laboratory type inverted frisbees. The rate of heavy metal deposition followed the order Zn>Cu>Cr>Pb>Ni>Cd. There were no obvious trends with regards to either seasonal or spatial deposition for any of the heavy metals measured. With the exception of Zn, heavy metal deposition in New Zealand was generally lower than rates measured in other countries. This reflects the general lack of high temperature industrial processes from urban-based industrial processes that are an important source of heavy metal aerosols in other industrialised regions worldwide. The inverted frisbee technique used provides a reliable indication of the magnitude of deposition of heavy metals from the atmosphere at a reasonable cost and with manageable logistical effort for a national survey.
A study was conducted on the pesticides Diuron, Irgarol 1051 and Fenitrothion in Kurose River water, Higashi Hiroshima, Japan for a period of one year to assess the contribution of agriculture and urban activities on pesticide pollution of the river. Samples were analysed by a reverse phase HPLC system. The maximum pesticide concentrations were; 4620ng/L, 50ng/L and 370ng/L for Diuron, Irgarol 1051 and Fenitrothion, respectively. While Diuron and Fenitrothion were detected at all sites, Irgarol 1051 was only present at Izumi, a high density urban and industrial area which also registered the highest concentrations of the pesticides. The pattern showed by Diuron and Fenitrothion was linked to farming activities. Also, Diuron and Fenitrothion concentration correlated with pesticide utilization data for Hiroshima Prefecture. Irgarol 1051 showed a different pattern to that of Diuron and Fenitrothion and its source was attributed to paint. It was noted that 78% and 42% of water samples at Izumi sampling site exceeded the European Union (EU) guidelines for Diuron and Fenitrothion, respectively. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
The toxicity and persistence of antifouling booster biocides are of major concern. This study reports the occurrence of Irgarol 1051 and its degradation product M1, in coastal waters of Southern England, during 2004-2005. The highest concentrations of Irgarol 1051 were 89 ng/L in water and 45 ng/g dry weight in sediments, with an overall mean (n=108) of 13 ng/L and 16 ng/g in water and sediments, respectively. As the degradation product of Irgarol 1051, M1 was less widespread, with the highest concentration of 30 ng/L in water and 14 ng/g in sediments, with an overall mean (n=108) of 5 ng/L and 4 ng/g in water and sediments, respectively. Overall, the concentration of Irgarol 1051 and M1 decreased significantly during the sampling period and in comparison to earlier studies during 2000 to early 2004, indicating that control measures by restricting the use of Irgarol 1051 are effective in reducing its concentrations in coastal waters. The distribution of Irgarol 1051 between sediments and water was significantly related to sediment organic carbon content. In addition, significantly higher concentrations of Irgarol 1051 were detected in paint particles than in sediment. The rate of release of Irgarol 1051 from paint residues is very slow, with a half life of approximately 1 y. Two important findings are emerging, first the importance of organic rich sediments and paint residues as major sites of storage for Irgarol 1051, and secondly Irgarol 1051 may be classified as a persistent organic pollutant due to its long half life.
The time dependence of the specific activity of Chernobyl-derived 134Cs, 137Cs and 106Ru was determined in vegetation and soil samples from an old spruce stand within a period of 600 days after the beginning of the radioactive fallout. The results show that 70% of the total activity of radiocesium and 60% of radioruthenium deposited in the spruce stand were retained initially in the canopy. They were removed from the needles and twigs as a result of weathering (rain, wind, litter fall) and transferred to the forest floor, but only rather slowly (half-lives in the canopy: radiocesium, 90 days for the period 0-130 days, 230 days for the period 130-600 days; radioruthenium, 95 days for the period 0-200 days). The transfer of radiocesium and ruthenium to the forest floor by litter-fall was small when compared with that of weathering by rain or wind (radiocesium 7%, radioruthenium 8%, with respect to the total activity deposited in the canopy). The total deposition of radiocesium and ruthenium in the spruce stand was higher by 20 and 24%, respectively, than that observed in nearby grassland. The deposition velocity of radiocesium in the spruce stand was estimated at 5.5 mm s-1, higher by a factor of 10 than the figure for grassland. Similar values were found for radioruthenium.
