Science.gov

Sample records for probalistic ecological risk

  1. Probalistic Assessment of Radiation Risk for Solar Particle Events

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kim, Myung-Hee Y.; Cucinotta, Francis A.

    2008-01-01

    For long duration missions outside of the protection of the Earth's magnetic field, exposure to solar particle events (SPEs) is a major safety concern for crew members during extra-vehicular activities (EVAs) on the lunar surface or Earth-to-moon or Earth-to-Mars transit. The large majority (90%) of SPEs have small or no health consequences because the doses are low and the particles do not penetrate to organ depths. However, there is an operational challenge to respond to events of unknown size and duration. We have developed a probabilistic approach to SPE risk assessment in support of mission design and operational planning. Using the historical database of proton measurements during the past 5 solar cycles, the functional form of hazard function of SPE occurrence per cycle was found for nonhomogeneous Poisson model. A typical hazard function was defined as a function of time within a non-specific future solar cycle of 4000 days duration. Distributions of particle fluences for a specified mission period were simulated ranging from its 5th to 95th percentile. Organ doses from large SPEs were assessed using NASA's Baryon transport model, BRYNTRN. The SPE risk was analyzed with the organ dose distribution for the given particle fluences during a mission period. In addition to the total particle fluences of SPEs, the detailed energy spectra of protons, especially at high energy levels, were recognized as extremely important for assessing the cancer risk associated with energetic particles for large events. The probability of exceeding the NASA 30-day limit of blood forming organ (BFO) dose inside a typical spacecraft was calculated for various SPE sizes. This probabilistic approach to SPE protection will be combined with a probabilistic approach to the radiobiological factors that contribute to the uncertainties in projecting cancer risks in future work.

  2. ECOLOGICAL RISK ASSESSMENT

    EPA Science Inventory

    The Ecological Soil Screening Level (Eco-SSL) Work Group, composed of scientists and risk assessors from EPA, Environment Canada, DOE, Army, Navy, Air Force, states, industry, academia, and consulting companies, has been working on the development of scientifically sound, ecologi...

  3. ECOLOGICAL RISK ASSESSMENT WORKSHOP

    EPA Science Inventory

    As ecological risk assessment evolves, it is moving beyond focus on single species toward addressing multiple species and their interactions, and from assessing effects of simple chemical toxicity to the cumulative impacts of multiple interacting chemical, physical, and biologica...

  4. Modeling extreme risks in ecology.

    PubMed

    Burgman, Mark; Franklin, James; Hayes, Keith R; Hosack, Geoffrey R; Peters, Gareth W; Sisson, Scott A

    2012-11-01

    Extreme risks in ecology are typified by circumstances in which data are sporadic or unavailable, understanding is poor, and decisions are urgently needed. Expert judgments are pervasive and disagreements among experts are commonplace. We outline approaches to evaluating extreme risks in ecology that rely on stochastic simulation, with a particular focus on methods to evaluate the likelihood of extinction and quasi-extinction of threatened species, and the likelihood of establishment and spread of invasive pests. We evaluate the importance of assumptions in these assessments and the potential of some new approaches to account for these uncertainties, including hierarchical estimation procedures and generalized extreme value distributions. We conclude by examining the treatment of consequences in extreme risk analysis in ecology and how expert judgment may better be harnessed to evaluate extreme risks. PMID:22817845

  5. Ecological risk assessment: Lessons learned

    SciTech Connect

    DeShields, B.R.; Stelljes, M.E.; Hawkins, E.T.; Alsop, W.R.

    1995-12-31

    On the basis of experience with ecological risk assessments and regulatory involvement in the process, a number of lessons can be learned relating to design, implementation, and reporting of ecological risk assessments. A number of case studies will be presented in order to evaluate the advantages and disadvantages of different approaches. Issues surrounding the selection of assessment and measurement endpoints, receptors, accuracy of models when compared with field data, bioavailability of chemicals, selection of appropriate reference sites, availability of relevant toxicological data, utility of bioassays, and accounting for temporal and seasonal variability, species adaptation, and ecological relevance will be examined. In addition, effective ways of dealing with limitations such as duration and cost of the assessments will be evaluated. Case studies ranging from large, complex Superfund sites to small, relatively simplistic sites will be included. By scrutinizing the approaches used and the outcomes of these case studies, insight can be gained that will allow risk assessors to deal with limitations and to focus future efforts to provide useful and relevant information and sound scientifically-based results.

  6. [Urban ecological risk assessment: a review].

    PubMed

    Wang, Mei-E; Chen, Wei-Ping; Peng, Chi

    2014-03-01

    With the development of urbanization and the degradation of urban living environment, urban ecological risks caused by urbanization have attracted more and more attentions. Based on urban ecology principles and ecological risk assessment frameworks, contents of urban ecological risk assessment were reviewed in terms of driven forces, risk resources, risk receptors, endpoints and integrated approaches for risk assessment. It was suggested that types and degrees of urban economical and social activities were the driven forces for urban ecological risks. Ecological functional components at different levels in urban ecosystems as well as the urban system as a whole were the risk receptors. Assessment endpoints involved in changes of urban ecological structures, processes, functional components and the integrity of characteristic and function. Social-ecological models should be the major approaches for urban ecological risk assessment. Trends for urban ecological risk assessment study should focus on setting a definite protection target and criteria corresponding to assessment endpoints, establishing a multiple-parameter assessment system and integrative assessment approaches. PMID:24984514

  7. Picillo Farm ecological risk assessment

    SciTech Connect

    Rury, P.M.; Turton, D.J.

    1995-12-31

    Under the direction of US Environmental Protection Agency, Region 1, a baseline ecological risk assessment (ERA) was conducted for terrestrial, wetland, and aquatic ecosystems located on-site and off-site/downstream of a Superfund site in Coventry, Rhode Island. Surveys of biota and ecosystems were focused in the vicinity of 26 soil, sediment, and surface water sampling locations used for the RI/FS site contamination assessment, to cross-link data on biological receptors to site-specific habitat maps. Classes of contaminants of concern (COCs), selected independently for each medium based on exceedances of ecotoxicity criteria, for which risks to one or more indicator communities and species were calculated, included VOCs, SVOCs, metals, PCBs and pesticides. Simple hazard quotients were used to estimate risks for benthic and pelagic communities of the aquatic and wetland exposure zones, using AWQC and NOAA sediment guidelines. These aquatic criteria also were applied to a site-specific exposure models for all life stages of the Green Frog (Rana clamitans). To complement the benthic invertebrate risk estimates, site-derived sediments also were used for toxicity tests of Chironomus tentans and Hyalella azteca. Published, species-specific and/or extrapolated toxicity effects endpoints were used in site-specific, mathematical food chain exposure assessment models for the Amedcan Woodcock (Scolopax minor), Short-tailed Shrew (Blarina brevicauda) and Mink (Mustela vison), to estimate organismal risks for a variety of foraging scenarios within one or more exposure zone. Incremental site contributions to risks from metals were inferred using local background data, whereas all risks from organic compounds were assumed to be site-derived.

  8. ECO 201: Overview of Ecological Risk Assessment

    EPA Science Inventory

    The objectives of this course is to provide participants with knowledge about the fundamentals of ecological risk assessment. A brief history of how ecological risk assessment has evolved over time and how it is both similar to and different from human health risk assessment wil...

  9. PERSONAL VALUES, BELIEFS, AND ECOLOGICAL RISK PERCEPTION

    EPA Science Inventory

    A mail survey on ecological risk perception was administered in the summer of 2002 to a randomized sample of the lay public and to selected risk professionals at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA). The ranking of 24 ecological risk items, from global climate change...

  10. Ecological risk assessment framework -- the NAS perspective

    SciTech Connect

    Barnthouse, L.W.

    1993-06-01

    A Workshop on Ecological Risk Assessment was held on February 26--March 1, 1991, at Airlie House, Warrenton, Virginia. In addition to presentation and discussion of the case study papers, the workshop included breakout sessions to discuss conceptual and technical aspects of ecological risk assessment. A general consensus emerged that an ecological version of the 1983 framework is desirable and feasible. The committee concluded that the 1983 human health framework could be expanded to accomodate both human health and ecological risk assessment. For general applicability to ecological assessments, the 1983 scheme requires augmentation to address some of the interfaces between science and management, primarily because of the need to focus on appropriate questions relevant to applicable environmental law and policy under different circumstances. Specifically, the scheme needs modification to address (1) the influence of legal and regulatory considerations on the initial stages of ecological risk assessment and (2) the importance of characterizing ecological risks in terms that are intelligible to risk managers. The committee`s opinion is that these augmentations are as important for human health risk assessment as they are for ecological risk assessment. This paper briefly describes the framework recommended by the Committee and compares it to EPA`s recently-published Framework for Ecological Risk Assessment.

  11. DRAFT PROPOSED GUIDELINES FOR ECOLOGICAL RISK ASSESSMENT

    EPA Science Inventory

    This document is part of a continuing, long-term effort to develop Agency-wide ecological risk assessment guidelines for EPA. The goal of the guidelines is to improve the quality and consistency of the Agency's ecological risk assessments. These guidelines move beyond the Agency'...

  12. [Forest health ecological risk assessment in China].

    PubMed

    Xiao, Fengjin; Ouyang, Hua; Cheng, Shulan; Zhang, Qiang

    2004-02-01

    Forest health ecological risk assessment is an important factor in forest resources management. In this paper, we selected forest fire, forest disease-pest disasters and acid rain as main risk sources, described the risk resources by probability, intensity and distributing, and mapped each risk source. The endpoints were the damages that the risk acceptor might and these damages might cause ecosystems' organization and function changing under the uncertainty risk sources. Endpoints of forest might compose of productivity descent, reducing biodiversity, forest degrading, forest ecological function declining, furthermore, forest disappearing. We described exposure in terms of intensity, space, and time. In the exposure and hazard analysis, we used fragile index to show frangibility or resistibility (resistibility is reverse to frangibility), and analyzed the damages by different risk sources. Risk assessment and management was the integrated phase of the research. Because of the spatial heterogeneity of risk sources, all risk index were overlaid in the China map by GIS, which divided the region into 30 ecological risk sub-zones (provinces), according to risk index of each risk sub-zone, and the forest in China was divided into six levels of risk zones. In every level of risk zones, we also put forward the countermeasures for forest health ecological risk management. The result of assessment could provide scientific basis for forest management. PMID:15146655

  13. PROPOSED GUIDELINES FOR ECOLOGICAL RISK ASSESSMENT

    EPA Science Inventory

    The Proposed Guidelines for Ecological Risk Assessment were published in the Federal Register on September 9, 1996 (61 FR 47552) for a 90 day public review and comment period. The Proposed Guidelines are being developed to improve the quality of and consistency among EPA's ecolog...

  14. Translating Ecological Risk to Ecosystem Service Loss

    EPA Science Inventory

    Hazardous site management in the US includes remediation of contaminated environmental media and restoration of injured natural resources. Site remediation decisions are informed by ecological risk assessment (ERA), while restoration and compensation decisions are informed by th...

  15. Personal values, beliefs, and ecological risk perception.

    PubMed

    Slimak, Michael W; Dietz, Thomas

    2006-12-01

    A mail survey on ecological risk perception was administered in the summer of 2002 to a randomized sample of the lay public and to selected risk professionals at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA). The ranking of 24 ecological risk items, from global climate change to commercial fishing, reveals that the lay public is more concerned about low-probability, high-consequence risks whereas the risk professionals are more concerned about risks that pose long-term, ecosystem-level impacts. To test the explanatory power of the value-belief-norm (VBN) theory for risk perception, respondents were questioned about their personal values, spiritual beliefs, and worldviews. The most consistent predictors of the risk rankings are belief in the new ecological paradigm (NEP) and Schwartz's altruism. The NEP and Schwartz's altruism explain from 19% to 46% of the variance in the risk rankings. Religious beliefs account for less than 6% of the variance and do not show a consistent pattern in predicting risk perception although religious fundamentalists are generally less concerned about the risk items. While not exerting as strong an impact, social-structural variables do have some influence on risk perception. Ethnicities show no effect on the risk scales but the more educated and financially well-off are less concerned about the risk items. Political leanings have no direct influence on risk rankings, but indirectly affect rankings through the NEP. These results reveal that the VBN theory is a plausible explanation for the differences measured in the respondents' perception of ecological risk. PMID:17184406

  16. DETERMINING SIGNIFICANT ENDPOINTS FOR ECOLOGICAL RISK ANALYSIS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Risk analyses, both human health and ecological, will be important factors in determining which DOE sites should be cleaned up and in deciding if acceptable performance standards have been met. Risk analysis procedures for humans use the individual as the 'unit' of observation, a...

  17. ECOLOGICAL RISK ASSESSMENT IN THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT

    EPA Science Inventory

    This report was prepared by an interagency work group under the auspices of the Committee on Environment and Natural Resources (CENR). The objective of the work group was to write a document on the major uses of ecological risk assessment by Federal agencies. Eight task groups we...

  18. Microplastics: addressing ecological risk through lessons learned.

    PubMed

    Syberg, Kristian; Khan, Farhan R; Selck, Henriette; Palmqvist, Annemette; Banta, Gary T; Daley, Jennifer; Sano, Larissa; Duhaime, Melissa B

    2015-05-01

    Plastic litter is an environmental problem of great concern. Despite the magnitude of the plastic pollution in our water bodies, only limited scientific understanding is available about the risk to the environment, particularly for microplastics. The apparent magnitude of the problem calls for quickly developing sound scientific guidance on the ecological risks of microplastics. The authors suggest that future research into microplastics risks should be guided by lessons learned from the more advanced and better understood areas of (eco) toxicology of engineered nanoparticles and mixture toxicity. Relevant examples of advances in these two fields are provided to help accelerate the scientific learning curve within the relatively unexplored area of microplastics risk assessment. Finally, the authors advocate an expansion of the "vector effect" hypothesis with regard to microplastics risk to help focus research of microplastics environmental risk at different levels of biological and environmental organization. PMID:25655822

  19. Ecosystem Services as Assessment Endpoints in Ecological Risk Assessment

    EPA Science Inventory

    The focus of ecological risk assessment (ERA) is on assessment endpoints, explicit expressions of environmental values to be protected. Traditionally, the ecological entities identified in assessment endpoints have been components of ecosystems deemed by risk assessors to be impo...

  20. SADA: Ecological Risk Based Decision Support System for Selective Remediation

    EPA Science Inventory

    Spatial Analysis and Decision Assistance (SADA) is freeware that implements terrestrial ecological risk assessment and yields a selective remediation design using its integral geographical information system, based on ecological and risk assessment inputs. Selective remediation ...

  1. Ecological risk assessment of endocrine disruptors.

    PubMed

    Hutchinson, T H; Brown, R; Brugger, K E; Campbell, P M; Holt, M; Länge, R; McCahon, P; Tattersfield, L J; van Egmond, R

    2000-11-01

    The European Centre for Ecotoxicology and Toxicology of Chemicals proposes a tiered approach for the ecological risk assessment of endocrine disruptors, integrating exposure and hazard (effects) characterization. Exposure assessment for endocrine disruptors should direct specific tests for wildlife species, placing hazard data into a risk assessment context. Supplementing the suite of mammalian screens now under Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) validation, high priority should be given to developing a fish screening assay for detecting endocrine activity in oviparous species. Taking into account both exposure characterization and alerts from endocrine screening, higher tier tests are also a priority for defining adverse effects. We propose that in vivo mammalian and fish assays provide a comprehensive screening battery for diverse hormonal functions (including androgen, estrogen, and thyroid hormone), whereas Amphibia should be considered at higher tiers if there are exposure concerns. Higher tier endocrine-disruptor testing should include fish development and fish reproduction tests, whereas a full life-cycle test could be subsequently used to refine aquatic risk assessments when necessary. For avian risk assessment, the new OECD Japanese quail reproduction test guideline provides a valuable basis for developing a test to detecting endocrine-mediated reproductive effects; this species could be used, where necessary, for an avian life-cycle test. For aquatic and terrestrial invertebrates, data from existing developmental and reproductive tests remain of high value for ecological risk assessment. High priority should be given to research into comparative endocrine physiology of invertebrates to support data extrapolation to this diverse fauna. PMID:11102288

  2. Ecological risk assessment of endocrine disruptors.

    PubMed Central

    Hutchinson, T H; Brown, R; Brugger, K E; Campbell, P M; Holt, M; Länge, R; McCahon, P; Tattersfield, L J; van Egmond, R

    2000-01-01

    The European Centre for Ecotoxicology and Toxicology of Chemicals proposes a tiered approach for the ecological risk assessment of endocrine disruptors, integrating exposure and hazard (effects) characterization. Exposure assessment for endocrine disruptors should direct specific tests for wildlife species, placing hazard data into a risk assessment context. Supplementing the suite of mammalian screens now under Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) validation, high priority should be given to developing a fish screening assay for detecting endocrine activity in oviparous species. Taking into account both exposure characterization and alerts from endocrine screening, higher tier tests are also a priority for defining adverse effects. We propose that in vivo mammalian and fish assays provide a comprehensive screening battery for diverse hormonal functions (including androgen, estrogen, and thyroid hormone), whereas Amphibia should be considered at higher tiers if there are exposure concerns. Higher tier endocrine-disruptor testing should include fish development and fish reproduction tests, whereas a full life-cycle test could be subsequently used to refine aquatic risk assessments when necessary. For avian risk assessment, the new OECD Japanese quail reproduction test guideline provides a valuable basis for developing a test to detecting endocrine-mediated reproductive effects; this species could be used, where necessary, for an avian life-cycle test. For aquatic and terrestrial invertebrates, data from existing developmental and reproductive tests remain of high value for ecological risk assessment. High priority should be given to research into comparative endocrine physiology of invertebrates to support data extrapolation to this diverse fauna. PMID:11102288

  3. Ecological risk assessment of contaminated soil.

    PubMed

    Jensen, John; Pedersen, Marianne Bruus

    2006-01-01

    This review has described three cases of ecological risk assessment. The cases include two heavy metals (Cu and Zn) and an anthropogenic organic chemical (DDT). It concludes that there are at least two major constraints hampering the use of laboratory tests to predict effects under natural field conditions. One key issue is bioavailability, and another is suboptimal conditions or multiple stresses in the field such as climatic stress (drought, frost), predators, competition, or food shortage. On the basis of the presented case studies, it was possible to answer three essential questions often raised in connection to ecological risk assessment of contaminated sites. 1. To what extend does soil screening level (SSL) estimate the risk? The SSL are generally derived at levels corresponding to the lowest observed effect levels in laboratory studies, which often is close to the background levels found in many soils. In the cases of zinc and especially DDT, the SSL seemed quite conservative, whereas for copper they resemble the level at which changes in the community structure of soil microarthropods and the plant community have been observed at contaminated sites. The SSL correspond as a whole relatively well with concentrations where no effects or only minor effects were observed in controlled field studies. However, large variation in field surveys can often make it difficult to conclude to what extent the SSL corresponded to no-effect levels in the field. 2. Do bioassays represent a more realistic risk estimate? Here, there is no firm conclusion. The zinc study in UK showed a better relationship between the outcome of ex situ bioassays and field observations than the SSL. The latter overestimated the risk compared to field observations. However, this would be species dependent, as the sensitivity to metals may vary considerably between recognized test species, even within the same group of organisms, such as Folsomia candida and Folsomia fimetaria or Eisenia fetida

  4. Ecological risk assessment benefits environmental management

    SciTech Connect

    Fairbrother, A.; Kapustka, L.A.; Williams, B.A.; Glicken, J.

    1994-12-31

    The ecological risk assessment process in its ideal form is an unbiased approach for assessing the probability of harm to the environment as a consequence of a given action. This information can then be combined with other societal values and biases in the management of such risks. However, as the process currently is understood, decision makers often are accused of manipulating information in order to generate decisions or achieve buy in from the public in support of a particular political agenda. A clear understanding of the nature of the risk management process can help define areas where information should be free from social or personal bias, and areas where values and judgments are critical. The authors do not propose to discuss the individual`s decision-making process, but rather to address the social process of risk communication and environmentally-related decision-making, identifying which parts of that process require bias-free, scientifically generated information about the consequences of various actions and which parts need an understanding of the social values which underlie the informed choices among those possible actions.

  5. ECOLOGICAL RISK ASSESSMENT FOR THE MIDDLE SNAKE RIVER, IDAHO

    EPA Science Inventory

    An ecological risk assessment was completed for the Middle Snake River, Idaho. In this assessment, mathematical simulations and field observations were used to analyze exposure and ecological effects and to estimate risk.

    The Middle Snake River which refers to a 100 km stret...

  6. ECOLOGICAL RISK ASSESSMENT: PROTECTING NORTHWEST ANADROMOUS SALMONID STOCKS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Ecological risk assessment is usually defined as the process that evaluates the likelihood that adverse ecological effects are occurring, or may occur, as a result of exposure to one or mare stressors. he basic concept, while straightforward, is difficult to apply. trong reaction...

  7. Evolutionary Consequences for Ecological Risk Assessment and Management.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gochfeld, Michael; Burger, Joanna

    1993-01-01

    Discusses the use of the human health risk assessment model as a basis for developing ecological risk assessment (ERA). For ERA, risk to individuals is less important than the survival of the population, with the exception of endangered species. Suggests that ERA take into account the relative reproductive value of the potentially impacted…

  8. CLINCH AND POWELL VALLEY WATERSHED ECOLOGICAL RISK ASSESSMENT

    EPA Science Inventory

    A watershed ecological risk assessment of the unique Clinch and Powell river system in southwestern Virginia strongly suggests that (1) coal mining activities and agricultural practices, past and present, are having adverse impacts on stream habitats, resulting in unacceptable lo...

  9. Web-enabling Ecological Risk Assessment for Accessibility and Transparency

    EPA Science Inventory

    Ecological risk methods and tools are necessarily diverse to account for different combinations of receptors, exposure processes, effects estimation, and degree of conservatism/realism necessary to support chemical-based assessments. These tools have been continuously developed s...

  10. Overview of the Rocky Mountain Arsenal ecological risk characterization

    SciTech Connect

    Applehans, F.; Jones, M.; Osborn, S.; Tate, D.J.; Cothern, K.A.; Pavlou, S.; Toll, J.E.; Armstrong, J.P.

    1994-12-31

    The Rocky Mountain Arsenal (RMA) Endangerment Assessment was performed to characterize potential threats to human health and the environment from contaminants released as a result of historical operations and past waste disposal practices at RMA. This paper presents an overview of the Ecological Risk Characterization (ERC), one component of the RMA Endangerment Assessment. Because of the magnitude of the ERC and high public profile of RMA, the RMA ecological risk assessment reflects all aspects of SETAC`s meeting theme, Ecological Risk: Science, Policy, Law, and Perception. The conceptual framework for the ERC is described, major technical and practical issues encountered in conducting the ERC are recounted, and key insights and recommendations for future ecological risk assessments are discussed.

  11. Application of Mechanistic Toxicology Data to Ecological Risk Assessments

    EPA Science Inventory

    The ongoing evolution of knowledge and tools in the areas of molecular biology, bioinformatics, and systems biology holds significant promise for reducing uncertainties associated with ecological risk assessment. As our understanding of the mechanistic basis of responses of organ...

  12. A TEST OF WATERSHED CLASSIFICATION SYSTEMS FOR ECOLOGICAL RISK ASSESSMENT

    EPA Science Inventory

    To facilitate extrapolation among watersheds, ecological risk assessments should be based on a model of underlying factors influencing watershed response, particularly vulnerability. We propose a conceptual model of landscape vulnerability to serve as a basis for watershed classi...

  13. WORKSHOP REPORT ON CHARACTERIZING ECOLOGICAL RISK AT THE WATERSHED SCALE

    EPA Science Inventory

    As ecological risk assessment evolves, it is moving beyond a focus on single species toward addressing multiple species and their interactions, and from assessing effects of simple chemical toxicity to the cumulative impacts of multiple interacting chemical, physical, and biologi...

  14. Landscape ecological risk assessment study in arid land

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gong, Lu; Amut, Aniwaer; Shi, Qingdong; Wang, Gary Z.

    2007-09-01

    The ecosystem risk assessment is an essential decision making system for predicting the reconstruction and recovery of a damaged ecosystem after intensive mankind activities. The sustainability of environment and resources of the lake ecosystem in arid districts have been paid close attention to by international communities as well as numerous experts and scholars. The ecological risk assessment offered a scientific foundation for making the decision and execution of ecological risk management. Bosten Lake, the largest inland freshwater lake in China, is the main water source of the industrial and agricultural production as well as the local residence in Yanqi basin, Kuara city and Yuri County in the southern Xinjiang. Bosten Lake also provides a direct water source for emergency transportation in the Lower Reaches of Tarim River. However, with the intensive utilizations of water and soil resources, the environmental condition in the Bosten Lake has become more and more serious. In this study, the theory and method of landscape ecological risk assessment has been practiced using 3S technologies combined with the frontier theory of landscape ecology. Defining the mainly risk resource including flood, drought, water pollution and rich nutrition of water has been evaluated based on the ecosystem risk assessment system. The main process includes five stages: regional natural resources analysis, risk receptor selection, risk sources evaluation, exposure and hazard analysis, and integrated risk assessment. Based on the risk assessment results, the environmental risk management countermeasure has been determined.

  15. Current directions in screening-level ecological risk assessments

    SciTech Connect

    Carlsen, T M; Efroymson, R A

    2000-12-11

    Ecological risk assessment (ERA) is a tool used by many regulatory agencies to evaluate the impact to ecological receptors from changes in environmental conditions. Widespread use of ERAs began with the United States Environmental Protection Agency's Superfund program to assess the ecological impact from hazardous chemicals released to the environment. Many state hazardous chemical regulatory agencies have adopted the use of ERAs, and several state regulatory agencies are evaluating the use of ERAs to assess ecological impacts from releases of petroleum and gas-related products. Typical ERAs are toxicologically-based, use conservative assumptions with respect to ecological receptor exposure duration and frequency, often require complex modeling of transport and exposure and are very labor intensive. In an effort to streamline the ERA process, efforts are currently underway to develop default soil screening levels, to identify ecological screening criteria for excluding sites from formal risk assessment, and to create risk-based corrective action worksheets. This should help reduce the time spent on ERAs, at least for some sites. Work is also underway to incorporate bioavailability and spatial considerations into ERAs. By evaluating the spatial nature of contaminant releases with respect to the spatial context of the ecosystem under consideration, more realistic ERAs with respect to the actual impact to ecological receptors at the population, community or ecosystem scale should be possible. In addition, by considering the spatial context, it should be possible to develop mitigation and monitoring efforts to more appropriately address such sites within the context of an ecological framework.

  16. An ecological risk assessment for Portsmouth Naval Shipyard, Kittery, Maine

    SciTech Connect

    Johnston, R.K.; Munns, W.R. Jr.; Short, F.T.; Hahn, S.

    1995-12-31

    An ecological risk assessment was conducted to assess the ecological risk of hazardous waste releases from the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard located on Seavey Island in the Piscataqua River and Great Bay Estuary, New Hampshire and Maine. Problem formulation suggested that certain areas in the lower estuary had the highest potential for impact, particularly depositional areas where fine-grained sediment particles accumulate. Lead, mercury, copper, zinc, nickel, arsenic, and to a lesser degree PCBs, PAHs, silver and cadmium were identified as contaminants of concern based on their spatial distribution in the estuary, hazard quotient screening levels for sediments and surface water, links to primary sources, and releases of contaminants and ecological damage from Shipyard Solid Waste Management Units. Ecological risk characterization was conducted for exposure pathways and receptors using measurement endpoints to assess risks to pelagic species, epibenthic species, benthic community, salt marsh community, eelgrass community, herbivorous waterfowl, avian predators, and trophic transfer of contaminants through the food chain. The results suggested that ecological risk was related to the loss of habitat from direct disposal of hazardous material in tidal flats, and heavy metal exposure and potential impact on ecological receptors associated with benthic, epibenthic, saltmarsh, and eelgrass habitats located in depositional areas around Seavey Island.

