Toxic Substances Hydrology Program

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Toxic Substances Hydrology Program scientists develop and apply advanced analytical methods, field investigations, laboratory studies, and modeling capabilities to understand sources, movement, and exposure pathways of chemical and microbial contaminants in the environment. They are integrated with Contaminant Biology Program Scientists who then determine the toxicity and effects of contaminants.

Featured Science Activities

Featured Science Activities

Our Science Feature Articles highlight recent USGS environmental health science activities.

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GeoHEALTH-USGS Newsletter

GeoHEALTH-USGS Newsletter

The GeoHEALTH-USGS Newsletter provides information on new USGS science activities related to safeguarding the health of fish, wildlife, domesticated animals, livestock, and people from environmental exposures to contaminants and pathogens.

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News

Date published: March 20, 2019

What's New with Our Budget in Fiscal Year 2020

Information on funding for Environmental Health Mission Area programs for fiscal year 2020.

Date published: February 22, 2019

Fiscal Year 2018 USGS Environmental Health Mission Area Accomplishments

In Fiscal Year 2018 our two integrated programs – Contaminant Biology and Toxic Substances Hydrology Programs – provided essential information to understand the risks of environmental contaminants and pathogens.

"Everything we do is designed to safeguard the Nation's health, economy, and resources."

Date published: February 15, 2019

Environmental Health Mission Area Science Priorities for Fiscal Year 2019

The USGS Environmental Health Mission Area (EHMA)—through its integrated programs, the Toxic Substances Hydrology Program (TSHP) and the Contaminant Biology Program (CBP) — will continue its non-regulatory, non-advocacy science throughout 2019.

Publications

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Year Published: 2019

Chemical and physical controls on mercury source signatures in stream fish from the northeastern United States

Streams in the northeastern U.S. receive mercury (Hg) in varying proportions from atmospheric deposition and legacy point sources, making it difficult to attribute shifts in fish concentrations directly back to changes in Hg source management. Mercury stable isotope tracers were utilized to relate sources of Hg to co-located fish and bed sediments...

Janssen, Sarah E.; Riva-Murray, Karen; DeWild, John F.; Ogorek, Jacob M.; Tate, Michael T.; Van Metre, Peter C.; Krabbenhoft, David P.; Coles, James F.
Janssen SE, Riva-Murray K, DeWild JF, Ogorek JM, Tate MT, Van Metre PC, et al. Chemical and Physical Controls on Mercury Source Signatures in Stream Fish from the Northeastern United States. Environmental Science & Technology 2019.

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Year Published: 2019

De facto reuse and disinfection by-products in drinking water systems in the Shenandoah River watershed

De facto reuse is increasingly being studied among the variety of stressors that are relevant to drinking water systems that obtain their source water from surface waters. De facto reuse may influence the levels and types of precursors relevant to formation of disinfection by-products (DBPs) in surface water systems. DBPs such as...

Weisman, Richard J; Barber, Larry; Rapp, Jennifer; Ferreira, Celso M

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Year Published: 2019

Lithostratigraphic, geophysical, and hydrogeologic observations from a boring drilled to bedrock in glacial sediments near Nantucket Sound in East Falmouth, Massachusetts

In spring 2016, a 310-foot-deep boring (named MA–FSW 750) was drilled by the U.S. Geological Survey near Nantucket Sound in East Falmouth, Massachusetts, to investigate the hydrogeology of the southern coast of western Cape Cod. Few borings that are drilled to bedrock exist in the area, and the study area was selected to fill a gap between...

Hull, Robert B.; Johnson, Carole D.; Stone, Byron D.; LeBlanc, Denis R.; McCobb, Timothy D.; Phillips, Stephanie N.; Pappas , Katherine L. ; Lane, Jr., John W.
Hull, R.B, Johnson, C.D., Stone, B.D., LeBlanc, D.R., McCobb, T.D., Phillips, S.N., Pappas, K.L., and Lane, J.W., 2019, Lithostratigraphic, geophysical, and hydrogeologic observations from a boring drilled to bedrock in glacial sediments near Nantucket sound in East Falmouth, Massachusetts: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2019–5042, 27 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/sir20195042.