Toxic Substances Hydrology Program

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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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Featured Science Activities

Featured Science Activities

Lean about our Featured Science Activities through our pages that highlight recience studies, publications, and results.

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Filter Total Items: 3,083
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Year Published: 2018

Associations between cyanobacteria and indices of secondary production in the western basin of Lake Erie

Large lakes provide a variety of ecological services to surrounding cities and communities. Many of these services are supported by ecological processes that are threatened by the increasing prevalence of cyanobacterial blooms which occur as aquatic ecosystems experience cultural eutrophication. Over the past 10 yr, Lake Erie experienced...

Larson, James H.; Evans, Mary Anne; Kennedy, Robert J.; Bailey, Sean; Loftin, Keith A.; Laughrey, Zachary; Femmer, Robin; Schaeffer, Jeff; Richardson, William B.; Wynne, Timothy; Nelson, J. C.; Duris, Joseph W.
Larson, J.H., Evans, M.A., Kennedy, R.J., Bailey S.W., Loftin, K.A., Laughrey, Z.R., Femmer, R.A., Schaeffer, J.S., Richardson, W.B., Wynne, T.T., Nelson, J.C., Duris, J.W. 2018. Associations between cyanobacteria and indices of secondary production in the western basin of Lake Erie. Limnology and Oceanography. 63(S1):S232-S243. DOI: 10.1002/lno.10733.

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Year Published: 2018

Environmental risks and challenges associated with neonicotinoid insecticides

Neonicotinoid use has increased rapidly in recent years, with a global shift towards insecticide applications as seed coatings rather than aerial spraying. While the use of seed coatings can lessen the amount of overspray and drift, the near universal and prophylactic use of neonicotinoid seed coatings on major agricultural crops has led to...

Hladik, Michelle L.; Main, Anson; Goulson, Dave
Hladik, M.L., Main, A.R., Goulson, D., 2018, Environmental risks and challenges associated with neonicotinoid insecticides, Environ. Sci. Technol.

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Year Published: 2018

Factors affecting mercury stable isotopic distribution in piscivorous fish of the Laurentian Great Lakes

Identifying the sources of methylmercury (MeHg) and tracing the transformations of mercury (Hg) in the aquatic food web are important components of effective strategies for managing current and legacy Hg sources. In our previous work, we measured stable isotopes of Hg (δ202Hg, Δ199Hg, and Δ200Hg) in the Laurentian Great Lakes and estimated source...

Janssen, Sarah E.; Yin, Runsheng; Ogorek, Jacob M.; DeWild, John F.; Tate, Michael T.; Holsen, Thomas M.; Hurley, James P.; Lepak, Ryan F.; Janssen, Sarah E.; Yin, Runsheng; Ogorek, Jacob M.; Krabbenhoft, David P.; DeWild, John F.; Tate, Michael T.; Holsen, Thomas M.; Hurley, James P.

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Year Published: 2018

Shrubland carbon sink depends upon winter water availability in the warm deserts of North America

Global-scale studies suggest that dryland ecosystems dominate an increasing trend in the magnitude and interannual variability of the land CO2 sink. However, such model-based analyses are poorly constrained by measured CO2 exchange in open shrublands, which is the most common global land cover type, covering ∼14% of Earth’s surface. Here...

Biederman, Joel A. ; Scott, Russell L.; John A. Arnone; Jasoni, Richard L. ; Litvak, Marcy E.; Moreo, Michael T.; Papuga, Shirley A.; Ponce-Campos, Guillermo E.; Schreiner-McGraw, Adam P. ; Vivoni, Enrique R.
Biederman, J.A., Scott, R.L., Arnone III, J.A., Jasoni, R.L., Litvak, M.E., Moreo, M.T., Papuga, S.A., Ponce-Campos, G.E., Schreiner-McGraw, A.P., Vivoni, E.R., 2018, Shrubland carbon sink depends upon winter water availability in the warm deserts of North America: Agricultural and Forest Meteorology, v. 249, p. 407-419, url: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0168192317303787.

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Year Published: 2018

Year-round presence of neonicotinoid insecticides in tributaries to the Great Lakes, USA

To better characterize the transport of neonicotinoid insecticides to the world's largest freshwater ecosystem, monthly samples (October 2015–September 2016) were collected from 10 major tributaries to the Great Lakes, USA. For the monthly tributary samples, neonicotinoids were detected in every month sampled and five of the six target...

Hladik, Michelle; Corsi, Steven R.; Kolpin, Dana W.; Baldwin, Austin K.; Blackwell, Brett R.; Cavallin, Jenna E.
Hladik, M.L., Corsi, S.R., Kolpin, D.W., Baldwin, A.K., Blackwell, B.R., Cavallin, J.E., 2018, Perennial presence of neonicotinoid insecticides in tributaries to The Great Lakes, USA, Env. Pollut.

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Year Published: 2018

Regional variability of nitrate fluxes in the unsaturated zone and groundwater, Wisconsin, USA

Process-based modeling of regional NO3− fluxes to groundwater is critical for understanding and managing water quality, but the complexity of NO3− reactive transport processes make implementation a challenge. This study introduces a regional vertical flux method (VFM) for efficient estimation of reactive transport of NO3− in the vadose zone and...