  17. Primer for evaluating ecological risk at petroleum release sites.

    PubMed

    Claff, R

    1999-02-01

    Increasingly, risk-based approaches are being used to guide decision making at sites such as service stations and petroleum product terminals, where petroleum products have been inadvertently released to the soil. For example, the API Decision Support System software, DSS, evaluates site human health risk along six different routes of exposure. The American Society for Testing and Materials' Risk-Based Corrective Action (RBCA) standard, ASTM 1739, establishes a tiered framework for evaluating petroleum release sites on the basis of human health risk. Though much of the risk assessment focus has been on human health risk, regulatory agencies recognize that protection of human health may not fully protect the environment; and EPA has developed guidance on identifying ecological resources to be protected through risk-based decision making. Not every service station or petroleum product terminal site warrants a detailed ecological risk assessment. In some cases, a simple preliminary assessment will provide sufficient information for decision making. Accordingly, the American Petroleum Institute (API) is developing a primer for site managers, to assist them in conducting this preliminary assessment, and in deciding whether more detailed ecological risk assessments are warranted. The primer assists the site manager in identifying relevant ecological receptors and habitats, in identifying chemicals and exposure pathways of concern, in developing a conceptual model of the site to guide subsequent actions, and in identifying conditions that may warrant immediate response. PMID:10189585

  18. Ecological risk assessments for watersheds: Lessons learned from case studies

    SciTech Connect

    Marcy, S.K.M.

    1994-12-31

    The USEPA Office of Water and Risk Assessment Forum are co-sponsoring the development of watershed level ecological risk assessments in Big Darby Creek, OH, Clinch River, VA, Middle Platte River Wetlands, NE, Snake River, ID, and Waquoit Bay Estuary, MA. The case studies are testing the Agency`s Framework for Ecological Risk Assessment at a watershed scale for multiple stressors. During case study development much has been learned about how to apply and modify the principles in the Framework to landscape scale risk assessments. Insights include how to select appropriate assessment endpoints to drive the risk assessment, how to effectively increase involvement by risk management teams, and provide decision opportunities for managers throughout development. The case studies demonstrate diverse ways to conduct watershed risk assessments, and illustrate the importance of multiple risk hypotheses in conceptual models addressing the combined and relative risk of chemical, physical and biological stressors. Issues the case studies highlight include the need for a process to determine when watershed risk assessments are appropriate and at what level of complexity they should be performed, how to increase the use of the ecological risk assessments in management decision-making and how to determine the best risk reduction strategy. An update on the watershed case studies will be provided and the insights and issues stated above, discussed.

  19. Ecosystem services as assessment endpoints for ecological risk assessment.

    PubMed

    Munns, Wayne R; Rea, Anne W; Suter, Glenn W; Martin, Lawrence; Blake-Hedges, Lynne; Crk, Tanja; Davis, Christine; Ferreira, Gina; Jordan, Steve; Mahoney, Michele; Barron, Mace G

    2016-07-01

    Ecosystem services are defined as the outputs of ecological processes that contribute to human welfare or have the potential to do so in the future. Those outputs include food and drinking water, clean air and water, and pollinated crops. The need to protect the services provided by natural systems has been recognized previously, but ecosystem services have not been formally incorporated into ecological risk assessment practice in a general way in the United States. Endpoints used conventionally in ecological risk assessment, derived directly from the state of the ecosystem (e.g., biophysical structure and processes), and endpoints based on ecosystem services serve different purposes. Conventional endpoints are ecologically important and susceptible entities and attributes that are protected under US laws and regulations. Ecosystem service endpoints are a conceptual and analytical step beyond conventional endpoints and are intended to complement conventional endpoints by linking and extending endpoints to goods and services with more obvious benefit to humans. Conventional endpoints can be related to ecosystem services even when the latter are not considered explicitly during problem formulation. To advance the use of ecosystem service endpoints in ecological risk assessment, the US Environmental Protection Agency's Risk Assessment Forum has added generic endpoints based on ecosystem services (ES-GEAE) to the original 2003 set of generic ecological assessment endpoints (GEAEs). Like conventional GEAEs, ES-GEAEs are defined by an entity and an attribute. Also like conventional GEAEs, ES-GEAEs are broadly described and will need to be made specific when applied to individual assessments. Adoption of ecosystem services as a type of assessment endpoint is intended to improve the value of risk assessment to environmental decision making, linking ecological risk to human well-being, and providing an improved means of communicating those risks. Integr Environ Assess Manag

  20. An integrated framework for health and ecological risk assessment

    SciTech Connect

    Suter, Glenn W. . E-mail: suter.glenn@epa.gov; Vermeire, Theo; Munns, Wayne R.; Sekizawa, Jun

    2005-09-01

    The worldHealth Organization's (WHO's) International Program for Chemical Safety has developed a framework for performing risk assessments that integrate the assessment of risks to human health and risks to nonhuman organisms and ecosystems. The WHO's framework recognizes that stakeholders and risk managers have their own processes that are parallel to the scientific process of risk assessment and may interact with the risk assessment at various points, depending on the context. Integration of health and ecology provides consistent expressions of assessment results, incorporates the interdependence of humans and the environment, uses sentinel organisms, and improves the efficiency and quality of assessments relative to independent human health and ecological risk assessments. The advantage of the framework to toxicologists lies in the opportunity to use understanding of toxicokinetics and toxicodynamics to inform the integrated assessment of all exposed species.

  1. [Ecological risks of reclaimed water irrigation: a review].

    PubMed

    Chen, Wei-Ping; Zhang, Wei-Ling; Pan, Neng; Jiao, Wen-Tao

    2012-12-01

    Wastewater reclamation and reuse have become an important approach to alleviate the water crisis in China because of its social, economic and ecological benefits. The irrigation on urban green space and farmland is the primary utilization of reclaimed water, which has been practiced world widely. To understand the risk of reclaimed water irrigation, we summarized and reviewed the publications associated with typical pollutants in reclaimed water including salts, nitrogen, heavy metals, emerging pollutants and pathogens, systematically analyzed the ecological risk posed by reclaimed water irrigation regarding plant growth, groundwater quality and public health. Studies showed that salt and salt ions were the major risk sources of reclaimed water irrigation, spreading disease was another potential risk of using reclaimed water, and emerging pollutants was the hot topic in researches of ecological risk. Based on overseas experiences, risk control measures on reclaimed water irrigation in urban green space and farmland were proposed. Five recommendations were given to promote the safe use of reclaimed water irrigation including (1) strengthen long-term in situ monitoring, (2) promote the modeling studies, (3) build up the connections of reclaimed water quality, irrigation management and ecological risk, (4) evaluate the soil bearing capacity of reclaimed water irrigation, (5) and establish risk management system of reclaimed water reuse. PMID:23379125

  2. Back-end Science Model Integration for Ecological Risk Assessment

    EPA Science Inventory

    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) relies on a number of ecological risk assessment models that have been developed over 30-plus years of regulating pesticide exposure and risks under Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA) and the Endangered Spe...

  3. Back-end Science Model Integration for Ecological Risk Assessment.

    EPA Science Inventory

    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) relies on a number of ecological risk assessment models that have been developed over 30-plus years of regulating pesticide exposure and risks under Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA) and the Endangered Spe...

  4. Ecological risks of DOE`s programmatic environmental restoration alternatives

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1994-06-01

    This report assesses the ecological risks of the Department of Energy`s (DOE) Environmental Restoration Program. The assessment is programmatic in that it is directed at evaluation of the broad programmatic alternatives outlined in the DOE Implementation Plan. It attempts to (1) characterize the ecological resources present on DOE facilities, (2) describe the occurrence and importance of ecologically significant contamination at major DOE facilities, (3) evaluate the adverse ecological impacts of habitat disturbance caused by remedial activities, and (4) determine whether one or another of the programmatic alternatives is clearly ecologically superior to the others. The assessment focuses on six representative facilities: the Idaho National Engineering Laboratory (INEL); the Fernald Environmental Management Project (FEMP); the Oak Ridge Reservation (ORR), including the Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), Y-12 plant, and K-25 plant; the Rocky Flats Plant; the Hanford Reservation; and the Portsmouth Gaseous Diffusion Plant.

  5. The role of ecological models in linking ecological risk assessment to ecosystem services in agroecosystems.

    PubMed

    Galic, Nika; Schmolke, Amelie; Forbes, Valery; Baveco, Hans; van den Brink, Paul J

    2012-01-15

    Agricultural practices are essential for sustaining the human population, but at the same time they can directly disrupt ecosystem functioning. Ecological risk assessment (ERA) aims to estimate possible adverse effects of human activities on ecosystems and their parts. Current ERA practices, however, incorporate very little ecology and base the risk estimates on the results of standard tests with several standard species. The main obstacles for a more ecologically relevant ERA are the lack of clear protection goals and the inherent complexity of ecosystems that is hard to approach empirically. In this paper, we argue that the ecosystem services framework offers an opportunity to define clear and ecologically relevant protection goals. At the same time, ecological models provide the tools to address ecological complexity to the degree needed to link measurement endpoints and ecosystem services, and to quantify service provision and possible adverse effects from human activities. We focus on the ecosystem services relevant for agroecosystem functioning, including pollination, biocontrol and eutrophication effects and present modeling studies relevant for quantification of each of the services. The challenges of the ecosystem services approach are discussed as well as the limitations of ecological models in the context of ERA. A broad, multi-stakeholder dialog is necessary to aid the definition of protection goals in terms of services delivered by ecosystems and their parts. The need to capture spatio-temporal dynamics and possible interactions among service providers pose challenges for ecological models as a basis for decision making. However, we argue that both fields are advancing quickly and can prove very valuable in achieving more ecologically relevant ERA. PMID:21802704

  6. How Do the Chinese Perceive Ecological Risk in Freshwater Lakes?

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Lei; Han, Yuting; Zhou, Ying; Gutscher, Heinz; Bi, Jun

    2013-01-01

    In this study, we explore the potential contributions of a risk perception framework in understanding public perceptions of unstable ecosystems. In doing so, we characterize one type of common ecological risk– harmful algal blooms (HABs)–in four of the most seriously eutrophicated freshwater lakes in China. These lakes include Chaohu, Dianchi, Hongze, and Taihu, where a total of 2000 residents living near these sites were interviewed. Regional discrepancies existed in the pilot study regarding public perceptions of ecological changes and public concerns for ecological risk. Comparing HABs and other kinds of risks (earthquake, nuclear, and public traffic) through the psychometric paradigm method, Knowledge, Effect, and Trust were three key factors formulating the risk perception model. The results indicated that Knowledge and risk tolerance levels had significant negative correlations in the higher economic situation while correlations in the lower economic situation were significantly positive. Effect and risk tolerance levels had significant negative correlations in the high and middle education situation while correlations in the low education situation were close to zero or insignificant. For residents from Taihu with comparatively higher economic and educational levels, more investment in risk prevention measures and stronger policies are needed. And for residents from Hongze and Dianchi with comparatively low economic and educational levels, improvement of the government’s credibility (Trust) was the most important factor of risk tolerance, so efforts to eliminate ecological problems with the stepwise development of economic and educational levels should be implemented and gradually strengthened. In turn, this could prevent public discontent and ensure support for ecological protection policies. PMID:23671602

  7. [Research progress on index system of regional ecological risk assessment].

    PubMed

    Meng, Ji-Jun; Zhao, Chun-Hong

    2009-04-01

    Regional ecological risk assessment (RERA) covers the assessments of multiple risk sources, receptors, and endpoints, while the selection of assessment indices is quite complicated, being a hotspot in regional environment management research. Domestic and international researches on RERA revealed that three processes in RERA are of vital, i.e., risk probability assessment measured by risk probability index, status and value assessment of ecosystem at regional scale indicated by ecological index, and vulnerability assessment of each ecosystem in a region under risk measured by vulnerability index. The main problems in the establishment of RERA index system are the strong subjectivity and poor comparability, and thus, the index system should be set up in the three key processes under the principles of objectivity, integration, hierarchy, and comparability. Due to the fact that the status and value assessment of ecosystem is most complicated, the index system should be formulated by compulsory and optional components to increase the comparability of RERA results between regions. PMID:19565785

  8. HUMAN AND ECOLOGICAL RISK ASSESSMENT: ASSOCIATIONS AMONG HUMAN HEALTH, ECOLOGICAL AND ENVIRONMENTAL MONITORING DATA

    EPA Science Inventory

    While all life is affected by the quality of the environment, environmental risk factors for human and wildlife health are typically assessed using independent processes that are dissimilar in scale and scope. However, the integrated analysis of human, ecological, and environmen...

  9. HUMAN AND ECOLOGICAL RISK ASSESSMENT: ASSOCIATIONS AMONG HUMAN HEALTH, ECOLOGICAL, AND ENVIRONMENTAL MONITORING

    EPA Science Inventory

    While all life is affected by the quality of the environment, environmental risk factors for human and wildlife health are typically assessed using independent processes that are dissimilar in scale and scope. However, the integrated analysis of human, ecological, and environmen...

  10. HUMAN AND ECOLOGICAL RISK: CORRELATIONS AMONG HUMAN HEALTH, ECOLOGICAL AND ENVIRONMENTAL MONITORING DATA

    EPA Science Inventory

    While all life is affected by the quality of the environment, environmental risk factors for human and wildlife health are typically assessed using independent processes that are dissimilar in scale and scope. However, the integrated analysis of human, ecological, and environmen...

  11. HUMAN AND ECOLOGICAL RISK ASSESSMENT: ASSOCIATIONS AMONH HUMAN HEALTH, ECOLOGICAL AND ENVIRONMENTAL MONITORING DATA

    EPA Science Inventory

    While all life is affected by the quality of the environment, environmental risk factors for human and wildlife health are typically assessed using independent processes that are dissimilar in scale and scope. However, the integrated analysis of human, ecological, and environmen...

  12. Toward an Ecological Risk Assessment Framework for Special Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Trepanier, Nathalie Sonia

    2005-01-01

    This paper suggests a new framework for conducting research in the field of special education. This framework is inspired by the ecological risk assessment frameworks of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (1995) and G.W. Suter (1993), which are primarily used in ecotoxicology and environmental toxicology. The methodology used to develop the…

  13. A REGIONAL APPROACH TO ECOLOGICAL RISK ASSESSMENTS FOR PESTICIDE REGISTRATION

    EPA Science Inventory

    Currently, most ecological risk assessments for EPA pesticide registration are evaluated at the national scale using a predetermined list of test species (OPPTS 850.4225 and 8504250) as a model system with little regard to where and how the product will ultimately be used. The a...

  14. U.S. EPA's Ecological Risk Assessment Support Center (ERASC)

    EPA Science Inventory

    Background

    The ERASC provides technical information and addresses scientific questions of concern or interest on topics relevant to ecological risk assessment at hazardous waste sites for EPA's Office of Solid Waste and Emergency Response (A REGIONAL APPROACH TO ECOLOGICAL RISK ASSESSMENTS FOR PRODUCT REGISTRATION

    EPA Science Inventory

    Currently, most ecological risk assessments for EPA registration are evaluated at the national scale using a predetermined list of species with little regard to where the product will ultimately be used. The assumption is that the test species presently used are representative a...

  15. APPLICATION OF METABOLOMICS FOR IMPROVING ECOLOGICAL EXPOSURE AND RISK ASSESSMENTS

    EPA Science Inventory

    We have developed a research program in metabolomics that involves numerous partners across EPA, other federal labs, academia, and the private sector. A primary goal is to develop metabolite-based markers that can be used by EPA in ecological exposure and risk assessments. We are...

  16. ISSUES IN SEDIMENT TOXICITY AND ECOLOGICAL RISK ASSESSMENT

    EPA Science Inventory

    This paper is based on a facilitated Workshop and Roundtable Discussion of key issues in sediment toxicology and ecological risk assessment (ERA) as applied to sediments that was held at the Conference on Dredged Material Management: Options and Environmental Considerations. The ...

  17. Probability Surveys, Conditional Probability, and Ecological Risk Assessment

    EPA Science Inventory

    We show that probability-based environmental resource monitoring programs, such as the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (U.S. EPA) Environmental Monitoring and Assessment Program, and conditional probability analysis can serve as a basis for estimating ecological risk over ...

  18. FINAL REPORT. DETERMINING SIGNIFICANT ENDPOINTS FOR ECOLOGICAL RISK ANALYSES

    EPA Science Inventory

    This research examines the ecological significance of radioactive and heavy metal contamination. Risks to non-human biota at higher levels of biological organization are assessed by using novel biological dosimeters in controlled, manipulative, dose/effects experiments, and by co...

  19. Toward an Ecological Risk Assessment Framework for Special Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Trepanier, Nathalie S.

    2005-01-01

    We suggest a new framework for conducting research in the field of special education. This framework is inspired by the ecological risk assessment frameworks of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (1995) and G.W. Suter (1993), which are primarily used in ecotoxicology and environmental toxicology. The framework includes three phases by which…

  1. Wetlands in the ecological risk assessment process: A case study

    SciTech Connect

    Saban, L.B.

    1995-12-31

    In the past few years, the ecological risk assessment (ERA) process as outlined in the EPA document Framework for Ecological Risk Assessment has been successfully used to assess risk to birds, mammals, aquatic organisms, plants, and to a limited extent, reptiles and amphibians, but has only recently been applied to wetlands. Due to the unique role that wetlands play in the environment as sources and sinks for nutrients, sediment retention, high productivity, habitat transition zones, aquifer recharge, high diversity and richness of biota, and aesthetic value, it is important to consider the entire wetland system in the ERA process. Because nearly sixty percent of Superfund sites are located in or near wetlands, a comprehensive approach is proposed to evaluate potential risks to flora and fauna in these wetland environments. Using the delineation and functional assessment techniques developed by wetland scientists, an estuarine wetland in western Washington was evaluated within the scope of ERA`S. The ERA was applied to the wetland using functional assessments as an integral part of the problem formulation phase of the risk assessment process. Applying the ERA process to wetlands enhances the functional assessment process and helps to define critical elements to evaluate within wetland systems. The results of this risk assessment help to define patches within a landscape that are potentially at risk and how to prioritize remedial actions.

  2. Guide for developing conceptual models for ecological risk assessments

    SciTech Connect

    Suter, G.W., II

    1996-05-01

    Ecological conceptual models are the result of the problem formulation phase of an ecological risk assessment, which is an important component of the Remedial Investigation process. They present hypotheses of how the site contaminants might affect the site ecology. The contaminant sources, routes, media, routes, and endpoint receptors are presented in the form of a flow chart. This guide is for preparing the conceptual models; use of this guide will standardize the models so that they will be of high quality, useful to the assessment process, and sufficiently consistent so that connections between sources of exposure and receptors can be extended across operable units (OU). Generic conceptual models are presented for source, aquatic integrator, groundwater integrator, and terrestrial OUs.

  3. Ecological risk assessment of water environment for Luanhe River Basin based on relative risk model.

    PubMed

    Liu, Jingling; Chen, Qiuying; Li, Yongli

    2010-11-01

    The relative risk model (RRM) was applied in regional ecological risk assessments successfully. In this study, the RRM was developed through increasing the data of risk source and introducing the source-stressor-habitat exposure filter (SSH), the endpoint-habitat exposure filter (EH) and the stressor-endpoint effect filter (SE) to reflect the meaning of exposure and effect more explicit. Water environment which include water quality, water quantity and aquatic ecosystems was selected as the ecological risk assessment endpoints. The Luanhe River Basin located in the North China was selected as model case. The results showed that there were three low risk regions, one medium risk region and two high risk regions in the Luanhe River Basin. The results also indicated habitat destruction was the largest stressor with the risk scores as high as 11.87 for the Luanhe water environment, the second was oxygen consuming organic pollutants (9.28) and the third was nutrients (7.78). So these three stressors were the main influencing factors of the ecological pressure in the study area. Furthermore, animal husbandry was the biggest source with the risk scores as high as 20.38, the second was domestic sewage (14.00), and the third was polluting industry (9.96). For habitats, waters and farmland were enduring the bigger pressure and should be taken considerable attention. Water deterioration and ecological service values damaged were facing the biggest risk pressure, and secondly was biodiversity decreased and landscape fragmentation. PMID:20683654

  4. Evaluating Ecological Risk to Invertebrate Receptors from PAHs in Sediments at Hazardous Waste Sites (External Review Draft)

    EPA Science Inventory

    In March 2004, ORD's Ecological Risk Assessment Support Center (ERASC) received a request from the Ecological Risk Assessment Forum (ERAF) relating to the evaluation of ecological risk to vertebrate and benthic invertebrate receptors from polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon compounds...

  5. Baseline ecological risk assessment Salmon Site, Lamar County, Mississippi

    SciTech Connect

    1995-04-01

    The Salmon Site (SS), formerly the Tatum Dome Test Site, located in Mississippi was the site of two nuclear and two gas explosion tests conducted between 1964 and 1970. A consequence of these testing activities is that radionuclides were released into the salt dome, where they are presently contained. During reentry drilling and other site activities, incidental liquid and solid wastes that contained radioactivity were generated, resulting in some soil, ground water and equipment contamination. As part of the remedial investigation effort, a Baseline Ecological Risk Assessment was conducted at the SS. The purpose is to gauge ecological and other environmental impacts attributable to past activities at the former test facility. The results of this facility-specific baseline risk assessment are presented in this document.

  6. Non-Dioxin-Like PCBs: Effects and Consideration in Ecological Risk Assessments

    EPA Science Inventory

    This response document was written in response to a request received by ORD’s Ecological Risk Assessment Support Center (ERASC) from the Ecological Risk Assessment Forum (ERAF). The purpose of this report is to o provide ecological risk assessors with a concise summary of the sta...

  7. Overview of DOD activities in ecological risk assessment.

    PubMed

    Whaley, J E; Porter, R C

    1997-11-01

    Under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act, Congress has mandated that all designated hazardous waste sites will be remediated to protect human health and the environment. This law is the driving force behind the Department of Defense (DOD) ecological risk assessment (ERA) program. Ecological risk assessments are currently underway at many DOD sites with budgets ranging from five thousand to ten million dollars. However, with the advent of downsizing government and shrinking funds, efforts are being made within DOD to better refine these assessments. Two DOD work groups function to develop guidance for and assist project managers with the ERA process. These groups are the Army Biological Technical Assistance Group chaired by the Army Environmental Center and the Tri-Service Ecological Risk Assessment Work Group (ERWG) chartered by the Tri-Service Environmental Support Centers Coordinating Committee. Membership in the Tri-Service ERWG includes all facets of DOD. In the research arena, the Fate & Effects Research and Development Program is one of four primary thrust areas under the Army's Environmental Quality Technology Program "Clean Up" pillar. This program is currently being executed by three laboratories, the Waterways Experiment Station, Vicksburg, MS, the Army Center for Health Promotion and Preventive Medicine, Aberdeen Proving Ground, MD, and the Army Center for Environmental Health Research (Provisional), Ft. Detrick, MD. The goal of this program is to provide tools to improve environmental risk assessments, both human and ecological. The research is geared toward addressing user requirements and is defined by the Fate and Effects Research Program. PMID:9433659

  8. Comprehensive methodology for ecological risk assessment of contaminated soils

    SciTech Connect

    Kuperman, R.G.

    1994-12-31

    Development of a comprehensive methodology for ecological risk assessment and monitoring of contaminated soils is essential to assess the impacts of environmental contaminants on soil community and biologically-mediated processes in soil. The proposed four-step plan involves (1) a thorough survey of the soil community to establish biodiversity and a base-line community structure, (2) toxicity trials on indicator species and whole soil invertebrate communities, (3) laboratory and field tests on indicator processes and (4) the use of statistical and simulation models to ascertain changes in the soil ecosystems. This methodology was used in portions of the US Army`s Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland as part of an ecological risk assessment. Previous soil analyses showed extensive surface soil contamination with metals, nitrate and PCBs. Preliminary results from field surveys of soil invertebrate communities showed significant reductions in total abundance of animals, reductions in the abundance of several taxonomic and functional groups of soil invertebrates, and changes in the activity of epigeic arthropods in contaminated areas when compared with the local ``background`` area. Laboratory tests also demonstrated that microbial activity and success of egg hatching of ground beetle Harpalus pensylvanicus were reduced in contaminated soils. These results suggest that impacts to soil ecosystems should be explicitly considered in ecological risk assessment. The proposed comprehensive methodology appears to offer an efficient and potentially cost saving tool for remedial investigations of contaminated sites.

  9. Case study of ecological risk assessment at an Alaska airport

    SciTech Connect

    Peterson, J.A.; Foster, T.L.; Zieber, P.A.

    1995-12-31

    An ecological risk assessment was conducted for 10 sites at a remote location that has unique biological resources. Chemicals of concern included petroleum, metals, polychlorinated biphenyls, and dioxins and furans. Risks to 23 species of mammals and birds were evaluated by using toxicity reference values and a hazard quotient approach analogous to the US Environmental Protection Agency`s (USEPA`s) approach for evaluating noncarcinogenic human health effects. Risks to fish and aquatic invertebrates were evaluated using risk-based concentrations for water analogous to the USEPA`s water quality criteria. Risks to plants were evaluated using risk-based concentrations for soil. Toxicity reference values and risk-based concentrations were developed by applying uncertainty factors to the highest quality toxicity data available in the literature. Intake rates for wildlife were obtained from the USEPA`s wildlife exposure factors handbook, or were estimated using allometric equations. The sizes of wildlife home ranges were compared with the size of each site to determine species- and site-specific exposure frequencies. Indicator chemicals were selected to represent the chemical and toxicological characteristics of petroleum fractions. The species most often at risk were found to be fish and aquatic invertebrates, as well as small-bodied, ground-dwelling or ground-feeding wildlife.

  10. Ecological predictors of extinction risks of endemic mammals of China.

    PubMed

    Chen, You-Hua

    2014-07-01

    In this brief report, we analyzed ecological correlates of risk of extinction for mammals endemic to China using phylogenetic eigenvector methods to control for the effect of phylogenetic inertia. Extinction risks were based on the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List and ecological explanatory attributes that include range size and climatic variables. When the effect of phylogenetic inertia were controlled, climate became the best predictor for quantifying and evaluating extinction risks of endemic mammals in China, accounting for 13% of the total variation. Range size seems to play a trivial role, explaining ~1% of total variation; however, when non-phylogenetic variation partitioning analysis was done, the role of range size then explained 7.4% of total variation. Consequently, phylogenetic inertia plays a substantial role in increasing the explanatory power of range size on the extinction risks of mammals endemic to China. Limitations of the present study are discussed, with a focus on under-represented sampling of endemic mammalian species. PMID:25017756

  11. Ecological risk assessment of a decommissioned military base

    SciTech Connect

    Starodub, M.E.; Feniak, N.A.; Willes, R.F.; Moore, C.E.; Mucklow, L.; Marshall, L.

