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Mercury and climate change mini

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  • Component of many rocks and is released continually, but very slowly into natural waters by normal chemical weathering processes. Small quantities vaporize into the atmosphere from mercury-containing rocks. In bodies of water hg Settle at the body and adhere to sediment.
    Mercury is used int eh production of chemiscals, paints, plastics, pharmaceuticals, steel, electrical equipment. fungicides.
  • Elemental mercury not readily absorbed. Anaerobic bacteria in the bottom convert these forms of mercury to organic methyl mercury ion which is very soluble and readily absorbed.
  • Hair, nursing, fetus
  • Can damage nervous system, kidneys, liver birth defects.
    Also preferentially attacks selenium
  • Mercury nitrates used in felting process of small animals pelts
    Insanity
  • Mercury sulfates used as a catalyst to form acetaldehyde, aka ethanal used to make fertilizers and platisizers, that are additives that increase the plasticity or fluidity of a material. The dominant applications are for plastics, especially polyvinyl chloride (PVC)
    Side reaction forms methylmercury.
    Polluted bay, accumulation of methylmercury in fish
    Paralysis, insanity, neurological problems, numbness, muscle degeneration, dancing cats of miniamata
    Acetylaldehyde found in nature in coffee and ripe fruits and many other things. A compound partially responsible for the hangover.
    Continued for upwards of 30 years.
    Compensation given as late as early 2000s
    Japan

Transcript

  • 1. Mercury & climate change Kriya Dunlap University of Alaska Fairbanks
  • 2. what do you know about mercury?
  • 3. mercury in the environment …
  • 4. biomagnification and bioaccumulation
  • 5. the risks of mercury exposure + H g H C 3 Mercury has a strong for sulfhydryl – S-H affinity groups (Thiol)
  • 6. 19th Century Felters
  • 7. 950’s plastic factory in Minimata Bay