Dr Larissa Schneider

Research Field: Ecology & Toxic Metals

Industrial activities have released toxic metals into the environment in
ways that damage the health of people, wildlife and ecosystems. Knowing
where and when toxic metals entered the environment is the key to
understanding their long-term impacts.
Dr Schneider studies mercury in lake sediments to understand how
industrialisation has affected the natural cycle of metals. Lake sediments

store traces of past metal contamination, allowing her to pinpoint the
timing and extent of industrial pollution. Her work has direct implications
for people’s health and wellbeing, helping to ensure cleaner air and safer
At the heart of her engagement activities is the multi-institutional
collaborative network she established. Mercury Australia (www.mercury-
australia.com.au) unites community groups, industry, researchers and
government bodies to investigate mercury pollution in the Australian
environment. She regularly engages in media interviews and contributes
to community forums at local, national and international levels, drawing
attention to the looming threat of metal contamination in the Australian
environment. Dr Schneider received her PhD from the University of
Canberra in 2014 and is currently an ARC DECRA Fellow at the Australian
National University.