    1995-12-31

    The ecological health risks to selected terrestrial animals at a decommissioned military base in Atlantic Canada have been assessed. Areas of the base varied in terms of terrain, ground cover, as well as types and extent of contamination, dependent on former uses of the sites. Analysis of surficial soils, sediments, water and fish tissue at the base indicated contamination by metals, PCBs, and various petroleum products and their constituents. Identification of chemicals of concern was based on these analyses, in conjunction with detailed chemical selection procedures. Exposures to chemicals of concern for ecological receptors were assessed in one of two ways. The exposures of moose, snowshoe hare and meadow vole were estimated in areas with surficial contamination, based on expected exposures to environmental media via oral inhalation, and dermal routes of exposure. For two top predators (mink and bald-headed eagle), exposures to bioaccumulative chemicals (cadmium, lead, mercury and PCBs) via transport through the aquatic and/or terrestrial foodchain were estimated. A toxicological assessment was conducted for the chemicals of concern, to yield exposure limits derived from governmental regulations or developed based on no-observed-effect-levels (NOELs) reported in scientifically sound toxicological assays in relevant species. The risk evaluation of each chemical of concern was conducted as a comparison of the estimated total exposures to the exposure limits derived for the selected ecological receptors.

  12. Combined ecological risks of nitrogen and phosphorus in European freshwaters.

    PubMed

    Azevedo, Ligia B; van Zelm, Rosalie; Leuven, Rob S E W; Hendriks, A Jan; Huijbregts, Mark A J

    2015-05-01

    Eutrophication is a key water quality issue triggered by increasing nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) levels and potentially posing risks to freshwater biota. We predicted the probability that an invertebrate species within a community assemblage becomes absent due to nutrient stress as the ecological risk (ER) for European lakes and streams subjected to N and P pollution from 1985 to 2011. The ER was calculated as a function of species-specific tolerances to NO3(-) and total P concentrations and water quality monitoring data. Lake and stream ER averaged 50% in the last monitored year (i.e. 2011) and we observed a decrease by 22% and 38% in lake and stream ER (respectively) of river basins since 1985. Additionally, the ER from N stress surpassed that of P in both freshwater systems. The ER can be applied to identify river basins most subjected to eutrophication risks and the main drivers of impacts. PMID:25700335

  13. Guidance for treatment of variability and uncertainty in ecological risk assessments of contaminated sites

    SciTech Connect

    1998-06-01

    Uncertainty is a seemingly simple concept that has caused great confusion and conflict in the field of risk assessment. This report offers guidance for the analysis and presentation of variability and uncertainty in ecological risk assessments, an important issue in the remedial investigation and feasibility study processes. This report discusses concepts of probability in terms of variance and uncertainty, describes how these concepts differ in ecological risk assessment from human health risk assessment, and describes probabilistic aspects of specific ecological risk assessment techniques. The report ends with 17 points to consider in performing an uncertainty analysis for an ecological risk assessment of a contaminated site.

  14. Soil-ecological risks for soil degradation estimation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Trifonova, Tatiana; Shirkin, Leonid; Kust, German; Andreeva, Olga

    2016-04-01

    Soil degradation includes the processes of soil properties and quality worsening, primarily from the point of view of their productivity and decrease of ecosystem services quality. Complete soil cover destruction and/or functioning termination of soil forms of organic life are considered as extreme stages of soil degradation, and for the fragile ecosystems they are normally considered in the network of their desertification, land degradation and droughts /DLDD/ concept. Block-model of ecotoxic effects, generating soil and ecosystem degradation, has been developed as a result of the long-term field and laboratory research of sod-podzol soils, contaminated with waste, containing heavy metals. The model highlights soil degradation mechanisms, caused by direct and indirect impact of ecotoxicants on "phytocenosis- soil" system and their combination, frequently causing synergistic effect. The sequence of occurring changes here can be formalized as a theory of change (succession of interrelated events). Several stages are distinguished here - from heavy metals leaching (releasing) in waste and their migration downward the soil profile to phytoproductivity decrease and certain phytocenosis composition changes. Phytoproductivity decrease leads to the reduction of cellulose content introduced into the soil. The described feedback mechanism acts as a factor of sod-podzolic soil self-purification and stability. It has been shown, that using phytomass productivity index, integrally reflecting the worsening of soil properties complex, it is possible to solve the problems dealing with the dose-reflecting reactions creation and determination of critical levels of load for phytocenosis and corresponding soil-ecological risks. Soil-ecological risk in "phytocenosis- soil" system means probable negative changes and the loss of some ecosystem functions during the transformation process of dead organic substance energy for the new biomass composition. Soil-ecological risks estimation is

  15. Sensitivity of risk estimates to wildlife bioaccumulation factors in ecological risk assessment

    SciTech Connect

    Karustis, C.G.; Brewer, R.A.

    1995-12-31

    The concept of conservatism in risk assessment is well established. However, overly conservative assumptions may result in risk estimates that incorrectly predict remediation goals. Therefore, realistic assumptions should be applied in risk assessment whenever possible. A sensitivity analysis was performed on conservative (i.e. bioaccumulation factor = 1) and scientifically-derived wildlife bioaccumulation factors (BAFs) utilized to calculate risks during a terrestrial ecological risk assessment (ERA). In the first approach, 100% bioaccumulation of contaminants was assumed to estimate the transfer of contaminants through the terrestrial food chain. In the second approach, scientifically-derived BAFs were selected from the literature. For one of the measurement species selected, total risks calculated during the first approach were higher than those calculated during the second approach by two orders of magnitude. However, potential risks due to individual contaminants were not necessarily higher using the conservative approach. Potential risk due to contaminants with low actual bioaccumulation were exaggerated while potential risks due to contaminants with greater than 100% bioaccumulation were underestimated. Therefore, the use of a default of 100% bioaccumulation (BAF = 1) for all contaminants encountered during an ERA could result in cases where contaminants are incorrectly identified as risk drivers, and the calculation of incorrect ecological risk-based cleanup goals. The authors suggest using site-specific or literature-derived BAFs whenever possible and realistic BAF estimates, based upon factors such as log K{sub ow}, when BAFs are unavailable.

  16. Ecological risk assessment of a wetland exposed to boron

    SciTech Connect

    Powell, R.L.; Kimerle, R.A.; Coyle, G.T.; Best, G.R.

    1997-11-01

    A wetland located in the southeastern portion of the United States was the site of an investigation to determine the potential ecological risk of elevated boron concentrations to the flora and fauna living in the wetland. The conceptual model identified the vegetation as the primary receptor of concern, and thus the vegetation is the focus of this article. Samples of surface water, sediments, and selected vegetation were collected from the study wetland and several nearby reference sites and were analyzed for boron. Concentrations of boron in all three media exceeded reference site concentrations. Boron concentrations were highest near the suspected source but decreased almost to reference-site concentrations near the outer perimeter of the wetland. Some plants appeared stressed with yellowing and necrotic leaves; however, a correlation between tissue boron concentrations and the plant`s visual appearance was not apparent for all species studied. Modeling of the fate of boron indicated that the wetland has likely been at a steady state for many years and that boron concentrations were not expected to increase. It was concluded that no observable adverse ecological impacts to the vegetation could be attributed to boron, nor is it likely that the boron poses an unacceptable risk to the surrounding areas.

  17. Ecological Risk Model of Childhood Obesity in Chinese Immigrant Children

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Nan; Cheah, Charissa S. L.

    2015-01-01

    Chinese Americans are the largest and fastest growing Asian American subgroup, increasing about one-third during the 2000s. Despite the slender Asian stereotype, nearly one-third of 6-to-11 years old Chinese American children were found to be overweight (above the 85th percentile in BMI). Importantly, unique and severe health risks are associated with being overweight/obese in Chinese. Unfortunately, Chinese immigrant children have been neglected in the literature on obesity. This review aimed to identify factors at various levels of the ecological model that may place Chinese immigrant children at risk for being overweight/obese in the U.S. Key contextual factors at the micro-, meso-, exo-, macro- and chronosystem were identified guided by Bronfenbrenner’s ecological systems theory. The corresponding mediating and moderating processes among the factors were also reviewed and proposed. By presenting a conceptual framework and relevant research, this review can provide a basic framework for directing future interdisciplinary research in seeking solutions to childhood obesity within this understudied population. PMID:25728887

  18. Food-chain contamination evaluations in ecological risk assessments

    SciTech Connect

    Linder, G.

    1994-12-31

    Food-chain models have become increasingly important within the ecological risk assessment process. This is the case particularly when acute effects are not readily apparent, or the contaminants of concern are not readily detoxified, have a high likelihood for partitioning into lipids, or have specific target organs or tissues that may increase their significance in evaluating their potential adverse effects. An overview of food-chain models -- conceptual, theoretical, and empirical -- will be considered through a series of papers that will focus on their application within the ecological risk assessment process. Whether a food-chain evaluation is being developed to address relatively simple questions related to chronic effects of toxicants on target populations, or whether a more complex food-web model is being developed to address questions related to multiple-trophic level transfers of toxicants, the elements within the food chain contamination evaluation can be generalized to address the mechanisms of toxicant accumulation in individual organisms. This can then be incorporated into more elaborate models that consider these organismal-level processes within the context of a species life-history or community-level responses that may be associated with long-term exposures.

  19. Ecological risk model of childhood obesity in Chinese immigrant children.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Nan; Cheah, Charissa S L

    2015-07-01

    Chinese Americans are the largest and fastest growing Asian American subgroup, increasing about one-third during the 2000s. Despite the slender Asian stereotype, nearly one-third of 6-to-11 year old Chinese American children were found to be overweight (above the 85th percentile in BMI). Importantly, unique and severe health risks are associated with being overweight/obese in Chinese. Unfortunately, Chinese immigrant children have been neglected in the literature on obesity. This review aimed to identify factors at various levels of the ecological model that may place Chinese immigrant children at risk for being overweight/obese in the U.S. Key contextual factors at the micro-, meso-, exo-, macro- and chronosystem were identified guided by Bronfenbrenner's ecological systems theory. The corresponding mediating and moderating processes among the factors were also reviewed and proposed. By presenting a conceptual framework and relevant research, this review can provide a basic framework for directing future interdisciplinary research in seeking solutions to childhood obesity within this understudied population. PMID:25728887

  20. Population-scale assessment endpoints in ecological risk assessment. Part 1: Reflections of stakeholder values.

    PubMed

    Landis, Wayne G

    2006-01-01

    The selection of appropriate assessment endpoints is a basic element of an ecological risk assessment, especially at regional or watershed scales. Because ecological services often are tied to specific species, the risk to populations is a critical endpoint and feature of ecological risk assessments. The first item is a discussion of the replacement of population-level risk assessment with the construct of a population-scale assessment endpoint. Next, the criteria that are currently used for assessment endpoints are reviewed and evaluated for utility in an ecological risk assessment. Following this examination, assessment endpoints from a number of regional-scale ecological risk assessments are compared. The outcome of this evaluation is that population-scale assessment endpoints are important expressions of the valued components of ecological structures. Finally, a few recommendations for the selection of assessment endpoints at a population scale are listed. PMID:16640323

  1. Family ecology and HIV sexual risk behaviors among African American and Puerto Rican adolescent males.

    PubMed

    Voisin, Dexter R

    2002-04-01

    This study examined the relationship between family ecology and HIV sexual risk behavior among African American and Puerto Rican adolescent males. Family, psychosocial, and HIV risk factors were assessed in 171 African American and 187 Puerto Rican adolescent males. Findings suggest that family ecology, culture, and gender role variables may differentially affect HIV sexual risk behaviors within these groups. PMID:15792069

  2. Guidance Manual for Conducting Screening Level Ecological Risk Assessments at the INEL

    SciTech Connect

    R. L. VanHorn; N. L. Hampton; R. C. Morris

    1995-06-01

    This document presents reference material for conducting screening level ecological risk assessments (SLERAs)for the waste area groups (WAGs) at the Idaho National Engineering Laboratory. Included in this document are discussions of the objectives of and processes for conducting SLERAs. The Environmental Protection Agency ecological risk assessment framework is closely followed. Guidance for site characterization, stressor characterization, ecological effects, pathways of contaminant migration, the conceptual site model, assessment endpoints, measurement endpoints, analysis guidance, and risk characterization are included.

  3. Triazine herbcides: Ecological risk assessment in North American surface waters

    SciTech Connect

    Solomon, K.R.

    1996-10-01

    The triazine herbicides are some of the most widely used pesticides in North America. Some are found in surface waters in North America and risks to aquatic ecosystems are a possible concern. This paper presents the results of a comprehensive aquatic ecological risk assessment conducted using probabilistic risk assessment techniques. The assessment of exposure data concentrated on Midwestern us watersheds, the area of greatest triazine use in North America and showed that concentrations of some triazines rarely exceeded 20 {mu}g/L in rivers, streams, and reservoirs. The effects assessment showed that phytoplankton were the most sensitive organisms to triazines followed, in decreasing order of sensitivity, by macrophytes, benthic invertebrates, zooplankton and fish. Distribution analysis of sensitivity to atrazine showed 10th percentile of 37 {mu}g/L for LC50s in all organisms and 5.4 {mu}g/L for LC50s in algae and plants. Simazine showed 10th percentiles of 188 {mu}g/L for LC50s in all organisms and 27 {mu}g/L for LC50s in aquatic plants. Comparisons of the exposure and effects distributions showed low probabilities of exceeding the 10th percentiles of the sensitivity distributions. These results will be discussed in relation to the mechanism of action of these substances and other stressors in the environment.

  4. Biological surveys for ecological and human health risk assessments

    SciTech Connect

    Kathman, R.D.; Reagan, D.P.; Mayfield, J.C.

    1994-12-31

    In the past, human risk assessment was used almost exclusively to determine remedial measures at contaminated waste sites. Recently, however, ecological risk assessments have gained importance in evaluating risk not only to plants and animals, but also to humans through use of measures such as action levels of chemicals in fish tissue. Biological surveys were initiated to assess the mercury concentrations in finfish and shellfish in Lavaca Bay, Texas, part of which has been closed to fish and shellfish consumption since 1988 due to high levels of mercury in these organisms. Samples of particulate organic matter, cordgrass, invertebrates and fish were collected and analyzed for mercury concentrations. In conjunction with the biological surveys, an extensive sediment sampling program was conducted to map mercury concentrations in the sediment throughout the bay. A food web pathways model developed by personnel at National Marine Fisheries Service to assess mercury uptake by aquatic organisms in the bay has enabled the authors to concentrate on specific locations/habitats where mercury concentrations in sediment exceed a critical value. Biological data, along with stable isotope analyses, were used to validate the food web model. The conclusion is that mercury is continuing to enter the food web through the sediment-based food chain and not through the water column. These studies will be used to identify areas which need to be addressed for possible remedial measures, resulting in less uptake and bioaccumulation of mercury, and possible future removal of the fishing ban, thus establishing a direct linkage with human health concerns.

  5. Ecological risk assessment of protected species at a military installation

    SciTech Connect

    Jones, M.L.; Faulk, S.T.; Lukin, C.; Kochel, M.J.

    1995-12-31

    A quantitative ecological risk assessment was performed to determine adverse effects posed by potential chemical contamination for two state-protected mammal species (Skull Valley pocket gopher and spotted bat) known to occur or potentially occur within the confines of the US Army Dugway Proving Ground, Utah. Surface soil and prey items were analyzed for metals and total petroleum hydrocarbons. Concentrations of the target analytes in forage were estimated. Receptor-specific biological parameters and the use of a geographic information system allowed the risk assessment to be tailored to the very different natural histories of the two mammals. A grid of interpolated soil concentrations was created for the entire base using measured soil concentrations and knowledge of site history. Spatially-averaged soil exposure concentrations were calculated using receptor home range areas. Doses were stochastically computed using the probability density functions of soil exposure concentration data, biomagnification factors, and measured prey concentration data. An extensive literature search provided the ecotoxicological benchmark values for the contaminants and hazard quotients were computed. The use of receptor-specific information and a geographic information system for spatial analysis of contaminant concentrations and animal exposure allowed a more precise estimate of risk for these two state-protected mammal species.

  6. State trends in ecological risk assessment and standard setting

    SciTech Connect

    Siegel, M R; Fowler, K M; Bilyard, G R

    1993-02-01

    The purposes of this paper are (1) to identify key states' activities and plans related to setting cleanup standards using the ecological risk assessment process, and (2) to discuss the impacts these actions may have on the US Department of Energy's (DOE's) environmental restoration program. This report is prepared as part of a larger task, the purpose of which is to identify and assess state regulatory trends and legal developments that may impact DOE's environmental restoration program. Results of this task are intended to provide DOE with advance notice of potentially significant regulatory developments so as to enhance DOE's ability to influence these developments and to incorporate possible regulatory and policy changes into its planning process.

  7. Baseline aquatic ecological risk assessment at a zinc smelter site

    SciTech Connect

    Sexton, J.E.; Becker, D.S.; Pastorok, R.A.; Ginn, T.C.; Shields, W.J.

    1995-12-31

    A baseline ecological risk assessment was conducted at the National Zinc smelter site (Bartlesville, Oklahoma). Surface water, sediments, and aquatic biota (whole fish and crayfish) in the North Tributary, West Tributary, Eliza Creek, and Sand Creek were analyzed for selected metals. Water toxicity tests (fathead minnow and cladoceran) and sediment toxicity tests (amphipod and chironomid) were also conducted. Metals in water and sediments in most of the North Tributary, West Tributary, and parts of Eliza Creek were elevated above reference values. Metal distributions in surface water showed no influence of the releases from the Site on Sand Creek, with the exception of a slight elevation of cadmium concentration relative to reference area values. In all cases, concentrations of metals in Sand Creek sediments were similar to or lower than mean reference values. Spatial distribution patterns for metals of concern in surface water were similar to those in sediments. Analyses of dissolved metals in surface water, SEM/AVS ratios for sediments, and tissue residues demonstrated that metals were bioavailable. No adverse effects were detected in the fathead minnow test for any of the site stations. A low level of toxicity was observed in the cladoceran test for several site stations. Little sediment toxicity was observed at the study area based on the amphipod survival endpoint. Sublethal effects were detected when chironomid growth at several site stations was compared with reference conditions. The ecological risks posed by surface water and sediment throughout most of the study area were not significant and bioaccumulation of metals of concern was restricted to a limited portion of the study area close to the Site.

  8. Documentation of the Ecological Risk Assessment Computer Model ECORSK.5

    SciTech Connect

    Anthony F. Gallegos; Gilbert J. Gonzales

    1999-06-01

    The FORTRAN77 ecological risk computer model--ECORSK.5--has been used to estimate the potential toxicity of surficial deposits of radioactive and non-radioactive contaminants to several threatened and endangered (T and E) species at the Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL). These analyses to date include preliminary toxicity estimates for the Mexican spotted owl, the American peregrine falcon, the bald eagle, and the southwestern willow flycatcher. This work has been performed as required for the Record of Decision for the construction of the Dual Axis Radiographic Hydrodynamic Test (DARHT) Facility at LANL as part of the Environmental Impact Statement. The model is dependent on the use of the geographic information system and associated software--ARC/INFO--and has been used in conjunction with LANL's Facility for Information Management and Display (FIMAD) contaminant database. The integration of FIMAD data and ARC/INFO using ECORSK.5 allows the generation of spatial information from a gridded area of potential exposure called an Ecological Exposure Unit. ECORSK.5 was used to simulate exposures using a modified Environmental Protection Agency Quotient Method. The model can handle a large number of contaminants within the home range of T and E species. This integration results in the production of hazard indices which, when compared to risk evaluation criteria, estimate the potential for impact from consumption of contaminants in food and ingestion of soil. The assessment is considered a Tier-2 type of analysis. This report summarizes and documents the ECORSK.5 code, the mathematical models used in the development of ECORSK.5, and the input and other requirements for its operation. Other auxiliary FORTRAN 77 codes used for processing and graphing output from ECORSK.5 are also discussed. The reader may refer to reports cited in the introduction to obtain greater detail on past applications of ECORSK.5 and assumptions used in deriving model parameters.

  9. Risk communication discourse among ecological risk assessment professionals and its implications for communication with nonexperts.

    PubMed

    Hunka, Agnieszka D; Palmqvist, Annemette; Thorbek, Pernille; Forbes, Valery E

    2013-10-01

    Risk communication, especially to the general public and end users of plant protection products, is an important challenge. Currently, much of the risk communication the general public receives is via the popular press, and risk managers face the challenge of presenting their decisions and their scientific basis to the general public in an understandable way. Therefore, we decided to explore the obstacles in risk communication, as done by expert risk assessors and managers. Using the discourse analysis framework and readability tests, we studied perspectives of 3 stakeholder groups-regulators, industry representatives, and academics across Europe. We conducted 30 confidential interviews (10 participants in each group), with part of the interview guide focused on communication of pesticide risk to the general public and the ideas experts in the field of risk assessment and management hold of the public perception of pesticides. We used the key informant approach in recruiting our participants. They were first identified as key stakeholders in ecological risk assessment of pesticides and then sampled by means of a snowball sampling technique. In the analysis, first we identified main motifs (themes) in each group, and then we moved to studying length of the sentences and grammar and to uncovering discourses present in the text data. We also used the Flesch Reading Ease test to determine the comprehension difficulty of transcribed interviews. The test is commonly used as a standard for estimating the readability of technical documents. Our results highlight 3 main obstacles standing in the way of effective communication with wider audiences. First of all, ecological risk assessment as a highly technical procedure uses the specific language of ecological risk assessment, which is also highly specialized and might be difficult to comprehend by nonexperts. Second, the idea of existing "expert-lay discrepancy," a phenomenon described in risk perception studies is visibly

  10. ECOLOGICAL RISK ASSESSMENT IN THE CONTEXT OF GLOBAL CLIMATE CHANGE

    PubMed Central

    Landis, Wayne G; Durda, Judi L; Brooks, Marjorie L; Chapman, Peter M; Menzie, Charles A; Stahl, Ralph G; Stauber, Jennifer L

    2013-01-01

    Changes to sources, stressors, habitats, and geographic ranges; toxicological effects; end points; and uncertainty estimation require significant changes in the implementation of ecological risk assessment (ERA). Because of the lack of analog systems and circumstances in historically studied sites, there is a likelihood of type III error. As a first step, the authors propose a decision key to aid managers and risk assessors in determining when and to what extent climate change should be incorporated. Next, when global climate change is an important factor, the authors recommend seven critical changes to ERA. First, develop conceptual cause–effect diagrams that consider relevant management decisions as well as appropriate spatial and temporal scales to include both direct and indirect effects of climate change and the stressor of management interest. Second, develop assessment end points that are expressed as ecosystem services. Third, evaluate multiple stressors and nonlinear responses—include the chemicals and the stressors related to climate change. Fourth, estimate how climate change will affect or modify management options as the impacts become manifest. Fifth, consider the direction and rate of change relative to management objectives, recognizing that both positive and negative outcomes can occur. Sixth, determine the major drivers of uncertainty, estimating and bounding stochastic uncertainty spatially, temporally, and progressively. Seventh, plan for adaptive management to account for changing environmental conditions and consequent changes to ecosystem services. Good communication is essential for making risk-related information understandable and useful for managers and stakeholders to implement a successful risk-assessment and decision-making process. Environ. Toxicol. Chem. 2013;32:79–92. © 2012 SETAC PMID:23161373

  11. FIFTH NHEERL SYMPOSIUM FLYER -- INDICATORS IN HEALTH AND ECOLOGICAL RISK ASSESSMENT

    EPA Science Inventory

    Announcement for NHEERL Fifth Symposium - Indicators in Health and Ecological Risk Assessment. The purpose of the symposium is to address assessment of risk to public health or environmental resources which requires competent characterization of stressors and corresponding effec...

  12. Conceptual Framework for Trait-Based Ecological Risk Assessment for Wildlife Populations Exposed to Pesticides

    EPA Science Inventory

    Between screening level risk assessments and complex ecological models, a need exists for practical identification of risk based on general information about species, chemicals, and exposure scenarios. Several studies have identified demographic, biological, and toxicological fa...

  13. FIFTH NHEERL SYMPOSIUM POSTER -- INDICATORS IN HEALTH AND ECOLOGICAL RISK ASSESSMENT

    EPA Science Inventory

    Poster for announcing NHEERL Fifth Symposium - Indicators in Health and Ecological Risk Assessment. The purpose of the symposium is to address assessment of risk to public health or environmental resources which requires competent characterization of stressors and corresponding ...

  14. NEW APPROACHES IN RISK ANALYSIS OF ENVIRONMENTAL STRESSORS TO HUMAN AND ECOLOGICAL SYSTEMS

    EPA Science Inventory

    We explore the application of novel techniques for improving and integrating risk analysis of environmental stressors to human and ecological systems. Environmental protection decisions are guided by risk assessments serving as tools to develop regulatory policy and other relate...

  15. Ecological risk assessment for river sediments contaminated by creosote

    SciTech Connect

    Pastorok, R.A.; Sampson, J.R.; Jacobson, M.A. ); Peek, D.C. )

    1994-12-01

    An ecological risk assessment was conducted for sediments of the lower Willamette River near a wood-treatment (creosote) facility. Both surface ad subsurface sediments near the facility are contaminated by polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs). Limited contamination of sediments by dioxins/furans, chlorinated phenols, and arsenic was also observed. Sediment bioassays based on amphipod (Hyalella azteca) mortality and Microtox[reg sign] (Photobacterium phosphoreum) bioluminescence showed toxicity within approximately 300 ft of the shoreline, with a highly toxic area (i.e., possible acute lethal effects in sedentary benthic species) near a dock used for creosote off-loading. The relatively low concentrations of contaminants measured in crayfish muscle tissue and the absence of serious lesions in livers of large-scale sucker collected near the site suggest that excess risk to mobile species from chronic contamination is low. Cursory observations indicate that acute toxic effects on crayfish may be associated with creosote seeps. There is no evidence of adverse biological effects throughout most of the main channel of the river. Evaluation of sediment chemistry data for PAHs relative to available sediment-quality criteria proposed by the US Environmental Protection Agency supports this conclusion.

  16. EPA APPROACH TO EVALUATION OF INDICATORS FOR ECOLOGICAL RISK ASSESSMENT

    EPA Science Inventory

    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Office of Research and Development (ORD) is continuing research efforts initiated by the Environmental Monitoring and Assessment Program (EMAP) on ecological indicator development. An ORD Ecological Indicators Working Group has been form...

  17. USE OF ECOLOGICAL RISK ASSESSMENT FOR DEVELOPING AND COORDINATING RESEARCH AT REGIONAL AND WATERSHED SCALES

    EPA Science Inventory

    A series of studies were undertaken to develop quantitative methods that could be used for ecological risk assessments at a watershed scale. This work contributed to the newly published ecological risk assessment guidelines (USEPA, 1998) and focused attention on the need for a pr...

  18. SURVEY OF METHODOLOGIES FOR DEVELOPING MEDIA SCREENING VALUES FOR ECOLOGICAL RISK ASSESSMENT

    EPA Science Inventory

    Barron, Mace G. and Steve Wharton. Submitted. Survey of Methodologies for Developing Media Screening Values for Ecological Risk Assessment. Environ. Toxicol. Chem. 44 p. (ERL,GB 1200).

    Concurrent with the increase in the number of ecological risk assessments over the past...

  19. IF ECOLOGICAL RISK ASSESSMENT IS THE ANSWER, WHAT IS THE QUESTION?

    EPA Science Inventory

    Ecological risk assessment has become a commonly used tool in policy analysis, but its use is controversial. Opinions are diverse; they range from enthusiastic support to caustic dismissal. Much of the controversy with using risk assessment in ecological policy analysis revolves ...

