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Chemical Biomarkers in Aquatic Ecosystems$
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Thomas S. Bianchi and Elizabeth A. Canuel

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780691134147

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: October 2017

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691134147.001.0001

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Anthropogenic Markers

Anthropogenic Markers

Chapter:
(p.267) 14. Anthropogenic Markers
Source:
Chemical Biomarkers in Aquatic Ecosystems
Author(s):

Thomas S. Bianchi

Elizabeth A. Canuel

Publisher:
Princeton University Press
DOI:10.23943/princeton/9780691134147.003.0014

This chapter examines the application of anthropogenic compounds as biomarkers. Since World War II, human activities have introduced a wide array of compounds into the environment, including insecticides such as dichloro-diphenyl-trichloroethane and pesticides, halocarbons (chlorofluorocarbons), sewage products (coprostanol), and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs). The chapter introduces structural features of these compounds, their distribution and transformation in the environment, and their potential use(s) as tracers. It presents examples of how relationships between anthropogenic markers and biomarkers can be used to provide information about the sources, delivery, and fate of natural organic matter in aquatic ecosystems. It introduces various emerging contaminants (personal care pharmaceutical products, caffeine, and flame retardants) and their potential use as tracers for anthropogenic organic matter in aquatic ecosystems. It describes how δ‎13C, stable isotopes of Cl and Br, and radiocarbon can be used to apportion sources of organic contaminants (e.g., PAHs and PCBs).

Keywords:   anthropogenic compounds, biomarkers, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, anthropogenic markers, organic contaminants

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