26 Jun 2010, 6:08pm
Latest Forest News
by admin

Severity Of Pollution In U.S. National Parks Confirmed In New Studies

By Peter Fowler, Newsroom America, 24 Jun 2010 [here]

Two studies conducted over several years show toxic contamination from pesticides, the burning of fossil fuels, agriculture, industrial operations and other sources are a continuing concern in national parks of the West.

In research performed by an international group of scientists over several years, pollution was found in all eight of the national parks and preserves that were studied, in terrain ranging from the Arctic to southern California.

Most of it was caused by regional agriculture or industry, but some had traveled thousands of miles from distant sources in Asia and elsewhere.

The two recent reports, both published in Environmental Science and Technology, reinforce previous research that has identified such problems, scientists say, and better quantify the extent of the concerns.

“As scientists we’re getting more used to these pollution problems,” said Staci Simonich, an associate professor of environmental and molecular toxicology at Oregon State University, and lead investigator on both studies. “Pesticide pollution is now so routine that we’ve had to look at museum specimens to find baseline data that existed prior to pesticide use.

“But it still seems surprising that such remote and supposedly pristine areas are not all that pristine,” she said. “You never really get used to that.” … [more]

Note: Not to mention the catastrophic fires that release megatons of particulate smoke, foul streams with ash and erosion, kill wildlife and destroy their habitats, jump off park properties and burn out the neighbors, etc. You never really get used to that, either. Although, I suspect the researchers failed to notice. They were shocked to discover that “pristine” is a myth, so we can’t expect a whole lot of observational acuity from them.



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