Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs) are chemical contaminants that adversely affect ecosystems, animals and humans. Most POPs are transported to the Arctic from southern latitudes by wind, rivers and ocean currents. The Arctic acts as a “sink” for these contaminants. Strict regulation has reduced the concentration of some POPs in the Arctic. However, new chemical contaminants reaching the Arctic is a matter of great concern. There are around 150,000 chemical substances but less than 1,000 are regularly monitored.
EBAS database, European Monitoring and Evaluation Programme (EMEP), Arctic Monitoring and Assessment Programme (AMAP), Norwegian Institute for Air Research (NILU); K. Tørseth et al., Introduction to the European Monitoring and Evaluation Programme (EMEP) and observed atmospheric composition change during 1972–2009, Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics, June 2012; AMAP Assessment 2015: Temporal Trends in Persistent Organic Pollutants in the Arctic; Arctic Pollution Issues 2015, Persistent Organic Pollutants; Radioactivity in the Arctic, Human Health in the Arctic, Summary for Policy-makers; AMAP Assessment 2016: Chemicals of Emerging Arctic Concern.
From collection: Global linkages – a graphic look at the changing Arctic (rev.1)
Philippe Rekacewicz and Nieves Lopez Izquierdo