The bioaccumulation of Pt, Pd and Rh by grass grown hydroponically with nutrient solutions containing these ions at elevated (38.7 mg l(-1) Pt, 21.7 mg l(-1) Pd and 7.1 mg l(-1) Rh) and medium (3.6 mg l(-1) Pt, 4.4 mg l(-1) Pd and 0.5 mg l(-1) Rh) concentrations was studied by using inductively coupled plasma sector field mass spectrometry (ICP-SFMS). The highest bioaccumulation factors were obtained for Pd and Rh in roots and for Pt in leaves. The obtained results showed that most of the studied metals were accumulated in roots, and only a small fraction was really metabolised and transported to leaves. The multi-element capability of ICP-SFMS has been exploited to study the metabolism of platinum group elements (PGEs) in cultivated plants. The species of studied metals were extracted from roots and leaves and separated into two mass fractions by ultra-filtration. The low molecular mass (<10 kDa) fractions of the root and the leaf extracts were investigated by size-exclusion chromatography (SEC) coupled on-line to ICP-SFMS. The presence of Ca, Cu, S and C in the same fractions as Pt, Pd and Rh may indicate the interaction of PGEs with phytochelatins and carbohydrates.
It is known that pollutants in the outdoor and indoor environments are associated with acute adverse effects on health. The acute health effects produced include a wide range, from minor biological changes to causes of illness and exacerbation of disease, to death. Valid assessment of total exposures in various microenvironments are much more meaningful in terms of the various health responses. Short and long exposure times are both important, especially as related to the locations of such exposure and activities engaged in at the time. The quantitative character of exposure-response relationships will require more extensive research on obtaining appropriate exposure information, including monitoring and validating exposures and time activities, and on further modelling. More knowledge is also needed regarding the quantitative nature of the acute health effects, combined effects of different pollutants, and on the effects of various co-variates, effect-modifiers, and confounders. Efforts should also consist of promoting acute health effects studies that have appropriate monitoring and exposure assessment.
The present study was aimed at obtaining an insight into possible experimental approaches for providing numerical data on both the accumulation of sediment As, Cd, Cu and Zn in the submerged water plant Potamogeton pectinatus L., and the possible corresponding metal flows into the water phase. A hydroculture two-compartment system was used as the experimental set-up, and the selected metals were followed by measurements of their radioisotopes 76As, 109Cd, 115Cd, 64Cu, 65Zn and 69mZn. All experiments were performed in single plant mode. The results stress the extreme importance of leakage tests, which were performed using 99mTcO4-, and which resulted in approximately 30% of all experiments being discarded. Metal flows were shown as very near the metal limits of detection or obscured by and/or numerically very near the occurring leakage phenomena. Bio-concentration factors BCF (fresh wt. fine root basis) were calculated as 100, 10, 10 and 100-500 l/kg for Cu, Zn, Cd and As, respectively. The mobility, expressed as the shoot/root concentration ratio, CR, was obtained as < 10(-4), < 10(-5), 10(-3) and 10(-3) - 10(-2) for Cu, As, Cd and Zn, respectively. Double-labeling experiments showed that the CR values were due to the exclusive root-mediated transport in radiotracer experiments: results for simultaneous applications of 109Cd and 115Cd or 65Zn and 69mZn showed field-simulated CR values of approximately 0.04 and 14, respectively. Single-tracer experiments, using liquid scintillation counting (LSC) with 109Cd and 65Zn, were shown to strongly improve the sensitivities of flow determinations. Under the applied conditions, metal flows could be determined as <5 x 10(-8), <5 X 10(-8), 3.5+/-1.8 x 10(-10) and <8 x 10(-9) mol/h per kg root fresh wt. for Cu, As, Cd and Zn, respectively. Upscaling calculations, assuming plant steady state behavior, indicate that the metal accumulation in the plants may comprise up to 1% of the sediment metal occurrence, that the major part of an accumulated metal is retained in the plant roots, and that plant-mediated metal flow into the water phase (< 0.01% for Cd, Cu and Zn, < 0.1% for As within a growing season) may be regarded as not significantly contributing to the overall process of metal mobilization. It should be noted, however, that the above conclusions should be drawn with care, due to the pilot nature and the short-term duration of the presented experiments.
