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Arctic sea ice gaps drive toxic mercury conveyor belt

from Los Angeles Times

Gaps forming in seasonal Arctic sea ice may be creating a toxic conveyor belt, drawing mercury from higher altitudes to rain down on the ice, snow and tundra, according to a new study. The gaps, which come as the region shifts from perennial ice to thinner seasonal ice due to climate change, drive convection currents in the lower atmosphere that cycle mercury and ozone from higher levels toward Earth’s surface, where oxidation converts the mercury into a more toxic form, according to the study published online in the journal Nature. more

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