Environmental contaminants

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Our research about environmental contaminants

All our environmental pollution by contaminants reaches the sea at one point or the other. Today we consider this as a problem, since we know they can harm the marine environment and the ecosystem services it provides. The Baltic Sea is particularly sensitive to pollution since the area is enclosed and lack mixing which prevents dilution. That is why the Baltic Sea is considered one of the most polluted areas in the world.

At the Baltic Sea Centre we calculate the distribution patterns of toxins in a model, gather knowledge on the effects of pollution on the ecosystem and try to map sources of microplastics.

Research area goals: 

Increase knowledge about the supply and levels of hazardous substances and plastics and their effects on the ecosystem by:

  1. Mapping sources and transport routes for pollutants that are discharged into or transported into the catchment area, taking into account the effects of climate change and eutrophication  
  2. Developing a basis on how to prioritize measures to reduce the effects of hazardous substances in the sea
  3. Identifying deficiencies in decision making and implementation of legislation related to chemicals

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Our news about contaminants

  • Policy Brief: European chemicals regulation needs greater transparency 2019-06-25 To meet the challenges of chemical risks in everyday life, risk assessments under the REACH registration process must be improved. One key element in this transformation is to introduce greater transparency.
  • Web survey about Decision Support Tools 2019-03-18 Do you have experience of Decision Support Tools? Or do you need tools to support your decision making when it comes to the Baltic Sea? Please help us out by answering the BONUS DESTONY web survey!
  • Control factors of the marine nitrogen cycle More negative side effects of capping 2018-11-27 Sediment capping with activated carbon might affect, among other things, essential benthic ecosystem functions.
  • Policy Brief: Why we need a list of ingredients on consumer articles 2018-10-19 Today, information on the chemical composition of articles is very scarce, making it difficult to understand which potentially hazardous chemicals are being released to the Baltic Sea. There is an urgent need for standardized methods and legal incentives to increase the transparency.
  • Policy Brief: The cosmetics clean-up 2017-05-05 Hygiene products are a small but important point source for microplastics to the environment. In a Policy Brief from April 2015, Baltic Eye summarized a number of recommendations on how to limit the release of microplastics from hygiene products.
  • Policy Brief: Advanced wastewater treatment 2017-03-22 New times call for new measures. Advanced wastewater treatment can be part of meeting the challenges of society’s ongoing chemical intensification. New water treatment techniques have the potential to significantly reduce emissions of both known and unknown substances to the aquatic environment and reduce the risk of marine pollution.

Stockholm University Baltic Sea Centre ...

... conducts research to support the management of the Baltic Sea, transmits useful scientific knowledge to the right place in society and provide essential infrastructure for marine monitoring, research and education.

Scientific leader:

Christoph Humborg

08-674 76 68

We offer resources ...

The Baltic Centre provide, develop and maintain expensive physical and financial resources for marine research.

... and convey useful knowledge

Another important task is to make research results and information available for those who work with management as well as and other interested parties.