This paper provides an overview of nickel concentrations in the terrestrial environment especially as it relates to exposure of the metal to humans and animals through food. The information includes a review of reports published in the scientific literature substantially supplemented with data obtained across the province of Ontario, Canada. The topics covered include background levels and levels of nickel measured in a number of different types of biota exposed to environmental contamination. These include plants of different types (higher plants, mosses), fungi and lichens and animals (birds, mammals, invertebrates). The information covers accumulation of nickel in plants with time and distribution of nickel among tissues of individual plants. Information on phytotoxicity and environmental guidelines are reviewed.
Cadmium with the radiotracer 109Cd was added to the epilimnion of Precambrian Shield Lake 382 in the Experimental Lakes Area, northwestern Ontario to monitor pathways of Cd from water to abiotic and biotic components, to quantify Cd accumulation and distribution in biota and to evaluate adverse biological and ecological effects. This experiment will permit evaluation of the adequacy of the water quality guidelines of 0.2 microgram Cd l-1 in protecting aquatic life in softwater lakes. As part of the whole-lake experiment, we monitored the activities of 109Cd in various body parts of the floater mussel Anodonta grandis grandis to determine accumulation and distribution of Cd. Additions of Cd from 23 June to the end of October 1987 (a total of 900 g Cd and 89 mCi of 109Cd) increased the total [Cd] in the water from 1.6 to about 85 ng l-1. Cadmium-109 was accumulated in body parts of the mussels, in increasing concentration: mantle less than foot less than gill less than visceral mass less than kidney. After 4 months exposure to the increased water [Cd], the mussels had increased body burden of Cd by an estimated 5-9 times. At the latter increase, the population of 7330 +/- 2100 mussels in the lake contained an estimated 0.011-0.020% of the added 109Cd.
Background: Children are susceptible to mercury toxicity, and mercury has immunomodulatory effects. Lower folate and B-12, and higher homocysteine may represent susceptibility cofactors. A large proportion of variability in rubella immune response is attributable to environmental factors. Objective: This study aimed to evaluate the interaction between total blood mercury (Hg) and nutritional and homocysteine status on rubella virus antibody concentrations. Design: Cross-sectional data on rubella IgG antibody concentrations, Hg, homocysteine, methylmalonic acid (MMA, an indicator of B-12 deficiency), and folate were obtained from 2003-2004 NHANES for children aged 6-11 years with rubella seropositivity (n=690). Linear regression was used to evaluate relationships between log-transformed rubella concentrations and Hg, stratified by sex, MMA ≥, folate<, and homocysteine ≥ sample medians, adjusted for demographic and nutritional cofactors. Results: Hg was significantly positively associated with rubella antibody concentrations (β=0.24; 95% confidence interval (CI)=0.11, 0.38) in children with higher MMA, lower folate and higher homocysteine (n=110), yet inversely associated among all other children (β=-0.18; 95% CI=-0.34, -0.03) (n=580). Among the former, estimates (β) were positive across all Hg quartiles relative to the lowest (Q1) (Hg<0.30 μg/L): Q2: β=0.23 (-.10, 0.56); Q3: β=0.35 (0.13, 0.57); Q4: β=0.53 (0.21, 0.84); P(trend)<0.01. Conclusion: Findings are consistent with previously reported associations between Hg and measles antibody concentrations, and highlight the importance of considering dynamics between toxicant exposures, pathogens and host susceptibility.
