Journal Highlights

Scientists Find Massive Reserves of Mercury Hidden in Permafrost

Press Release—

New study finds more than 15 million gallons of mercury is frozen in permafrost in the Northern hemisphere—roughly 10 times the amount mercury emissions over the last 30 years.

Researchers have discovered permafrost in the northern hemisphere stores massive amounts of natural mercury, a finding with significant implications for human health and ecosystems worldwide.

In a new study, scientists measured mercury concentrations in permafrost cores from Alaska and estimated how much mercury has been trapped in permafrost north of the equator since the last Ice Age.

The study reveals northern permafrost soils are the largest reservoir of mercury on the planet, storing nearly twice as much mercury as all other soils, the ocean and the atmosphere combined...more

Article Category
Research Letters
Cryosphere

Permafrost Stores a Globally Significant Amount of Mercury

Paul F. Schuster, Kevin M. Schaefer, George R. Aiken, Ronald C. Antweiler, John F. Dewild, Joshua D. Gryziec, Alessio Gusmeroli, Gustaf Hugelius, Elchin Jafarov, David P. Krabbenhoft, Lin Liu, Nicole Herman‐Mercer, Cuicui Mu, David A. Roth, Tim Schaefer, Robert G. Striegl, Kimberly P. Wickland, Tingjun Zhang
First Published:
| DOI:
10.1002/2017GL075571
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