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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: 2,970
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Year Published: 2018

Unsaturated zone CO2, CH4, and δ13C-CO2 at an arid region low-level radioactive waste disposal site

Elevated tritium, radiocarbon, Hg, and volatile organic compounds associated with low-level radioactive waste (LLRW) at the USGS Amargosa Desert Research Site (ADRS) have stimulated research on factors and processes that affect contaminant gas distribution and transport. Consequently, we examined the sources, mixing, and biogeochemistry of CO2...

Conaway, Christopher H.; Walvoord, Michelle Ann; Thomas, Randall B.; Green, Christopher; Baker, R.J.; Thordsen, James J.; Stonestrom, David A.; Andraski, Brian J.

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Year Published: 2018

Effects of persistent energy-related brine contamination on amphibian abundance in national wildlife refuge wetlands

To inform sustainable energy development, it is important to understand the ecological effects of historical and current production practices and the persistence of those effects. The Williston Basin is one of North America's largest oil production areas and overlaps the Prairie Pothole Region, an area densely...

Hossack, Blake R.; Smalling, Kelly L.; Anderson, Chauncey W.; Preston, Todd M.; Cozzarelli, Isabelle M.; Honeycutt, R. Ken
Hossack, B. R., K. L. Smalling, C. W. Anderson, T. M. Preston, I. M. Cozzarelli, and R. Ken Honeycutt. 2018. Effects of persistent energy-related brine contamination on amphibian abundance in national wildlife refuge wetlands. Biological Conservation 228:36–43.

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Year Published: 2018

Chronic toxicity of 4-nonylphenol to two unionid mussels in water-only exposures

Limited studies indicate that mussels are generally insensitive to organic chemicals; however, these studies were conducted in acute or short-term exposures, and little is known about the chronic sensitivity of mussels to organic chemicals. We evaluated the chronic (28 days) toxicity of 4-nonylphenol (4-NP) to two commonly tested species of...

Ivey, Chris D.; Wang, Ning; Alvarez, David; Hammer, Edward J.; Bauer, Candice R.
Ivey, C.D., Wang, N., Alvarez, D.A., Hammer, E.J., and Bauer, C.R., 2018, Chronic Toxicity of 4-Nonylphenol to Two Unionid Mussels in Water-Only Exposures: Bulletin of Environmental Contamination and Toxicology, v. 101, no. 4, p. 423-427

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Year Published: 2018

Geochemical conditions and nitrogen transport in nearshore groundwater and the subterranean estuary at a Cape Cod embayment, East Falmouth, Massachusetts, 2013–14

Nitrogen transport and transformation were studied during 2013 to 2014 by the U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, in a subterranean estuary beneath onshore locations on the Seacoast Shores peninsula, a residential area in Falmouth, Massachusetts, served by septic systems and cesspools, and adjacent...

Colman, John A.; LeBlanc, Denis R.; Böhlke, John K.; McCobb, Timothy D.; Kroeger, Kevin D.; Belaval, Marcel; Cambareri, Thomas C.; Pirolli, Gillian F.; Brooks, T. Wallace; Garren, Mary E.; Stover, Tobias B.; Keeley, Ann
Colman, J.A., LeBlanc, D.R., Böhlke, J.K., McCobb, T.D., Kroeger, K.D., Belaval, M., Cambareri, T.C., Pirolli, G.F., Brooks, T.W., Garren, M.E., Stover, T.B., and Keeley, A., 2018, Geochemical conditions and nitrogen transport in nearshore groundwater and the subterranean estuary at a Cape Cod embayment, East Falmouth, Massachusetts, 2013–14: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2018–5095, 69 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/sir20185095.

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Year Published: 2018

Inferring watershed hydraulics and cold-water habitat persistence using multi-year air and stream temperature signals

Streams strongly influenced by groundwater discharge may serve as “climate refugia” for sensitive species in regions of increasingly marginal thermal conditions. The main goal of this study is to develop paired air and stream water annual temperature signal analysis techniques to elucidate the relative groundwater contribution to stream water and...

Briggs, Martin A.; Johnson, Zachary C.; Snyder, Craig D.; Hitt, Nathaniel P.; Kurylyk, Barret L.; Lautz, Laura K.; Irvine, Dylan J.; Hurley, Stephen T.; Lane, Jr., John W.
Briggs, M.A., Johnson, Z.C., Snyder, C.D., Hitt, N.P., Kurylyk, B., Lautz, L.K., Irvine, D.J., Hurley, S., and Lane, J.W., 2018, Inferring watershed hydraulics and cold-water habitat persistence using multi-year air and stream temperature signals, Science of the Total Environment, 636, 1117-1127doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2018.04.344.

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Year Published: 2018

Mercury and lead exposure in avian scavengers from the Pacific Northwest suggest risks to California condors: Implications for reintroduction and recovery

Mercury (Hg) and lead (Pb) are widespread contaminants that pose risks to avian scavengers. In fact, Pb exposure is the primary factor limiting population recovery in the endangered California condor (Gymnogyps californianus) and Hg can impair avian reproduction at environmentally relevant exposures. The Pacific Northwest region of the...

