Senate Environment and Public Works Committee

Superfund, Waste Management, and Regulatory Oversight Subcommittee

Understanding the Presence of Microplastics in Water

406 Dirksen
Tue, 27 Feb 2024 19:30:00 GMT

Subcommittee hearing.

  • Susanne M. Brander, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Oregon State University, College of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Fisheries, Wildlife, and Conservation Sciences
  • Sherri A. “Sam” Mason, Ph.D., Director of Sustainability, Penn State Behrend
  • Brent Alspach, P.E., Vice President & Director of Applied Research, Arcadis

As an ecotoxicologist, Susanne M. Brander’s research integrates the responses of aquatic organisms to endocrine disrupting compounds (EDCs) and other environmental stressors, such as microplastics, across the biological hierarchy. He group focuses on discerning mechanisms of toxicity and linking the results of laboratory experiments to ecosystem responses. Current work examines the impact of EDCs on gene expression, development, reproductive behavior, sex ratio and population dynamics across multiple generations, with an emphasis on exposure during early life. Specific compounds of concern include endocrine active pesticides and pharmaceuticals.

Dr. Sherri A. Mason holds a doctorate in chemistry from the University of Montana and is a leading researcher in freshwater plastic pollution. Her award-winning work has drawn international attention to the threats posed by microplastics and led to the passage of national measures banning microbeads. She currently serves as Associate Research Professor and Director of Sustainability at Penn State Erie, The Behrend College.

Brent Alspach is an Associate Vice President with Arcadis and serves as the company’s Director of Applied Research. He is an internationally recognized authority on membrane filtration and desalination processes. He has conducted seawater desalination planning studies and concept design for facilities in the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia, and Mexico.