Hazardous substances

What is it: 

Substances which accumulate in the environment and impact on wildlife are considered to be hazardous. Substances identified as a particular cause for concern include cadmium, mercury, lead, pesticides, polychlorinated biphenyls ( PCBs), polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons ( PAHs) and brominated flame retardants ( PBDEs). Inputs of selected substances to the marine environment via rivers and effluent discharges have been quantified for the OSPAR Rivers and Direct Discharges ( RID) programme since 1990.

The layers show the assessments from the UK Marine Environment Monitoring and Assessment National (MERMAN) database, used for international reporting for the following substances in sediment and biota.

  • Polybrominated diphenyl ethers (flame retardants) (PBDEs) – 4 layers covering BDE47, BDE99 and BDE209.
  • Polychlorinated biphenyls ( PCBs)- 4 layers covering CB153 and CB118.
  • Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) – 6 layers covering phenanthrene, naphthalene and pyrene.
  • Metals – 6 layers covering Cadmium (Cd), Lead (Pb) and Mercury (Hg).

Updated graphs for dredge spoil hazardous substance content (as found in Scotland’s Marine Atlas) can be accessed in the ‘Data Sources’ tab at the bottom of the page.

Links to Scotland's Marine Atlas: 
This information page is part of the theme: 
Laboratory Work - © Marine Scotland

Links and Resources

Map Type Click title for metadata and licence informationsort descending Date of data View Map
NMPi Metals - Cadmium (Cd) in Biota from 2013 (time-aware) 2013-01-01 to 2017-12-31 Access this map on NMPi
NMPi Metals - Cadmium (Cd) in Sediment from 2013 (time-aware) 2013-01-01 to 2017-12-31 Access this map on NMPi
NMPi Metals - Lead (Pb) in Biota from 2013 (time-aware) 2013-01-01 to 2017-12-31 Access this map on NMPi
NMPi Metals - Lead (Pb) in Sediment from 2013 (time-aware) 2013-01-01 to 2017-12-31 Access this map on NMPi
NMPi Metals - Mercury (Hg) in Biota from 2013 (time-aware) 2013-01-01 to 2017-12-31 Access this map on NMPi
NMPi Metals - Mercury (Hg) in Sediment from 2013 (time-aware) 2013-01-01 to 2017-12-31 Access this map on NMPi
NMPi OSPAR - Direct Discharge Monitoring Points 2011-05-05 Access this map on NMPi
NMPi OSPAR - Riverine Input Monitoring Points 2011-05-05 Access this map on NMPi
NMPi OSPAR - Sampling Regions for Monitoring Points 2012-08-23 Access this map on NMPi
NMPi OSPAR - Sea Divisions for Sampling Regions 2013-10-01 Access this map on NMPi
NMPi Polybrominated diphenyl ethers (flame retardants) (PBDEs) - BD209 in Sediment from 2013 (time-aware) 2013-01-01 to 2017-12-31 Access this map on NMPi
NMPi Polybrominated diphenyl ethers (flame retardants) (PBDEs) - BDE47 in biota from 2013 (time-aware) 2013-01-01 to 2017-12-31 Access this map on NMPi
NMPi Polybrominated diphenyl ethers (flame retardants) (PBDEs) - BDE47 in Sediment from 2013 (time-aware) 2013-01-01 to 2017-12-31 Access this map on NMPi
NMPi Polybrominated diphenyl ethers (flame retardants) (PBDEs) - BDE99 in Sediment from 2013 (time-aware) 2013-01-01 to 2017-12-31 Access this map on NMPi
NMPi Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) - CB118 in Biota from 2013 (time-aware) 2013-01-01 to 2017-12-31 Access this map on NMPi
NMPi Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) - CB118 in Sediment from 2013 (time-aware) 2013-01-01 to 2017-12-31 Access this map on NMPi
NMPi Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) - CB153 in Biota from 2013 (time-aware) 2013-01-01 to 2017-12-31 Access this map on NMPi
NMPi Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) - CB153 in Sediment from 2013 (time-aware) 2013-01-01 to 2017-12-31 Access this map on NMPi
NMPi Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH) - Naphthalene (NAP) in Biota from 2013 (time-aware) 2013-01-01 to 2017-12-31 Access this map on NMPi
NMPi Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH) - Naphthalene (NAP) in Sediment from 2013 (time-aware) 2013-01-01 to 2017-12-31 Access this map on NMPi
NMPi Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH) - Phenanthrene (PA) in Biota from 2013 (time-aware) 2013-01-01 to 2017-12-31 Access this map on NMPi
NMPi Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH) - Phenanthrene (PA) in Sediment from 2013 (time-aware) 2013-01-01 to 2017-12-31 Access this map on NMPi
NMPi Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH) - Pyrene (PYR) in Biota from 2013 (time-aware) 2013-01-01 to 2017-12-31 Access this map on NMPi
NMPi Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH) - Pyrene (PYR) in Sediment from 2013 (time-aware) 2013-01-01 to 2017-12-31 Access this map on NMPi