ANCHORAGE - The state Department of Natural Resources has been awarded a $700,000 federal grant to test for environmental contaminants in Alaska fish.
The Minerals Management Service awarded the grant through the Coastal Impact Assistance Program created by Congress in 2005.
The state will assess the effect of contaminants such as heavy metals and pesticides on coastal and marine ecosystems by testing muscle tissue from fish.
Federal officials said scientists will be able to locate areas in Alaska where there may be high concentrations of contaminants.
Six states with offshore petroleum production are eligible for grants. Funding to Alaska included $37.5 million for fiscal years 2009 and 2010.