Avner Vengosh

Avner Vengosh

Professor of Earth and Ocean Sciences

External address: 
308 Research Drive, A-207 LSRC, Durham, NC 27708
Internal office address: 
Box 90328, Durham, NC 27708-0230
(919) 681-8050

My research aims to link environmental geochemistry and isotope hydrology in order to trace the sources and mechanisms of water contamination and relationships with human health. Current research includes global changes of the chemical and isotopic compositions of water resources due to human intervention and contamination, salinization of water resources in the Middle East and Northern Africa, naturally occurring contaminants (arsenic, fluoride, boron) and radioactivity in water resources, the impact of coal combustion residues on the environment, and the impact of gas drilling and hydro-fracking on the quality of shallow groundwater.


  • Ph.D., Australian National University (Australia) 1990
  • M.S., Hebrew University (Israel) 1986
  • B.S., Hebrew University (Israel) 1984

Schwartz, Grace E., Lauren K. Redfern, Kaoru Ikuma, Claudia K. Gunsch, Laura S. Ruhl, Avner Vengosh, and Heileen Hsu-Kim. “Impacts of coal ash on methylmercury production and the methylating microbial community in anaerobic sediment slurries.Environmental Science. Processes & Impacts 18, no. 11 (November 2016): 1427–39. https://doi.org/10.1039/c6em00458j. Full Text

Harkness, Jennifer S., Barry Sulkin, and Avner Vengosh. “Evidence for Coal Ash Ponds Leaking in the Southeastern United States.Environmental Science & Technology 50, no. 12 (June 10, 2016): 6583–92. https://doi.org/10.1021/acs.est.6b01727. Full Text

Lauer, N., and A. Vengosh. “Age Dating Oil and Gas Wastewater Spills Using Radium Isotopes and Their Decay Products in Impacted Soil and Sediment.” Environmental Science and Technology Letters 3, no. 5 (May 10, 2016): 205–9. https://doi.org/10.1021/acs.estlett.6b00118. Full Text

Lauer, Nancy E., Jennifer S. Harkness, and Avner Vengosh. “Brine Spills Associated with Unconventional Oil Development in North Dakota.Environmental Science & Technology 50, no. 10 (May 2016): 5389–97. https://doi.org/10.1021/acs.est.5b06349. Full Text

Schwartz, G. E., N. Rivera, S. W. Lee, J. M. Harrington, J. C. Hower, K. E. Levine, A. Vengosh, and H. Hsu-Kim. “Leaching potential and redox transformations of arsenic and selenium in sediment microcosms with fly ash.” Applied Geochemistry 67 (April 1, 2016): 177–85. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.apgeochem.2016.02.013. Full Text

Di Giulio, R. T., E. S. Bernhardt, A. Vengosh, H. Hsu-Kim, and J. E. Brandt. “Legacy impacts of coal combusion residues in freshwater ecosystems in North Carolina.” Water Resources Research Institute News of the University of North Carolina, no. 464 (March 1, 2016).

Yu, Mengjun, Erika Weinthal, Dalia Patiño-Echeverri, Marc A. Deshusses, Caineng Zou, Yunyan Ni, and Avner Vengosh. “Water Availability for Shale Gas Development in Sichuan Basin, China.Environmental Science & Technology 50, no. 6 (March 2016): 2837–45. https://doi.org/10.1021/acs.est.5b04669. Full Text

Schlesinger, W. H., and A. Vengosh. “Global boron cycle in the Anthropocene.” Global Biogeochemical Cycles 30, no. 2 (February 1, 2016): 219–30. https://doi.org/10.1002/2015GB005266. Full Text

Darrah, T. H., R. B. Jackson, A. Vengosh, N. R. Warner, C. J. Whyte, T. B. Walsh, A. J. Kondash, and R. J. Poreda. “The evolution of Devonian hydrocarbon gases in shallow aquifers of the northern Appalachian Basin: Insights from integrating noble gas and hydrocarbon geochemistry.” Geochimica Et Cosmochimica Acta 170 (December 1, 2015): 321–55. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.gca.2015.09.006. Full Text

Drollette, Brian D., Kathrin Hoelzer, Nathaniel R. Warner, Thomas H. Darrah, Osman Karatum, Megan P. O’Connor, Robert K. Nelson, et al. “Elevated levels of diesel range organic compounds in groundwater near Marcellus gas operations are derived from surface activities.Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 112, no. 43 (October 12, 2015): 13184–89. https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1511474112. Full Text