Impact of global change on the remobilization and bioaccumulation of organic pollutants in polar aquatic food webs (BIOPOLLAR)
This Marie Curie research project aimed to study the effect of climate warming and permafrost melting on organic pollutants in food webs from freshwater and marine Arctic ecosystems and maritime Antarctica using long temporal series of legacy persistent organic pollutants (POPs) such as polychlorinated biphenyl’s (PCBs), organochlorine pesticides (OCPs) such as (DDTs, HCB, HCHs), brominated flame retardands (BDEs), recently regulated pollutants such as perfluoro alkyl substances (PFASs) and emerging pollutants such as organophosphate ester and plasticisers (OPES). For achieving these goals, a combination of laboratory analysis in achieved samples, intensive sampling campaigns in the High Arctic and in the maritime Antarctica, and statistical tools were applied on collected and archived samples. More than 1000 samples, (from different environmental compartments (fish, plankton, water, soil, vegetation, air, etc), including archived samples have been considered during the whole duration of the project. The proposal has addressed a knowledge gap on the influence of climate change on the availability of contaminants in Arctic ecosystems and food webs and the presence for the first time of emerging pollutants such as OPEs in Antarctic biota (e.g plankton) and seawater. Some of the goals achieved through this Marie Curie project have been recently published under Cabrerizo et al, 2018, Environ. Sci. Technol., 52, 10380−10390 (paper which was selected as featured cover for the Journal (in Sept 18) or Cabrerizo et al, Environ. Sci. Technol., 2018, 52, 14187−14197, among others. This study showed for the first time, that the concentrations of POPs in Arctic char from the last two decades were correlated with interannual variations of the North Atlantic Oscillation. This fact together with increasing Arctic temperatures could increase POPs concentrations in char from the High Arctic lakes in the following decades particularly if there are nearby secondary sources, which importance was also pointed out recently.