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Title: Global decrease in heavy metal concentrations in brown algae in the last 90 years
Authors: Aboal, J. R.
Pacín, C.
García-Seoane, R.
Varela, Z.
González González, Aridane 
Fernández, J. A.
UNESCO Clasification: 32 Ciencias médicas
330811 Control de la contaminación del agua
Keywords: Biomonitoring
Climate Change
Hazardous Elements
Marine Pollution
Temporal Trends
Issue Date: 2022
Journal: Journal of Hazardous Materials 
Abstract: In the current scenario of global change, heavy metal pollution is of major concern because of its associated toxic effects and the persistence of these pollutants in the environment. This study is the first to evaluate the changes in heavy metal concentrations worldwide in brown algae over the last 90 years (>15,700 data across the globe reported from 1933 to 2020). The study findings revealed significant decreases in the concentrations of Cd, Co, Cr, Cu, Fe, Hg, Mn, Pb and Zn of around 60–84% (ca. 2% annual) in brown algae tissues. The decreases were consistent across the different families considered (Dictyotaceae, Fucaceae, Laminariaceae, Sargassaceae and Others), and began between 1970 and 1990. In addition, strong relationships between these trends and pH, SST and heat content were detected. Although the observed metal declines could be partially explained by these strong correlations, or by adaptions in the algae, other evidences suggest an actual reduction in metal concentrations in oceans because of the implementation of environmental policies. In any case, this study shows a reduction in metal concentrations in brown algae over the last 50 years, which is important in itself, as brown algae form the basis of many marine food webs and are therefore potential distributors of pollutants.
ISSN: 0304-3894
DOI: 10.1016/j.jhazmat.2022.130511
Source: Journal of Hazardous Materials[ISSN 0304-3894],v. 445: 130511, (Marzo 2023)
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