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(P256) Evaluating impacts of heavy metal and nitrogen deposition from aircraft in coastal wetlands.
Boyle, Karleen1, Anghera, Michelle*,2, Ambrose, Richard2,3, Fong, Peggy1, 1 University of California, Los Angeles Department of Organismic Biology, Ecology, and Evolution, Los Angeles2 Department of Environmental Health Sciences, Los Angeles3 Envrionmental Sciences and Engineering Program, Los Angeles
ABSTRACT- Many coastal regions are in the process of building new airports or expanding existing facilities. Despite this, little is known about the effects of air traffic on coastal ecosystems. Our study investigated the impacts of particulate emissions from jet engines to wetlands. We focused on jet exhaust particulates (JEPs) because their characteristics are relatively unknown, and because of their high potential for incorporation into estuarine food webs. We addressed two questions: 1.) In what amounts are JEPs entering coastal environments near airports? 2.) What are the fate and effects of JEP-associated metals in estuarine environments? The first question was investigated through field air sampling. Ambient particulate heavy metals were measured at seven locations in varying proximity to a large coastal airport. The second question was investigated with a laboratory microcosm experiment, which exposed estuarine microcosms to varying doses of JEPs. Our results indicate that several metals, especially copper, nickel and vanadium, are present in aircraft emissions. Stimulation of macroalgal growth in some experimental treatments suggests that nitrogenous components may also be associated with JEPs. Our findings show that coastal wetlands near airports may be subject to increased levels of heavy metal and nitrogen deposition.
Key words: wetlands, microcosm experiment, jet exhaust particulates
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