Platinum (Pt) and Palladium (Pd) concentrations have been analysed in 194 samples from within the city of Sheffield in the UK. The samples were taken from road dust, gully pots (also known as drains), soils, a motorway drainage pipe, rivers, lakes, sewage sludge, incinerator ash, incinerator ash in landfill, street cleansers and gully cleansers. The introduction of Pt- and Pd-bearing automobile catalysts, has been cited as the cause of a rise in the concentration of urban Pt and Pd accumulations. Geochemical analyses for the different sample types are used here to show how the Pt and Pd accumulate in different urban environments as they are transported from their catalytic source.
The objective of this study was to make a robust 137Cs inventory calculation for Reservoir 11 in the Mayak Production Associations industrial cascade of reservoirs. High resolution satellite photographs provided information about the original Techa River and floodplain environment before, during and also after Reservoir 11 was constructed. The images provided important clues about the old Techa River system and also showed the extent of the contaminated area. Sediment cores were sampled along a transect in Reservoir 11, and perpendicular to the Techa River in 1996. 13Cs contamination densities were in the range 344-4030 kBq m(-2) and appear to exhibit a strong dependence on relative position along the transect, with more central positions exhibiting the highest actual levels. The contamination densities derived from the seven cores were combined with (published) data from four core samples collected in a 1994 field campaign. Sample data and images were integrated in a geographical information system (GIS). The GIS aided in the definition of distinctive floodplain classes, the so-called sediment 'facies', area calculations and in the positioning of 1994 and 1996 sample profiles in the reservoir. The resulting inventory estimate for Reservoir 11, is a factor 4-10 lower than earlier calculations. Analysis of the uncertainty in the calculations has been carried out and provides support for the integrity of the new method.
Measurements of the two unusual nuclides 110mAg and 125Sb in soils and grass, derived from fallout, were made in Greece after the Chernobyl reactor accident. The 110mAg concentrations ranged from 4.5 to 46.1 Bq kg-1 (average 14.3 Bq kg-1) in soils and from 0.2 to 1.5 Bq kg-1 (average 0.8 Bq kg-1) in grass. The 125Sb concentrations ranged from 15.7 to 284.6 Bq kg-1 (average 105.0 Bq kg-1) in soils and from 1.1 to 19.6 Bq kg-1 (average 4.4 Bq kg-1) in grass.
The transfer of Ag-110m from the Chernobyl fallout to sheep tissues is discussed. Ag-110m was only detected in the liver and occasionally the brain of the sheep analysed. The transfer of Ag-110m associated with perennial rye-grass, harvested soon after deposition in 1986, was greater to the liver of both ewes and lambs than that of Cs-137. Transfer coefficients of Ag-110m for lamb liver exceeded those for ewe livers. However, in a 1987 field study there was no difference between transfer coefficients of Ag-110m for ewes and lambs. It is suggested that there is a slow turnover of Ag-110m in the liver of sheep and that unlike radiocaesium, Ag-110m from the Chernobyl fallout did not become more available once incorporated into plant tissues.
Mining and resource recovery activities have not been kind to ecosystems in the Sudbury basin, Ontario. The combination of logging, smelting, fires and erosion resulted in an unusual anthropogenic ecosystem of denuded barren land with lifeless lakes, or a micro-desert. Since the 1970s, however, the concerted efforts made to reduce the emissions and rehabilitate parts of the degraded ecosystem have resulted in improvements in water quality, and recoveries in phytoplankton, zooplankton, zoobenthos and fish communities but have had little impact on toxic metal concentrations in many lakes. We show that most of the catchments in the Sudbury basin have become saturated with Cu and Ni, and some with Zn and Pb. It is estimated that mobilization of metals stored in soils and glacial overburden by surface runoff, groundwater drainage and wind re-working of tailings can sustain the high concentrations of Cu and Ni in many lakes for well over 1000 years. Strategies to immobilize the pollutant metals in the watershed rather than further emission controls may be required for dealing with high levels of toxic metals in surface waters of the saturated ecosystems.
