Field sampling kicks off for linking freshwater HABs to marine impacts

Posted February 2, 2017

SCCWRP and its partners have launched the field sampling for a study that will examine how freshwater toxins influence downstream waterbodies along the California coast.

The goal is to understand the linkages between harmful algal blooms (HABs) in freshwater systems and marine systems, particularly estuaries.
The findings of the study will help water-quality managers rethink historical HAB management paradigms, which have traditionally considered management of freshwater HABs to be distinct from that of marine HABs.

Researchers hope to develop best-practices strategies for monitoring and managing HABs at the land-sea interface, including identifying which toxins and toxigenic species should be monitored.

SCCWRP and the Sanitation Districts of Los Angeles County have begun analyzing sediment samples collected from across two regions of California for a pilot study that will test-drive a new, multi-tiered monitoring framework to screen for CECs in receiving waters.

The sediment samples, which were collected from the Los Angeles, San Gabriel and Russian Rivers, are being analyzed via two screening methods simultaneously: targeted chemical analysis and a novel bioanalytical assay that screens for endocrine-disrupting CECs.

The goal is to compare the findings obtained with each method and to potentially detect additional CECs in the sediment samples.
Sediments are known to house certain CECs preferentially over the water column, including triclosan, nonylphenol and polybrominated diphenyl ether (PBDE) flame retardants.

The sediment analyses are part of an ongoing study that seeks to help managers developing efficient, cost-effective ways to zero in on the CECs in receiving waters that pose the greatest potential health risks. Results are expected to be available in spring 2017.


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