Thursday, September 13, 2012

Blog 3: Arctic Contaminants 9/13/12

    Due to worldwide sea and air currents, the arctic sea is region for long transport pollutants and in some areas the concentration passed the levels of densely populated urban areas.  The issue of Arctic haze is always blamed on long-ranged pollutants.  It has been more than a decade since the global leaders meet to discuss ways to prevent organic pollutants making their way to the food chain.  Instead researches at Massachusetts Institute of Technology are working on a way to help inform policies that heavily address contamination problems.  Persistent organic pollutants are chemical of international concern.  It is known that pollutants from around the world being carried by ocean currents, atmospheric circulation, and rivers.  The conditions in the Arctic are very extreme including cold temperature and reduced sunlight which are causing the contaminants to be highly concentrated due to their lengthened life span in the Arctic.  Selin and Carey Friedman are both associated with the MIT joint program on the science policy of global change and they created 3-D atmospheric model used to track movement of chemicals.  During the experiment the tracked toxic byproducts of burning wood, oil, coal, and other forms of energy that remained in the atmosphere. After the experiment the chemicals were known as carcinogens which could cause cancer.  The researchers will continue to do research on the global transport on other type of contaminants in the Arctic such as chemical in stain-resistant carpets and non stick pans.
    Organic pollutants usually in the Arctic area and once they mix with one another it could cause danger to the humans and the animals. It is even worse in concert with other climate change stressors in the Arctic.  The chemical are known to build up in the fat of whales, seals, and other ocean animal plus, these are main food for those who live in high latitude regions.  This is a global issue because the arctic ocean doesn't just affect the animal in the ocean but it also affect as well, individuals from different continents eat the animals in the arctic sea and if those animals are contaminated with hazardous chemicals so will the people eating the animal.  I think it is very important that people around the world resist from throwing chemicals in the water such as house cleaning supplies or trash so we can at least minimize the amount of hazardous chemical going in the ocean.


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