Organochlorines in Precipitation in the Great Lakes Region
Atmospheric precipitation in the form of snow (1976) and rain (1976 and 1977) was collected from around the Canadian side of the Great Lakes as well as inland. All sites were remote from any nearby industrial or urban contamination. Rain samples were collected with a 0.36 m2 stainless steel funnel and were event related. Snow was obtained from the accumulated columns during the month of February, 1976. A total of 81 rain and 17 snow samples were examined.
Quantifiable levels of PCBs, a-BHC, lindane, DDT residues, endosulfan, dieldrin and methoxychlor were all observed in most samples; HCB and chlordane were found infrequently; heptachlor, heptachlor epoxide, aldrin, endrin, and mirex were not detected. The observed concentrations of these substances were generally the same in both 1976 and 1977 rainfall, except that a-BHC appeared to be increased during 1977. Levels in snowmelt were considerably less than for rainfall, except for PCBs for which they were approximately the same.
An examination of air movements preceding several of the events failed to indicate any particular region(s) or source(s) for any of these contaminants. Indications were that most of the substances were associated with particulate deposition during a rainfall.
KeywordsGreat Lake Organochlorine Pesticide Great Lake Region Snow Sample Heptachlor Epoxide
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