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Pacific Northwest Contaminants Workgroup

Recent studies have found elevated levels of, and effects from, atmospherically-deposited contaminants including mercury, pesticides, and industrial chemicals in national parks and other protected areas in the Pacific Northwest. Concerned about the results, representatives from United States federal and state agencies, Environment Canada and universities held a workshop in November 2010 to discuss airborne toxics deposition and accumulation in the region. Workshop participants summarized research and monitoring activities, identified data gaps and discussed the need to improve communication within, among and outside the agencies.

Links to information about the Pacific Northwest Contaminants Workshop.

The workshop resulted in formation of the interagency Pacific Northwest (PNW) Contaminants Workgroup to coordinate and facilitate science, education, and outreach related to contaminants issues in protected areas in the region.

The objectives of the PNW Contaminants Workgroup are to:

Develop a data clearinghouse and a forum to facilitate collaboration and coordination of contaminant monitoring and research activities in the region.

Prioritize contaminant-related research and monitoring needs in the Pacific Northwest, collaborate on funding, and conduct monitoring and research projects.

Coordinate outreach efforts and products related to contaminants issues in the region.

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