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March d3sj + population meetings

From: geoffrey
Sent on: Tuesday, February 17, 2009 10:23 PM

D3SJ* meeting 11 March 2009:

Polar Toxicology: Persistent Organic
Pollutants in Antarctica

Is Dr. Susan Bengtson Nash the Indiana Jones of biology? She certainly cuts an impressive figure when braced at the bow of a speeding boat, shooting humpback whales with a biopsy rifle (the harmless tethered ?bullet? enables sampling of tiny slivers of subcutaneous fat). Such uber cool action adventure nothwithstanding, she is undertaking serious scientific investigation to help us understand the damage we may be causing the ecosystem of the Southern Ocean.

Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs), as their name suggests, can linger in the environment for many years. For example, much of the DDT released in the past persisted in the atmosphere for decades before eventually condensing down in the cold polar regions - the Southern Ocean and Antarctica being of particular importance to us. DDT, being an insecticide, can adversely affect marine arthropods such as krill, a keystone species. POPs are lipophilic and accumulate in the body fat of the multitude of animals which feed on krill - and concentrate all the way up the food chain - from fish to penguins to seals to sharks. The levels of POPs in humpback whale blubber reflect the levels of environmental POP exposure to the krill. The demise of krill would cause a cascade of extinctions in the Southern Ocean - an ecological catastrophe.

Dr. Nash leads the Southern Ocean Persistent Organic Pollutant framework at the University of Queensland. The program represents a new research direction aimed at understanding the significance of increasing levels of traditional and emerging POPs in the Antarctic marine ecosystem. Her team seeks to address major research gaps concerning the transfer of chemicals to the South Polar Region as well as their distribution, fate and impact at South Polar latitudes. The program incorporates investigation of species-specific toxicity within a risk assessment framework and operates in close collaboration with the Australian Government Antarctic Division.

Date & time: Wednesday 11 March 2009

5.30pm - biscuits, coffee/tea

6.00pm - presentations & discussion

7.15pm - meeting concludes - enthusiastic participants are encouraged to continue discussion over dinner at another venue

Venue: Sullivan Nicolaides Pathology Boardrooms, 134 Whitmore St (Swann Rd end), Taringa. Go to reception (off upper car park) & signs will direct from there.

Parking is available on site (upper car park- anywhere there is a space or lower car parks in the non reserved spaces).There's also plenty of nearby on-street parking (with no meters/time limit) at that time of day.

Who should attend: Any intelligent person interested in the common good.


Cost: FREE!

* Doctors and Scientists for Sustainability and Social Justice:

We invite participation from all members of the public who agree with the medical and scientific principles that we should use evidence, reason and fairness as the primary means to address the issues facing society

please visit www.d3sj.org for more information

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From Jane O'Sullivan:
 
Hi All,
Mark O'Connor, co-author of the new book "Overloading Australia: how governments and media dither and deny on population" is giving a number of talks around Brisbane between 20 and 23 Feb.  Details below.  I am attaching a flyer for the UQ event.  I hope you're able to get to one of them.  Please pass on to anyone who might be interested.

Regards,
Jane

Friday 20th February:
4:30 - 6:00pm
Redlands Performing Arts Centre
2 - 16 Middle Street, Cleveland

Saturday 21st February:
1:00 - 1:30pm
Followed by a SEQ Regional Plan Workshop
until 4:00pm
Caloundra Events Centre
Minchinton Street, Caloundra

Monday 23rd February:
1:30 - 3:00pm
Goddard Building (8). Room #139
University of Queensland, St. Lucia

4:00 - 5:30pm
Brisbane City Council Library
Brisbane Square
Mark O?Connor 266 George Street, Brisbane

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