  20. Phase two of Site 300`s ecological risk assessment: Model verification and risk management

    SciTech Connect

    Carlson, T.M.; Gregory, S.D.

    1995-12-31

    The authors completed the baseline ecological risk assessment (ERA) for Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory`s Site 300 in 1993. Using data collection and modeling techniques adapted from the human health risk assessment (HRA), they evaluated the potential hazard of contaminants in environmental media to ecological receptors. They identified potential hazards to (1) aquatic invertebrates from heavy metal contaminants in surface water, (2) burrowing vertebrates from contaminants volatilizing from subsurface soil into burrow air, and (3) grazing deer and burrowing vertebrates from cadmium contamination in surface soil. They recently began collecting data to refine the estimates of potential hazard to these ecological receptors. Bioassay results form the surface water failed to verify a hazard to aquatic invertebrates. Soil vapor surveys of subsurface burrows did verify the presence of high concentrations of volatile organic compounds (VOCs). However, they have not yet verified a true impact on the burrowing populations. The authors also completed an extensive surface soil sampling program, which identified local hot spots of cadmium contamination. In addition, they have been collecting data on the land use patterns of the deer population. Their data indicate that deer do not typically use those areas with cadmium surface soil contamination. Information from this phase of the ERA, along with the results of the HRA, will direct the selection of remedial alternatives for the site. For the ecological receptors, remedial alternatives include developing a risk management program which includes ensuring that (1) sensitive burrowing species (such as rare or endangered species) do not use areas of surface or subsurface contamination, and (2) deer populations do not use areas of surface soil contamination.

  1. Toxicity Bioassays for Ecological Risk Assessment in Arid and Semiarid Ecosystems. Reviews Environmental Contamination and Toxicology 168:43-98.

    SciTech Connect

    Markwiese, J.T.; Ryti, R.T.; Hooten, M.M.; Michael, D.I.; Hlohowskyj, I.

    2001-02-01

    This paper discusses current limitations for performing ecological risk assessments in dry environments (i.e., ecosystems that are characteristic of many DOE Facilities) and presents novel approaches to addressing ecological risk in such systems.

  2. BOTTOMLAND HARDWOODS IN THE TIFTON-VIDIALIA UPLAND OF GEORGIA: A CONCEPTUAL MODEL FOR ECOLOGICAL RISK ASSESSMENT

    EPA Science Inventory

    Ecology risk assessment provides a methodology for evaluating threats to ecosystem function associated with environmental perturbations or stressors. his report documents the development of a conceptual model for assessing the ecological risk to the water quality function (WQF) o...

  3. [Ecological risk assessment of organophosphorus pesticides in aquatic ecosystems of Pearl River Estuary].

    PubMed

    Guo, Qiang; Tian, Hui; Mao, Xiao-Xuan; Huang, Tao; Gao, Hong; Ma, Jian-Min; Wu, Jun-Nian

    2014-03-01

    The risk quotient method and a probabilistic risk assessment method were applied for assessing aquatic ecological risk of nine organophosphorus pesticides, including thimet, dichlorovos, disulfoton, dimethoate, dimethyl parathion, chlorpyrifos, ethoprophos, sumithion and malathion on eight aquatic organisms in the Pearl River Estuary. Results using the risk quotient method revealed that the risk level of opossum shrimp was the highest among eight aquatic organisms of the Pearl River Estuary. The risk of water flea and midge was in medium level, followed by the rest six aquatic organisms, including diatom, oyster, carp, catfish and eel, which were in the low risk by the examined organophosphorus pesticides. It was found that thimet made the largest contribution to total aquatic ecological risk among nine organophosphorus pesticides to every organism. The results from probabilistic risk assessment showed that the total ecological risk in high water period was higher than that in low water period determined by the HC5 under the 95% confidence level. The largest contribution of thimet to total aquatic ecological risk subject to the HC5 in 50% confidence level was regarded as the toxic reference value. The probabilistic risk of a single contaminant showed that thimet and disulfoton were harmful to exceeded 10% organisms in the estuarine. The probabilistic risk of nine pesticides mixture in high water period was also higher than that in low water period, and both risks were greater than 5% which exceeded safety threshold for 95% organisms in the Pearl River Estuary. PMID:24881393

  4. Review of ecological-based risk management approaches used at five Army Superfund sites.

    PubMed

    Poucher, Sherri L; Tracey, Gregory A; Johnson, Mark S; Haines, Laurie B

    2012-04-01

    Factors used in environmental remedial decision making concerning ecological risk are not well understood or necessarily consistent. Recent Records of Decision (RODs) for Army CERCLA sites were reviewed to select case studies where remedial management occurred in response to ecological risks. Thirty-four Army RODs were evaluated representing decisions promulgated between 1996 and 2004. Five were selected based on assessments that remedial actions were clearly linked to concern for ecological receptors. The Ecological Risk Assessment (ERA) approach and the subsequent risk management process were reviewed for each site. The case studies demonstrated that the ERA findings, as well as critical management decisions regarding interpretation of identified ecological risks, were determinants of remedial action objectives. Decisions regarding the selection of remedial alternatives were based on a set of criteria prescribed by Superfund requirements and guidance. Remedial alternative evaluations require protection of human health and the environment, but protective conditions were determined using different methods at each site. Examining the remedial management process for the 5 case study sites revealed that uncertainty in the risk assessment and decisions regarding appropriate spatial scales for both risk assessment and remediation were important factors influencing remedial action decisions. The case reviews also revealed that levels of documentation were variable from site to site. In the future, more detailed documentation of decision criteria and the development of criteria that consider the resilience of the site will result in more technically defensible ecological risk management. PMID:22025287

  5. Ecological Risk Assessment with MCDM of Some Invasive Alien Plants in China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xie, Guowen; Chen, Weiguang; Lin, Meizhen; Zheng, Yanling; Guo, Peiguo; Zheng, Yisheng

    Alien plant invasion is an urgent global issue that threatens the sustainable development of the ecosystem health. The study of its ecological risk assessment (ERA) could help us to prevent and reduce the invasion risk more effectively. Based on the theory of ERA and methods of the analytic hierarchy process (AHP) of multi-criteria decision-making (MCDM), and through the analyses of the characteristics and processes of alien plant invasion, this paper discusses the methodologies of ERA of alien plant invasion. The assessment procedure consisted of risk source analysis, receptor analysis, exposure and hazard assessment, integral assessment, and countermeasure of risk management. The indicator system of risk source assessment as well as the indices and formulas applied to measure the ecological loss and risk were established, and the method for comprehensively assessing the ecological risk of alien plant invasion was worked out. The result of ecological risk analysis to 9 representative invasive alien plants in China shows that the ecological risk of Erigeron annuus, Ageratum conyzoides, Alternanthera philoxeroides and Mikania midrantha is high (grade1-2), that of Oxalis corymbosa and Wedelia chinensis comes next (grade3), while Mirabilis jalapa, Pilea microphylla and Calendula officinalis of the last (grade 4). Risk strategies are put forward on this basis.

  6. Developing ecosystem services-based assessment endpoints for determining ecological risks to estuarine environments

    EPA Science Inventory

    Current U.S. EPA ecological risk assessment (ERA) guidance defines an assessment endpoint (AE) as an explicit expression of the environmental value that is to be protected, and recommends that AEs are selected based on ecological relevance, susceptibility to known or potential st...

  7. Evaluation of vegetable production management practices to reduce the ecological risk of pesticides

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The ability of agricultural management practices to reduce the ecological risks of pesticides was evaluated. Risk quotients, a mathematical description of the relationship between exposure and toxicity, and hazard ratings, a rank of potential risk of pesticides to aquatic environments, were calculat...

  8. An Ecological Risk/Protective Factor Approach to Understanding Depressive Symptoms in Adolescents

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Olson, Jonathan; Goddard, H. Wallace

    2010-01-01

    We applied an ecological multiple risk/protective factor model to study factors related to depressive symptoms among adolescents. Participants were 39,740 adolescents who self-reported risk factors, protective factors, and depressive symptoms on a school-based survey. Results indicate that an index of multiple risk was related to increased…

  9. An Ecological Risk Model for Early Childhood Anxiety: The Importance of Early Child Symptoms and Temperament

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mian, Nicholas D.; Wainwright, Laurel; Briggs-Gowan, Margaret J.; Carter, Alice S.

    2011-01-01

    Childhood anxiety is impairing and associated with later emotional disorders. Studying risk factors for child anxiety may allow earlier identification of at-risk children for prevention efforts. This study applied an ecological risk model to address how early childhood anxiety symptoms, child temperament, maternal anxiety and depression symptoms,…

  10. Spatially Explicit Landscape-Level Ecological Risks Induced by Land Use and Land Cover Change in a National Ecologically Representative Region in China.

    PubMed

    Gong, Jian; Yang, Jianxin; Tang, Wenwu

    2015-11-01

    Land use and land cover change is driven by multiple influential factors from environmental and social dimensions in a land system. Land use practices of human decision-makers modify the landscape of the land system, possibly leading to landscape fragmentation, biodiversity loss, or environmental pollution-severe environmental or ecological impacts. While landscape-level ecological risk assessment supports the evaluation of these impacts, investigations on how these ecological risks induced by land use practices change over space and time in response to alternative policy intervention remain inadequate. In this article, we conducted spatially explicit landscape ecological risk analysis in Ezhou City, China. Our study area is a national ecologically representative region experiencing drastic land use and land cover change, and is regulated by multiple policies represented by farmland protection, ecological conservation, and urban development. We employed landscape metrics to consider the influence of potential landscape-level disturbance for the evaluation of landscape ecological risks. Using spatiotemporal simulation, we designed scenarios to examine spatiotemporal patterns in landscape ecological risks in response to policy intervention. Our study demonstrated that spatially explicit landscape ecological risk analysis combined with simulation-driven scenario analysis is of particular importance for guiding the sustainable development of ecologically vulnerable land systems. PMID:26569270

  11. Spatially Explicit Landscape-Level Ecological Risks Induced by Land Use and Land Cover Change in a National Ecologically Representative Region in China

    PubMed Central

    Gong, Jian; Yang, Jianxin; Tang, Wenwu

    2015-01-01

    Land use and land cover change is driven by multiple influential factors from environmental and social dimensions in a land system. Land use practices of human decision-makers modify the landscape of the land system, possibly leading to landscape fragmentation, biodiversity loss, or environmental pollution—severe environmental or ecological impacts. While landscape-level ecological risk assessment supports the evaluation of these impacts, investigations on how these ecological risks induced by land use practices change over space and time in response to alternative policy intervention remain inadequate. In this article, we conducted spatially explicit landscape ecological risk analysis in Ezhou City, China. Our study area is a national ecologically representative region experiencing drastic land use and land cover change, and is regulated by multiple policies represented by farmland protection, ecological conservation, and urban development. We employed landscape metrics to consider the influence of potential landscape-level disturbance for the evaluation of landscape ecological risks. Using spatiotemporal simulation, we designed scenarios to examine spatiotemporal patterns in landscape ecological risks in response to policy intervention. Our study demonstrated that spatially explicit landscape ecological risk analysis combined with simulation-driven scenario analysis is of particular importance for guiding the sustainable development of ecologically vulnerable land systems. PMID:26569270

  12. Application of WATERSHED ECOLOGICAL RISK ASSESSMENT Methods to Watershed Management

    EPA Science Inventory

    Watersheds are frequently used to study and manage environmental resources because hydrologic boundaries define the flow of contaminants and other stressors. Ecological assessments of watersheds are complex because watersheds typically overlap multiple jurisdictional boundaries,...

  13. Application of Watershed Ecological Risk Assessment Methods to Watershed Management

    EPA Science Inventory

    Watersheds are frequently used to study and manage environmental resources because hydrologic boundaries define the flow of contaminants and other stressors. Ecological assessments of watersheds are complex because watersheds typically overlap multiple jurisdictional boundaries,...

  14. Ecological risk assessment and sources of heavy metals in sediment from Daling River basin.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Lei; Mi, Dong; Chen, Yifu; Wang, Luo; Sun, Yeqing

    2015-04-01

    To investigate the distribution, source, and ecological risk of heavy metals in Daling River basin, 28 surface sediments collected in this region were analyzed by experimental and theoretical methods. Seven heavy metals, including Pb, Cr, Hg, Cu, As, Cd, and Zn, were detected in all samples. Monte Carlo simulation was used to assess the ecological risks of these heavy metals. It was found that the pollution of Cd was the most serious; the ecological risks in Daling River and Bohai Bay were significantly higher than those in estuary, Bohai Sea, and wetland, but overall, the ecological risks of these heavy metals were low to aquatic organisms in Daling River basin at present. Correlation analysis, principal component analysis, and cluster analysis showed that these heavy metals might originate from the same pollution sources located near Daling River and Bohai Bay. PMID:25378031

  15. Ecological risk characterization based on exposure to contaminants through the Rocky Mountain Arsenal aquatic food chains

    SciTech Connect

    Toll, J.E.; Cothern, K.A.; Pavlou, S.; Tate, D.J.; Armstrong, J.P.

    1994-12-31

    This paper describes ecological risk characterization methods and results for characterizing potential risk from exposure to bioaccumulative contaminants of concern (aldrin, dieldrin, endrin, DDT, DDE, and mercury) through the lake food chains at Rocky Mountain Arsenal (RMA). Aquatic risks were estimated for the bald eagle, great blue heron, shorebird, and water bird using a prey-tissue-concentration-based food web model. Methods for estimating missing tissue concentration data were developed on a case-by-case basis and will be described. A sediment-based food web model was also considered and the reasons for its rejection will be described. Generalizable insights from the aquatic ecological risk characterization will be discussed.

  16. Calculating background levels for ecological risk parameters in toxic harbor sediment

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Leadon, C.J.; McDonnell, T.R.; Lear, J.; Barclift, D.

    2007-01-01

    Establishing background levels for biological parameters is necessary in assessing the ecological risks from harbor sediment contaminated with toxic chemicals. For chemicals in sediment, the term contaminated is defined as having concentrations above background and significant human health or ecological risk levels. For biological parameters, a site could be considered contaminated if levels of the parameter are either more or less than the background level, depending on the specific parameter. Biological parameters can include tissue chemical concentrations in ecological receptors, bioassay responses, bioaccumulation levels, and benthic community metrics. Chemical parameters can include sediment concentrations of a variety of potentially toxic chemicals. Indirectly, contaminated harbor sediment can impact shellfish, fish, birds, and marine mammals, and human populations. This paper summarizes the methods used to define background levels for chemical and biological parameters from a survey of ecological risk investigations of marine harbor sediment at California Navy bases. Background levels for regional biological indices used to quantify ecological risks for benthic communities are also described. Generally, background stations are positioned in relatively clean areas exhibiting the same physical and general chemical characteristics as nearby areas with contaminated harbor sediment. The number of background stations and the number of sample replicates per background station depend on the statistical design of the sediment ecological risk investigation, developed through the data quality objective (DQO) process. Biological data from the background stations can be compared to data from a contaminated site by using minimum or maximum background levels or comparative statistics. In Navy ecological risk assessments (ERA's), calculated background levels and appropriate ecological risk screening criteria are used to identify sampling stations and sites with contaminated

  17. Waste area grouping 2 Phase I task data report: Ecological risk assessment and White Oak Creek watershed screening ecological risk assessment

    SciTech Connect

    Efroymson, R.A.; Jackson, B.L.; Jones, D.S.

    1996-05-01

    This report presents an ecological risk assessment for Waste Area Grouping (WAG) 2 based on the data collected in the Phase I remedial investigation (RI). It serves as an update to the WAG 2 screening ecological risk assessment that was performed using historic data. In addition to identifying potential ecological risks in WAG 2 that may require additional data collection, this report serves to determine whether there are ecological risks of sufficient magnitude to require a removal action or some other expedited remedial process. WAG 2 consists of White Oak Creek (WOC) and its tributaries downstream of the Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) main plant area, White Oak Lake (WOL), the White Oak Creek Embayment of the Clinch River, associated flood plains, and the associated groundwater. The WOC system drains the WOC watershed, an area of approximately 16.8 km{sup 2} that includes ORNL and associated WAGs. The WOC system has been exposed to contaminants released from ORNL and associated operations since 1943 and continues to receive contaminants from adjacent WAGs.

  18. [Method of ecological risk assessment for risk pollutants under short-term and high dose exposure in water pollution accident].

    PubMed

    Lei, Bing-Li; Sun, Yan-Feng; Liu, Qian; Yu, Zhi-Qiang; Zeng, Xiang-Ying

    2011-11-01

    In recent years, water pollution accidents resulting in acute aquatic ecological risk and security issues become a research focus. However, in our country, the surface water quality standards and drinking water health standards were used to determine the safety of waters or not in pollution incidents due to lacking safety effect threshold or risk value for protection of aquatic life. In foreign countries, although predicted no effect concentration (PNEC) or risk value (R) of pollutants were provided for protection of aquatic organisms, the PNECs or risk values were derived based on long-term exposure toxicity data NOECs (no observed effect concentrations) and lack of short-term exposure risk or threshold values. For the short-term and high dose exposure in pollution incident, ecological risk assessment methods were discussed according to the procedures of the conventional ecological risk assessment and the water quality criteria establishment of the U.S. EPA for the protection of aquatic organisms in short-term exposure, and had a case study. At the same time, we provide some suggestions for the establishment of ecological risk assessment system in water pollution incidents. PMID:22295619

  19. The role of mesocosm studies in ecological risk analysis

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Boyle, T.P.; Fairchild, J.F.

    1997-01-01

    Mesocosms have been primarily used as research tools for the evaluation of the fate and effects of xenobiotic chemicals at the population, community, and ecosystem levels of biological organization. This paper provides suggestions for future applications of mesocosm research. Attention should be given to the configuration of mesocosm parameters to explicitly study regional questions of ecological interest. The initial physical, chemical, and biological conditions within mesocosms should be considered as factors shaping the final results of experiments. Certain fundamental questions such as the ecological inertia and resilience of systems with different initial ecological properties should be addressed. Researchers should develop closer working relationships with mathematical modelers in linking computer models to the outcomes of mesocosm studies. Mesocosm tests, linked with models, could enable managers and regulators to forecast the regional consequences of chemicals released into the environment.

  20. The Impact of Ecological Risk and Perceived Discrimination on the Psychological Adjustment of African American and European American Youth

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Prelow, Hazel M.; Danoff-Burg, Sharon; Swenson, Rebecca R.; Pulgiano, Dana

    2004-01-01

    The purpose of the present study was to examine the role of cumulative ecological risk (i.e., neighborhood disadvantage and ecologically salient stressful events) and perceived discrimination on the psychological adjustment of urban African American and European American youth. Findings indicated that both cumulative ecological risk and perceived…

  1. [Risk assessment of ecological disasters in Jilin Province based on GIS].

    PubMed

    Zhang, Ji-Quan; Liang, Jing-Dan; Zhou, Dao-Wei

    2007-08-01

    Based on the principles of natural disasters risk formation, and considering the natural and social features of Jilin Province, relevant indices were selected from the aspects of hazard, exposure, vulnerability and emergency responses, and recovery capability, and Natural Disaster Risk Index method, Weighted Comprehensive Analysis, and Analytic Hierarchy Process were used to build the risk assessment model of ecological disasters in this Province. The contribution of each index was assessed, and the regionalization map of the ecological disasters risk in Jilin Province was built based on GIS, which would provide scientific references in accurately understanding the risk level of ecological disasters and in decision-making of eco-environment restoration and management in Jilin Province. PMID:17974242

  2. A framework for assessing ecological risks of petroleum-derived materials in soil

    SciTech Connect

    Suter, G.W. II

    1997-05-01

    Ecological risk assessment estimates the nature and likelihood of effects of human actions on nonhuman organisms, populations, and ecosystems. It is intended to be clearer and more rigorous in its approach to estimation of effects and uncertainties than previously employed methods of ecological assessment. Ecological risk assessment is characterized by a standard paradigm that includes problem formulation, analysis of exposure and effects, risk characterization, and communication with a risk manager. This report provides a framework that applies the paradigm to the specific problem of assessing the ecological risks of petroleum in soil. This type of approach requires that assessments be performed in phases: (1) a scoping assessment to determine whether there is a potential route of exposure for potentially significant ecological receptors; (2) a screening assessment to determine whether exposures could potentially reach toxic levels; and (3) a definitive assessment to estimate the nature, magnitude, and extent of risks. The principal technical issue addressed is the chemically complex nature of petroleum--a complexity that may be dealt with by assessing risks on the basis of properties of the whole material, properties of individual chemicals that are representative of chemical classes, distributions of properties of the constituents of chemical classes, properties of chemicals detected in the soil, and properties of indicator chemicals. The advantages and feasibility of these alternatives are discussed. The report concludes with research recommendations for improving each stage in the assessment process.

  3. Analysis of the ecological risk of opening new oil and gas fields

    SciTech Connect

    Anikiev, V.V.; Mansurov, M.N.; Fleishman, B.S.

    1995-01-01

    Practical recommendations that would ensure the ecological safety of opening new marine oil and gas fields should include analysis of ecological risk. Such an analysis should precede the studies of ecological safety and resolve a sequence of problems in evaluating the ecological risk, the probability and scale of accidents at the oil and gas extraction complex, and economic damage that could occur. This paper presents a method of evaluation of risks for fish populations incurred by marine extraction of oil and gas, calculates the required limit of probability of accidents excluding the possibility of degradation of flatfish populations, estimates expenses incurred by accidental oil spills, and presents data on level of pollution. 9 refs., 1 tab.

  4. Ecological risk assessment for Mather Air Force Base, California: Phase 1, screening assessment

    SciTech Connect

    Meyers-Schoene, L.; Fischer, N.T.; Rabe, J.J.

    1994-12-31

    Mather Air Force Base (AFB) is among the numerous facilities scheduled for closure under the US Air Force (USAF) Installation Restoration Program (IRP). A component of the Mather AFB IRP is to prepare risk assessments for each of the chemically contaminated sites. Because no previous ecological risk related studies have been conducted on Mather AFB, the authors proposed a phased approach to assessing ecological risks at the base. Phase 1 consisted of baseline ecological surveys that collected data over a 12-month period. In addition, benchmark screening criteria were used in conjunction with modeling results that utilized measured concentrations of chemical analytes in abiotic samples. Phase 2 may consist of the collection of more site-specific data and toxicity testing, if warranted by the Phase 1 screening analysis. This approach was in agreement with the USAF`s ecological risk assessment guidance and met the approval of the Air Force and USEPA Region 9. The authors found the use of established and derived screening values to effectively aid in the focusing of the ecological risk assessment on those chemicals most likely to be hazardous to ecological receptors at the base. Disadvantages in the use of screening values include the uncertainties associated with the conservative assumptions inherent in the derivation of benchmark values and the difficulty in extrapolating from laboratory determined benchmark values to impacts in the field.

  5. Ecological risk of heavy metals in sediments of the luan river source water

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Liu, J.; Li, Y.; Zhang, B.; Cao, J.; Cao, Z.; Domagalski, J.

    2009-01-01

    Distribution and characteristics of heavy metals enrichment in sediment were surveyed including the bio-available form analyzed for assessment of the Luan River source water quality. The approaches of sediment quality guidelines (SQG), risk assessment code and Hakanson potential ecological risk index were used for the ecological risk assessment. According to SQG, The results show that in animal bodies, Hg at the sampling site of Wuliehexia was 1.39 mg/kg, Cr at Sandaohezi was 152.37 mg/kg and Cu at Hanjiaying was 178.61 mg/kg exceeding the severe effect screening level. There were 90% of sampling sites of Cr and Pb and 50% sites of Cu exceeded the lowest effect screening level. At Boluonuo and Wuliehexia, the exchangeable and carbonate fractions for above 50% of sites were at high risk levels and that for above 30% of sites at Xiahenan and Wulieheshang were also at high risk levels. Other sites were at medium risk level. Compared to soil background values of China, Hg and Cd showed very strong ecological risk, and the seven heavy metals of Hg, Cd, Cu, As, Pb, Cr, Zn at ecological risk levels were in the descending order. The results could give insight into risk assessment of environmental pollution and decision-making for water source security. ?? 2009 Springer Science+Business Media, LLC.

  6. Ecosystem services as assessment endpoints for ecological risk assessment

    EPA Science Inventory

    Ecosystem services (ES) are defined as the outputs of ecological processes that contribute to human welfare or have the potential to do so in the future, and include the production of food and drinking water, purification of air and water, pollination, and nutrient cycling. The n...

  7. COMMUNICATING AND CHARACTERIZING ECOLOGICAL RISK AT THE WATERSHED SCALE

    EPA Science Inventory

    Since the biggest environmental problems in the United States now stem from nonpoint sources of pollution that are not regulated by Federal laws, a watershed approach to environmental decision making that uses partnerships and sound science is being used more frequently. Ecologi...

  8. Ecological Risk of Heavy Metals and a Metalloid in Agricultural Soils in Tarkwa, Ghana

    PubMed Central

    Bortey-Sam, Nesta; Nakayama, Shouta M. M.; Akoto, Osei; Ikenaka, Yoshinori; Baidoo, Elvis; Mizukawa, Hazuki; Ishizuka, Mayumi

    2015-01-01

    Heavy metals and a metalloid in agricultural soils in 19 communities in Tarkwa were analyzed to assess the potential ecological risk. A total of 147 soil samples were collected in June, 2012 and analyzed for As, Cd, Co, Cr, Cu, Hg, Ni, Pb and Zn. Mean concentrations (mg/kg dw) of heavy metals in the communities decreased in order of Zn (39) ˃ Cr (21) ˃ Pb (7.2) ˃ Cu (6.2) ˃ As (4.4) ˃ Ni (3.7) ˃ Co (1.8) ˃ Hg (0.32) ˃ Cd (0.050). Correlations among heavy metals and soil properties indicated that soil organic matter could have substantial influence on the total contents of these metals in soil. From the results, integrated pollution (Cdeg) in some communities such as, Wangarakrom (11), Badukrom (13) and T–Tamso (17) indicated high pollution with toxic metals, especially from As and Hg. Potential ecological risk (RI) indices indicated low (Mile 7) to high risks (Wangarakrom; Badukrom) of metals. Based on pollution coefficient (Cif), Cdeg, monomial ecological risk (Eir) and RI, the investigated soils fall within low to high contamination and risk of heavy metals to the ecological system especially plants, soil invertebrates and/or mammalian wildlife. This represented moderate potential ecological risk in the study area, and mining activities have played a significant role. PMID:26378563

  9. Coordinating ecological restoration options analysis and risk assessment to improve environmental outcomes.

    PubMed

    Kapustka, Lawrence A; Bowers, Keith; Isanhart, John; Martinez-Garza, Cristina; Finger, Susan; Stahl, Ralph G; Stauber, Jenny

    2016-04-01

    Ecological risk assessment as currently practiced has hindered consideration of ecosystem services endpoints and restoration goals in the environmental management process. Practitioners have created barriers between procedures to clean up contaminated areas and efforts to restore ecosystem functions. In this article, we examine linkages between contaminant risk assessment approaches and restoration efforts with the aim of identifying ways to improve environmental outcomes. We advocate that project managers and other stakeholders use an ecological planning framework, with restoration options included upfront in the risk assessment. We also considered the opportunities to incorporate ecosystem services as potential assessment endpoints in the Problem Formulation stages of a risk assessment. Indeed, diverse perspectives of stakeholders are central to understand the relevance of social, cultural, economic, and regional ecology as influences on future use options for the landscape being restored. The measurement endpoints used to characterize the existing ecological conditions for selected ecosystem services can also be used to evaluate restoration success. A regional, landscape, or seascape focus is needed throughout the risk assessment process, so that restoration efforts play a more prominent role in enhancing ecosystem services. In short, we suggest that practitioners begin with the question of "how can the ecological risk assessment inform the decision on how best to restore the ecosystem?" PMID:26077395

  10. DEVELOPMENT OF LANDSCAPE INDICATORS FOR USE IN REGIONAL ECOLOGICAL RISK ASSESSMENTS

    EPA Science Inventory

    There is a growing need for cost effective ways to assess conditions of and risks to ecological resources at a variety of scales over broad regions. Indicators, models and assessment tools are needed to evaluate water bodies at risk to non-point source pollution and to be able t...

