Testing the Waters
Clarkson University Environmental Engineering professor Tom Holsen is hoping his research on fish tissue will eventually help him prove the ecological health of the Great Lakes waterways.
"The idea is to try and head off problems with chemicals they are currently using, before they are causing big problems in the environment," says Holsen.
Holsen and a team of Clarkson researchers are joining forces with professors from SUNY Oswego and SUNY Fredonia, as part of a $6-million dollar federal Environmental Protection Agency grant.
The researchers will be looking to see if there are any developing trends in current or emerging contaminents found in Great Lakes fish tissue. That data can then be used to improve the aquatic ecosystem.
"Some of these newer chemicals, like the flame retardents and the musks, we are seeing concentrations increase. If they get to the point where they can cause problems then appropriate action can be taken by regulators to limit their use," says Holsen.
The impact of pollutants in Lake Ontario waters and the other Great Lakes could have significant consequences, affecting everything from health to tourism.
Clarkson's involvement in the chemical analysis of the sampling of predator fish could help efforts to identify and reduce sources of pollutants.
Tuesday, May 21, 2013, Watertown, NY
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