John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Response of fish tissue mercury in a freshwater lake to local, regional, and global changes in mercury emissions

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A suite of mechanistic atmospheric and mercury cycling/bioaccumulation models is applied to simulate atmospheric mercury deposition and mercury concentrations in the water column and fish in a mercury‐impaired freshwater lake located in the northeastern United States that receives its mercury loading primarily through deposition. Two future‐year scenarios evaluate the long‐term response of fish tissue mercury concentrations to reductions in local and nationwide coal‐fired electric generating utility and other mercury emissions and an increase or decrease in global (non‐U.S.) mercury emissions. Results indicate that fish tissue mercury concentrations in this ecosystem could require approximately three to eight years to begin to respond to declines in U.S. emissions and deposition with a fish mercury reduction proportional to deposition reduction requiring over fifty years. Furthermore, recovery could potentially be partially or completely offset by growth in non‐U.S. mercury emissions. Environ Toxicol Chem © 2014 SETAC

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