  11. The occurrence and ecological risk assessment of phthalate esters (PAEs) in urban aquatic environments of China.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Lulu; Liu, Jingling; Liu, Huayong; Wan, Guisheng; Zhang, Shaowei

    2015-07-01

    Phthalate esters (PAEs) are widely used in the manufacturing of plastics, and the demand for PAEs has grown rapidly, especially in China. This trend will lead to much more environmental PAE contamination. PAEs are listed as priority substances in the European Union and are therefore subject to ecological risk assessments. This paper reviews the literature concerning the pollution status of PAEs and their ecological risk to aquatic environments. Risk quotients (RQs) based on the predicted no effect concentration and PAE concentrations in aquatic environments demonstrated significant (10 ≤ RQ < 100) or expected (RQ ≥ 100) potential adverse effects for algae, Daphnia, and fish in aquatic environments near PAE-based industrial and urban areas. Thus, the ecological risk of PAEs in Chinese aquatic environments should be considered, especially in areas where commercial plastics are produced. PMID:25847103

  12. [Uncertainty analysis of ecological risk assessment caused by heavy-metals deposition from MSWI emission].

    PubMed

    Liao, Zhi-Heng; Sun, Jia-Ren; Wu, Dui; Fan, Shao-Jia; Ren, Ming-Zhong; Lü, Jia-Yang

    2014-06-01

    The CALPUFF model was applied to simulate the ground-level atmospheric concentrations of Pb and Cd from municipal solid waste incineration (MSWI) plants, and the soil concentration model was used to estimate soil concentration increments after atmospheric deposition based on Monte Carlo simulation, then ecological risk assessment was conducted by the potential ecological risk index method. The results showed that the largest atmospheric concentrations of Pb and Cd were 5.59 x 109-3) microg x m(-3) and 5.57 x 10(-4) microg x m(-3), respectively, while the maxima of soil concentration incremental medium of Pb and Cd were 2.26 mg x kg(-1) and 0.21 mg x kg(-1), respectively; High risk areas were located next to the incinerators, Cd contributed the most to the ecological risk, and Pb was basically free of pollution risk; Higher ecological hazard level was predicted at the most polluted point in urban areas with a 55.30% probability, while in rural areas, the most polluted point was assessed to moderate ecological hazard level with a 72.92% probability. In addition, sensitivity analysis of calculation parameters in the soil concentration model was conducted, which showed the simulated results of urban and rural area were most sensitive to soil mix depth and dry deposition rate, respectively. PMID:25158505

  13. Probabilistic ecological risk assessment of effluent toxicity of a wastewater reclamation plant based on process modeling.

    PubMed

    Zeng, Siyu; Huang, Yunqing; Sun, Fu; Li, Dan; He, Miao

    2016-09-01

    The growing use of reclaimed wastewater for environmental purposes such as stream flow augmentation requires comprehensive ecological risk assessment and management. This study applied a system analysis approach, regarding a wastewater reclamation plant (WRP) and its recipient water body as a whole system, and assessed the ecological risk of the recipient water body caused by the WRP effluent. Instead of specific contaminants, two toxicity indicators, i.e. genotoxicity and estrogenicity, were selected to directly measure the biological effects of all bio-available contaminants in the reclaimed wastewater, as well as characterize the ecological risk of the recipient water. A series of physically based models were developed to simulate the toxicity indicators in a WRP through a typical reclamation process, including ultrafiltration, ozonation, and chlorination. After being validated against the field monitoring data from a full-scale WRP in Beijing, the models were applied to simulate the probability distribution of effluent toxicity of the WRP through Latin Hypercube Sampling to account for the variability of influent toxicity and operation conditions. The simulated effluent toxicity was then used to derive the predicted environmental concentration (PEC) in the recipient stream, considering the variations of the toxicity and flow of the upstream inflow as well. The ratio of the PEC of each toxicity indicator to its corresponding predicted no-effect concentration was finally used for the probabilistic ecological risk assessment. Regional sensitivity analysis was also performed with the developed models to identify the critical control variables and strategies for ecological risk management. PMID:27219046

  14. Regional multi-compartment ecological risk assessment: Establishing cadmium pollution risk in the northern Bohai Rim, China.

    PubMed

    Shi, Yajuan; Wang, Ruoshi; Lu, Yonglong; Song, Shuai; Johnson, Andrew C; Sweetman, Andrew; Jones, Kevin

    2016-09-01

    Ecological risk assessment (ERA) has been widely applied in characterizing the risk of chemicals to organisms and ecosystems. The paucity of toxicity data on local biota living in the different compartments of an ecosystem and the absence of a suitable methodology for multi-compartment spatial risk assessment at the regional scale has held back this field. The major objective of this study was to develop a methodology to quantify and distinguish the spatial distribution of risk to ecosystems at a regional scale. A framework for regional multi-compartment probabilistic ecological risk assessment (RMPERA) was constructed and corroborated using a bioassay of a local species. The risks from cadmium (Cd) pollution in river water, river sediment, coastal water, coastal surface sediment and soil in northern Bohai Rim were examined. The results indicated that the local organisms in soil, river, coastal water, and coastal sediment were affected by Cd. The greatest impacts from Cd were identified in the Tianjin and Huludao areas. The overall multi-compartment risk was 31.4% in the region. The methodology provides a new approach for regional multi-compartment ecological risk assessment. PMID:27286039

  15. [Scale effect of Li-Xiang Railway construction impact on landscape pattern and its ecological risk].

    PubMed

    Wang, De-zhi; Qiu, Peng-hua; Fang, Yuan-min

    2015-08-01

    As a large corridor project, plateau railway has multiple points and passes various sensitive environments along the railway. The determination of the scope of impact on ecological environment from railway construction is often controversial in ecological impact assessment work. Taking the Tangbu-Jiantang section of Li-Xiang Railway as study object, and using present land use map (1:10000) in 2012 and DEM as data sources, corridor cutting degree index ( CCI) and cumulative effect index of corridor (CCEI) were established by topology, buffer zone and landscape metrics methods. Besides, the ecological risk index used for railway construction was improved. By quantitative analysis of characteristics of the spatio-temporal change of landscape pattern and its evolution style at different spatial scales before and after railway construction, the most appropriate evaluation scale of the railway was obtained. Then the characteristics of the spatio-temporal variation of ecological risk within this scale before and after railway construction were analyzed. The results indicated that the cutting model and degree of railway corridor to various landscape types could be effectively reflected by CCI, and the exposure and harm relations between risk sources and risk receptors of railway can be measured by CCEI. After the railway construction, the railway corridor would cause a great deal of middle cutting effect on the landscape along the railroad, which would influence wood land and grassland landscape most greatly, while would cause less effect of edge cutting and internal cutting. Landscape indices within the 600 m buffer zone demonstrated the most obvious scale effect, therefore, the 600 m zone of the railway was set as the most suitable range of ecological impact assessment. Before railway construction, the low ecological risk level covered the biggest part of the 600 m assessment zone. However, after the railway construction, the ecological risk increased significantly, and

  16. Risk, Resilience, and Development: The Multiple Ecologies of Black Adolescents.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nettles, Saundra Murray; Pleck, Joseph H.

    This report examines protective factors and the process of resilience as they apply to Black adolescents. The report reviews risk factors at the individual level and at the community level, and reviews the incidence of health- and life-compromising risk outcomes in Black adolescents. It then discusses protective factors and resilience and their…

  17. Ecological Risk Assessment of a Metal-Contaminated Area in the Tropics. Tier II: Detailed Assessment

    PubMed Central

    Niemeyer, Júlia Carina; Moreira-Santos, Matilde; Ribeiro, Rui; Rutgers, Michiel; Nogueira, Marco Antonio; da Silva, Eduardo Mendes; Sousa, José Paulo

    2015-01-01

    This study presents data on the detailed evaluation (tier 2) of a site-specific ecological risk assessment (ssERA) in a former smelter area contaminated with metals (Santo Amaro, Bahia, Brazil). Combining information from three lines of evidence (LoE), chemical (ChemLoE), ecotoxicological (EcotoxLoE) and ecological (EcoLoE), in the Triad approach, integrated risk values were calculated to rank sites and confirm the potential risk disclosed with tier 1. Risk values were calculated for the habitat and for the retention functions in each sampling point. Habitat function included the ChemLoE calculated from total metal concentrations. The EcotoxLoE was based on reproduction tests with terrestrial invertebrates (Folsomia candida, Enchytraeus crypticus, Eisenia andrei), shoot length and plant biomass (Avena sativa, Brassica rapa). For the EcoLoE, ecological parameters (microbial parameters, soil invertebrate community, litter breakdown) were used to derive risk values. Retention function included the ChemLoE, calculated from extractable metal concentrations, and the EcotoxLoE based on eluate tests with aquatic organisms (Daphnia magna reproduction and Pseudokirchneriella subcapitata growth). Results related to the habitat function indicated that the metal residues are sufficient to cause risk to biota, while the low metal levels in extracts and the general lack of toxicity in aquatic tests indicated a high soil retention capacity in most sampling points. Integrated risk of tier 2 showed the same trend of tier 1, suggesting the need to proceed with remediation actions. The high risk levels were related to direct toxicity to organisms and indirect effects, such as failure in the establishment of vegetation and the consequent loss of habitat quality for microorganisms and soil fauna. This study shed some light on the selection of tools for the tier 2 of an ssERA in tropical metal-contaminated sites, focusing on ecological receptors at risk and using available chemical

  18. Ecological Risk Assessment of a Metal-Contaminated Area in the Tropics. Tier II: Detailed Assessment.

    PubMed

    Niemeyer, Júlia Carina; Moreira-Santos, Matilde; Ribeiro, Rui; Rutgers, Michiel; Nogueira, Marco Antonio; da Silva, Eduardo Mendes; Sousa, José Paulo

    2015-01-01

    This study presents data on the detailed evaluation (tier 2) of a site-specific ecological risk assessment (ssERA) in a former smelter area contaminated with metals (Santo Amaro, Bahia, Brazil). Combining information from three lines of evidence (LoE), chemical (ChemLoE), ecotoxicological (EcotoxLoE) and ecological (EcoLoE), in the Triad approach, integrated risk values were calculated to rank sites and confirm the potential risk disclosed with tier 1. Risk values were calculated for the habitat and for the retention functions in each sampling point. Habitat function included the ChemLoE calculated from total metal concentrations. The EcotoxLoE was based on reproduction tests with terrestrial invertebrates (Folsomia candida, Enchytraeus crypticus, Eisenia andrei), shoot length and plant biomass (Avena sativa, Brassica rapa). For the EcoLoE, ecological parameters (microbial parameters, soil invertebrate community, litter breakdown) were used to derive risk values. Retention function included the ChemLoE, calculated from extractable metal concentrations, and the EcotoxLoE based on eluate tests with aquatic organisms (Daphnia magna reproduction and Pseudokirchneriella subcapitata growth). Results related to the habitat function indicated that the metal residues are sufficient to cause risk to biota, while the low metal levels in extracts and the general lack of toxicity in aquatic tests indicated a high soil retention capacity in most sampling points. Integrated risk of tier 2 showed the same trend of tier 1, suggesting the need to proceed with remediation actions. The high risk levels were related to direct toxicity to organisms and indirect effects, such as failure in the establishment of vegetation and the consequent loss of habitat quality for microorganisms and soil fauna. This study shed some light on the selection of tools for the tier 2 of an ssERA in tropical metal-contaminated sites, focusing on ecological receptors at risk and using available chemical

  19. Ecology.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    National Audubon Society, New York, NY.

    This set of teaching aids consists of nine Audubon Nature Bulletins, providing teachers and students with informational reading on various ecological topics. The bulletins have these titles: Schoolyard Laboratories, Owls and Predators, The Forest Community, Life in Freshwater Marshes, Camouflage in the Animal World, Life in the Desert, The…

  20. Ecological Risk Assessment of EDTA-Assisted Phytoremediation of Cd Under Different Cultivation Systems.

    PubMed

    Luo, Jie; Qi, Shihua; Gu, X W Sophie; Hou, Tao; Lin, Lihong

    2016-02-01

    A long-term field experiment was designed to assess remediation efficiency and ecological risk of phytoremediation of Cd under different cultivation systems with or without ethylene diamine tetraacetic acid (EDTA). EDTA can significantly improve the phytoremediation effectiveness of a historically polluted e-waste dismantling site through enhancing Cd uptake by plants in all cultivation systems along with higher ecological risks to different receptors especially in the presence of Cicer arietinum (chickpea). Moisture content at each layer of soil profile under Eucalyptus globules L. cultivated sites was consistently lower than under chickpea monoculture as a result of E. globules' high water use efficiency. Besides low soil moisture, E. globules can intercept more Cd-rich leachate than chickpea regardless of the presence of EDTA. E. globules could be used for Cd phytoremediation as they can take full advantage of EDTA and decrease ecological risk caused by the chelator. PMID:26499324

  1. Mining the potential interrelationships between human health and ecological risk assessments of metal-contaminated sites

    SciTech Connect

    Appling, J.W.

    1994-12-31

    Conservative approaches to human health or ecological risk assessment often result in evaluations that indicate a risk at metal concentrations near or below background levels. This presents a complex dilemma to regulators, responsible parties, and the public: How can risk be more realistically estimated so that the public is not unnecessarily alarmed into thinking normal exposures pose abnormal risk, and site remediation can be responsible yet cost-effective? One answer is using-ecological and human health studies together to improve the quality of both types of assessments. Mammalian herbivores and roving children are good spatial and temporal integrators of exposure; biomarkers or Monte Carlo-based models of exposure to herbivores can support realistic estimates of exposure to children. Reduced bioavailability of metals in soils at mining sites is well recognized for many metals and is amenable to study in ecological species; such studies reduce the overestimate of risk to humans through direct contact or exposure via the food chain. Recent and current human health studies of lead and arsenic bioavailability also support ecological assessments. Mixtures of metals pose special challenges because of the potential for antagonistic, additive, or synergistic effects with respect to bioavailability, absorption, distribution, excretion, toxic effects and nutritional or physiological essentiality. Combining results from pharmacokinetic, mechanistic, and environmental studies of mixtures enhances the predictive abilities of risk assessments.

  2. Integrating ecological risk assessments across levels of organization using the Franklin-Noss model of biodiversity

    SciTech Connect

    Brugger, K.E.; Tiebout, H.M. III |

    1994-12-31

    Wildlife toxicologists pioneered methodologies for assessing ecological risk to nontarget species. Historically, ecological risk assessments (ERAS) focused on a limited array of species and were based on a relatively few population-level endpoints (mortality, reproduction). Currently, risk assessment models are becoming increasingly complex that factor in multi-species interactions (across trophic levels) and utilize an increasingly diverse number of ecologically significant endpoints. This trend suggests the increasing importance of safeguarding not only populations of individual species, but also the overall integrity of the larger biotic systems that support them. In this sense, ERAs are in alignment with Conservation Biology, an applied science of ecological knowledge used to conserve biodiversity. A theoretical conservation biology model could be incorporated in ERAs to quantify impacts to biodiversity (structure, function or composition across levels of biological organization). The authors suggest that the Franklin-Noss model for evaluating biodiversity, with its nested, hierarchical approach, may provide a suitable paradigm for assessing and integrating the ecological risk that chemical contaminants pose to biological systems from the simplest levels (genotypes, individual organisms) to the most complex levels of organization (communities and ecosystems). The Franklin-Noss model can accommodate the existing ecotoxicological database and, perhaps more importantly, indicate new areas in which critical endpoints should be identified and investigated.

  3. [Pollution Characteristics and Potential Ecological Risk of Heavy Metals in Urban Surface Water Sediments from Yongkang].

    PubMed

    Qi, Peng; Yu, Shu-quan; Zhang, Chao; Liang, Li-cheng; Che, Ji-lu

    2015-12-01

    In order to understand the pollution characteristics of heavy metals in surface water sediments of Yongkang, we analyzed the concentrations of 10 heavy metals including Ti, Cr, Mn, Co, Ni, Cu, Zn, As, Pb and Fe in 122 sediment samples, explored the underlying source of heavy metals and then assessed the potential ecological risks of those metals by methods of the index of geo-accumulation and the potential ecological risk. The study results showed that: 10 heavy metal contents followed the order: Fe > Ti > Mn > Zn > Cr > Cu > Ph > Ni > As > Co, all heavy metals except for Ti were 1. 17 to 3.78 times higher than those of Zhejiang Jinhua- Quzhou basin natural soils background values; The concentrations of all heavy metals had a significantly correlation between each other, indicating that those heavy metals had similar sources of pollution, and it mainly came from industrial and vehicle pollutions; The pollution extent of heavy metals in sediments by geo-accumulation index (Igeo) followed the order: Cr > Zn > Ni > Cu > Fe > As > Pb >Mn > Ti, thereinto, Cr, Zn, Cu and Ni were moderately polluted or heavily polluted at some sampling sites; The potential ecological risk of 9 heavy metals in sediments were in the following order: Cu > As > Ni > Cr > Pb > Co > Zn > Mn > Ti, Cu and As contributed the most to the total potential ecological risk, accounting for 22.84% and 21. 62% , others had a total of 55.54% , through the ecological risk assessment, 89. 34% of the potential ecological risk indexes ( RI) were low and 10. 66% were higher. The contamination level of heavy metals in Yongkang was slight in total, but was heavy in local areas. PMID:27011984

  4. APPLICATION OF FETAX IN ECOLOGICAL RISK ASSESSMENTS: A CRITICAL ASSESSMENT

    EPA Science Inventory

    A workshop sponsored by NIEHS in 2000 evaluated the use of FETAX as a screening method for identifying the developmental toxicity potenial of chemical and environmental samples. Workshop recommendations pertinent to environmental risk assessment suggested that additional comparat...

  5. Derivation of Ecological Protective Concentration using the Probabilistic Ecological Risk Assessment applicable for Korean Water Environment: (I) Cadmium

    PubMed Central

    Nam, Sun-Hwa; Lee, Woo-Mi

    2012-01-01

    Probabilistic ecological risk assessment (PERA) for deriving ecological protective concentration (EPC) was previously suggested in USA, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, and Netherland. This study suggested the EPC of cadmium (Cd) based on the PERA to be suitable to Korean aquatic ecosystem. First, we collected reliable ecotoxicity data from reliable data without restriction and reliable data with restrictions. Next, we sorted the ecotoxicity data based on the site-specific locations, exposure duration, and water hardness. To correct toxicity by the water hardness, EU’s hardness corrected algorithm was used with slope factor 0.89 and a benchmark of water hardness 100. EPC was calculated according to statistical extrapolation method (SEM), statistical extrapolation methodAcute to chronic ratio (SEMACR), and assessment factor method (AFM). As a result, aquatic toxicity data of Cd were collected from 43 acute toxicity data (4 Actinopterygill, 29 Branchiopoda, 1 Polychaeta, 2 Bryozoa, 6 Chlorophyceae, 1 Chanophyceae) and 40 chronic toxicity data (2 Actinopterygill, 23 Branchiopoda, 9 Chlorophyceae, 6 Macrophytes). Because toxicity data of Cd belongs to 4 classes in taxonomical classification, acute and chronic EPC (11.07 μg/l and 0.034 μg/l, respectively) was calculated according to SEM technique. These values were included in the range of international EPCs. This study would be useful to establish the ecological standard for the protection of aquatic ecosystem in Korea. PMID:24278601

  6. Ecological risk assessment of genetically modified crops based on cellular automata modeling.

    PubMed

    Yang, Jun; Wang, Zhi-Rui; Yang, De-Li; Yang, Qing; Yan, Jun; He, Ming-Feng

    2009-01-01

    The assessment of ecological risk in genetically modified (GM) biological systems is critically important for decision-making and public acceptance. Cellular automata (CA) provide a potential modeling and simulation framework for representing relationships and interspecies interactions both temporally and spatially. In this paper, a simple subsystem contains only four species: crop, target pest, non-target pest and enemy insect, and a three layer arrangement of LxL stochastic cellular automata with a periodic boundary were established. The simulation of this simplified system showed abundant and sufficient complexity in population assembly and densities, suggesting a prospective application in ecological risk assessment of GM crops. PMID:19477260

  7. Toward Guidelines for Population-level Ecological Risk Assessment: Results of a U.S. EPA Risk Assessment Forum Workshop

    EPA Science Inventory

    The choice of levels of biological organization reflected in ecological risk assessment (ERA) is receiving increasing attention. Most ERAs conducted for chemicals by the U.S. EPA, and indeed by most organizations worldwide, focus on organism-level attributes (e.g., survival, gro...

  8. Ecological risk of estrogenic endocrine disrupting chemicals in sewage plant effluent and reclaimed water.

    PubMed

    Sun, Yan; Huang, Huang; Sun, Ying; Wang, Chao; Shi, Xiao-Lei; Hu, Hong-Ying; Kameya, Takashi; Fujie, Koichi

    2013-09-01

    The long-term ecological risk of micropollutants, especially endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) has threatened reclaimed water quality. In this study, estrogenic activity and ecological risk of eight typical estrogenic EDCs in effluents from sewage plants were evaluated. The estrogenic activity analysis showed that steroidal estrogens had the highest estrogenic activity (ranged from 10(-1) to 10(3) ng-E2/L), phenolic compounds showed weaker estrogenic activity (mainly ranged from 10(-3) to 10 ng-E2/L), and phthalate esters were negligible. The ecological risk of the estrogenic EDCs which was characterized by risk quotient ranged from 10(-4) to 10(3), with an order in descending: steroids estrogens, phenolic compounds and phthalate esters. The eight estrogenic EDCs were scored and sorted based on the comparison of the estrogenic activity and the ecological risk, suggesting that 17α-ethynylestradiol (EE2), estrone (E1) and estradiol (E2) should be the priority EDCs to control in municipal sewage plants. PMID:23735815

  9. The integration of ecological risk assessment and structured decision making into watershed management.

    PubMed

    Ohlson, Dan W; Serveiss, Victor B

    2007-01-01

    Watershed management processes continue to call for more science and improved decision making that take into account the full range of stakeholder perspectives. Increasingly, the core principles of ecological risk assessment (i.e., the development and use of assessment endpoints and conceptual models, conducting exposure and effects analysis) are being incorporated and adapted in innovative ways to meet the call for more science. Similarly, innovative approaches to adapting decision analysis tools and methods for incorporating stakeholder concerns in complex natural resource management decisions are being increasingly applied. Here, we present an example of the integration of ecological risk assessment with decision analysis in the development of a watershed management plan for the Greater Vancouver Water District in British Columbia, Canada. Assessment endpoints were developed, ecological inventory data were collected, and watershed models were developed to characterize the existing and future condition of 3 watersheds in terms of the potential risks to water quality. Stressors to water quality include sedimentation processes (landslides, streambank erosion) and forest disturbance (wildfire, major insect or disease outbreak). Three landscape-level risk management alternatives were developed to reflect different degrees of management intervention. Each alternative was evaluated under different scenarios and analyzed by explicitly examining value-based trade-offs among water quality, environmental, financial, and social endpoints. The objective of this paper is to demonstrate how the integration of ecological risk assessment and decision analysis approaches can support decision makers in watershed management. PMID:17283600

  10. [Ecological risk assessment of sediment pollution based on triangular fuzzy number].

    PubMed

    Zhou, Xiao-Wei; Wang, Li-Ping; Zheng, Bing-Hui

    2008-11-01

    Based on the characteristics of random and fuzziness, and the shortage and imprecision of datum information of water environmental system, environment background value of sediments and concentration of pollution is calculated by means of triangle fuzzy number and fuzzy risk assessment model of the potential ecological risk index is established. Using this method heavy metal pollution and ecological risk in the Yangtze Estuary and its adjacent waters were analyzed. The result shows that the environment of the foundation of the study area is subject to varying degrees of pollution. The pollution extents are correspondingly Cu, Hg, Zn, Pb, As, Cd. RI by that method and the Hakanson ecological risk method is in similar trend. RI of the estuary, turbidity maximum zone and Hangzhou bay is greater than that at outside of the estuary and sea area nearby Zhousan, and the potential ecological risk rate increases one. The assessment result is good in the validation based on the corresponding period macrobenthic community parameters. PMID:19186829

  11. Ecological risk assessment guidance for preparation of remedial investigation/feasibility study work plans

    SciTech Connect

    Pentecost, E.D.; Vinikour, W.S.

    1993-08-01

    This guidance document (1) provides instructions on preparing the components of an ecological work plan to complement the overall site remedial assessment investigation/feasibility study (RI/FS) work plan and (2) directs the user on how to implement ecological tasks identified in the plan. Under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act of 1980 (CERCLA), as amended by the Superfired Amendments and Reauthorization Act of 1986 (SARA), an RI/FS work plan win have to be developed as part of the site-remediation scoping the process. Specific guidance on the RI/FS process and the preparation of work plans has been developed by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA 1988a). This document provides guidance to US Department of Energy (DOE) staff and contractor personnel for incorporation of ecological information into environmental remediation planning and decision making at CERCLA sites. An overview analysis of early ecological risk assessment methods (i.e., in the 1980s) at Superfund sites was conducted by the EPA (1989a). That review provided a perspective of attention given to ecological issues in some of the first RI/FS studies. By itself, that reference is of somewhat limited value; it does, however, establish a basis for comparison of past practices in ecological risk with current, more refined methods.

  12. Supplemental risk-assessment guidance for the Superfund program. Part 1. Guidance for Public-Health Risk Assessments. Part 2. Guidance for ecological Risk Assessments. Draft report (Final)

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1989-06-01

    This guidance manual was developed to address the practical aspects and issues pertaining to the Superfund risk-assessment process for both public health and environment concerns. Part 1, Guidance for Public Health Risk Assessments, supplements the Superfund Public Health Evaluation Manual and Superfund Exposure Assessment Manual and the Endangerment Assessment Handbook. Explicit guidance on technical matters which should be followed in developing public health risk assessments for EPA Region 1. The guidance addresses hazard identification, dose-response assessment, exposure assessment, risk characterization, and uncertainty/limitations. Part 2 of the manual, Guidance for Ecological Risk Assessments, addresses the collection of site-specific data needed to support an ecological risk assessment, describes a framework for conducting the assessments, and provides several specific approaches for assessing risks to systems exposed to chemical contamination in different media.

  13. Adolescent Sexual Activity: An Ecological, Risk-Factor Approach.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Small, Stephen A.; Luster, Tom

    1994-01-01

    Examined relationship between adolescent sexual intercourse and history of physical abuse, neighborhood monitoring, and adolescent's attachment to school. Findings from 2,108 adolescents suggest that there are many significant risk factors related to whether adolescents are sexually experienced and that importance of some factors vary by gender.…

  14. [Radiation risk, health and quality of life: the medico-psychological and social-ecological aspects].

