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Temporal trends of organochlorine pesticides in the Canadian Arctic atmosphere.

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal article

<mark>Journal publication date</mark>1/03/2002
<mark>Journal</mark>Environmental Science and Technology
Number of pages7
Pages (from-to)862-868
<mark>Original language</mark>English


Temperature normalization (TN), multiple linear regression (MLR), and digital filtration (DF) were used to analyze the temporal trends of an atmospheric dataset on organochlorine pesticides (OCs) collected at the Canadian high arctic site of Alert, Nunavut. Details of these techniques have been presented before (Environ. Sci. Technol. 2001, 35, 1303-1311). Both the TN and DF methods revealed that the majority of OC pesticides declined over the 5 years of study, except endosulfan I and several of the pesticide metabolites, including dieldrin and p,p'-DDE. In comparison to studies conducted in the Great Lakes, atmospheric levels in the Arctic were less dependent on temperature, although seasonal variations were apparent. Generally, levels in the winter were lower than during the rest of the year. A notable exception was p,p'-DDE. Many compounds also showed a second minimum in concentrations during June/July and possible explanations are presented to account for this. The estimated first order half-lives for the decline in OC concentrations were generally found to be comparable or slightly longer than those obtained at temperate locations, with the exception of -HCH, which displayed a much longer half-life in the Arctic (~17 yrs). Sporadic increases in heptachlor as well as increases in the ratio of trans- to cis-chlordane suggest episodic input of chlordanes between 1995 and 1997, especially during the winter.

Bibliographic note

This paper arose as a result of collaboration with the Meteorological Services of Canada (MSC). Halsall initiated the project with funding obtained in Canada and co-wrote the paper with Hung, a PDRA, employed at MSC. The work identified, for the first time, contaminant trends in the arctic atmosphere (48 citations). RAE_import_type : Journal article RAE_uoa_type : Earth Systems and Environmental Sciences