Research press release



Environment: Mercury sources in the Arctic tundra identified



今回、Daniel Obristたちの研究グループは、2年間にわたって北極のツンドラ地帯で水銀の沈着量の測定と安定同位体データの収集を行い、北極生態系における水銀の主な供給源を突き止めた。Obristたちは、北極のツンドラ生態系で見つかった水銀の多くが(長距離大気輸送され、全球の大気中に分布する)ガス状の元素水銀であり、全体の約71%を占めていることを明らかにした。水銀の沈着は1年を通して起こり、夏季には植生の取り込みのために増加する。


The sources of mercury pollution in the Arctic tundra have been identified in a study published in Nature this week.

Anthropogenic activities have led to large-scale mercury pollution in the Arctic; however, a clear understanding of its source has been lacking. It has been suggested that sea-salt-induced chemical cycling of mercury and wet deposition of mercury via precipitation were the main sources of mercury to the Arctic in its oxidized form, but their relative importance has been questioned.

Daniel Obrist and colleagues collected field measurements including mercury deposition and stable isotope data in the Arctic tundra, over a two-year period, to determine the major sources of mercury in this ecosystem. The authors found that gaseous elemental mercury - a form subject to long-range atmospheric transport and global atmospheric distribution - was the dominant form of mercury found in the tundra ecosystem, accounting for 71 per cent of the total. Deposition of mercury occurred throughout the year, increasing during the summer months owing to its uptake by vegetation.

The authors’ findings suggest that the Arctic tundra serves as an important repository for atmospheric mercury, and that the high concentrations found in the tundra soil may also explain why Arctic rivers transport large amounts of mercury annually into the Arctic Ocean.

doi: 10.1038/nature22997

「Nature 関連誌注目のハイライト」は、ネイチャー広報部門が報道関係者向けに作成したリリースを翻訳したものです。より正確かつ詳細な情報が必要な場合には、必ず原著論文をご覧ください。

メールマガジンリストの「Nature 関連誌今週のハイライト」にチェックをいれていただきますと、毎週最新のNature 関連誌のハイライトを皆様にお届けいたします。