    PubMed

    Davydov, B I; Ponomarenko, V A; Baluev, O T; Ushakov, I B

    1993-01-01

    Complexity and contradictoriness of the triplet life quality-health-risk gain particular acuity owing to the extensive and intensive nature of radiation and non-radiation risks in the modern technological society. Improvement of life standards issue new risks. Unavoidability of existing risks, emergence of new ones, and necessity of qualitative, first of all energetic, life maintenance come into conflict with the principles of ecological stability. The concept of life quality is in many respects irrational and in the future will largely hinge on traditions, ideological and religious maxims. PMID:8012301

  15. [Distribution and potential ecological risk assessment of heavy metals in sediments of Zhalong Wetland].

    PubMed

    Ye, Hua-Xiang; Zang, Shu-Ying; Zhang, Li-Juan; Zhang, Yu-Hong

    2013-04-01

    This study investigated the concentrations of heavy metals in the sediments of the Zhalong Wetland using ICP-MS, analyzed their spatial distributions, evaluated the potential ecological risk, and explored the pollution sources and environmental influencing factors. The results can be summarized as the followings: (1) The concentrations of Hg, Cd, As, Cu, Pb, Zn and Cr were 0.065, 0.155, 10.26, 18.20, 21.35, 52.08 and 46.47 mg x kg(-1), respectively, which were all above the soil background values of the Songnen Plain. Their spatial distributions were distinctly different. The concentration of heavy metals in the north was higher than that in the south, and the east was higher than the west. Particularly in the eastern region, the concentrations of Hg and Cd were 20.8 and 32.4 times the minimum values of the whole area. And in the core zone, the concentration was relatively low. (2) The sequence of the potential ecological risk posed by the metals was Hg > Cd > As > Pb > Cu > Cr > Zn. The average potential ecological risk index (RI) of the Zhalong Wetland was 171.9 (ranged from 76.9-473.5), suggesting a moderate ecological risk. However, the potential ecological risk was extremely high in the east which should be treated as the major heavy metal pollution prevention site in the future. (3) Except for Hg and Pb, the concentrations of all heavy metals were significantly correlated to each other, indicating that those heavy metals had homology. (4) Organic matter was the major environmental influencing factor. However, the trend of land salinization in the Zhalong Wetland has been intensified, indicating a higher risk of heavy metal releasing from the sediments, to which the local authorities should pay enough attention. PMID:23798110

  16. Ecological risk assessment of multimedia hazardous air pollutants: estimating exposure and effects.

    PubMed

    Efroymson, R A; Murphy, D L

    2001-07-01

    Hazardous air pollutants, some of which have the potential for multimedia distribution, raise several hurdles for ecological risk assessment including: (1) the development of an adequate transport, fate and exposure model; and (2) the selection of exposure-response models that can accommodate multiple exposure routes for ecological receptors. To address the first issue, the EPA Office of Air Quality Planning and Standards has developed TRIM.FaTE, a mass-balance, fate, transport, and ecological exposure model that is a component of the Total Risk Integrated Methodology (TRIM) for air pollutants. In addition to abiotic transfers and transformations, TRIM.FaTE estimates the uptake of a chemical by terrestrial and aquatic organisms with time. Measures of exposure that TRIM.FaTE can provide include: (1) body burdens or tissue concentrations; (2) doses averaged over any time period; or (3) concentrations of chemicals in abiotic media. The model provides the user with the flexibility to choose the exposure-response thresholds or dose-response relationships that are best suited to data availability, routes of exposure, and the mechanism of toxicity of the chemical to an ecological receptor. One of the challenges of incorporating TRIM.FaTE into a risk assessment methodology lies in defining a streamlined model simulation scenario for initial screening-level risk assessments. These assessments may encompass multiple facilities that emit a variety of pollutants near diverse ecosystems. The information on ecological risk assessment methodology that is described is applicable to the EPA Residual Risk Program with emphasis on multimedia pollutants and the role of TRIM.FaTE. PMID:11453299

  17. Integrating diverse scientific and practitioner knowledge in ecological risk analysis: a case study of biodiversity risk assessment in South Africa.

    PubMed

    Dana, G V; Kapuscinski, A R; Donaldson, J S

    2012-05-15

    Ecological risk analysis (ERA) is a structured evaluation of threats to species, natural communities, and ecosystem processes from pollutants and toxicants and more complicated living stressors such as invasive species, genetically modified organisms, and biological control agents. Such analyses are typically conducted by a narrowly-focused group of scientific experts using technical information. We evaluate whether the inclusion of more diverse experts and practitioners in ERA improved the ecological knowledge base about South African biodiversity and the potential impacts of genetically modified (GM) crops. We conducted two participatory ERA workshops in South Africa, analyzing potential impacts of GM maize on biodiversity. The first workshop involved only four biological scientists, who were joined by 18 diverse scientists and practitioners in the second, and we compared the ERA process and results between the two using descriptive statistics and semi-structured interview responses. The addition of diverse experts and practitioners led to a more comprehensive understanding of biological composition of the agro-ecosystem and a more ecologically relevant set of hazards, but impeded hazard prioritization and the generation of precise risk assessment values. Results suggest that diverse participation can improve the scoping or problem formulation of the ERA, by generating an ecologically robust set of information on which to base the subsequent, more technical risk assessment. The participatory ERA process also increased the transparency of the ERA by exposing the logic and rationale for decisions made at each step. PMID:22266478

  18. [Characteristics of speciation and evaluation of ecological risk of heavy metals in sewage sludge of Guangzhou].

    PubMed

    Guo, Peng-Ran; Lei, Yong-Qian; Cai, Da-Chuan; Zhang, Tao; Wu, Rui; Pan, Jia-Chuan

    2014-02-01

    Contents of heavy metals in different sewage sludges were analyzed and the speciation distribution and bioavailability of heavy metals were investigated, and the risk assessment code (RAC) and toxicity characteristic leaching procedure for solid waste were used to evaluate the potential ecological risk and leaching toxicity risk of heavy metals in sludge samples, respectively. The results showed that contents of Cu, Cr, Pb and Zn were high and presented a great difference by different sources in sewage sludges. Most of heavy metals existed in non-residual fractions and percentages of the mobile fraction (acid soluble fraction) of heavy metals in acidic sludge were higher. According to the results of single extraction, 1 mol x L(-1) NaOAc solution (pH 5.0) and 0.02 mol x L(-1) EDTA + 0.5 mol x L(-1) NH4OAc solution (pH 4.6) were suitable for evaluating bioavailable heavy metals in acidic and alkaline sludge, respectively. Percentages of bioavailable heavy metals were higher with the stronger of sludge acidity. The mobile ability of heavy metals resulted in the high ecological risk of sludge samples, and the bioavailability of heavy metals caused acidic sludges with a very high ecological risk but alkaline sludges with the middle ecological risk. Leaching toxicity risk was very high in sludge samples except domestic sewage sludge. After the removal of bioavailable heavy metals, leaching toxicity risk of sludge samples was still high in spite of its decrease; however, part type of sludges could be implemented landfill disposal. PMID:24812965

  19. Ecological Risk Assessment of Land Use Change in the Poyang Lake Eco-economic Zone, China

    PubMed Central

    Xie, Hualin; Wang, Peng; Huang, Hongsheng

    2013-01-01

    Land use/land cover change has been attracting increasing attention in the field of global environmental change research because of its role in the social and ecological environment. To explore the ecological risk characteristics of land use change in the Poyang Lake Eco-economic Zone of China, an eco-risk index was established in this study by the combination of a landscape disturbance index with a landscape fragmentation index. Spatial distribution and gradient difference of land use eco-risk are analyzed by using the methods of spatial autocorrelation and semivariance. Results show that ecological risk in the study area has a positive correlation, and there is a decreasing trend with the increase of grain size both in 1995 and 2005. Because the area of high eco-risk value increased from 1995 to 2005, eco-environment quality declined slightly in the study area. There are distinct spatial changes in the concentrated areas with high land use eco-risk values from 1995 to 2005. The step length of spatial separation of land use eco-risk is comparatively long—58 km in 1995 and 11 km in 2005—respectively. There are still nonstructural factors affecting the quality of the regional ecological environment at some small-scales. Our research results can provide some useful information for land eco-management, eco-environmental harnessing and restoration. In the future, some measures should be put forward in the regions with high eco-risk value, which include strengthening land use management, avoiding unreasonable types of land use and reducing the degree of fragmentation and separation. PMID:23343986

  20. [Heavy Metals Pollution in Topsoil from Dagang Industry Area and Its Ecological Risk Assessment].

    PubMed

    Zhang, Qian; Chen, Zong-juan; Peng, Chang-sheng; Li, Fa-sheng; Gu, Qing-bao

    2015-11-01

    Based on previous studies and field investigation of Dagang industry area in Tianjin, a total of 128 topsoil samples were collected, and contents of 10 heavy metals (As, Cd, Cr, Co, Cu, Pb, Ni, V, Zn and Hg) were determined. The geoaccumulation index and geostatistics were applied to examine the degree of contamination and spatial distribution of heavy metals in topsoil. The assessment on ecological risk of heavy metals was carried out using Hakanson's method, and the main resources of the heavy metals were analyzed as well. It was found that As, Cd and Co had the highest proportions exceeding Tianjin background value, which were 100%, 97.66% and 96.88%, respectively; the heavy-metal content increased to some extent comparing with that in 2004, and the pollutions of As and Cd were the worst, and other metals were at moderate pollution level or below. The ecological risks of heavy metals were different in topsoil with different land use types, the farmland soil in the southwest as well as soils adjacent to the industrial land were at relatively high potential ecological risk level, and the integrated ecological risk index reached up to 1 437.37. Analysis of correlation and principal component showed that traffic and transportation as well as agricultural activities might be the main resources of heavy metals in the area, besides, the industrial activities in the region might also affect the accumulation of heavy metals. PMID:26911014

  1. Ecological Factors Associated with STD Risk Behaviors among Detained Female Adolescents

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Voisin, Dexter R.; DiClemente, Ralph J.; Salazar, Laura F.; Crosby, Richard A.; Yarber, William L.

    2006-01-01

    The authors used Bronfenbrenner's conceptual framework of an ecological systems model to examine factors that are independently associated with sexually transmitted disease (STD) risk behaviors among 280 sexually active detained female adolescents. Using computer-assisted self-interviewing procedures, the authors assessed individual…

  2. Ecological risk assessment for radionuclides and metals: A radiological and chemical approach

    SciTech Connect

    Mahini, X.; Mahini, R.; Fan, A.

    1995-12-31

    In response to the regulatory concern over the adverse effects of depleted uranium (DU) on ecological receptors at two sites contaminated with DU and metals, an ecological risk assessment (ERA) was performed, in conjunction with a radiological/chemical human health risk assessment (HRA). To date, most research on the harmful effects of radiation has focused only on humans. With regard to radiation protection of the environment, national and international radiation protection advisory committees have concluded that levels protecting human health should be sufficient to protect the environment as well. To select chemicals of potential ecological concern, a qualitative ERA was first performed by comparing chemical stressor concentrations in abiotic media with various benchmarked criteria. The results indicate that, as with the case of human health, DU was the ecological risk-driving chemical at these sites. Both radiological and chemical effects posed by DU were then estimated for the bald eagle, an endangered species that represents the assessment end point of the quantitative ERA. Abiotic media and food webs evaluated were: soils, surface water, plants, terrestrial (both mammalian and avian) species, and aquatic species. The results of the quantitative ERA indicate that the decision to cleanup DU contamination at these sites can solely be based on human health effects as limiting criteria. The risk assessments were well received by the regulatory agencies overseeing the project.

  3. PUBLIC HEALTH RISK ASSESSMENT LINKED TO CLIMATIC AND ECOLOGICAL CHANGE. (R824995)

    EPA Science Inventory

    Abstract

    Disturbances of climatic and ecological systems can present risks to human health, which are becoming more evident from health studies linked to climate variability, landuse change and global climate change. Waterborne disease agents, such as Giardia cy...

  4. A CONCEPTUAL MODEL FOR EVALUATING RELATIVE POTENCY DATA FOR USE IN ECOLOGICAL RISK ASSESSMENTS

    EPA Science Inventory

    For chemicals with a common mechanism of toxicity, relative potency factors (RPFs) allow dose and exposure measures to be normalized to an equivalent toxicity amount of a model chemical... In ecological risk assessments the large number of possible target species, variety of expo...

  5. Social Ecological Model of Illness Management in High-Risk Youths with Type 1 Diabetes

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Naar-King, Sylvie; Podolski, Cheryl-Lynn; Ellis, Deborah A.; Frey, Maureen A.; Templin, Thomas

    2006-01-01

    In this study, the authors tested a social ecological model of illness management in high-risk, urban adolescents with Type 1 diabetes. It was hypothesized that management behaviors would be associated with individual adolescent characteristics as well as family, peer, and provider relationships. Questionnaires were collected from 96 adolescents…

  6. UNDERSTANDING ECOLOGICAL RISK IN RURAL WATERSHEDS THROUGH MEASURMENTS OF STREAM COMMUNITY METABOLISM, NUTRIENT AND SEDIMENT DYNAMICS

    EPA Science Inventory

    The goal of this project, and associated research, is to establish thresholds for ecological response to watershed disturbance and to develop tools and insights that will help us manage risks and evaluate best management practice (BMP) effectiveness. Changes in the amount and typ...

  7. NONINDIGENOUS PATHOGENIC SHRIMP VIRUS INTRODUCTIONS INTO THE UNITED STATES: DEVELOPING A QUALITATIVE ECOLOGICAL RISK ASSESSMENT

    EPA Science Inventory

    Nonindigenous Pathogenic Shrimp Virus Introductions into the United States: Developing a Qualitative Ecological Risk Assessment. Austin, R.K.; van der Schalie, W.R.; U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Washington, DC; Menzie, C.; Menzie-Cura and Associates, Chelmsford, MA; Fair...

  8. THE INTERSECTION OF INDEPENDENT LIES: INCREASING REALISM IN ECOLOGICAL RISK ASSESSMENT

    EPA Science Inventory

    In 1966, Levins presented a philosophical discussion on making inference about populations using clusters of models. In this article we provide an overview of model inference in ecological risk assessment, discuss the benefits and trade-offs of increasing model realism, show the...

  9. A PROBABALISTIC ANALYSIS TO DETERMINE ECOLOGICAL RISK DRIVERS, 10TH VOLUME ASTM STP 1403

    EPA Science Inventory

    A probabilistic analysis of exposure and effect data was used to identify chemicals most likely responsible for ecological risk. The mean and standard deviation of the natural log-transformed chemical data were used to estimate the probability of exposure for an area of concern a...

  10. 78 FR 17201 - Pesticide Chemicals; Registration Review; Draft Human Health and Ecological Risk Assessments...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-03-20

    ...This notice announces the availability of EPA's draft human health and ecological risk assessments for the registration review of ancymidol, fosthiazate, lactofen, polybutene resins, quizalofop, and soap salts and opens a public comment period on these documents. Registration review is EPA's periodic review of pesticide registrations to ensure that each pesticide continues to satisfy the......

  11. HUMAN AND ECOLOIGCAL RISK: CORRELATIONS AMONG HUMAN HEALTH, ECOLOGICAL AND ENVIORNMENTAL MONITORING DATA

    EPA Science Inventory

    While all life is affected by the quality of the environment, environmental risk factors for human and wildlife health are typically assessed using independent processes that are dissimilar in scale and scope. However, the integrated analysis of human, ecological, and environmen...

  12. INTEGRATING ECOLOGICAL RISK ASSESSMENT AND ECONOMIC ANALYSIS IN WATERSHEDS: A CONCEPTUAL APPROACH AND THREE CASE STUDIES

    EPA Science Inventory

    This document reports on a program of research to investigate the integration of ecological risk assessment (ERA) and economics, with an emphasis on the watershed as the scale for analysis. In 1993, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency initiated watershed ERA (W-ERA) in five...

  13. An ecological risk assessment of lead shot exposure in upland game birds and raptors

    SciTech Connect

    Kendall, R.I.; Lacher, T.E. Jr.; Bunck, C.

    1995-12-31

    There is concern about exposure of birds in terrestrial ecosystems to spent lead shot. Upland birds, particularly mourning doves, ingest spent lead shot; raptors ingest lead shot by consuming wounded game. Mortality, neurological dysfunction, immune suppression and reproductive impairment are effects of exposure to lead. The authors conducted an ecological risk assessment (using the new USEPA Ecological Risk Assessment Paradigm) on the impact of lead shot exposure in upland birds. Large amounts of lead shot are released into the environment each year from shooting and hunting. Doves collected from fields cultivated to attract mourning doves for hunting contain ingested spent lead shot. This might underestimate risk because doves ingesting shot may experience lead toxicosis and not be collected by hunters. Because lead can cause both acute and chronic toxicity if ingested and there is evidence of widespread liberation of lead shot in terrestrial ecosystems, concern for impacts on upland game birds and raptors is warranted. Although this ecological risk assessment does not clearly define a significant risk of upland game birds to lead shot, there is little evidence to rebut the presumption of risk. This issue merits continued scrutiny to protect upland game bird and raptor resources.

  14. Ecological determinants of distribution decline and risk of extinction in moths.

    PubMed

    Mattila, Niina; Kaitala, Veijo; Komonen, Atte; Kotiaho, Janne S; Päivinen, Jussi

    2006-08-01

    For successful conservation of species it is important to identify traits that predispose species to the risk of extinction. By identifying such traits conservation efforts can be directed toward species that are most at risk of becoming threatened. We used data derived from the literature to determine ecological traits that affect distribution, distribution change, and the risk of extinction in Finnish noctuid moths (Lepidoptera, Noctuidae). The ecological traits we examined included body size, larval specificity, length of the flight period, and overwintering stage. In addition, in monophagous species we examined the effects of resource distribution. Larval specificity, length of the flight period, and the overwintering stage each had an independent effect on the risk of extinction when the effects of other traits were controlled by entering all traits into the same regression model. Not a single trait predicted the risk of extinction when analysis was conducted without controlling for the other traits. This discrepancy among the results suggests that a single trait may not be enough to allow prediction of the risk of extinction. Instead, it seems that for successful, predictive conservation science data on several ecological characteristics are needed. PMID:16922232

  15. Response to Ecological Risk Assessment Forum Request for Information on the Benefits of PCB Congener-Specific Analyses

    EPA Science Inventory

    In August, 2001, the Ecological Risk Assessment Forum (ERAF) submitted a formal question to the Ecological Risk Assessment Support Center (ERASC) on the benefits of evaluating PCB congeners in environmental samples. This question was developed by ERAF members Bruce Duncan and Cla...

  16. Ecological risk of methylmercury in Everglades National Park, Florida, USA.

    PubMed

    Rumbold, D G; Lange, T R; Axelrad, D M; Atkeson, T D

    2008-10-01

    Dramatic declines in mercury levels have been reported in Everglades biota in recent years. Yet, methylmercury (MeHg) hot spots remain. This paper summarizes a risk assessment of MeHg exposure to three piscivorous wildlife species (bald eagle, Haliaeetus leucocephalus; wood stork, Mycteria americana; and great egret, Ardea albus) foraging at a MeHg hot spot in northern Everglades National Park (ENP). Available data consisted of literature-derived life history parameters and tissue concentrations measured in 60 largemouth bass (Micropterus salmoides), 60 sunfish (Lepomis spp.), and three composite samples of mosquitofish (Gambusia holbrooki) collected from 2003 to 2005. To assess risk, daily MeHg intake was estimated using Monte Carlo methods and compared to literature-derived effects thresholds. The results indicated the likelihood was very high, ranging from 98-100% probability, that these birds would experience exposures above the acceptable dose when foraging in northern ENP. Moreover, the likelihood that these birds would experience exposures above the lowest-observed-adverse-effect level (LOAEL) ranged from a 14% probability for the wood stork to 56% probability for the eagle. Data from this study, along with the results from several other surveys suggest that biota in ENP currently contain the highest MeHg levels in South Florida and that these levels are similar to or greater than other known MeHg hot spots in the United States. Given these findings, this paper also outlines a strategic plan to obtain additional measured and modeled information to support risk-based management decisions in ENP. PMID:18679795

  17. Ecological risk assessment of elemental pollution in sediment from Tunku Abdul Rahman National Park, Sabah

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Elias, Md Suhaimi; Hamzah, Mohd Suhaimi; Rahman, Shamsiah Ab; Salim, Nazaratul Ashifa Abdullah; Siong, Wee Boon; Sanuri, Ezwiza

    2014-02-01

    Eleven (11) surface sediment samples were collected from Tunku Abdul Rahman National Park, Sabah. The neutron activation analysis (NAA) and inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) techniques were applied for the determinations metal contents and their distributions in sediment samples. The results shown that Arsenic (As) concentrations are enriched at all sampling stations except for station TAR 09, with enrichment factor (EF) values ranged from 1.1 to 7.2. The elements such as Cd, Cr, Sb and U showed enrichment at a few stations and other elements (Cr, Cu, Pb, Th, Zn) shown as background levels in all stations. Degrees of contamination in this study were calculated base on concentrations of six elements (As, Cd, Cr, Cu, Pb, and Zn). TAR 11 station can be categorized as very high degree of contamination with degree of contamination value of 43.2. TAR 07 station can be categorized as a considerable degree of contamination (contamination value of 16.9). Six stations (TAR 01, 03, 04, 05, 06, 08, 10) showed moderate degree of contamination, with contamination values ranging from 8.0 to 16.0. TAR 02 and TAR 09 stations showed low degree of contaminations (< 8.0). TAR 11 showed very high ecological risk index (RI) with RI value is 916. TAR 07 and TAR 10 showed moderate ecological risk index with RI value 263 and 213, respectively. Other stations showed low ecological risk with RI values ranging from 42.3 to 117 (< 150). Very high ecological risk index could give an adverse effect to the benthic organism. The data obtained from the enrichment factor, degree of contamination and ecological risk index provided vital information, which can be used for future comparison. Information from the present study will be useful to the relevant government agencies and authorities in preparing preventive action to control direct discharge of heavy metals from industries, agro-base activities and domestic waste to the rivers and the sea.

  18. Ecological risk assessment of heavy metals in soils surrounding oil waste disposal areas.

    PubMed

    Xu, Jianling; Wang, Hanxi; Liu, Yuanyuan; Ma, Mengchao; Zhang, Tian; Zheng, Xiaoxue; Zong, Meihan

    2016-02-01

    More attention is being devoted to heavy metal pollution because heavy metals can concentrate in higher animals through the food chain, harm human health and threaten the stability of the ecological environment. In this study, the effects of heavy metals (Cu, Cr, Zn, Pb, Cd, Ni and Hg) emanating from oil waste disposal on surrounding soil in Jilin Province, China, were investigated. A potential ecological risk index was used to evaluate the damage of heavy metals and concluded that the degree of potential ecological damage of heavy metals can be ranked as follows: Hg > Cd > Pb > Cu > Ni > Cr > Zn. The average value of the potential ecological harm index (Ri) is 71.93, thereby indicating light pollution. In addition, this study researched the spatial distribution of soil heavy metals by means of ArcGIS (geographic information system) spatial analysis software. The results showed that the potential ecological risk index (R) of the large value was close to the distance from the oil waste disposal area; it is relatively between the degree of heavy metals in soil and the distance from the waste disposal area. PMID:26832722

  19. Developing ecological scenarios for the prospective aquatic risk assessment of pesticides.

    PubMed

    Rico, Andreu; Van den Brink, Paul J; Gylstra, Ronald; Focks, Andreas; Brock, Theo Cm

    2016-07-01

    The prospective aquatic environmental risk assessment (ERA) of pesticides is generally based on the comparison of predicted environmental concentrations in edge-of-field surface waters with regulatory acceptable concentrations derived from laboratory and/or model ecosystem experiments with aquatic organisms. New improvements in mechanistic effect modeling have allowed a better characterization of the ecological risks of pesticides through the incorporation of biological trait information and landscape parameters to assess individual, population and/or community-level effects and recovery. Similarly to exposure models, ecological models require scenarios that describe the environmental context in which they are applied. In this article, we propose a conceptual framework for the development of ecological scenarios that, when merged with exposure scenarios, will constitute environmental scenarios for prospective aquatic ERA. These "unified" environmental scenarios are defined as the combination of the biotic and abiotic parameters that are required to characterize exposure, (direct and indirect) effects, and recovery of aquatic nontarget species under realistic worst-case conditions. Ideally, environmental scenarios aim to avoid a potential mismatch between the parameter values and the spatial-temporal scales currently used in aquatic exposure and effect modeling. This requires a deeper understanding of the ecological entities we intend to protect, which can be preliminarily addressed by the formulation of ecological scenarios. In this article we present a methodological approach for the development of ecological scenarios and illustrate this approach by a case-study for Dutch agricultural ditches and the example focal species Sialis lutaria. Finally, we discuss the applicability of ecological scenarios in ERA and propose research needs and recommendations for their development and integration with exposure scenarios. Integr Environ Assess Manag 2016;12:510-521.

  20. Reducing uncertainty in ecological risk assessment: The pros of measuring contaminant exposures

    SciTech Connect

    Burris, J.A.; Pease, A.

    1995-12-31

    Wildlife species (mammals, birds and reptiles) are primarily exposed to contamination in soils via ingestion of food. Uncertainties in risk analyses for this pathway are largely associated with the estimation of the amount of contamination in food items. The benefits of measuring contaminant concentrations in food items are examined based on comparison of risk results with and without measurements of exposure. At two hazardous waste sites, plants and earthworms were analyzed for metals and organics. Site-specific bioaccumulation factors (BAFs) were calculated and compared to literature reported values. In general, the metals concentrations in plant samples were higher than those predicted by literature values with the exception of cadmium and copper. Metal concentrations measured in invertebrates (worms) were lower than those predicted by literature values with the exception of arsenic. Literature BAFs did not adequately predict concentrations of barium, mercury or copper in invertebrate tissue. In the ecological risk assessments for both of the sites, if site-specific measurements were used, risks for wildlife species were not predicted. However if literature BAF values were used, unacceptable risks were predicted. The higher estimates of risks were associated with overestimates of dietary exposures of lead, cadmium, chromium, copper and zinc. Measurement of contaminant exposures provided for a more realistic and cost-effective estimate of ecological risks. The effect of using the empirical data on the magnitude of risks were evaluated including decisions concerning remediation. A cost-benefit analysis will be provided comparing the costs of measurement of exposures versus remediation.

  1. Potential ecological risk assessment and prediction of soil heavy metal pollution around coal gangue dump

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jiang, X.; Lu, W. X.; Yang, Q. C.; Yang, Z. P.

    2014-03-01

    Aim of the present study is to evaluate the potential ecological risk and predict the trend of soil heavy metal pollution around a~coal gangue dump in Jilin Province (Northeast China). The concentrations of Cd, Pb, Cu, Cr and Zn were monitored by inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS). The potential ecological risk index method developed by Hakanson (1980) was employed to assess the potential risk of heavy metal pollution. The potential ecological risk in an order of E(Cd) > E(Pb) > E(Cu) > E(Cr) > E(Zn) have been obtained, which showed that Cd was the most important factor led to risk. Based on the Cd pollution history, the cumulative acceleration and cumulative rate of Cd were estimated, and the fixed number of years exceeding standard prediction model was established, which was used to predict the pollution trend of Cd under the accelerated accumulation mode and the uniform mode. Pearson correlation analysis and correspondence analysis are employed to identify the sources of heavy metal, and the relationship between sampling points and variables. These findings provide some useful insights for making appropriate management strategies to prevent and decrease heavy metal pollution around coal gangue dump in Yangcaogou coal mine and other similar areas elsewhere.

