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Mercury as a global pollutant: sources, pathways, and effects.
Environ Sci Technol. 2013 May 21; 47(10):4967-83.ES

Abstract

Mercury (Hg) is a global pollutant that affects human and ecosystem health. We synthesize understanding of sources, atmosphere-land-ocean Hg dynamics and health effects, and consider the implications of Hg-control policies. Primary anthropogenic Hg emissions greatly exceed natural geogenic sources, resulting in increases in Hg reservoirs and subsequent secondary Hg emissions that facilitate its global distribution. The ultimate fate of emitted Hg is primarily recalcitrant soil pools and deep ocean waters and sediments. Transfers of Hg emissions to largely unavailable reservoirs occur over the time scale of centuries, and are primarily mediated through atmospheric exchanges of wet/dry deposition and evasion from vegetation, soil organic matter and ocean surfaces. A key link between inorganic Hg inputs and exposure of humans and wildlife is the net production of methylmercury, which occurs mainly in reducing zones in freshwater, terrestrial, and coastal environments, and the subsurface ocean. Elevated human exposure to methylmercury primarily results from consumption of estuarine and marine fish. Developing fetuses are most at risk from this neurotoxin but health effects of highly exposed populations and wildlife are also a concern. Integration of Hg science with national and international policy efforts is needed to target efforts and evaluate efficacy.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Syracuse University, Syracuse, New York 13244, United States. ctdrisco@syr.eduNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info available

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article
Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

Language

eng

PubMed ID

23590191

Citation

Driscoll, Charles T., et al. "Mercury as a Global Pollutant: Sources, Pathways, and Effects." Environmental Science & Technology, vol. 47, no. 10, 2013, pp. 4967-83.
Driscoll CT, Mason RP, Chan HM, et al. Mercury as a global pollutant: sources, pathways, and effects. Environ Sci Technol. 2013;47(10):4967-83.
Driscoll, C. T., Mason, R. P., Chan, H. M., Jacob, D. J., & Pirrone, N. (2013). Mercury as a global pollutant: sources, pathways, and effects. Environmental Science & Technology, 47(10), 4967-83. https://doi.org/10.1021/es305071v
Driscoll CT, et al. Mercury as a Global Pollutant: Sources, Pathways, and Effects. Environ Sci Technol. 2013 May 21;47(10):4967-83. PubMed PMID: 23590191.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Mercury as a global pollutant: sources, pathways, and effects. AU - Driscoll,Charles T, AU - Mason,Robert P, AU - Chan,Hing Man, AU - Jacob,Daniel J, AU - Pirrone,Nicola, Y1 - 2013/05/03/ PY - 2013/4/18/entrez PY - 2013/4/18/pubmed PY - 2014/3/29/medline SP - 4967 EP - 83 JF - Environmental science & technology JO - Environ Sci Technol VL - 47 IS - 10 N2 - Mercury (Hg) is a global pollutant that affects human and ecosystem health. We synthesize understanding of sources, atmosphere-land-ocean Hg dynamics and health effects, and consider the implications of Hg-control policies. Primary anthropogenic Hg emissions greatly exceed natural geogenic sources, resulting in increases in Hg reservoirs and subsequent secondary Hg emissions that facilitate its global distribution. The ultimate fate of emitted Hg is primarily recalcitrant soil pools and deep ocean waters and sediments. Transfers of Hg emissions to largely unavailable reservoirs occur over the time scale of centuries, and are primarily mediated through atmospheric exchanges of wet/dry deposition and evasion from vegetation, soil organic matter and ocean surfaces. A key link between inorganic Hg inputs and exposure of humans and wildlife is the net production of methylmercury, which occurs mainly in reducing zones in freshwater, terrestrial, and coastal environments, and the subsurface ocean. Elevated human exposure to methylmercury primarily results from consumption of estuarine and marine fish. Developing fetuses are most at risk from this neurotoxin but health effects of highly exposed populations and wildlife are also a concern. Integration of Hg science with national and international policy efforts is needed to target efforts and evaluate efficacy. SN - 1520-5851 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/23590191/Mercury_as_a_global_pollutant:_sources_pathways_and_effects_ L2 - https://doi.org/10.1021/es305071v DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -