MPR News reporter Elizabeth Dunbar writes,
Increasing amounts of triclosan, a common antibacterial agent used in soaps and other products, has been detected in Minnesota lakes, according to the results of a new University of Minnesota study.
The researchers studied sediment in eight Minnesota lakes of varying size: Lake Pepin, Lake St. Croix, Lake Winona, East Lake Gemini, Lake Shagawa, Duluth Harbor, Lake Superior and Little Wilson Lake. Some of the sediment dated back more than 100 years.
When the researchers analyzed the chemicals in that sediment, they discovered increased concentrations of triclosan and its byproducts since the chemical was patented in 1964 and entered the market in the 1970s. Triclosan is added to everything from cosmetics to toothpaste to dishwashing soap.
The study was published Tuesday in the journal, Environmental Science and Technology.
"It's important for people to know that what they use in their house every day can have an impact in the environment far beyond their home," said the study's lead author William Arnold, a University of Minnesota civil engineering professor.
Arnold joins The Daily Circuit on Tuesday, Jan. 22 to discuss the triclosan study.