  2. Potential ecological risk assessment and prediction of soil heavy-metal pollution around coal gangue dump

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jiang, X.; Lu, W. X.; Zhao, H. Q.; Yang, Q. C.; Yang, Z. P.

    2014-06-01

    The aim of the present study is to evaluate the potential ecological risk and trend of soil heavy-metal pollution around a coal gangue dump in Jilin Province (Northeast China). The concentrations of Cd, Pb, Cu, Cr and Zn were monitored by inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS). The potential ecological risk index method developed by Hakanson (1980) was employed to assess the potential risk of heavy-metal pollution. The potential ecological risk in the order of ER(Cd) > ER(Pb) > ER(Cu) > ER(Cr) > ER(Zn) have been obtained, which showed that Cd was the most important factor leading to risk. Based on the Cd pollution history, the cumulative acceleration and cumulative rate of Cd were estimated, then the fixed number of years exceeding the standard prediction model was established, which was used to predict the pollution trend of Cd under the accelerated accumulation mode and the uniform mode. Pearson correlation analysis and correspondence analysis are employed to identify the sources of heavy metals and the relationship between sampling points and variables. These findings provided some useful insights for making appropriate management strategies to prevent or decrease heavy-metal pollution around a coal gangue dump in the Yangcaogou coal mine and other similar areas elsewhere.

  3. Environmental monitoring and ecological risk assessment for pesticide contamination and effects in Lake Pamvotis, northwestern Greece.

    PubMed

    Hela, Dimitra G; Lambropoulou, Dimitra A; Konstantinou, Ioannis K; Albanis, Triantafyllos A

    2005-06-01

    Monitoring of pesticide residues in water and sediments was conducted as a basis for subsequent ecotoxicological risk assessment for the shallow eutrophic Lake Pamvotis, northwestern Greece. During a one-year study period, atrazine, desethylatrazine (DEA), simazine, diazinon, malathion, oxamyl, carbofuran, and ethion were detected in water and atrazine, desethylatrazine, diazinon, and s-ethyl dipropylthiocarbamate (EPTC) in sediments, all at ppb concentration level. Temporal variation in pesticide concentrations was observed. Highest residue levels for most pesticides in both water and sediment matrices occurred in the May to July period with the exception of atrazine and DEA, which show highest levels in water during the September to November period. The ecological risk associated with pesticide contamination was assessed using two different methods: The toxic unit method, which provides a first indication of the relative contribution of detected pesticides to the total toxicity and a probabilistic approach, and the inverse method of Van Straalen and Denneman, which is used to quantify the ecological risk. The maximum percentage of the ecological risk was 10.3 and 51.8% for water and 17.2 and 70.6% for sediment, based on acute and chronic level, respectively. These results show that pesticides exert a significant pressure on the aquatic system of Lake Pamvotis, especially for the chronic-effect level. Simple quotient methods should be coupled with higher-tier risk assessment, especially if restoration activities on lake ecosystems are to be undertaken for sustainable development. PMID:16117136

  4. Ecological risk assessment of the impact of a landfill associated with karst terrain

    SciTech Connect

    Farmer, J.J.; Bailey, F.C.; Hollyday, E.F.; Byle, T.D.

    1995-12-31

    An ecological risk assessment is underway on an active sanitary landfill in Bedford County, Tennessee. The overall objective is to determine the probability of risk from landfill-associated toxicants to both the aquatic ecological communities and to human health through drinking water contamination. During the problem formulation phase, an EPA Rapid Bioassessment (Protocol I) of streams around the landfill indicated a lower diversity and abundance of benthic macroinvertebrates in streams adjacent to the landfill compared to reference streams. During the analysis phase, water chemistry analyses were conducted on samples from 176 sites around the landfill, including seeps and springs, and the direction of movement of ground water under the site was determined by potentiometric mapping. Water flowing into Anderton Branch from landfill-associated tributaries, seeps and springs showed elevated specific conductance and elevated levels of chloride, manganese, iron, and nickel. GC-FID analysis indicated the presence of unidentified organic compounds in a small seep adjacent to the landfill. From these data it was concluded that there is potential for exposure of aquatic ecological communities and drinking water supplies to landfill-associated chemicals. In order to more thoroughly characterize ecological and human health risk associated with the landfill, more intensive analyses are underway, including quantitative seasonal macroinvertebrate biomonitoring, laboratory toxicity tests with Daphnia magna using water from selected monitoring sites, and monitoring of drinking water wells.

  5. Polychlorinated biphenyls and Hudson River white perch: implications for population-level ecological risk assessment and risk management.

    PubMed

    Barnthouse, Lawrence W; Glaser, David; DeSantis, Liane

    2009-07-01

    Risk assessments and risk management decisions concerning risks to wild fish populations resulting from exposures to polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and related chemicals have been based primarily on observations of effects of chemicals on individual organisms. Although the development and application of population-level ecological risk-assessment methods is proceeding at a rapid pace, the organism-level approach is still being justified by arguments that population-level ecological risk assessment is in an early stage of development and has not been shown to be reliable. This article highlights the importance of including population-level effects in risk-management decision-making, by examining the effects of exposures to PCBs on fish populations inhabiting the Hudson River, New York, USA, a system in which data have been collected for approximately 30 y concerning both concentrations of PCBs in sediment and fish tissue and the abundance and reproduction of exposed fish populations. We previously tested hypotheses concerning the effects of PCBs on the striped bass population of the Hudson River, and found that the available data conflicted with all of these hypotheses. Here, we report results of similar analyses of effects of historic PCB exposures on the Hudson River white perch population, using an extended data set that recently became available. As with striped bass, we found no correlation between maternal PCB tissue concentrations and any measure of reproductive success in Hudson River white perch during the 30-y period covered by the data set. Together with results of studies performed on fish populations exposed to PCBs at other sites, our results clearly demonstrate that physiological and genetic adaptation, biological compensation, and other ecological processes influence responses of fish populations to PCB exposures and should be considered in risk management decision-making. PMID:20050031

  6. Refuse and the ‘Risk Society’: The Political Ecology of Risk in Inter-war Britain

    PubMed Central

    Cooper, Timothy; Bulmer, Sarah

    2013-01-01

    This article responds to current critiques of Ulrich Beck's ‘risk society’ thesis by historians of science and medicine. Those who have engaged with the concept of risk society have been content to accept the fundamental categories of Beck's analysis. In contrast, we argue that Beck's risk society thesis underplays two key themes. First, the role of capitalist social relations as the driver of technological change and the transformation of everyday life; and second, the ways in which hegemonic discourses of risk can be appropriated and transformed by counter-hegemonic forces. In place of ‘risk society’, we propose an approach based upon a ‘political ecology of risk’, which emphasises the social relations that are fundamental to the everyday politics of environmental health. PMID:24771975

  7. [Heavy metals distribution characteristics and ecological risk evaluation in surface sediments of dammed Jinshan lake].

    PubMed

    Zhou, Xiao-Hong; Liu, Long-Mei; Chen, Xi; Chen, Zhi-Gang; Zhang, Jin-Ping; Li, Yi-Min; Liu, Biao

    2014-11-01

    In order to reveal the pollution loading of heavy metals in Dammed Jinshan lake, six heavy metals (As, Cu, Pb, Cd, Zn, Cr) from 18 sediment samples were analyzed using ICP, and the distribution characteristics of heavy metals in the sediment were comprehensively evaluated through concentration coefficient, geo-acumulation indexes, potential ecological risk evaluation and traceability analysis. The results showed that (1) the average contents of As, Pb, Cu, Zn, Cr, Cd were 23.22, 26.20, 24.42, 143.12, 245.30 and 0.67 mg x kg(-1), respectively, in the surface sediments of dammed Jinshan Lake. The average contents of Pb and Cu were lower than the primary standard and secondary standards of soil environmental quality standards. The average contents of Zn and Cr were lower than the primary standard and higher than the secondary standards of soil environmental quality standards. The average contents of As and Cd were higher than the primary and secondary standards of soil environmental quality standards. From the spatial distribution, the contents of Pb and Zn were the highest at sampling site No. 1, which was located at the Beigushan Square. The contents of As,Cu, Cr, Cd were the highest at sampling sites Nos. 12, 3, 14, and 7, respectively; (2) The order of concentration coefficient was As > Cr > Cd > Pb > Zn > Cu, which indicated that the enrichment amount of As was the highest and that of Cu was the lowest; (3) Based on the geo-acumulation indexes, the Cu is clean and Pb, Zn, Cd is the light pollution and As, Cr moderate pollution; (4) The order of Potential ecological risk coefficient was Cd > As > Cr > Pb > Cu > Zn, Cr, Pb, Cu, Zn were of light ecological risk and As, Cd were of medium ecological risk. From the spatial distribution, the sampling sites Nos. 1, 6, 7 and 12 had medium potential ecological risk, and the rest sample points had slight potential ecological risk; (5) The principal component analysis (PCA) revealed that the main reason for the differences

  8. Residues, Distributions, Sources, and Ecological Risks of OCPs in the Water from Lake Chaohu, China

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Wen-Xiu; He, Wei; Qin, Ning; Kong, Xiang-Zhen; He, Qi-Shuang; Ouyang, Hui-Ling; Yang, Bin; Wang, Qing-Mei; Yang, Chen; Jiang, Yu-Jiao; Wu, Wen-Jing; Xu, Fu-Liu

    2012-01-01

    The levels of 18 organochlorine pesticides (OCPs) in the water from Lake Chaohu were measured by a solid phase extraction-gas chromatography-mass spectrometer detector. The spatial and temporal distribution, possible sources, and potential ecological risks of the OCPs were analyzed. The annual mean concentration for the OCPs in Lake Chaohu was 6.99 ng/L. Aldrin, HCHs, and DDTs accounted for large proportions of the OCPs. The spatial pollution followed the order of Central Lakes > Western Lakes > Eastern Lakes and water area. The sources of the HCHs were mainly from the historical usage of lindane. DDTs were degraded under aerobic conditions, and the main sources were from the use of technical DDTs. The ecological risks of 5 OCPs were assessed by the species sensitivity distribution (SSD) method in the order of heptachlor > γ-HCH > p,p′-DDT > aldrin > endrin. The combining risks of all sampling sites were MS > JC > ZM > TX, and those of different species were crustaceans > fish > insects and spiders. Overall, the ecological risks of OCP contaminants on aquatic animals were very low. PMID:23251107

  9. Integration of modeling components into ecological and human health risk assessments

    SciTech Connect

    Chernoff, H.; Tomchuk, D.

    1995-12-31

    The Hudson River is an important recreational and ecological resource in New York State. From 1957 to 1975 between 209,000 and 1.3 million pounds of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) were discharged into the Hudson River from two electrical capacitor manufacturing facilities. Many PCBs discharged to the river adhered to the sediment in the Upper River. Aquatic organisms have been exposed to PCBs in the sediment through ingestion or direct contact with sediment. PCBs in the sediment can enter the water column via particulate resuspension and dissolved PCB diffusion from sediment pore water to the overlying water column, providing additional exposure pathways. Multiple exposure pathways can increase the body burden of organisms living in contaminated areas. Ecological and human health risk assessments are being performed as part of a reassessment effort to determine the need and extent of remediation, required for contaminated sediments in the Upper River. Hydrodynamic, water quality and food-chain models based upon and calibrated to recent and historical data collection efforts are integrated into the risk assessments to provide estimates of total PCBs, Aroclors and selected congener concentrations at specific locations in the river under current and future scenarios. The results of both the ecological and human health risk assessments will assist in defining PCB concentrations that pose risks to the biological communities of the Hudson River.

  10. Potential human health risks from metals and As via Odontesthes bonariensis consumption and ecological risk assessments in a eutrophic lake.

    PubMed

    Monferran, Magdalena V; Garnero, Paola Lorena; Wunderlin, Daniel A; Angeles Bistoni, María de Los

    2016-07-01

    The concentration of Al, Cr, Fe, Mn, Ni, Cu, Zn, Hg, Sr, Mo, Ag, Cd, Pb and As was analyzed in water, sediment, and muscle of Odontesthes bonariensis from the eutrophic San Roque Lake (Córdoba-Argentina). The monitoring campaign was performed during the wet, dry and intermediate season. The concentration of Cr, Fe, Pb, Zn, Al and Cd in water exceeded the limits considered as hazardous for aquatic life. The highest metal concentrations were observed in sediment, intermediate concentrations, in fish muscle, and the lowest in water, with the exception of Cr, Zn, As and Hg, which were the highest in fish muscle. Potential ecological risk analysis of heavy metal concentrations in sediment indicated that the San Roque Lake posed a low ecological risk in all sampling periods. The target hazard quotients (THQs) and carcinogenic risk (CR) for individual metals showed that As in muscle was particularly hazardous, posing a potential risk for fishermen and the general population during all sampling periods. Hg poses a potential risk for fishermen only in the intermediate season. It is important to highlight that none of these two elements exceeded the limits considered as hazardous for aquatic life in water and sediment. This result proves the importance of performing measurements of contaminants, in both abiotic and biotic compartments, to assess the quality of food resources. These results suggest that the consumption of this fish species from this reservoir is not completely safe for human health. PMID:27060257

  11. Risk Factors for Overweight/Obesity in Preschool Children: An Ecological Approach

    PubMed Central

    McBride, Brent A.; Fiese, Barbara H.; Jones, Blake L.; Cho, Hyunkeun

    2013-01-01

    Abstract Background Identification of risk factors is critical to preventing the childhood obesity epidemic. Risk factors that contribute to obesity are multifactorial. However, limited research has focused on identifying obesity risk factors using an ecological approach. Methods Baseline self-report survey data from the STRONG Kids program were used. The sample consisted of 329 parent-child dyads recruited from childcare programs in east-central Illinois. Child height and weight were measured and converted to age- and sex-specific z-scores using standard growth charts. An ecological model provided the theoretical framework for the selection of 22 previously reported childhood obesity risk factors. Multiple logistic regression analyses were used to identify risk factors. Results Of 22 potential risk factors, three were found to be significantly associated with child overweight/obesity. These included child nighttime sleep duration (χ2=8.56; p=0.003), parent BMI (χ2=5.62; p=0.01), and parental restrictive feeding for weight control (χ2=4.77; p=0.02). Children who slept for 8 hours and less were 2.2 times more likely to be overweight/obese [95% confidence interval (CI): 1.3–3.7), whereas children with an overweight/obese parent were 1.9 times more likely to be overweight/obese (95% CI: 1.12–3.2). Finally, children whose parents used restrictive feeding practices were 1.75 times more likely to be overweight/obese (95% CI: 1.06–2.9). Conclusions Using an ecological approach, we conclude that childhood obesity prevention efforts may benefit from targeting the key risk factors of child sleep duration, parent BMI, and parental restrictive feeding practices as focus areas for obesity prevention. PMID:24020790

  12. Perceived extrinsic mortality risk and reported effort in looking after health: testing a behavioral ecological prediction.

    PubMed

    Pepper, Gillian V; Nettle, Daniel

    2014-09-01

    Socioeconomic gradients in health behavior are pervasive and well documented. Yet, there is little consensus on their causes. Behavioral ecological theory predicts that, if people of lower socioeconomic position (SEP) perceive greater personal extrinsic mortality risk than those of higher SEP, they should disinvest in their future health. We surveyed North American adults for reported effort in looking after health, perceived extrinsic and intrinsic mortality risks, and measures of SEP. We examined the relationships between these variables and found that lower subjective SEP predicted lower reported health effort. Lower subjective SEP was also associated with higher perceived extrinsic mortality risk, which in turn predicted lower reported health effort. The effect of subjective SEP on reported health effort was completely mediated by perceived extrinsic mortality risk. Our findings indicate that perceived extrinsic mortality risk may be a key factor underlying SEP gradients in motivation to invest in future health. PMID:24990431

  13. Human health and ecological risk assessment of soil-borne arsenic and lead: A site-specific risk assessment

    SciTech Connect

    Roy, M.; Epp, G.A.; Beukema, P.; Nieboer, E.

    1997-12-31

    Screening level site specific human health and ecological risk assessments (ERA) were conducted at a historical (1908--1921) smelting and refining site in the Niagara Region, Ontario in accordance with the recently released provincial and federal risk assessment guidelines. The purpose of the assessment was to evaluate the risk associated with elevated levels of arsenic and lead in surface soils, and to assess alternative remediation options, prior to property transfer. Future intended land use will be parkland and for the site to remain forested. The identification of potential receptors, exposure pathways, and end-points was conducted at the biological community-level. The ERA involved a toxic cue inventory of the core smelting and refining site, adjacent lands and a reference site. Development of remediation options was based on hazard assessment and the prediction of risks associated with arsenic contamination. An evaluation of remediation options and the selection of a preferred option are discussed.

  14. Structural complexity, movement bias, and metapopulation extinction risk in dendritic ecological networks

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Campbell Grant, Evan H.

    2011-01-01

    Spatial complexity in metacommunities can be separated into 3 main components: size (i.e., number of habitat patches), spatial arrangement of habitat patches (network topology), and diversity of habitat patch types. Much attention has been paid to lattice-type networks, such as patch-based metapopulations, but interest in understanding ecological networks of alternative geometries is building. Dendritic ecological networks (DENs) include some increasingly threatened ecological systems, such as caves and streams. The restrictive architecture of dendritic ecological networks might have overriding implications for species persistence. I used a modeling approach to investigate how number and spatial arrangement of habitat patches influence metapopulation extinction risk in 2 DENs of different size and topology. Metapopulation persistence was higher in larger networks, but this relationship was mediated by network topology and the dispersal pathways used to navigate the network. Larger networks, especially those with greater topological complexity, generally had lower extinction risk than smaller and less-complex networks, but dispersal bias and magnitude affected the shape of this relationship. Applying these general results to real systems will require empirical data on the movement behavior of organisms and will improve our understanding of the implications of network complexity on population and community patterns and processes.

  15. Hydrologic analysis for ecological risk assessment of watersheds with abandoned mine lands

    SciTech Connect

    Gallagher, D.; Babendreier, J.; Cherry, D.

    1999-07-01

    As part of on-going study of acid mine drainage (AMD), a comprehensive ecological risk assessment was conducted in the Leading Creek Watershed in southeast Ohio. The watershed is influenced by agriculture and active and abandoned coal-mining operations. This work presents a broad overview of several quantitative measures of hydrology and hydraulic watershed properties available for in risk assessment and evaluates their relation to metrics of ecology. Data analysis included statistical comparisons of metrics of ecology, ecotoxicology, water quality, and physically based parameters describing land use, geomorphology, flow, velocity, and particle size. A multiple regression analysis indicated that abandoned mining operations dominated impacts upon aquatic ecology. It also indicated low flow velocity measurements and a ratio of maximum velocity to average velocity at low flow where helpful in describing variation in macroinvertebrate Total Taxa scores. Other key parameters also identified strong impact relationships with biodiversity trends and included pH, simple knowledge of any mining upstream, calculated % of the subshed covered by strip mines, and the measured depth of streambed sediments from site to site.

  16. Modified social ecological model: a tool to guide the assessment of the risks and risk contexts of HIV epidemics

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Social and structural factors are now well accepted as determinants of HIV vulnerabilities. These factors are representative of social, economic, organizational and political inequities. Associated with an improved understanding of multiple levels of HIV risk has been the recognition of the need to implement multi-level HIV prevention strategies. Prevention sciences research and programming aiming to decrease HIV incidence requires epidemiologic studies to collect data on multiple levels of risk to inform combination HIV prevention packages. Discussion Proximal individual-level risks, such as sharing injection devices and unprotected penile-vaginal or penile-anal sex, are necessary in mediating HIV acquisition and transmission. However, higher order social and structural-level risks can facilitate or reduce HIV transmission on population levels. Data characterizing these risks is often far more actionable than characterizing individual-level risks. We propose a modified social ecological model (MSEM) to help visualize multi-level domains of HIV infection risks and guide the development of epidemiologic HIV studies. Such a model may inform research in epidemiology and prevention sciences, particularly for key populations including men who have sex with men (MSM), people who inject drugs (PID), and sex workers. The MSEM builds on existing frameworks by examining multi-level risk contexts for HIV infection and situating individual HIV infection risks within wider network, community, and public policy contexts as well as epidemic stage. The utility of the MSEM is demonstrated with case studies of HIV risk among PID and MSM. Summary The MSEM is a flexible model for guiding epidemiologic studies among key populations at risk for HIV in diverse sociocultural contexts. Successful HIV prevention strategies for key populations require effective integration of evidence-based biomedical, behavioral, and structural interventions. While the focus of epidemiologic

  17. USDOE study: Human health and ecological risk assessment for produced water discharges

    SciTech Connect

    Meinhold, A.F.; Holtzman, S.; DePhillips, M.; Hamilton, L.D.

    1994-12-31

    Produced water generated during the production of oil and gas can contain high concentrations of radionuclides, organics and heavy metals. There are concerns about potential human health and ecological impacts from the discharge of these contaminants to the Gulf of Mexico. Data collected in the United States Department of Energy (USDOE) field study are being used in a series of human health and ecological risk assessments. These assessments will support scientifically-based regulation and risk management. This presentation: summarizes risk assessments performed for produced water discharges; describes how uncertainties in these assessments are guiding data collection efforts in the USDOE field study; and outlines ongoing risk assessment studies. In these studies, risk assessment is treated as an iterative process. An initial screening-level assessment is performed to identify important contaminants, transport and exposure pathways, and parameters. These intermediate results are used to guide data collection efforts and refinements to the analysis. At this stage in the analysis, risk is described in terms of probabilities; the uncertainties in each measured or modeled parameter are considered explicitly.

  18. Effects of algae growth on cadmium remobilization and ecological risk in sediments of Taihu Lake.

    PubMed

    Ni, Lixiao; Li, Dandan; Su, Lili; Xu, Jiajun; Li, Shiyin; Ye, Xiang; Geng, Hong; Wang, Peifang; Li, Yi; Li, Yiping; Acharya, Kumud

    2016-05-01

    Indoor simulation experiment with 2.76 L microcosms using sediment from Taihu Lake were conducted to investigate the relationship between algae bloom and heavy metals release into a lake aquatic environment. The results showed that Microcystic aeruginosa (M. aeruginosa) growth can enhance cadmium (Cd) mobilization from sediments to overlying water due to increasing pH and DO content of overlying water and changing the redox condition of surface sediment (0-2 cm) from weak oxidation to weak reduction. The dissolved Cd concentration in overlying water can be decreased during algal growth process. The remobilization of Cd from sediment can effectively reduce the ecological risk of total Cd in sediments. The results of this study showed that both Igeo and Er(i) can be used to effectively evaluate the ecological risk of heavy metal Cd in different fractions. PMID:26923240

  19. Incorporating uncertainity in regional ecological risk assessments: Ozone effects on southeastern USA forests

    SciTech Connect

    Woodbury, P.B.; Smith, J.E.; Weinstein, D.A.

    1995-09-01

    Currently, assessments of how environmental stresses such as tropospheric ozone affect forests employ point estimates of factors such as ozone dose and species sensitivity. However, there is substantial regional heterogeneity in such factors. Hence, we have developed an approach for incorporating probabilistic analysis in estimating ecological risk at a regional scale. As an example, we model the effects of tropospheric ozone on the growth of loblolly pine stands in the southeastern USA. Our approach links software capable of automated Monte Carlo simulation to a Geographic Information System in order to assess the influence of uncertainty in factors such as ozone dose, soil moisture availability, and climate on regional patterns of loblolly growth rate. We demonstrate that this methodology may improve assessments of ecological risk by quantitating regional patterns in the influence of various factors on the predicted response of forests to ozone as well as identifying regions in which uncertainty in model predictions is the greatest.

  20. Produced water discharges to the Gulf of Mexico: Background information for ecological risk assessments

    SciTech Connect

    Meinhold, A.F.; Holtzman, S.; DePhillips, M.P.

    1996-06-01

    This report reviews ecological risk assessment concepts and methods; describes important biological resources in the Gulf of Mexico of potential concern for produced water impacts; and summarizes data available to estimate exposure and effects of produced water discharges. The emphasis is on data relating to produced water discharges in the central and western Gulf of Mexico, especially in Louisiana. Much of the summarized data and cited literature are relevant to assessments of impacts in other regions. Data describing effects on marine and estuarine fishes, mollusks, crustaceans and benthic invertebrates are emphasized. This review is part of a series of studies of the health and ecological risks from discharges of produced water to the Gulf of Mexico. These assessments will provide input to regulators in the development of guidelines and permits, and to industry in the use of appropriate discharge practices.

  1. Remedial investigation report for J-Field, Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland. Volume 3: Ecological risk assessment

    SciTech Connect

    Hlohowskyj, I.; Hayse, J.; Kuperman, R.; Van Lonkhuyzen, R.

    2000-02-25

    The Environmental Management Division of the U.S. Army Aberdeen Proving Ground (APG), Maryland, is conducting a remedial investigation (RI) and feasibility study (FS) of the J-Field area at APG, pursuant to the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA), as amended. As part of that activity, Argonne National Laboratory (ANL) conducted an ecological risk assessment (ERA) of the J-Field site. This report presents the results of that assessment.

  2. Application of a watershed ecological risk assessment in developing a nitrogen management strategy

    SciTech Connect

    Tyler, P.; Geist, M.; Dow, D.; Clark, H.; Gerritsen, J.

    1995-12-31

    Waquoit Bay is a small estuary on the south shore of Cape Cod, Massachusetts. Population in the watershed has increased approximately 1 5 fold in the past 50 years, and residential land use has increased tenfold from 2 percent of the watershed in 1950 to 20 percent in 1990. Of particular concern is nitrogen loading primarily via groundwater from on-site septic systems, fertilizers and atmospheric deposition. Adverse ecological impacts have included: growth of nuisance macroalgae, decreases in water quality, loss of bay scallops and loss of eel grass (Zostera marina) in Waquoit Bay and adjoining coastal ponds. A watershed-based ecological risk assessment was applied to assist in the development of management strategies for the bay. Management goals for the watershed were identified by stakeholders. Endpoints of the risk assessment were derived from the management goals and included: areal extent and patch size of eel grass beds and macroalgal mats, and habitat quality as evidenced by physical, chemical and biological water quality. Ecological response of the endpoints to the nitrogen loading was examined with a regional analysis of eel grass cover, land use, and predicted nitrogen loading in similar embayments of Cape Cod. The uncertainty analysis of the risk assessment allows prediction of the probability of success for a given management strategy; for example, what would be the probability that eel grass would return by reducing the nitrogen load through the implementation of various management strategies. This example shows the utility of the ecological risk assessment approach for developing optimal management strategies to increase the probability of achieving management goals.

