What regions are responsible for the contamination of remote regions with chlorinated paraffins?

May 23, 2024

ES&T Letters just published Chengkang’s study examining global source-receptor relationships for short-, medium- and long-chain chlorinated paraffins with the help of the BETR-Global model. The answer differs for different remote regions for different time periods and for different chlorinated paraffin mixtures.

How effective is the Stockholm Convention in reducing emissions of POPs?

May 17, 2024

A project that was started 20 years ago has finally come to fruition! We used our XAD-based passive sampler to collect POP vapours from the atmosphere at 20 sites of the global GAPS network – from 2005 to 2016. This allowed us to assess whether releases of POPs have declined or remained steady over that decade. To our great surprise, global air concentrations of several unintentionally produced POPs, such as hexachlorobutadiene and hexachlorobenzene, actually increased, suggesting that the Stockholm Convention is not effective in curbing the releases of these types of contaminants. Read the paper in ES&T Letters for details of this work, which was a massive collaborative effort by Chuba, Michelle (an undergrad researcher with our group for several years), Ying and Anya.

Are D4, D5 and D6 persistent organic pollutants?

May 11, 2024

Last summer Michael and Frank commented on a draft by ECHA to nominate the cyclic volatile methylsiloxanes as POPs under the Stockholm Convention. They just published an opinion piece advocating for more input by independent scientists in the decision making process surrounding chemical regulation.

Non-Aroclor PCB sources wide spread across Canada

April 18, 2024

In an effort led by Jenny, we found that unintentionally produced polychlorinated biphenyls are commonly found in Canadian air, suggesting the existence of wide-spread emissions related to the manufacturing and application of pigments and silicone rubber. This is described in our first paper in the new journal ACS ES&T Air.



Congratulations to Desmond!

April 16, 2024

Yesterday, Desmond has completed his thesis entitled “Measuring the Effect of Dietary Microplastic on Biomagnification Potential of Environmental Contaminants and Plastic Additives” and is now all set to graduate with a MSc. Well done.

How should we simulate human exposure to chlorinated paraffins?

February 27, 2024

Chengkang’s latest paper in ES&T explores the “chemical resolution” that is required to reliably simulate exposure to complex chlorinated paraffin mixtures. Do we have to perform thousands of simulations for individual isomers or can we simplify the procedure by simulating congeners or homologue groups?

Remembering Don Mackay

February 22, 2024

The SETAC Globe published a memorial piece on Don Mackay today, in which Frank, Jon, and Frank are highlighting defining elements of Don’s “scientific character” and are recalling some of the many contributions by this founding pioneer in the field of environmental organic chemistry.

Will’s paper on the importance of multiphase chemical reactions in the indoor environment published

February 21, 2024

Will Fahy from the Abbatt group has used a simple indoor fate model to explore the question “When Does Multiphase Chemistry Influence Indoor Chemical Fate?” You can read all about the answer in his paper in ES&T.

3rd paper on the XAD-PAS calibration published in final form in Atmospheric Measurement Techniques

January 29, 2024

The results of the calibration of our passive air sampler for polycyclic aromatic compounds are described in Yuening’s latest paper in AMT. We also included results from another calibration study Yushan completed 20 years ago, but had never published. Collaborating with Zilin and Jon allowed us to test for the possibility that PACs react with ozone while being sorbed to the XAD resin.

Tracking complex mixtures of chemicals in the human and eco-exposome

November 16, 2023

Environmental Science: Processes & Impacts has published a Themed Issue on the topic of “tracking complex mixtures of chemicals in the human and eco-exposome” this month. Our group has contributed with Zhizhen’s work on prioritizing chemical features in house dust and through a collaboration with Beate Escher on mixture effects in traditional food made from beluga whale blubber.