Type of Presentation

Oral

Session Title

General Pollution Topics

Description

Environmental interests typically focus on the site where effects are observed. However, for many ecological systems the outcomes are diffuse or slow acting resulting in reduced fitness that contributes to lower survival elsewhere in the ecosystem. These chronic effects can have substantial implications for populations and may contribute to otherwise unexplained population trends. Anthropogenic stressors such as stormwater runoff, anthropogenic noise, structural shading and artificial light affect ecosystems through complex pathways and the sources and mechanisms of these stressors are often overlooked. While injury values have been identified for some of these mechanisms and regulatory tools are beginning to target those levels, chronic, sublethal effects are likely continuing to occur. By reviewing existing literature and using GIS to map the location and level of these stressors present in the ecosystem we identify the areas where stressors are present at levels of potential concern. The cumulative effects of environmental stressors are likely contributing to disease, altered predator-prey relationships, reduced fecundity, and/or increased mortality. Unlike other anthropogenic sources, chronic mechanisms can often be affected through low costs interventions, such as shielding for dock lighting. Mapping and identifying sources and levels of anthropogenic stressors is an initial step towards improving management of these stressors.

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Mapping Sources and Levels of Chronic Anthropogenic Stressors

2016SSEC

Environmental interests typically focus on the site where effects are observed. However, for many ecological systems the outcomes are diffuse or slow acting resulting in reduced fitness that contributes to lower survival elsewhere in the ecosystem. These chronic effects can have substantial implications for populations and may contribute to otherwise unexplained population trends. Anthropogenic stressors such as stormwater runoff, anthropogenic noise, structural shading and artificial light affect ecosystems through complex pathways and the sources and mechanisms of these stressors are often overlooked. While injury values have been identified for some of these mechanisms and regulatory tools are beginning to target those levels, chronic, sublethal effects are likely continuing to occur. By reviewing existing literature and using GIS to map the location and level of these stressors present in the ecosystem we identify the areas where stressors are present at levels of potential concern. The cumulative effects of environmental stressors are likely contributing to disease, altered predator-prey relationships, reduced fecundity, and/or increased mortality. Unlike other anthropogenic sources, chronic mechanisms can often be affected through low costs interventions, such as shielding for dock lighting. Mapping and identifying sources and levels of anthropogenic stressors is an initial step towards improving management of these stressors.