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: 2,651
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Year Published: 2016

Molecular detection of airborne Coccidioides in Tucson, Arizona

Environmental surveillance of the soil-dwelling fungus Coccidioides is essential for the prevention of Valley fever, a disease primarily caused by inhalation of the arthroconidia. Methods for collecting and detectingCoccidioides in soil samples are currently in use by several laboratories; however, a method utilizing current air...

Chow, Nancy A.; Griffin, Dale W.; Barker, Bridget M.; Loparev, Vladimir N.; Litvintseva, Anastasia P.

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Year Published: 2016

The new Landsat 8 potential for remote sensing of colored dissolved organic matter (CDOM)

Due to a combination of factors, such as a new coastal/aerosol band and improved radiometric sensitivity of the Operational Land Imager aboard Landsat 8, the atmospherically-corrected Surface Reflectance product for Landsat data, and the growing availability of corrected fDOM data from U.S. Geological Survey gaging stations, moderate-resolution...

Slonecker, Terrance; Jones, Daniel K.; Pellerin, Brian A.
Slonecker, E. Terrence, Daniel K. Jones, and Brian A. Pellerin. "The new Landsat 8 potential for remote sensing of colored dissolved organic matter (CDOM)." Marine pollution bulletin (2016).

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Year Published: 2016

Seasonal Variability in Vadose zone biodegradation at a crude oil pipeline rupture site

Understanding seasonal changes in natural attenuation processes is critical for evaluating source-zone longevity and informing management decisions. The seasonal variations of natural attenuation were investigated through measurements of surficial CO2 effluxes, shallow soil CO2 radiocarbon contents, subsurface gas concentrations, soil temperature...

Sihota, Natasha J.; Trost, Jared J.; Bekins, Barbara; Berg, Andrew M.; Delin, Geoffrey N.; Mason, Brent E.; Warren, Ean; Mayer, K. Ulrich
Sihota, N.J., Trost, J.J., Bekins, B.A., Berg, A., Delin, G.N., Mason, B., Warren, E., and Mayer, K.U., 2016, Seasonal variability in vadose zone biodegradation at a crude oil pipeline rupture site: Vadose Zone Journal, v. 15, no. 5, 14 p.,

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Year Published: 2016

Pre/post-closure assessment of groundwater pharmaceutical fate in a wastewater‑facility-impacted stream reach

Pharmaceutical contamination of contiguous groundwater is a substantial concern in wastewater-impacted streams, due to ubiquity in effluent, high aqueous mobility, designed bioactivity, and to effluent-driven hydraulic gradients. Wastewater treatment facility (WWTF) closures are rare environmental remediation events; offering unique insights into...

Bradley, Paul M.; Barber, Larry B.; Clark, Jimmy M.; Duris, Joseph W.; Foreman, William T. ; Furlong, Edward T.; Givens, Carrie E.; Hubbard, Laura E.; Hutchinson, Kasey J.; Journey, Celeste A.; Keefe, Steffanie H.; Kolpin, Dana W.
P.M., Bradley, L.B. Barber, J.W. Duris, W.T. Foreman, E.T. Furlong, C.E. Givens, L.E. Hubbard, K.J. Hutchinson, C.A. Journey, S.H. Keefe, D.W. Kolpin. Pre/post-closure assessment of groundwater pharmaceutical fate in a wastewater-impacted stream system. Science of the Total Environment. http://dx.doi.org/10.​1016/​j.​scitotenv.​2016.​06.​104

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Year Published: 2016

Resetting the bar: Establishing baselines for persistent contaminants after Hurricane Sandy in the coastal environments of New Jersey and New York, USA

In the immediate aftermath of natural disasters, public health officials and other first responders engage in many activities to protect the public and ecosystems in the affected area. These activities include critical tasks designed to minimize adverse consequences resulting from chemical and microbial contaminant exposures, such as acute disease...

Reilly, Timothy J.; Focazio, Michael J.; Simmons, Dale L.

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Year Published: 2016

Mercury in western North America: A synthesis of environmental contamination, fluxes, bioaccumulation, and risk to fish and wildlife

Western North America is a region defined by extreme gradients in geomorphology and climate, which support a diverse array of ecological communities and natural resources. The region also has extreme gradients in mercury (Hg) contamination due to a broad distribution of inorganic Hg sources. These diverse Hg sources and a varied landscape create a...

Eagles-Smith, Collin A.; Wiener, James G.; Eckley, Chris S.; Willacker, James J.; Evers, David C.; Marvin-DiPasquale, Mark C.; Obrist, Daniel; Fleck, Jacob; Aiken, George R.; Lepak, Jesse M.; Jackson, Allyson K.; Webster, Jackson; Stewart, Robin; Davis, Jay; Alpers, Charles N.; Ackerman, Joshua T.
Eagles-Smith, C.A., Wiener, J.G., Eckley, C.S., Willacker Jr., J.J., Evers, D.C., Marvin-DiPasquale, M.C., Obrist, D., Fleck, J.A., Aiken, G.R., Lepak, J.M., Jackson, A.K., Stewart, A.R., Webster, J., Davis, J.A., Alpers, C.N., Ackerman, J.T., 2016, Mercury in western North America- A synthesis of environmental contamination, fluxes, bioaccumulation and risk to fish and wildlife: Science of the Total Environment, p. 1213-1226, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2016.05.094.

