Science and Products
Water quality and aquatic life standards that are set by Federal and state regulatory agencies are used to evaluate the quality of our nation’s water and the health of aquatic ecosystems. These standards currently are based on hardness of the water and are determined for single metals, not for mixtures of metals that are typically found in natural systems. Metal mixtures can potentially be more or less toxic, or have the same toxicity as single metals to aquatic organisms. However, models that predict the toxicity of metal mixtures to aquatic organisms are in their infancy. In this study we will conduct a series of mesocosm studies to examine the toxicity of cobalt, copper, nickle, and zinc to natural communities of invertebrates.