Herring, Garth; Eagles-Smith, Collin A.; Varland, Daniel E.
Herring, G., Eagles-Smith, C.A., Varland, D.E., 2018, Mercury and lead exposure in avian scavengers from the Pacific Northwest suggest risks to California condors- Implications for reintroduction and recovery: Environmental Pollution, p. online, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.envpol.2018.09.005.

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Year Published: 2018

Weathering of oil in a surficial aquifer

The composition of crude oil in a surficial aquifer was determined in two locations at the Bemidji, MN, spill site. The abundances of 71 individual hydrocarbons varied within 16 locations sampled. Little depletion of these hydrocarbons (relative to the pipeline oil) occurred in the first 10 years after the spill, whereas losses of 25% to 85% of...

Baedecker, Mary Jo; Eganhouse, Robert P.; Qi, Haiping; Cozzarelli, Isabelle M.; Trost, Jared J.; Bekins, Barbara A.
Mary Jo Baedecker, Robert P. Eganhouse, Haiping Qi, Isabelle M. Cozzarelli, Jared J. Trost, and Barbara A. Bekins, 2018, Weathering of Oil in a Surficial Aquifer, Groundwater, Vol. 56, No. 5, 797–809, doi: 10.1111/gwat.12619.

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Year Published: 2018

Potential toxicity of dissolved metal mixtures (Cd, Cu, Pb, Zn) to early life stage white sturgeon (Acipenser transmontanus) in the Upper Columbia River, Washington, United States

The Upper Columbia River (UCR) received historical releases of smelter waste resulting in elevated metal concentrations in downstream sediments. Newly hatched white sturgeon hide within the rocky substrate at the sediment–water interface in the UCR for a few weeks before swim-up. Hiding behavior could expose them to metal contaminants, and metal...

Balistrieri, Laurie S.; Mebane, Christopher A.; Cox, Stephen E.; Puglis, Holly J.; Calfee, Robin D.; Wang, Ning

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Year Published: 2018

Examination of contaminant exposure and reproduction of ospreys (Pandion haliaetus) nesting in Delaware Bay and River in 2015

A study of ospreys (Pandion haliaetus) nesting in the coastal Inland Bays of Delaware, and the Delaware Bay and Delaware River in 2015 examined spatial and temporal trends in contaminant exposure, food web transfer and reproduction. Concentrations of organochlorine pesticides and metabolites, polychlorinated biphenyls...

Rattner, Barnett A.; Lazarus, Rebecca S.; Bean, Thomas G.; McGowan, Peter C.; Callahan, Carl R.; Erickson, Richard A.; Hale, Robert
Rattner, B. A., Lazarus, R. S., Bean, T. G., McGowan, P. C., Callahan, C. R., Erickson, R. A., and Hale, R. C., 2018, Examination of contaminant exposure and reproduction of ospreys (Pandion haliaetus) nesting in Delaware Bay and River in 2015: Science of the Total Environment, v. 639, p. 596-607. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2018.05.068

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Year Published: 2018

A critical time for mercury science to inform global policy

Mercury is a global pollutant released into the biosphere by varied human activities including coal combustion, mining, artisanal gold mining, cement production, and chemical production. Once released to air, land and water, the addition of carbon atoms to mercury by bacteria results in the production of methylmercury, the toxic form that...

Chen, Celia Y.; Driscoll, Charles T.; Eagles-Smith, Collin A.; Eckley, Chris S.; Gay, David A.; Hsu-Kim, Heileen; Keane, S.E.; Kirk, Jane L.; Mason, Robert; Obrist, Daniel; Selin, Henrik; Selin, Noelle; Thompson, Marcella R.

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Year Published: 2018

Temporal evaluation of estrogenic endocrine disruption markers in smallmouth bass (Micropterus dolomieu) reveals seasonal variability in intersex

A reconnaissance project completed in 2009 identified intersex and elevated plasma vitellogenin in male smallmouth bass inhabiting the Missisquoi River, VT. In an attempt to identify the presence and seasonality of putative endocrine disrupting chemicals or other factors associated with these observations, a comprehensive reevaluation was...

Iwanowicz, Luke R.; Pinkney, A.E.; Guy, C.P.; Major, A.M.; Munney, K.; Blazer, Vicki S.; Alvarez, David; Walsh, Heather L.; Sperry, Adam J.; Sanders, Lakyn R.; Smith, D.R.
Iwanowicz, Luke R. et al. "Temporal Evaluation Of Estrogenic Endocrine Disruption Markers In Smallmouth Bass (Micropterus Dolomieu) Reveals Seasonal Variability In Intersex". Science Of The Total Environment, vol 646, 2018, pp. 245-256., doi:10.1016/j.scitotenv.2018.07.167.

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Year Published: 2018

Explicit consideration of preferential groundwater discharges as surface water ecosystem control points

Heterogeneities in sediment and rock permeability induce preferentialgroundwater flow from the scale of pore networks to large basins. Inthe unsaturated zone, preferential flow is frequently conceptualizedas an infiltration process dominated by macropores, resulting in stron-ger delivery of surface‐derived solute than would be predicted via dif-...

Briggs, Martin A.; Hare, Danielle K.
Briggs, M.A. and D.K. Hare, (2018), Explicit consideration of preferential groundwater discharges as surface water ecosystem control points, Hydrological Processes, doi:10.1002/hyp.13178.