Metals found in natural waters are an important area of research on climate change and environmental protection, and are a source of valuable minerals in industry. The natural processes that govern the transport of metals in the environment are however poorly understood. To address this problem, the EU-funded 'Metal transport in the environment' (METTRANS) project aims to apply new technologies to understand how naturally occurring metals behave. It constitutes various PhD projects, bringing together a network of leading European research groups. So far, scientists have developed a wide variety of novel techniques to track metals. This allows researchers to explore the dynamic relationship between metals and their geographical and living surroundings. Future analytical methods will further characterise environmental processes in entire watersheds. Ultimately, researchers will be able to see how metals travel from various continental water sources into the ocean basins. The METTRANS project will be a rich source of information for various future scientific endeavours. Furthermore, it will strengthen research collaborations between relevant academic and industry partners.
Environment, metal transport, climate change, environmental protection