Contaminants of Emerging Concern and their Connections to Salish Sea Wildlife and People


Archived video of the presentation.


Contaminants of Emerging Concern are substances that have the potential to harm wildlife and humans, but have not been well studied or regulated. Microplastics, tire wear particles, and pharmaceutical and personal care products are among those that we are studying.  The presentation will focus on what we know about the toxicity and chemistry of these substances, and what we know about the impacts to wildlife and humans in the Salish Sea. 

About the Speaker

Ruth Sofield
Ruth Sofield
Professor, WWU, Environmental Sciences Department (Chair)

Ruth Sofield is a Professor in the Department of Environmental Sciences at Western Washington University.  She is an environmental toxicologist and chemist with experience in marine and freshwater systems. Her current research projects are focused on microplastic and tire wear particle toxicity and chemistry, modeling the risk of contaminants of emerging concern in Puget Sound, and assessing contamination in Salish Sea seaweeds. 

Environmental Speaker Series

The Environmental Speaker Series is hosted by the College of the Environment at Western Washington University.

The Series is free and open to the public. Talks are held each Thursday at 4:30 pm in Academic Instructional Center West room 204 - AW-204. Talks will also be streamed via zoom. Register with the Alumni Association for the zoom link. Paid parking is available in lot C.

Learn more about the Environmental Speaker Series
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