Toxic contaminants and Great Lakes ecosystem health: current understandings and strategies for improved assessments

Abstract

Although extensive research, surveillance, and monitoring studies have been conducted on the Great Lakes ecosystem for more than two decades, the presence of toxic substances in the Great Lakes ecosystem continues to be a major issue of environmental concern. This issue was addressed during a symposium and workshop sponsored by the International Joint Commission during which more than 30 experts on Great Lakes biota discussed various aspects of toxic substances and Great Lakes ecosystem health. This manuscript is based on these deliberations. It discusses the reasons for the limited understanding of the effects of toxic substances on Great Lakes biota despite years of surveillance and monitoring. It also identifies those studies which have provided direct evidence of the effects of toxic substances on the well-being of the organism. Finally, it recommends improved approaches to research and monitoring investigations of the effects of toxic substances on the health of the Great Lakes ecosystem.

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Evans, M.S. Toxic contaminants and Great Lakes ecosystem health: current understandings and strategies for improved assessments. J Aquat Ecosyst Stress Recov 2, 87–93 (1993). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00044721

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Keywords

  • surveillance
  • monitoring
  • International Joint Commission