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Year Published: 2016

Detection of hepatitis E virus and other livestock-related pathogens in Iowa streams

Manure application is a source of pathogens to the environment. Through overland runoff and tile drainage, zoonotic pathogens can contaminate surface water and streambed sediment and could affect both wildlife and human health. This study examined the environmental occurrence of gene markers for livestock-related bacterial, protozoan, and viral...

Givens, Carrie E.; Kolpin, Dana W.; Borchardt, Mark A.; Duris, Joseph W.; Moorman, Thomas B.; Spencer, Susan K.

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Year Published: 2016

Endocrine disrupting activities of surface water associated with a West Virginia oil and gas industry wastewater disposal site

Currently, >95% of end disposal of hydraulic fracturing wastewater from unconventional oil and gas operations in the US occurs via injection wells. Key data gaps exist in understanding the potential impact of underground injection on surface water quality and environmental health. The goal of this study was to assess endocrine disrupting...

Kassotis, Christopher D.; Iwanowicz, Luke R. ; Akob, Denise M.; Cozzarelli, Isabelle M.; Mumford, Adam; Orem, William H.; Nagel, Susan C.
Kassotis, C.D., L.R. Iwanowicz, D.M. Akob, I.M. Cozzarelli, A.C. Mumford, W.H. Orem, and S.C. Nagel. 2016. Endocrine Disrupting Activities of Surface Water Associated with a West Virginia Oil and Gas Industry Wastewater Disposal Site. Science of the Total Environment, 557–558: 901–910.

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Year Published: 2016

Wastewater disposal from unconventional oil and gas development degrades stream quality at a West Virginia injection facility

The development of unconventional oil and gas (UOG) resources has rapidly increased in recent years; however, the environmental impacts and risks are poorly understood. A single well can generate millions of liters of wastewater, representing a mixture of formation brine and injected hydraulic fracturing fluids. One of the most common methods for...

Akob, Denise M.; Mumford, Adam; Orem, William H.; Engle, Mark A.; Klinges, Julia (Grace); Kent, Douglas B.; Cozzarelli, Isabelle M.
Akob, D.M., A. Mumford, W. H. Orem, M. Engle, J.G. Klinges, D. B. Kent and I. M. Cozzarelli. Wastewater Disposal from Unconventional Oil and Gas Development Degrades Stream Quality at a West Virginia Injection Facility. Environmental Science and Technology, 50 (11): 5517–5525

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Year Published: 2016

Combined use of thermal methods and seepage meters to efficiently locate, quantify, and monitor focused groundwater discharge to a sand-bed stream

Quantifying flow of groundwater through streambeds often is difficult due to the complexity of aquifer-scale heterogeneity combined with local-scale hyporheic exchange. We used fiber-optic distributed temperature sensing (FO-DTS), seepage meters, and vertical temperature profiling to locate, quantify, and monitor areas of focused groundwater...

Rosenberry, Donald O.; Briggs, Martin A.; Delin, Geoffrey N.; Hare, Danielle K.

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Year Published: 2016

Regional assessment of persistent organic pollutants in resident mussels from New Jersey and New York estuaries following Hurricane Sandy

Resident mussels are effective indicators of ecosystem health and have been utilized in national assessment and monitoring studies for over two decades. Mussels were chosen because contaminant concentrations in their tissues respond to changes in ambient environmental levels, accumulation occurs with little metabolic transformation and a...

Smalling, Kelly L. ; Deshpande, Ashok D.; Galbraith, Heather S.; Sharack, Beth; Timmons, DeMond; Baker, Ronald J.

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Year Published: 2016

Cyanotoxins in inland lakes of the United States: Occurrence and potential recreational health risks in the EPA National Lakes Assessment 2007

A large nation-wide survey of cyanotoxins (1161 lakes) in the United States (U.S.) was conducted during the EPA National Lakes Assessment 2007. Cyanotoxin data were compared with cyanobacteria abundance- and chlorophyll-based World Health Organization (WHO) thresholds and mouse toxicity data to evaluate potential recreational risks....

Loftin, Keith A.; Graham, Jennifer L.; Elizabeth Hilborn; Sarah Lehmann; Meyer, Michael T.; Dietze, Julie E.; Griffith, Christopher
Loftin, K.A., Graham, J.L., Hilborn, E.D., Lehmann, S.C., Meyer, M.T., Dietze, J.E., Griffith, C.B., 2016, Cyanotoxins in inland lakes of the United States: Occurrence and potential recreational health risks in the EPA National Lakes Assessment 2007, Harmful Algae, 56, 77-90.