Publication Date


Document Type


Committee Members

William Fitzgerald (Committee Member), Chad Hammerschmidt (Advisor), Terry Loecke (Committee Member), John Stireman (Committee Member)

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Emissions from coal-fired utilities are the major anthropogenic source of mercury (Hg) to the atmosphere. Because emitted Hg may be deposited near the source, there are concerns on levels of toxic monomethylmercury (MeHg) in local biota. We investigated the potential impact of a large Hg-emitting (> 500 kg Hg y-1) coal-fired power station on MeHg levels in mosquitoes near the Conesville power station in central Ohio. Mosquitoes were sampled with CO2-baited traps at 23 locations within a 60 km radius of the utility and at three reference sites distant from Hg combustion sources. MeHg in mosquitoes within a 30-km radius of the plant (n = 12) were comparable to those within a 30-60 km radius (n = 11) and the three control sites. This suggests that either little of the Hg emitted is deposited locally or near-source Hg deposition doesn't have a significant impact on MeHg in mosquitoes.

Page Count


Department or Program

Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences

Year Degree Awarded