Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search

 


Number of contaminants in marine ecosystems a concern

Growing number of contaminants in marine ecosystems a concern

October 17, 2013

Chemicals from every day household products are increasingly being detected in the environment.

The presence of a growing number of contaminants, in particular pharmaceuticals in marine ecosystems, is of international concern as many of these every day chemicals are designed to be biologically active and may have adverse effects on marine organisms, University of Canterbury (UC) senior chemistry lecturer Dr Sally Gaw says.

The emerging contaminants are not routinely monitored in the environment but they pose potential threats to ecosystems and human health, she says.

``These emerging contaminants are of interest either because we have more information about their adverse effects in the environment or, in some cases, due to advances in analytical equipment we are now able to detect them in the environment,’’ Dr Gaw says.

She will be giving a public lecture on campus next week (October 23) discussing emerging contaminants. Dr Gaw will explain how pharmaceutical contaminants enter coastal waters, how showering and cleaning your teeth can contribute to marine pollution and how anti-depressants have been found in fish brains.

`` Until recently, researchers investigating the impacts of these emerging contaminants have focussed on freshwater environments and there has been limited assessment of these every day chemicals in marine environments.

``New Zealand's population is predominantly coastal, with three quarters of the population living within 10km of the coast. The coastline is a national taonga and a significant source of income.

``I will be explaining the likely impacts of emerging contaminants in the marine environment and the potential impacts on human health.

``Many of these contaminants are every day chemicals in widespread use in consumer products, personal care products and pharmaceuticals. The presence of antibiotics and antimicrobial compounds in the environment is a public health issue due to the potential for the development of antibiotic drug resistance in bacteria.

``Sewage discharges are a major source of emerging contaminants entering coastal waters. Current sewage treatment processes were not designed to remove these types of contaminants.’’

Measures to reduce the impact of emerging contaminants in the marine environment will involve a combination of improved treatment at wastewater plants and regulatory controls for high risk chemicals, Dr Gaw says.

For details about her lecture, see: https://www.eventbrite.co.nz/event/8360082231

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell:
On The Pakistan Schoolchildren Killings

The slaughter of the children in Pakistan is incomprehensibly awful. On the side, it has thrown a spotlight onto something that’s become a pop cultural meme. Fans of the Homeland TV series will be well aware of the collusion between sections of the Pakistan military/security establishment on one hand and sections of the Taliban of the other…

Reportedly, it was the breakdown of the relationship between the Pakistan Taliban and the Pakistan military – which for the first time, began bombing Taliban enclaves in the Tribal Federated Areas earlier this year – that led to this revenge attack on the school, which is attended by the children of the military. More>>

 

Parliament Adjourns:

Police: Phillip Smith Investigation Passport Charge

A 25 year-old man will appear in the Whanganui District Court today charged with the Passports Act offence of False Representations. The charges were laid on December 9 by the Auckland-based Phillip Smith investigation... More>>

Intelligence: Inspector-General Accepts Apology For Leak Of Report

The Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security, Cheryl Gwyn, has accepted an unreserved apology from Hon Phil Goff MP for disclosing some of the contents of her recent Report into the Release of Information by the NZSIS in July and August 2011 to media prior to its publication. The Inspector-General will not take the matter any further. More>>

ALSO:

Drink: Alcohol Advertising Report Released

The report of the Ministerial Forum on Alcohol Advertising and Sponsorship has been released today, with Ministers noting that further work will be required on the feasibility and impact of the proposals. More>>

ALSO:

Other Report:

Leaked Cabinet Papers: Treasury Calls For Health Cuts

Leaked Cabinet papers that show that Government has been advised to cut the health budget by around $200 million is ringing alarm bells throughout the nursing and midwifery community. More>>

ALSO:

Maori Party: Tribunal Report Confirms Iwi Ownership Of Lake Waikaremoana

“We are pleased for the claimants that eight years after the hearing began on Lake Waikaremoana they have some closure,” says Māori Party Co-leader Te Ururoa Flavell. “Most importantly, the report confirms freshwater is a taonga and identifies the ownership rights of Tūhoe, Ngāti Ruapani, Ngāti Kahungunu, and Ngāi Tamaterangi to the lake bed.” More>>

ALSO:

Climate Performance Report - Not Achieved: NZ Government Part Of Global Climate Problem

The New Zealand Government’s position on climate change is part of the global problem that we need to overcome if we are to avoid catastrophic climate change, the Green Party said. More>>

ALSO:

NSW Police Statement: Three Dead Following Martin Place Siege

About 2.10am (Tuesday 16 December), a confrontation occurred between police and a man who had taken a number of people hostage inside a café on Martin Place. Shots were fired during the confrontation. As a result, the 50-year-old man was pronounced dead after being taken to hospital. Another man, aged 34, and a woman, aged 38, were pronounced dead after being taken to hospital. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Sydney Siege (And DHB Budget Cuts)
Whenever the authorities bring a siege situation to an end, there will be criticism if – as has happened in Sydney – any hostages are seriously hurt, or killed... In the Sydney Morning Herald this morning, columnist Peter Hartcher raises a different point – that the initial public response had been noticeably different to the agitated reactions of politicians and the media. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Income Inequality, And Yo Ho Ho Christmas Songs

As 2014 grinds to a close, we probably didn’t need one more reminder of this government’s ability to stare reality in the face and declare black to be a very fine shade of white... Yet on Wednesday, there was Finance Minister Bill English trying to tell RNZ that the OECD was (a) wrong (b) using old data and (c) somehow anti-growth and in any case (d) New Zealand allegedly already had a strongly re-distributive tax system... More>>

Werewolf: Public Health - The Silent Crisis

Gordon Campbell: New Zealand’s public health system has been in crisis for so long that its failings – and deteriorating performance vis a vis other developed countries – now tend to be treated as its normal mode of being. More>>

ALSO:

Parliament Today: House Adjourns For Summer

Parliament has risen for the summer break with the Adjournment Motion agreed just after 5pm on Wednesday. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Regional
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news