What are persistent organophosphates (POPs), what are their sources and why are they a concern for humans as well as other animal species? Give two examples of POPs and explain how humans come into contact with them. Be sure that your answer clearly indicates that you understand the concept of biomagnification.
- POPS: Persistant Organic Pollutants = organic compounds that are toxic. They are harmful to HUMANS and ENVIR.
- Concern for humans: 1. having effects on human systems such as NERVOUS, Endocrine, Reproductive & Immune. Stored in Adipose tissue
- 2. degrade VERY SLOWLY, and travel long distances
- 3. Subject to BIOMAGNIFICATION as the food chain moves up. For example, if we eat multiple fish that have been exposed to various POPs, we develop a MAGNIFICATION of POPs from the buildup of each fish we eat. From here, the farther up the food chain the more POPs
- 2 examples of POPs: PCDD/Fs and PCBs
- PCDD/Fs: produced from MEDICAL WASTE, Industrial-related processes and garbage combustion
- PCBs: produced for Plastics, Industrial APPLIANCES
- FOOD sources are most common now, since more regulations limit POPs in developed nation