Carl Orazio, Ph.D.


Carl Orazio, a research chemist at the Columbia Environmental Research Center, conducts research to assess effects of anthropogenic activities on ecosystems and environmental health. Aspects of the research include environmental fate and effects of contaminant mixtures, contaminants of emerging concern, and environmental toxicology. Studies focus on determination of damage to terrestrial, fresh and coastal aquatic natural resources. His areas of interest include: fate of pollutants in the air, soil and aquatic environments; bioaccumulation and exposure pathways; passive sampling; chromatography and mass spectrometry; environmental forensics; and effects of pollution on the health of coral-reef environments. Investigations are conducted to understand environmental impacts of dioxins/furans, legacy and current-use pesticides, PCBs, industrial chemical byproducts, algal toxins, pharmaceuticals, mercury/toxic elements, and endocrine disruptors including brominated flame retardants. Research is conducted throughout the USA from Maine to Hawaii, Palmyra Atoll, with collaborations in Russia, Trinidad, South Korea, and Europe.

Recent Accomplishments


  • Ph.D. Enviromental/Analytical Chemistry, University of Missouri-Columbia, 1992
  • M.S. Enviromental/Analytical Chemistry, University of Missouri-Columbia, 1983
  • B.S. Chemistry/Biochemistry, Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo CA, 1980

Professional Studies/Experience

  • 2018-present, Research Chemist, USGS Columbia Environmental Research Center
  • 2010-2018 Deputy Director, USGS Columbia Environmental Research Center
  • 2004-2010 Chief, Environmental Chemistry Branch,  USGS Columbia Environmental Research Center
  • 1997-2004 Leader, Organic Chemistry, USGS Columbia Environmental Research Center
  • 1993-1997 Research Associate, USGS Columbia Environmental Research Center
  • 1992 Visiting Scientist, European Community Joint Research Center, Ispra, Italy
  • 1997 Adjunct Professor, Chemistry Dept, University of Missouri-Columbia
  • 1983-1992 Research Scientist, Environmental Trace Substances Research Center, University of Missouri- Columbia MO
  • 1997 Cooperative Education Student, IBM, Blossom Hill San Jose CA