Green, Christopher T.; Liao, Lixia; Nolan, Bernard T.; Juckem, Paul F.; Shope, Christopher L.; Tesoriero, Anthony J.; Jurgens, Bryant C.
Green, C. T., Liao, L., Nolan, B. T., Juckem, P. F., Shope, C. L., Tesoriero, A. J., & Jurgens, B. C. (2018). Regional variability of nitrate fluxes in the unsaturated zone and groundwater, Wisconsin, USA. Water Resources Research, 54. https://doi.org/10.1002/2017WR022012

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Year Published: 2018

Comparison of time nonlocal transport models for characterizing non-Fickian transport: From mathematical interpretation to laboratory application

Non-Fickian diffusion has been increasingly documented in hydrology and modeled by promising time nonlocal transport models. While previous studies showed that most of the time nonlocal models are identical with correlated parameters, fundamental challenges remain in real-world applications regarding model selection and parameter definition. This...

Lu, Bingqing; Zhang, Yong; Zheng, Chunmiao; Green, Christopher T.; O'Neill, Charles; Sun, Hong-Guang; Qian, Jiazhong

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Year Published: 2017

Potential for Small Unmanned Aircraft Systems applications for identifying groundwater-surface water exchange in a meandering river reach

The exchange of groundwater and surface water (GW-SW), including dissolved constituents and energy, represents a critical yet challenging characterization problem for hydrogeologists and stream ecologists. Here, we describe the use of a suite of high spatial-resolution remote-sensing techniques, collected using a small unmanned aircraft system (...

Pai, H.; Malenda, H.; Briggs, Martin A.; Singha, K.; González-Pinzón, R.; Gooseff, M.; Tyler, S.W.
Pai, H., H. Malenda, M. Briggs, K. Singha, R. González-Pinzón, M. Gooseff, and S.W. Tyler, 2017, Potential for Small Unmanned Aircraft Systems applications for identifying groundwater-surface water exchange in a meandering river reach, Geophysical Research Letters, doi: 10.1002/2017GL075836.

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Year Published: 2017

Estimating the high-arsenic domestic-well population in the conterminous United States

Arsenic concentrations from 20 450 domestic wells in the U.S. were used to develop a logistic regression model of the probability of having arsenic >10 μg/L (“high arsenic”), which is presented at the county, state, and national scales. Variables representing geologic sources, geochemical, hydrologic, and physical features were among the...

Ayotte, Joseph D.; Medalie, Laura; Qi, Sharon L.; Backer, Lorraine C.; Nolan, Bernard T.
Ayotte, Joseph D., Medalie, Laura, Qi, Sharon L., Backer, Lorraine C., and Nolan, Bernard T., 2017, Estimating the High-Arsenic Domestic-Well Population in the Conterminous United States. Environmental Science & Technology, DOI: 10.1021/acs.est.7b02881

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Year Published: 2017

Widespread legacy brine contamination from oil production reduces survival of chorus frog larvae

Advances in drilling techniques have facilitated a rapid increase in hydrocarbon extraction from energy shales, including the Williston Basin in central North America. This area overlaps with the Prairie Pothole Region, a region densely populated with wetlands that provide numerous ecosystem services. Historical (legacy) disposal practices often...

Hossack, Blake R.; Puglis, Holly J.; Battaglin, William A.; Anderson, Chauncey W.; Honeycutt, R. Ken; Smalling, Kelly L.
Hossack, B. R., H. J. Puglis, W. A. Battaglin, C. W. Anderson, R. K. Honeycutt, and K. L. Smalling. 2017. Widespread legacy brine contamination from oil production reduces survival of chorus frog larvae. Environmental Pollution 231:742–751.

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Year Published: 2017

Effects of sulfide concentration and dissolved organic matter characteristics on the structure of nanocolloidal metacinnabar

Understanding the speciation of divalent mercury (Hg(II)) in aquatic systems containing dissolved organic matter (DOM) and sulfide is necessary to predict the conversion of Hg(II) to bioavailable methylmercury. We used X-ray absorption spectroscopy to characterize the structural order of mercury in Hg(II)–DOM–sulfide systems for a range of sulfide...

Poulin, Brett; Gerbig, Chase A.; Kim, Christopher S.; Stegemeier, John P.; Ryan, Joseph N.; Aiken, George R.
Poulin, B.A., Gerbig, C. A., Kim, C.S., Stegemeier, J.P., Ryan, J.N., and Aiken, G.R. Effects of Sulfide Concentration and Dissolved Organic Matter Characteristics on the Structure of Nanocolloidal Metacinnabar. 2017. Environmental Science & Technology 51, 13133-13142. DOI:10.1021/acs.est.7b02687.

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Year Published: 2017

Degradation of crude 4-MCHM (4-methylcyclohexanemethanol) in sediments from Elk River, West Virginia

In January 2014, approximately 37 800 L of crude 4-methylcyclohexanemethanol (crude MCHM) spilled into the Elk River, West Virginia. To understand the long-term fate of 4-MCHM, we conducted experiments under environmentally relevant conditions to assess the potential for the 2 primary compounds in crude MCHM (1) to undergo biodegradation and (2)...

Cozzarelli, Isabelle M.; Akob, Denise M.; Baedecker, Mary Jo; Spencer, Tracey; Jaeschke, Jeanne B.; Dunlap, Darren S.; Mumford, Adam C.; Poret-Peterson, Amisha T.; Chambers, Douglas B.
Cozzarelli, I. M., D. M. Akob, M. J. Baedecker, T. Spencer, J. Jaeschke, D. S. Dunlap, A. C. Mumford, A. T. Poret-Peterson, D. B. Chambers. 2017. Degradation of MCHM (4-methylcyclohexanemethanol) in Sediments from Elk River, West Virginia. Environmental Science and Technology, 51(21): 12139-12145.