Car Tire Chemical Linked to Mass Fish Deaths

Car Tire Chemical Linked to Mass Fish Deaths

News Type: State, Regional, Federal Source: Missoulian
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Every time you have to change your tires because they’re worn out, it’s because tiny bits of chemical-laden tire material spray across the roads you’ve traveled. And every time it rains or the snow melts, that material washes into lakes, rivers and streams where fish and animals live and where humans go to get drinking water and play.

A new study from a team of researchers has found that one chemical commonly found in car tires is toxic to coho salmon and is the cause of mass-death events of the fish species. The study’s authors also say it’s possible the chemical is harmful to other species, including trout and other species in Montana waters, although more work is needed.

“Just based on the fact that there are 16,000 species of freshwater fish, probability says it’s likely that other species are affected,” Edward Kolodziej of the University of Washington, one of the lead researchers of the study, told the Missoulian.

The team’s work was recently published in the prestigious peer-reviewed academic journal Science.