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Pollution Tracker: A Coast-Wide Initiative


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as presented by Peter S. Ross (Ocean Wise) at #BISS2017 (Burrard Inlet Science Symposium)

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Pollution Tracker: A Coast-Wide Initiative

  1. 1. PollutionTracker A Coast-Wide Initiative Peter S. Ross, Kelsey Miller & Marie Noel Ocean Pollution Research Program
  2. 2. Ocean Pollution Research Program  Ocean plastics: documenting sources and impacts of microplastics and debris using novel study designs and cutting-edge technologies  Marine mammals as canaries: using non-invasive approaches in seals and killer whales to provide an integrated assessment of coastal pollution  Oil spill science: conducting research on hydrocarbon fate and effects in the coastal environment  Safe traditional seafoods: working with First Nations communities along the coast to understand risks and benefits  PollutionTracker Project: conducting coast-wide sampling of mussels and sediments for analysis of marine pollutants to track spatial and temporal trends
  3. 3. PollutionTracker Objectives Establish a coast-wide partner-supported coastal pollution monitoring program to inform: • Pollution priorities (hotspots, priority pollutants in marine environment) • Pollutant source identification • Best practices and natural resource management Sample at each site every three years to examine temporal trends Generate openly available, comparable, high-quality baseline data Phase 1 Partners (2015-17) Tsleil-Waututh Nation, Port of Vancouver, Metro Vancouver, Fisheries & Oceans Canada, Parks Canada, Capital Regional District, Prince Rupert Port Authority, Heiltsuk Nation, Nuu-cha-nulth Tribal Council, Metlakatla First Nation, Tlowitsis First Nation
  4. 4. Phase 1: 2015-17 Samples collected along the coast: • 51 sediment sites • 33 mussel sites
  5. 5. PollutionTracker - Burrard Inlet Phase 1 • 15 sediment samples • 10 mussel samples Partners • Tsleil-Waututh Nation • Port of Vancouver • Metro Vancouver
  6. 6. PollutionTracker - Samples Why Sediments? • A sink for contaminants • A source to food web • Guidelines available Why Mussels? • Pollution sentinels • Filter large amounts of water • Used internationally • Near-shore sediment collected using small craft at depth of 5 to 20 m • Top 2-5 cm sampled; pooled samples <100 m • Mussels collected from within ~ 2 km of sediment sample
  7. 7. PollutionTracker – High resolution analysis for a wide variety of pollutants Tier 3 Level Analysis: Over 450 analytes
  8. 8. PollutionTracker – Preliminary results from Indian Arm Contaminant Class Indian Arm Sediments Mussels Alkylphenols   Hexabromocyclododecane (HBCD)   Metals   Organotins  X Perfluorinated compounds (PFCs)  X Pesticides - current use   Pesticides - legacy   Pharmaceuticals and Personal Care Products (PPCPs)  X Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs)   Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs)   Polychlorinated dibenzodioxins (PCDDs)   Polychlorinated dibenzofurans (PCDFs)   Polybrominated diethylethers (PBDEs)   Tetrabromobisphenol A (TBBPA) X X Note: Not all samples were analyzed for all contaminants
  9. 9. PollutionTracker – Indian Arm Total PCBs in Sediment CCME / BC MOE Sediment Quality Guideline
  10. 10. PollutionTracker – Indian Arm Total PBDEs in Sediment
  11. 11. PollutionTracker – Indian Arm Total PAHs in Sediment
  12. 12. PollutionTracker – Microplastics Microplastics Analysis currently underway • Extraction from sediment and mussel samples • Preliminary identification under microscope • Polymer identification using Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR) • Microplastic particles, including fibres, are being found in sediment & mussels
  13. 13. Caged Mussel Study GoogleEarth • Deployment of farmed mussels in lantern nets reduces confounding factors (e.g., age & size) • Health endpoints (e.g. DNA damage) are being measured to assess biological effects of contaminants • 6 sites in Burrard Inlet • Day 0 – 30 – 60 day study • Lab work underway
  14. 14. PollutionTracker: some good news… - First time coast-wide pollution assessment has been carried out - Two Tsleil-Waututh sites can now be compared against sites along entire BC coast - Results enable pollution priority setting and risk assessment - Results provide a foundation to assess safety of traditional seafoods and quality of local environment - Preliminary findings suggest that Indian Arm sediments and mussels are less contaminated with several pollutants of concern than the BC coastal average, despite being close to a major city
  15. 15. PollutionTracker – Next Steps Phase 1 Reporting  Site-specific summary reports for each partner (November 2017)  New website for summary of coast-wide results (January 2018)  Publish results in international literature Phase 2 (2018-2020) Preparations are now underway Dependent on partner Re-sample Phase 1 sites (based on 3-year cycle): trends Add new sites to address gaps and partner interests
  16. 16. Thank you Staff: Carmen Morales, Angela Hansen, Megane Neauport, Anahita Etemadifar & Jeremy Heywood Partners: - Tsleil-Waututh Nation - Port of Vancouver - Fisheries & Oceans Canada - Metro Vancouver - Capital Regional District (Victoria) - Prince Rupert Port Authority - Parks Canada - Heiltsuk Nation - Nuu-cha-nulth Tribal Council - Metlakatla First Nation - Tlowitsis First Nation Special thanks: John, Rae, Ronnie & Bridget at TW-N
  17. 17. PollutionTracker – Indian Arm Chemical Contaminants not detected in Indian Arm Contaminant Sediment Mussels Perfluorinated Compounds (PFCs) X X Hexabromocyclododecane (HBCD) X  (IA2) Tetrabromobisphenol A (TBBPA) X X Pharmaceutical & Personal Care Products (PPCPs) X X Organotins  (IA2) X