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Evaluating Benthic Recovery Decades after a Major Oil Spill in the Laurentian Great Lakes.

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Bertrand, Karine; Hare, Landis (2017). Evaluating Benthic Recovery Decades after a Major Oil Spill in the Laurentian Great Lakes. Environmental Science & Technology , vol. 51 , nº 17. p. 9561-9568. DOI: 10.1021/acs.est.7b02392.

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Résumé

The long-term effects of oil spills on freshwater organisms have been little studied. In 1950, a large oil spill (10 million L) covered the harbor area of Parry Sound, Ontario, the deepest port in the Laurentian Great Lakes. Ecological impacts were not studied at the time, but 25 years later three-quarters of the Chironomus cucini larvae (Insecta, Diptera, Chironomidae) living in the harbor area were reported to be deformed. We returned six decades after the spill and found that the frequency of deformities had returned to background levels and that the community of burrowing invertebrates has largely recovered. By dating sediment cores and measuring the depth distribution of oils, we conclude that, although the oil persists six decades after the spill, sufficient uncontaminated sediment has covered the oil thereby putting it out of reach of most burrowing animals. Provided that the sediment remains undisturbed, the buried oil is unlikely to exert further negative effects on the biota in spite of the fact that it will likely persist for centuries.

Type de document: Article
Mots-clés libres: benthic fauna; Chironomus cucini; environmental monitoring; sediments; Laurentian Great Lakes Region; Lake Ontario; Oil spills
Centre: Centre Eau Terre Environnement
Date de dépôt: 16 févr. 2018 22:18
Dernière modification: 28 juill. 2018 04:00
URI: http://espace.inrs.ca/id/eprint/6334

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