A Recipe for Algae Blooms?

A Recipe for Algae Blooms?

Ambience: Wetlands

Nanoparticles – tiny bits of matter, now found in drugs and other products, are finding their way into our ecosystems and water supplies, and scientists are investigating their possible effects. A recent finding is linking nanoparticles, fertilizers and algae blooms. I’m Jim Metzner and this is the Pulse of the Planet.

Hendren: in a regular ecosystem, there was not much change with the addition of the nanoparticles, but in some ecosystems that had a lot of extra nutrients, like you might see in waters near agriculture lands where there are fertilizers – in those systems, there were a lot of changes in the growth rates of the plants that were in those ecosystems when nanomaterials were added.

Christine Ogilvie Hendren is the Executive Director of the Center for the Environmental Implications of Nanotechnology at Duke University. A team of scientists at the Center is investigating what happens when nanoparticles and fertilizer find their way into an ecosystem.

Hendren: The most obvious change was in the ecosystems with nutrients enriched, there became some floating bits of algae that formed at the surface of the waters and this really changes the clarity of the water and it changes how much the plants grow overall in the system.
The interesting thing here is that it wasn’t just the gold nanoparticles or just the extra nutrients. It was the combination of these two things in the systems that caused these algae to bloom and fill the waters.

Pulse of the Planet is made possible in part by the Center for Earth and Environmental Nanotechnology and the National Science Foundation.

A Recipe for Algae Blooms?

Recent findings suggest that fertilizers together with nanoparticles can lead to algae blooms.
Air Date:02/13/2018
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A Recipe for Algae Blooms?

Ambience: Wetlands

Nanoparticles - tiny bits of matter, now found in drugs and other products, are finding their way into our ecosystems and water supplies, and scientists are investigating their possible effects. A recent finding is linking nanoparticles, fertilizers and algae blooms. I'm Jim Metzner and this is the Pulse of the Planet.

Hendren: in a regular ecosystem, there was not much change with the addition of the nanoparticles, but in some ecosystems that had a lot of extra nutrients, like you might see in waters near agriculture lands where there are fertilizers - in those systems, there were a lot of changes in the growth rates of the plants that were in those ecosystems when nanomaterials were added.

Christine Ogilvie Hendren is the Executive Director of the Center for the Environmental Implications of Nanotechnology at Duke University. A team of scientists at the Center is investigating what happens when nanoparticles and fertilizer find their way into an ecosystem.

Hendren: The most obvious change was in the ecosystems with nutrients enriched, there became some floating bits of algae that formed at the surface of the waters and this really changes the clarity of the water and it changes how much the plants grow overall in the system.
The interesting thing here is that it wasn't just the gold nanoparticles or just the extra nutrients. It was the combination of these two things in the systems that caused these algae to bloom and fill the waters.

Pulse of the Planet is made possible in part by the Center for Earth and Environmental Nanotechnology and the National Science Foundation.