Tropical Asian Core (TACO) Project

Reconstruction of pollution history in Tropical Asian waters by using sediment cores.

1st core in Thailand (Gulf of Thailand) June 2004

2nd core in Philippines (Manila Bay) Dec. 2004

3rd core in Vietnam (Off Saigon River) July 2005

4th core in Malaysia (Straits of Johor) Sep. 2006

More will come

What's TACO project?
South and southeast Asian countries have been suffering rapid population and economic growth during last decades. The increased anthropogenic activities caused sever environmental pollution in the region. Our current monitoring has revealed serious environmental pollution in the tropical Asian waters (Zakaria et al., 2000, 2001, 2002, Tsutsumi 2002, Isobe et al., 2002, 2004). However, the monitoring has provided us just a "snapshot" of current pollution status and no information on the historical trend of pollution in the region has been available. Understanding the historical trends of pollution is essential to establish effective countermeasure (policy) to control the pollution. To reconstruct the historical trend of the pollution, we have started Tropical Asian Core (TACO) project where pollution history will be reconstructed by collecting sediment cores in coastal zones and lakes in the region and by analyzing sliced layers for wide range of contaminants. TACO project focus on 8 tropical Asian countries including Thailand, Philippines, Vietnam, Cambodia, Malaysia,Singapore, Indonesia, and India.

Kei O. Isobe, Mohamad P. Zakaria, Nguyen H. Chiem, Le Y. Minh, Maricar Prudente, Ruchaya Boonyatumanond, and Hideshige Takada (2004) Distribution of linear alkylbenzenes (LABs) in riverine and coastal environments in South and Southeast Asia. Water Research, vol..38, p.2449-2459.

Kei O. Isobe, Mitsunori Tarao, Mohamad P. Zakaria, Nguyen H. Chiem, Le Y. Minh, and Hideshige Takada (2002) Quantitative application of fecal sterols using GC-MS to investigate fecal pollution in tropical waters: western Malaysia and Mekong Delta, Vietnam. Environ. Sci. Technol. vol.36, p.4497-4507.

Shinobu Tsutsumi, Yuka Yamaguchi, Itsuko Nishida, Ken-ichiro Akiyama, Mohamad Pauzi Zakaria, Hideshige Takada (2002) Alkylbenzenes in Mussels from South and South East Asian Coasts as a Molecular Tool to Assess Sewage Impact. Mar. Pollut. Bull. vol. 45, p.325-331.

Mohamad Pauzi Zakaria, Hideshige Takada, Shinobu Tsutsumi, Kei Ohno, Junya Yamada, Eriko Kouno, Hidetoshi Kumata (2002) Distribution of Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAHs) in Rivers and Estuaries in Malaysia: A Widespread Input of Petrogenic PAHs. Environ. Sci. Technol. vol.36, p.1907-1918.

Zakaria M.P., Okuda T., and Takada H. (2001) Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbon (PAHs) and Hopanes in Stranded Tar-balls on the Coasts of Peninsular Malaysia: Applications of Biomarkers for Identifying Sources of Oil Pollution. , Mar. Pollut. Bull. vol.42, p.1357-1366.

Zakaria, M.P., H. Takada, S. Tsutsumi, A. Horinouchi, S. Tanabe, and A. Ismail (2002) Application of Biomarkers for Source Identification of Oil Pollution in The Straits of Malacca, Malaysia. Environ. Sci. Technol. vol.34, p.1189-1196.
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