Nineteen elements (Al, B, Ca, Cd, Co, Cr, Cu, Fe, K, Mg, Mn, Na, Ni, P, Pb, Sr, Ti, V and Zn) were analyzed in excavated bone (rib) of the Edo era (a Japanese historical era, 300-120 BP (before present] from different burial conditions in Tokyo, and in contemporary Japanese bone (rib) obtained from autopsy cases. The elemental composition of the excavated bones varied according to their burial conditions. The concentration of soil-related elements such as Fe, Mn, Co and Ti in the bone was lowest in the samples in the "wooden coffin in a stone room", next lowest in the "funeral urn with mud", and highest in the "wooden coffin full of mud". The Pb concentration was higher in excavated bones than in contemporary bones and much higher, by as much as several tens micrograms/g, in the bones in the "wooden coffin in a stone room" and in the "funeral urn with mud". These results strongly support the notion that Japanese in the city of Edo were highly polluted by environmental lead.
The emission of platinum group elements (PGE) from automobile catalytic converters has led to rapid increases in Pt, Pd and Rh concentrations in roadside media. This article represents the first detailed study to assess PGE levels in road dusts and roadside soils in Australia. Road dust and roadside soil samples were analysed by ICP-MS following microwave digestion and cation exchange. All samples show elevation of PGE above average upper crust values, with maximum values of 420 ng g(-1) Pt, 440 ng g(-1) Pd and 91 ng g(-1) Rh. PGE ratios in road dusts and soils are consistent with known catalytic converter compositions and while Pt and Rh abundances are comparable with European studies, Pd levels are substantially higher in Australian samples. PGE in these samples are not correlated with Pb, though positive correlations with Ce, Cu and Y are evident. No straightforward relationship between traffic volume and PGE abundance is evident and factors such as driving style, topography, road drainage and potentially climate exert considerable influences.
Using validated models and methods routinely employed by pesticide regulatory agencies, the absorbed dosages of Agent Orange (AO) herbicide contaminant 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (TCDD) were estimated for mixer/loaders, applicators, and individuals in the vicinity of applications of AO by C-123 aircraft during the Vietnam War. Resulting dosages of TCDD were then transformed to estimates of adipose residues, and compared to population biomonitoring of known mixer/loaders and applicators as well as ground troops in Vietnam and civilians in the U.S. Results demonstrate that mixer/loaders and applicators had the greatest exposures and their measured residues of TCDD in adipose were consistent with the estimated exposures. Further, the potentially exposed ground troops, including those who could have been directly sprayed during aerial defoliation, had measured adipose residues that were consistent with those in civilian U.S. populations with no defined source of exposure exposures and both of those cohorts had orders of magnitude less exposure than the mixer/loaders or applicators. Despite the availability of validated exposure modeling methods for decades, the quantitative TCDD dose estimates presented here are the first of their kind for the Vietnam conflict. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Some mute swans have been found to have higher levels of radio-iodine in their thyroids than farm and wildlife animals. In the East Midlands of the U.K., elevated levels were confined to swans inhabiting major rivers like the Trent and Soar where the highest values occurred in thyroids collected downstream from sewage and water reclamation works. Comparing the concentrations of 125I and 131I in blanket weed, which is a food source of the swan, and river water samples collected from above, below and in such effluents, showed that radio-iodine enters the river via these routes. The environmental pathway is sewage effluent--(water reclamation)--river water--river weed--swan. The radioactivity originates from the widespread use of radio-iodine in hospitals and analytical laboratories where much of the liquid and soluble waste is discarded into the sewage drain system. With a simple counting assembly consisting of a heavily shielded thin NaI(Tl) crystal detector attached to a 2-channel scaler-timer it was possible to check large numbers of swan thyroid glands. Although relatively high count rates were frequently obtained the levels of radio-iodine in thyroids were too low to affect the health and well-being of the swan.
Top-cited authors
Derek Muir
  • Environment and Climate Change Canada
Thomas Ternes
  • Bundesanstalt für Gewässerkunde
Roy M Harrison
  • University of Birmingham
Samuel Asumadu Sarkodie
Kevin C Jones
  • Lancaster University