Persistent Organic Pollutants in the Environment Essay

Persistent Organic Pollutants in the Environment Essay

Length: 1847 words (5.3 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Powerful Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview


Introduction
Persistent organic pollutants (POPs) categorize a vast assemblage of environmentally toxic compounds and have received notoriety in recent decades for their lingering presence within an ecosystem. Most POPs are lipophilic and enabling them to bioaccumulate within an ecosystem which may potentially cause long lasting damage as they are transferred through consumption of an organism’s fat content (Ritter et al. 1995). The chemical stability of POPs allows these substances to persist in an ecosystem for many years either in soils or within animal tissue (Ritter et al. 1995). The recent detection of POPs in Arctic regions has raised concern over the severity these toxins may pose to Northern ecosystems (Letcher et al. 2010). Monitoring the amount and rate that POPs are being leeched back into the North is crucial in understanding the extent of ecosystem damage as well as identifying areas of further research. Schmid et al. (2011) found that glacial fed lakes contain higher POP levels compared to non-glacial fed ones demonstrating the potential for reintroduction of these pollutants back into the ecosystem. Another study by Blais et al. (2001) produced similar results as they detected higher levels of POPs in glacial streams compared to water from valley streams and precipitation. Blais et al. also believes free suspending POPs in glacial water are more prevalent because of the low organic material in these waters; consequently enabling them to travel further before being caught by soil or organic material.
The POPs in focus for this study are chlordane, dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT), and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs). Chlordane, DDT, and PCBs have all been widely banned or reduced globally since the later qua...


... middle of paper ...


..., Bizzotto, E., Comolli, R., and M. Vighi. 2008. POPs in mountain soils from the Alps and Andes: Suggestions for a precipitation effect on altitudinal gradients. Water Air and Soil Pollution 188(1-4): 93-109.
Vos, J.G., Dybing, E., Griem, H.A., Ladefoged, O., Lambre, C., Tarazona, J.V., Brant, I., and A.D. Vethaak. 2000. Health effects of endocrine-disrupting chemicals on wildlife, with special reference to the European situation. Critical Reviews in Toxicology, 30(1): 71-133.
Wang, X.P., Yao, T.D., Wang, P.L., Yang, W., and L.D. Tian. 2008. The recent deposition of persistent organic pollutants and mercury to the Dasuopu glacier, Mt. Xixiabangma, central Himalayas. Science of the Total Environment 394: 1134-143.
Wania, F., and D. Mackay. 1993. Global fractionation and cold condensation of low volatility organochlorine compounds in polar regions. Ambio, 22(1): 10-18.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Essay about Analysis on a toxin in the environment, PCB

- Analysis on a toxin in the environment, PCB As one of POPs, PCB pollution has a unimaginable impact on the environment. PCB mainly comes from the extensive use of PCB factories worldwide, such as the motor factory uses PCB as insulating oil, and chemical plant extensive uses PCB as heat carrier and lubricating oil. The corrosion resistance of coating in ship contains PCB, so if it is dissolved by seawater, it is also a considerable pollution source. PCB from such sources enters the drainage system with the forms of waste oil, slurry, and paint peeling, deposits on the bottom, then slowly flows to the water, and pollutes ecology system....   [tags: PCB Pollution, Environment, Harmful]

Powerful Essays
867 words (2.5 pages)

Essay on Environmental Risk Assessment of the Chemical Lindane

- Introduction Hexachlorocyclohexane’s (HCH) are primarily used as insecticides. These pollutants have been dispersed worldwide and are extremely persistent in the environment (Walker et al. 1999). HCH’s occur in eight different isomers, one of these isomers is lindane, which is also known as gamma-hexachlorocyclohexane (Willett et al. 1998). Today most of the use of HCH is in the form of lindane, but there is great concern that this isomer can be transformed into other isomers that have a greater persistence in the environment and more harmful effects to humans and other species (Walker et al....   [tags: HCH insecticides, pollutants]

Free Essays
740 words (2.1 pages)

The Importance of Degradation in the Fate of Selected Organic Compounds in the Environment

- Organic substances can enter the environment by several sources and pathways. One of the pathways is introduced through waste water or rain water flow into surface water. According to Abwasserverband Braunschweig (2014), approximately 700 liters of waste water per second with annual quantity of 22 million m3 waste water, mainly from household activity, are admitted to Steinhof Waste Water Treatment Plant in Braunschweig, Germany. The waste water treatment plant carries out mechanical and biological treatment for this waste water in multiple stages of processes....   [tags: waste water, organic substances, anion exchange]

Powerful Essays
1785 words (5.1 pages)

Essay on Air Pollutants

- A fleet of vehicles will have far reaching impacts; perhaps best known by the general public is the impact on air quality. Air pollutants may be released in a number of ways: first through evaporation during fueling, second through tailpipe emissions while a car is running, and third through chemical reactions occurring with byproducts or unused components emitted into the atmosphere.(Motor vehicles and toxic air pollutants. 2008) Typical chemicals released include benzene, toluene, xylenes, diesel particulate matter, and volatile organic compounds.(Motor vehicles and toxic air pollutants....   [tags: Environment ]

Powerful Essays
959 words (2.7 pages)

Essay on The Environmental Benefits Of Organic Agriculture

- Humans initially began farming organically when European farmers began to notice a decrease in soil quality and crop health due to the use of chemical fertilizers (UCSC). This problem that presented itself to crop farmers left no other alternative than to cease the use of chemical fertilizers and begin implementing less harmful supplements in order to improve crop quality, otherwise known as organic farming. Organic agriculture takes into account “the medium and long-term effect of agricultural interventions” (“What are the environmental benefits of organic agriculture” 1), by taking preemptive measures, whereas industrial farming addresses problems as they arise....   [tags: Organic farming, Organic food]

Powerful Essays
1096 words (3.1 pages)

Essay about The Great Pacific Garbage Patch

- Plastic If you look around your house right now, I can almost guarantee that you will see plastic somewhere. It’s used in just about everything nowadays, from your toothbrush, to the clothes on your back. In fact, without plastic life today probably wouldn’t even be possible for most of us. Plastic seems like such a great material; its strong and very durable, but it’s these traits that make plastic so harmful. Plastic to our knowledge does not biodegrade; and since nowadays it’s one of the most common materials used by man this poses a huge problem....   [tags: material, recycling, waste, environment]

Powerful Essays
1006 words (2.9 pages)

Essay on The Harmful Effects Of Organic Foods

- ... The taste also depends largely on how much water is in it. If there is too much water, then it dilutes the flavor. Conventionally fertilization methods include nitrogen, which causes more water to be absorbed in the cells of the produce. Therefore, it is not as flavorful as organically made produce. Grass fed cows and chicken taste better because there are no harmful antibiotics or growth hormones to make them bigger. The livestock is allowed to roam freely and a natural diet is fed to them....   [tags: Organic food, Organic farming]

Powerful Essays
1169 words (3.3 pages)

Organic Foods: They Are Only Natural! Essay

- When going to the grocery store or supermarket, people have a one track mind. Their one and only concern is food, food, and more food. Most shoppers come prepared with a list, so they can get in, get the supplies they need, and go happily on their way. Some shoppers tend to pick out brand name or well advertised products. Others prefer the brands they grew up with as kids. However, many choose the money saving route and buy only the items that are on sale or the cheap knock-offs of the original....   [tags: Health Benefits of Organic Food]

Powerful Essays
1119 words (3.2 pages)

Essay on Organic Farming And The Organic System Plan

- Organic farming refers to agricultural production systems used to produce food and fiber without the use of synthetic pesticides or fertilizers. The majority of current farming is conventional and uses these products in order to get larger yields more quickly. All kinds of agricultural products are produced organically, including produce, grains, meat, dairy, eggs, fibers such as cotton, flowers, and processed food products. Some of the essential characteristics of organic systems include: design and implementation of an "organic system plan" that describes the practices used in producing crops and livestock products; a detailed recordkeeping system that tracks all products from the field to...   [tags: Agriculture, Organic farming, Organic food]

Powerful Essays
1478 words (4.2 pages)

Essay on Organic Farming Summary

- Organic Farming Summary What is organic farming. Organic farming is farming is defined by the USDA as: “...Organic agriculture produces products using methods that preserve the environment and avoid most synthetic materials, such as pesticides and antibiotics.”(USDA) This means that organic farmers have jump through a certain amount of hoops to get certified in the United States. These hoops include; must preserve natural resources, support animal health and welfare, provide access for animals to go outside, only use approved material, no use of genetically modified ingredients, annual onsite inspections, and to keep organic food separate from non-organic food....   [tags: Organic Farming, USDA, Agriculture, Environment]

Powerful Essays
1048 words (3 pages)