Data reveals that many regions of India are hotspots of POP exposure. Beyond the presence of active primary sources the Indian environment may be sensitive to the influence of releases from environmental repositories. POP outflow from glacier, for example , has been pointed out as a relevant source for freshwater ecosystems. Although it is espected that climate change have an effect on environmental exposure and remobilization of diffuse chemical pollution from environmental repositories (including soil, v egetation and glaciers), very little is known on the modality and relevance of this relationship. Furthermore, lack of baseline studies, hampers a sounding forecasting of future regional exposure scenarios under climate change conditions.INDNOPOP will co ntribute to fill these gaps by developing a research in a particularly informative scenario: the Ganges river catchment. In average 30 to 40% of the Ganges waters derive from glacier melting. Monsoon inputs and water withdrawal for human use represents th e other major drivers controlling seasonality of the Ganges hydrology. The variability expressed here along the spatial and seasonal scale represents an ideal scenario to investigate the potential effects of climate on the environmental exposure to POPs. We will exploit this in order to characterize and assess the effectiveness of climatic controls on ecosystem and potential human exposure to POPs over a large regional scale.We will establish infrastructures for POP monitoring in 9 sites along the Ganges main stream and its Himalayan headwaters. We will perform a seasonally resolved assessment of the contribution of selected sources of POPs to the water ecosystem (namely glacier melting, atmospheric depositions and primary sources).We will also investig ate the potential implications for human exposure through the water ecosystem by consistently monitoring drinking water and water resources used in food production.
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