Field Notes
U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service
Field Notes Entry   
USGS Environmental Chemist Carl Orazioshares study findings about pollution in the Missouri River with Missouri River Relief, Big Muddy National Fish andWildlife Refuge and Friends of Big Muddy
Midwest Region, June 9, 2009
Print Friendly Version
On June 9 the Missouri River Relief, Friends of Big Muddy and Big Muddy National Fish and Wildlife Refuge hosted an educational program featuring Carl Orazio, USGS Branch Chief of Columbia’s Environmental Research Center’s Environmental Chemistry branch. In his discussion, Orazio revealed study findings about pollution found in the Missouri River.

Due to its large watershed, the Missouri River is subject to a variety pollution sources including agriculture, industrial and urban waste. A pressing issue concerning the pollution of the Missouri River is the contamination of drinking water from runoff of pesticides like chlordane, unfiltered PCBs, remnants of prescription drugs and other chemicals appearing in drinking water.

Contrary to popular belief, not all of these chemicals get filtered out of public drinking water, Orazio explained. Wastewater treatment plants ensure the removal solid wastes but only have the ability to reduce organic matter and pollutants. Complete removal of some of these pollutants cannot be guaranteed.

Fortunately, this newfound knowledge about contaminants in the Missouri River has been beneficial. People have become aware of the effects of pollution and are taking action. Thanks to the scientists like Orazio doing the research and spreading the word about the Missouri River’s toxic state, pollution rates have been on the decline and wastewater treatment plants are finding new ways to filter these contaminants out of our drinking water.

Contact Info: Tim Haller, 573-441-2799, tim_haller@fws.gov
Find a Field Notes Entry

Search by keyword

Search by State

Search by Region

US Fish and Wildlife Service footer