Feb 4, 2019

Dr. Rebecca Sutton and Jennifer Sun of SFEI, along with other colleagues from Jinan University in China, Southern Illinois University, and the California Academy of Sciences, recently published an article in the journal Science of the Total Environment on flame retardants in the Bay. A uniquely wide-ranging characterization of flame retardants was conducted, including polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) and 52 additional brominated, chlorinated, or phosphate flame retardants in water, sediment, bivalves, and harbor seal blubber of the Bay, once considered a hot spot for PBDE contamination. PBDEs were found to still have the highest concentrations among the brominated flame retardants. Two phosphate compounds used as PBDE replacements were found at levels comparable to thresholds for aquatic toxicity. Dr. Sutton was also interviewed on this topic by KQED on January 14.

Associated Staff: 
Programs and Focus Areas: 
Clean Water Program
Bay Regional Monitoring Program