Darren Koppel

Dr Darren Koppel

Research Scientist
Tropical ecotoxicology and risk assessment

(07) 4753 4072
+61 7 4753 4072

My research delivers the science to make decisions about contaminant impacts and risks in the environment. I’m particularly fascinated by the way different environmental conditions affect contaminant risk through changes to their chemical speciation.

I have worked on a range of tricky environmental contamination challenges, including legacy waste in the Antarctic coastal environment, developing bioavailability-based water quality guidelines, and the decommissioning of subsea oil and gas infrastructure. My experience applying ecotoxicology, environmental chemistry, and eDNA techniques helps ensure the sustainable management of our marine resources.


2013 Int Bsc Hons, Chemistry, University of Wollongong

2019 PhD, Environmental chemistry and toxicology, University of Wollongong

Employment history

Postdoctoral research fellow, Curtin University (2021-2022)

Postdoctoral research fellow, University of Technology Sydney (2019-2021)

Policy intern, Australian Academy of Science (2017)

Research Technician, CSIRO Land and Water (2011-2012)

Other Activities

Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry Asia Pacific, Board Member

Queers in Science Western Australia, State Representative


Journal publications

Koppel, D.J., Kho, F., Hastings, A., Crouch, D., MacIntosh, A., Cresswell, T., Higgins, S., 2022. Current understanding and research needs for ecological risk assessments of naturally occurring radioactive materials (NORM) in subsea oil and gas pipelines. J. Environ. Radioact. 241, 106774. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jenvrad.2021.106774

Stone, S.; McKnight, K.; Naab,C; Koppel, D. J.; Binet, M. T.; Jolley, D. F., 2022. Exposure duration and composition are important variables to predict short-term toxicity of effluents to a tropical copepod, Acartia sinjiensis

Koppel, D.J., Whitelaw, N., Adams, M.S., King, C.K., Jolley, D.F., 2021. The microalga Phaeocystis antarctica is tolerant to salinity and metal mixture toxicity interactions. Environ. Sci.: Processes Impacts 23, 1362–1375. https://doi.org/10.1039/D1EM00233C

Stone, S.; McKnight, K.; Legendre, L.; Koppel, D. J.; Binet, M. T.; Simpson, S. L.; Jolley, D. F. The Effects of Pulse Exposures of Metal Toxicants on Different Life Stages of the Tropical Copepod Acartia sinjiensis. Environmental Pollution 2021, 285, 117212. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.envpol.2021.117212.

Koppel, D. J.; Bishop, J.; Kopalová, K.; Price, G. A. V.; Brown, K. E.; Adams, M. S.; King, C. K.; Jolley, D. F. Metal Lability and Environmental Risk in Anthropogenically Disturbed Antarctic Melt Streams. Environmental Pollution 2021, 287, 117627. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.envpol.2021.117627.

Koppel, D. J.; King, C. K.; Brown, K. E.; Price, G. A. V.; Adams, M. S.; Jolley, D. F. Assessing the Risk of Metals and Their Mixtures in the Antarctic Nearshore Marine Environment with Diffusive Gradients in Thin-Films. Environ. Sci. Technol. 2019, acs.est.9b04497. https://doi.org/10.1021/acs.est.9b04497.

Koppel, D.J., Adams, M.S., King, C.K., Jolley, D.F., 2019. Diffusive Gradients in Thin Films Can Predict the Toxicity of Metal Mixtures to Two Microalgae: Validation for Environmental Monitoring in Antarctic Marine Conditions. Environ. Toxicol. Chem. 38, 1323–1333. https://doi.org/10.1002/etc.4399

Industry publications and reports

Curtin University Oil and Gas Innovation Centre (2021). Risk Based Marine Impact Assessment of NORM and Hg from Decommissioning Oil & Gas Infrastructure Literature Review. National Energy Resources Australia, National Decommissioning Research Initiative Project 2.3. 198 pages.

Australian Academy of Science (2018) Mapping Australia’s International Climate Science Engagement. Commissioned by the Federal Department of the Environment and Energy for the National Climate Science Advisory Committee.

Adams, M. S., Spadaro D. A., Golding L. A., Binet, M. T., Jung R. F., Gissi, F., Koppel, D. J., and Simpson S. L. (2012). Toxicity assessment of deep sea tailing placement of a tailings slurry from the Woodlark Gold Project. CSIRO Wealth from Oceans Flagship Technical Report. CSIRO, Australia. 58 pages.