Warming temperatures are leading to dramatic reductions in glacial coverage in northern areas. As glaciers and permafrost melt, they become potential sources of legacy organic contaminants, including pesticides and PCBs, to coastal ecosystems. Despite rapid warming in the last decades, data on potential mobilization of contaminants and uptake by lower trophic levels is scarce. The IcePOPs project seeks to provide information on the uptake of terrestrially-derived legacy contaminants in coastal pelagic and benthic food-webs. Through the quantification of a variety of persistent organic pollutants (POPs) with varying physicochemical characteristics (DDTs, HCHs, chlorinated pesticides, PCBs), this project will examine how the concentrations and ratios of these contaminants change through the pelagic and benthic food-web in Isfjord (Svalbard). The IcePOPs project will provide high quality data that is essential for future parameterization of contaminant models and for informing management guidelines.
Project manager: Maeve McGovern
Project code: 475 772019