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Two Funded PhD Studentships in the Centre for Chemicals Management

The Centre for Chemicals Management is looking for candidates for two MPhil/PhD studentships to undertake projects on the fate and behaviour of persistent organic pollutants (POPs) in the environment.

POPs have attracted considerable scientific and political interest, arising from concern over human exposure to these chemicals and their discovery in pristine environments far from source regions. The ability of certain POPs to undergo long range atmospheric transport (LRAT) has resulted in the negotiation of protocols for their reduction or elimination, to reduce the risks to regional and global environments. These include the 1998 UN/ECE Protocol on Persistent Organic Pollutants made under the Convention on Long-Range Transboundary Air Pollution, and the Stockholm Convention (SC) on POPs. The UK is a signatory to both these instruments, and therefore has an ongoing requirement to assess the extent of the presence of the listed POPs in the UK environment.

The first project will involve the development and application of a range of multi-media environmental fate models for persistent organic pollutants (POPs). This project will provide support for Defra and the UK's obligations commitments on source reductions under a number of International Chemicals Regulations such as the UNEP Stockholm Convention and the UNECE POPs Protocol. This project will cover a range of research topics including; POPs source inventories (air, land, water), developmental of algorithms for key environmental transport processes and identification of sinks. We are looking for someone with an interest in developing/using mathematical models and some experience in programming and GIS.

The second project will assist in the operation of the Defra funded Toxic Organic Micro-Pollutants (TOMPs) air monitoring network. This network has been running for nearly 20 years, and provides long term ambient air trend data for a range of POPs at both urban and rural locations. Data from the network provides Defra with valuable information on emission/source controls and on the effectiveness of International chemicals regulation. It is also used to demonstrate UK compliance with its obligations under the Stockholm Convention and UN/ECE Long-Range Atmospheric Transport Protocol. This research project will provide assistance in the operation of the network and laboratory analysis, but also will provide opportunities to undertake detailed studies on atmospheric fate and behaviour processes that effect persistent chemicals.

Deadline for Applications: Friday 10th September 2010

Further information about the PhD Studentships and details on how to apply is available at Project 1, Project 2 or from Andy Harrod

Fri 13 August 2010