  3. Screening of high phytotoxicity priority pollutants and their ecological risk assessment in China's surface waters.

    PubMed

    Yan, Zhenguang; Wang, Weili; Zhou, Junli; Yi, Xianliang; Zhang, Juan; Wang, Xiaonan; Liu, Zhengtao

    2015-06-01

    The protection of aquatic plants has received less attention in ecological risk assessment of pollutants compared with animals. Some pollutants like herbicide, however, are more toxic to aquatic plants than to animals. Aquatic toxicity data of 126 priority pollutants were screened and analyzed in this study. Through data analysis, five priority pollutants namely 1,1,1-trichloroethane (1,1,1-TCA), 4-nitrophenol (4-NP), butylbenzyl phthalate (BBP), di-n-butyl phthalate (DBP) and N-nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA) were identified to have high phytotoxicity effect. The most sensitive aquatic plants to these five pollutants are all alage, including Chlamydomonas reinhardtii, Pseudokirchneriella subcapitata, Gymnodinium breve. The water quality criteria concentration of the five pollutants were derived by the species sensitivity distribution method. The acute criteria concentration for the five pollutants were derived to be 1474, 2180, 54.41, 98.52 and 520.4 μg L(-1), and the chronic criteria concentration for them were 147.4, 218.0, 5.441, 9.852 and 52.04 μg L(-1), respectively. For China's freshwater bodies, the results of ecological risk assessment based on the derived criteria showed that, for the selected pollutants except DBP, there were basically no significant risk in most of the studied water bodies. DBP showed apparent ecological risks in all of the studied water bodies, particularly in the middle Yellow River, the Xuanwu Lake, the Yuehu Lake, etc. Field monitoring data of the Liao River and the Taihu Lake showed that DBP had moderate risks in some of the sampling sites of both the watersheds, while BBP posed moderate risks only on a few sites of the Liao River. PMID:25655815

  4. Baseline ecological risk assessment of the Calcasieu Estuary, Louisiana: 1. Overview and problem formulation

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    MacDonald, Donald D.; Moore, Dwayne R.J.; Ingersoll, Christopher G.; Smorong, Dawn E.; Carr, R. Scott; Gouguet, Ron; Charters, David; Wilson, Duane; Harris, Tom; Rauscher, Jon; Roddy, Susan; Meyer, John

    2011-01-01

    A remedial investigation/feasibility study (RI/FS) of the Calcasieu Estuary cooperative site was initiated in 1998. This site, which is located in the southwestern portion of Louisiana in the vicinity of Lake Charles, includes the portion of the estuary from the saltwater barrier on the Calcasieu River to Moss Lake. As part of the RI/FS, a baseline ecological risk assessment (BERA) was conducted to assess the risks to aquatic organisms and aquatic-dependent wildlife exposed to environmental contaminants. The purpose of the BERA was to determine if adverse effects on ecological receptors are occurring in the estuary; to evaluate the nature, severity, and areal extent of any such effects; and to identify the substances that are causing or substantially contributing to effects on ecological receptors. This article describes the environmental setting and site history, identifies the chemicals of potential concern, presents the exposure scenarios and conceptual model for the site, and summarizes the assessment and measurement endpoints that were used in the investigation. Two additional articles in this series describe the results of an evaluation of effects-based sediment-quality guidelines as well as an assessment of risks to benthic invertebrates associated with exposure to contaminated sediment.

  5. Ecological risk and pollution history of heavy metals in Nansha mangrove, South China.

    PubMed

    Wu, Qihang; Tam, Nora F Y; Leung, Jonathan Y S; Zhou, Xizhen; Fu, Jie; Yao, Bo; Huang, Xuexia; Xia, Lihua

    2014-06-01

    Owing to the Industrial Revolution in the late 1970s, heavy metal pollution has been regarded as a serious threat to mangrove ecosystems in the region of the Pearl River Estuary, potentially affecting human health. The present study attempted to characterize the ecological risk of heavy metals (Cd, Cr, Cu, Mn, Ni, Pb and Zn) in Nansha mangrove, South China, by estimating their concentrations in the surface sediment. In addition, the pollution history of heavy metals was examined by determining the concentrations of heavy metals along the depth gradient. The phytoremediation potential of heavy metals by the dominant plants in Nansha mangrove, namely Sonneratia apetala and Cyperus malaccensis, was also studied. Results found that the surface sediment was severely contaminated with heavy metals, probably due to the discharge of industrial sewage into the Pearl River Estuary. Spatial variation of heavy metals was generally unobvious. The ecological risk of heavy metals was very high, largely due to Cd contamination. All heavy metals, except Mn, decreased with depth, indicating that heavy metal pollution has been deteriorating since 1979. Worse still, the dominant plants in Nansha mangrove had limited capability to remove the heavy metals from sediment. Therefore, we propose that immediate actions, such as regulation of discharge standards of industrial sewage, should be taken by the authorities concerned to mitigate the ecological risk posed by heavy metals. PMID:24675443

  6. Development of stressor-response models for an ecological risk assessment case study

    SciTech Connect

    Nacci, D.E.; Munns, W.R.; Cayula, S.; Serbst, J.; Johnston, R.K.; Walker, H.A.

    1994-12-31

    An estuarine ecological risk assessment for the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard (Kittery, ME) is being conducted following the US EPA`s Framework for Ecological Risk Assessment (ERA). As part of the Analysis phase of the ERA, laboratory studies were conducted to develop stressor-response models for lead, the primary contaminant of concern. Thirty-day exposures to adult sea urchins, Arbacia punctulata, occurred via food or suspended sediment. Exposure media were amended with lead sulfate to 10--100 or 100--300 times uncontaminated levels for the Feeding or Sediment Experiments, respectively. The sea urchin experimental model was selected because it permitted the measurement of biological endpoints with significance at the population level (e.g., adult survival and reproduction success), including those used in standard marine bioassays (i.e., fertilization and larval development). Feeding Experiment treatments produced few effects. Sediment Experiment treatments resulted in reductions in survival, growth and reproductive output of exposed adults and were directly toxic to early lifestages. However, in uncontaminated sea water, gametes from Sediment Experiment adults fertilized and completed larval development normally. Data from these experimental systems will be used to produce models relating lead exposure to specific biological responses and, ultimately, ecological risk.

  7. Development of a conceptual model for ecological risk assessment in the Clinch River, VA

    SciTech Connect

    Diamond, J.; Miller, J.

    1995-12-31

    The Clinch River watershed is one of five selected by the USEPA to: (1) evaluate the methodology given in the USEPA Framework for Ecological Risk Assessment, and (2) provide a case study with which to develop an ecological risk problem formulation framework given a complex watershed with multiple stressors. The Clinch water is perhaps most notable for its high diversity of endemic mussel and fish species, most of which are threatened and endangered. Discussions among most of the resource managers in the watershed revealed four assessment endpoints for this risk assessment, all of which have ecological and societal value, and which are susceptible to a number of stressors common in the recruitment and reproduction; threatened and endangered mussel species recruitment and reproduction; threatened and endangered fish species recruitment and reproduction; aquatic cave fauna abundance and diversity; and riparian corridor extent, connectivity, and species composition. Together, these endpoints address the goals established by the workgroup: self-sustaining populations of native macroinvertebrates and fish; improving surface and subsurface water quality; and establishing and maintaining functional riparian corridors of native vegetation. The heart of the problem formulation was defining the conceptual model for this system. Several sources were addressed including various anthropogenic land-use activities, introduced species, and acid rain.

  8. [Spatial Distribution and Potential Ecological Risk Assessment of Heavy Metals in Soils and Sediments in Shunde Waterway, Southern China].

    PubMed

    Cai, Yi-min; Chen, Wei-ping; Peng, Chi; Wang, Tie-yu; Xiao, Rong-bo

    2016-05-15

    Environmental quality of soils and sediments around water source area can influence the safety of potable water of rivers. In order to study the pollution characteristics, the sources and ecological risks of heavy metals Zn, Cr, Pb, Cu, Ni and Cd in water source area, surface soils around the waterway and sediments in the estuary of main tributaries were collected in Shunde, and ecological risks of heavy metals were assessed by two methods of potential ecological risk assessment. The mean contents of Zn, Cr, Pb, Cu, Ni and Cd in the surface soils were 186.80, 65.88, 54.56, 32.47, 22.65 and 0.86 mg · kg⁻¹ respectively, and they were higher than their soil background values except those of Cu and Ni. The mean concentrations of Zn, Cr, Pb, Cu, Ni and Cd in the sediments were 312.11, 111.41, 97.87, 92.32, 29.89 and 1.72 mg · kg⁻¹ respectively, and they were higher than their soil background values except that of Ni. The results of principal component analysis illustrated that the main source of Cr and Ni in soils was soil parent materials, and Zn, Pb, Cu and Cd in soils mainly came from wastewater discharge of local manufacturing industry. The six heavy metals in sediments mainly originated from industry emissions around the Shunde waterway. The results of potential ecological risk assessment integrating environmental bioavailability of heavy metals showed that Zn, Cu, Pb and Ni had a slight potential ecological risk. Cd had a slight potential ecological risk in surface soils, but a moderate potential ecological risk in surfaces sediments. Because the potential ecological risk assessment integrating environmental bioavailability of heavy metals took the soil properties and heavy metal forms into account, its results of risks were lower than those of Hakanson methods, and it could avoid overestimating the potential risks of heavy metals. PMID:27506029

  9. Where Lies the Risk? An Ecological Approach to Understanding Child Mental Health Risk and Vulnerabilities in Sub-Saharan Africa

    PubMed Central

    Atilola, Olayinka

    2014-01-01

    Efforts at improving child-health and development initiatives in sub-Saharan Africa had focused on the physical health of children due to the neglect of child and adolescent mental health (CAMH) policy initiatives. A thorough and broad-based understanding of the prevalent child mental-health risk and vulnerability factors is needed to successfully articulate CAMH policies. In this discourse, we present a narrative on the child mental-health risk and vulnerability factors in sub-Saharan Africa. Through an ecological point of view, we identified widespread family poverty, poor availability and uptake of childcare resources, inadequate community and institutional childcare systems, and inadequate framework for social protection for vulnerable children as among the risk and vulnerability factors for CAMH in the region. Others are poor workplace policy/practice that does not support work-family life balance, poor legislative framework for child protection, and some harmful traditional practices. We conclude that an ecological approach shows that child mental-health risks are diverse and cut across different layers of the care environment. The approach also provides a broad and holistic template from which appropriate CAMH policy direction in sub-Saharan Africa can be understood. PMID:24834431

  10. [Ecological risk assessment of land use based on exploratory spatial data analysis (ESDA): a case study of Haitan Island, Fujian Province].

    PubMed

    Wu, Jian; Chen, Peng; Wen, Chao-Xiang; Fu, Shi-Feng; Chen, Qing-Hui

    2014-07-01

    As a novel environment management tool, ecological risk assessment has provided a new perspective for the quantitative evaluation of ecological effects of land-use change. In this study, Haitan Island in Fujian Province was taken as a case. Based on the Landsat TM obtained in 1990, SPOT5 RS images obtained in 2010, general layout planning map of Pingtan Comprehensive Experimental Zone in 2030, as well as the field investigation data, we established an ecological risk index to measure ecological endpoints. By using spatial autocorrelation and semivariance analysis of Exploratory Spatial Data Analysis (ESDA), the ecological risk of Haitan Island under different land-use situations was assessed, including the past (1990), present (2010) and future (2030), and the potential risk and its changing trend were analyzed. The results revealed that the ecological risk index showed obvious scale effect, with strong positive correlation within 3000 meters. High-high (HH) and low-low (LL) aggregations were predominant types in spatial distribution of ecological risk index. The ecological risk index showed significant isotropic characteristics, and its spatial distribution was consistent with Anselin Local Moran I (LISA) distribution during the same period. Dramatic spatial distribution change of each ecological risk area was found among 1990, 2010 and 2030, and the fluctuation trend and amplitude of different ecological risk areas were diverse. The low ecological risk area showed a rise-to-fall trend while the medium and high ecological risk areas showed a fall-to-rise trend. In the planning period, due to intensive anthropogenic disturbance, the high ecological risk area spread throughout the whole region. To reduce the ecological risk in land-use and maintain the regional ecological security, the following ecological risk control strategies could be adopted, i.e., optimizing the spatial pattern of land resources, protecting the key ecoregions and controlling the scale of

  11. Ecological risk assessment of Tomsk region groundwater used for drinking purposes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Konchakova, N. V.; Ushakova, N. S.; Aikina, T. Yu

    2016-03-01

    The present paper is devoted to the chemical composition analysis of Neogene-quaternary and Paleogene groundwater widely used for drinking in the territory of Tomsk region. It has been shown that groundwater under study contains iron and manganese in excessive concentration. Consequently, this water can negatively affect human health. The ecological and human health risk assessment of Tomsk region groundwater used for drinking has been conducted. According to the calculations, it has been defined that in the overwhelming majority of cases there is a great risk to use groundwater of Tomsk region for drinking purposes.

  12. Factors influencing acquisition of ecological and exposure information about hazards and risks from contaminated sites.

    PubMed

    Burger, Joanna; Greenberg, Michael; Gochfeld, Michael; Shukla, Sheila; Lowrie, Karen; Keren, Roger

    2008-02-01

    Considerable research indicates that a wide range of socio-economic factors influence attitudes and perceptions about environmental hazards and risks, and that social trust in those who manage a hazard is strongly correlated to judgements about risks and benefits. We suggest that there are three steps that lead to environmental risk perceptions: acquisition of information, interpretation and synthesis of different pieces of information, and understanding of that information in light of previous knowledge, perceptions, or attitudes. In this study we presented 211 college students in the sciences and non-sciences with ecological and exposure information using text, tables and maps to examine the factors that affect information acquisition and interpretation concerning ecological issues at a fictitious hazardous waste site. Students were allowed about an hour to read the materials and answer questions. The percent of students answering each question correctly varied from 4 to 82%, indicating that some questions were extremely difficult to answer. We attributed these differences to variations in the number of places information was presented (in text, tables, maps, or a combination) and the complexity of the information (how many pieces of information were required to answer the question correctly). The correlation between the number of students answering each question correctly and these combined measures (frequency, complexity) was -0.72. Thus, although there were differences in accuracy concerning ecological information as presented in this study, the major differences were accounted for by how the information was presented, and how much information was required. This suggests that risk communicators should carefully determine which ecological information is critical for the target audience, and ensure that it is presented several times (in different forms). That a lower percentage of people correctly answered questions that required synthesizing several pieces of

  13. Assessment of ecological risks at former landfill site using TRIAD procedure and multicriteria analysis.

    PubMed

    Sorvari, Jaana; Schultz, Eija; Haimi, Jari

    2013-02-01

    Old industrial landfills are important sources of environmental contamination in Europe, including Finland. In this study, we demonstrated the combination of TRIAD procedure, multicriteria decision analysis (MCDA), and statistical Monte Carlo analysis for assessing the risks to terrestrial biota in a former landfill site contaminated by petroleum hydrocarbons (PHCs) and metals. First, we generated hazard quotients by dividing the concentrations of metals and PHCs in soil by the corresponding risk-based ecological benchmarks. Then we conducted ecotoxicity tests using five plant species, earthworms, and potworms, and determined the abundance and diversity of soil invertebrates from additional samples. We aggregated the results in accordance to the methods used in the TRIAD procedure, conducted rating of the assessment methods based on their performance in terms of specific criteria, and weighted the criteria using two alternative weighting techniques to produce performance scores for each method. We faced problems in using the TRIAD procedure, for example, the results from the animal counts had to be excluded from the calculation of integrated risk estimates (IREs) because our reference soil sample showed the lowest biodiversity and abundance of soil animals. In addition, hormesis hampered the use of the results from the ecotoxicity tests. The final probabilistic IREs imply significant risks at all sampling locations. Although linking MCDA with TRIAD provided a useful means to study and consider the performance of the alternative methods in predicting ecological risks, some uncertainties involved still remained outside the quantitative analysis. PMID:22762796

  14. Terrestrial population models for ecological risk assessment: A state-of-the-art review

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Emlen, J.M.

    1989-01-01

    Few attempts have been made to formulate models for predicting impacts of xenobiotic chemicals on wildlife populations. However, considerable effort has been invested in wildlife optimal exploitation models. Because death from intoxication has a similar effect on population dynamics as death by harvesting, these management models are applicable to ecological risk assessment. An underlying Leslie-matrix bookkeeping formulation is widely applicable to vertebrate wildlife populations. Unfortunately, however, the various submodels that track birth, death, and dispersal rates as functions of the physical, chemical, and biotic environment are by their nature almost inevitably highly species- and locale-specific. Short-term prediction of one-time chemical applications requires only information on mortality before and after contamination. In such cases a simple matrix formulation may be adequate for risk assessment. But generally, risk must be projected over periods of a generation or more. This precludes generic protocols for risk assessment and also the ready and inexpensive predictions of a chemical's influence on a given population. When designing and applying models for ecological risk assessment at the population level, the endpoints (output) of concern must be carefully and rigorously defined. The most easily accessible and appropriate endpoints are (1) pseudoextinction (the frequency or probability of a population falling below a prespecified density), and (2) temporal mean population density. Spatial and temporal extent of predicted changes must be clearly specified a priori to avoid apparent contradictions and confusion.

  15. Ecological risk assessment of substances with suspected estrogenic activity using standard laboratory fish tests

    SciTech Connect

    Gimeno, S.; Bowmer, C.T.

    1999-07-01

    The assessment of risks to the aquatic environment in the European Union is generally based on a comparison of Predicted Environmental Concentrations (PEC) with Predicted No Effect Concentrations (PNEC) for surrogate, or representative, organisms of the receiving waters. Such risk assessments are required for new and priority existing chemicals, pesticides, and, in the near future, biocides; they are dependent on robust in vivo test data. Current strategies for ecological risk assessment were not designed to assess the risk of endocrine disrupters. The selection of suitable fish species and practical in vivo end points for determining endocrine disruption in fish are discussed, including the adaptation of some existing guidelines. This paper is partly based on a series of experiments conducted at the laboratory to look at the effects of a model alkylphenol (4-tert-pentylphenol), an industrial chemical intermediate, acting as a pseudo-estrogen on an all-male population of the common carp, Cyprinus carpio. Exposure to the test substance occurred at critical life stages for endocrine disruption. Biochemical parameters as well as histological parameters were applied, and their suitability to be used in ecological risk assessment is discussed.

  16. Work plan for conducting an ecological risk assessment at J-Field, Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland

    SciTech Connect

    Hlohowskyj, I.; Hayse, J.; Kuperman, R.

    1995-03-01

    The Environmental Management Division of Aberdeen Proving Ground (APG), Maryland, is conducting a remedial investigation and feasibility study (RI/FS) of the J-Field area at APG pursuant to the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA), as amended. J-Field is within the Edgewood Area of APG in Harford County, Maryland, and activities at the Edgewood Area since World War II have included the development, manufacture, testing, and destruction of chemical agents and munitions. The J-Field site was used to destroy chemical agents and munitions by open burning and open detonation. This work plan presents the approach proposed to conduct an ecological risk assessment (ERA) as part of the RI/FS program at J-Field. This work plan identifies the locations and types of field studies proposed for each area of concern (AOC), the laboratory studies proposed to evaluate toxicity of media, and the methodology to be used in estimating doses to ecological receptors and discusses the approach that will be used to estimate and evaluate ecological risks at J-Field. Eight AOCs have been identified at J-Field, and the proposed ERA is designed to evaluate the potential for adverse impacts to ecological receptors from contaminated media at each AOC, as well as over the entire J-Field site. The proposed ERA approach consists of three major phases, incorporating field and laboratory studies as well as modeling. Phase 1 includes biotic surveys of the aquatic and terrestrial habitats, biological tissue sampling and analysis, and media toxicity testing at each AOC and appropriate reference locations. Phase 2 includes definitive toxicity testing of media from areas of known or suspected contamination or of media for which the Phase 1 results indicate toxicity or adverse ecological effects. In Phase 3, the uptake models initially developed in Phase 2 will be finalized, and contaminant dose to each receptor from all complete pathways will be estimated.

  17. Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in water from three estuaries of China: Distribution, seasonal variations and ecological risk assessment.

    PubMed

    Yan, Jinxia; Liu, Jingling; Shi, Xuan; You, Xiaoguang; Cao, Zhiguo

    2016-08-15

    The distribution, seasonal variations and ecological risk assessment of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in water from three estuaries in Hai River Basin of China, which has been suffering from different anthropogenic pressures, were investigated. In three estuaries, the average concentration of ΣPAHs was the lowest in Luan River estuary, followed by Hai River estuary, and the highest in Zhangweixin River estuary. There were significant seasonal variations in ΣPAHs, the concentrations of ΣPAHs were higher in November than in May and August. The composition profiles of PAHs in different sites were significantly different, and illustrated seasonal variations. Generally, 2-ring (Nap) and 3-ring PAHs (Acp, Fl and Phe) were the most abundant components at most sampling sites in three estuaries. The PAHs in three estuaries were mainly originated from pyrogenic sources. A method based on toxic equivalency factors (TEFs) and risk quotient (RQ) was proposed to assess the ecological risk of ΣPAHs, with the ecological risk of individual PAHs being considered separately. The results showed that the ecological risks caused by ΣPAHs were high in Hai River estuary and Zhangweixin River estuary, and moderate in Luan River estuary. The mean values of ecological risk in August were lower than those in November. The contributions of individual PAHs to ecological risk were different in May, August and November. 3-ring and 4-ring PAHs accounted for much more ecological risk than 2-ring, 5-ring and 6-ring, although the contributions of 5-ring and 6-ring to ecological risk were higher than these to PAHs concentrations. PMID:27209122

  18. Integrating human impacts and ecological integrity into a risk-based protocol for conservation planning

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Mattson, K.M.; Angermeier, P.L.

    2007-01-01

    Conservation planning aims to protect biodiversity by sustainng the natural physical, chemical, and biological processes within representative ecosystems. Often data to measure these components are inadequate or unavailable. The impact of human activities on ecosystem processes complicates integrity assessments and might alter ecosystem organization at multiple spatial scales. Freshwater conservation targets, such as populations and communities, are influenced by both intrinsic aquatic properties and the surrounding landscape, and locally collected data might not accurately reflect potential impacts. We suggest that changes in five major biotic drivers-energy sources, physical habitat, flow regime, water quality, and biotic interactions-might be used as surrogates to inform conservation planners of the ecological integrity of freshwater ecosystems. Threats to freshwater systems might be evaluated based on their impact to these drivers to provide an overview of potential risk to conservation targets. We developed a risk-based protocol, the Ecological Risk Index (ERI), to identify watersheds with least/most risk to conservation targets. Our protocol combines risk-based components, specifically the frequency and severity of human-induced stressors, with biotic drivers and mappable land- and water-use data to provide a summary of relative risk to watersheds. We illustrate application of our protocol with a case study of the upper Tennessee River basin, USA. Differences in risk patterns among the major drainages in the basin reflect dominant land uses, such as mining and agriculture. A principal components analysis showed that localized, moderately severe threats accounted for most of the threat composition differences among our watersheds. We also found that the relative importance of threats is sensitive to the spatial grain of the analysis. Our case study demonstrates that the ERI is useful for evaluating the frequency and severity of ecosystemwide risk, which can

  19. Ecological risk assessment of elemental pollution in sediment from Tunku Abdul Rahman National Park, Sabah

    SciTech Connect

    Elias, Md Suhaimi; Hamzah, Mohd Suhaimi; Rahman, Shamsiah Ab; Salim, Nazaratul Ashifa Abdullah; Siong, Wee Boon; Sanuri, Ezwiza

    2014-02-12

    Eleven (11) surface sediment samples were collected from Tunku Abdul Rahman National Park, Sabah. The neutron activation analysis (NAA) and inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) techniques were applied for the determinations metal contents and their distributions in sediment samples. The results shown that Arsenic (As) concentrations are enriched at all sampling stations except for station TAR 09, with enrichment factor (EF) values ranged from 1.1 to 7.2. The elements such as Cd, Cr, Sb and U showed enrichment at a few stations and other elements (Cr, Cu, Pb, Th, Zn) shown as background levels in all stations. Degrees of contamination in this study were calculated base on concentrations of six elements (As, Cd, Cr, Cu, Pb, and Zn). TAR 11 station can be categorized as very high degree of contamination with degree of contamination value of 43.2. TAR 07 station can be categorized as a considerable degree of contamination (contamination value of 16.9). Six stations (TAR 01, 03, 04, 05, 06, 08, 10) showed moderate degree of contamination, with contamination values ranging from 8.0 to 16.0. TAR 02 and TAR 09 stations showed low degree of contaminations (< 8.0). TAR 11 showed very high ecological risk index (R{sub I}) with RI value is 916. TAR 07 and TAR 10 showed moderate ecological risk index with R{sub I} value 263 and 213, respectively. Other stations showed low ecological risk with RI values ranging from 42.3 to 117 (< 150). Very high ecological risk index could give an adverse effect to the benthic organism. The data obtained from the enrichment factor, degree of contamination and ecological risk index provided vital information, which can be used for future comparison. Information from the present study will be useful to the relevant government agencies and authorities in preparing preventive action to control direct discharge of heavy metals from industries, agro-base activities and domestic waste to the rivers and the sea.

  20. Ecological risk assessment at a hazardous waste site on Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland

    SciTech Connect

    Iohowskyi, I.; Hayse, J.W.; Kuperman, R.; Lonkhuyzen, R. van

    1995-12-31

    The Toxic Burning Pits (TBP) area of the J-Field site, Aberdeen Proving Ground, MD, was used in the past for disposal and destruction of munitions and chemical agents. The TBP area, located at the end of a large peninsula on Chesapeake Bay, covers about 9 acres adjacent to a marsh containing a large freshwater pond. An ecological risk assessment (ERA) was conducted at the site to determine whether current levels of contamination at the site are producing demonstrable ecological effects, whether contaminated media are toxic to biota, and to estimate potential risks to biota from direct and indirect contaminant uptake from site media. The ERA incorporated field studies, tissue residue analyses, media toxicity tests, and uptake modeling for wildlife species. Areas with contaminated soil had lower abundance, diversity, and biomass of terrestrial vegetation and soil-dwelling invertebrates; altered trophic structure of nematode communities; reduced soil respiration and litter decomposition rates; and reduced soil microbial enzyme activities. Test showed that contaminated soils were toxic to vegetation, insect eggs, and earthworms. Contamination and toxicity of aquatic media were limited to adjacent portions of the marsh that receive surface runoff from the TBP area. Uptake modeling indicated current contamination levels at the TBP area may pose unacceptable risks to several wildlife species and that the risks are associated primarily with soil-based uptake pathways. The ERA results identified soil to be the medium posing the greatest risk to ecological receptors, and the assessment results are currently being used to assist in the development and evaluation of remedial alternatives for the contaminated soil.

  1. Ecological risk assessment of copper and cadmium in surface waters of Chesapeake Bay watershed

    SciTech Connect

    Hall, L.W. Jr.; Scott, M.C.; Killen, W.D.

    1998-06-01

    This ecological risk assessment was designed to characterize risk of copper and cadmium exposure in the Chesapeake Bay watershed by comparing the probability distributions of environmental exposure concentrations with the probability distributions of species response data determined from laboratory studies. The overlap of these distributions was a measure of risk to aquatic life. Dissolved copper and cadmium exposure data were available from six primary data sources covering 102 stations in 18 basins in the Chesapeake Bay watershed from 1985 through 1996. Highest environmental concentrations of copper (based on 90th percentiles) were reported in the Chesapeake and Delaware (C and D) Canal, Choptank River, Middle River, and Potomac River; the lowest concentrations of copper were reported in the lower and middle mainstem Chesapeake Bay and Nanticoke River. Based on the calculation of 90th percentiles, cadmium concentrations were highest in the C and D Canal, Potomac River, Upper Chesapeake Bay, and West Chesapeake watershed. Lowest environmental concentrations of cadmium were reported in the lower and middle mainstem Chesapeake Bay and Susquehanna River. The ecological effects data used for this risk assessment were derived primarily from acute copper and cadmium laboratory toxicity tests conducted in both fresh water and salt water; chronic data were much more limited. The 10th percentile (concentration protecting 90% of the species) for all species derived from the freshwater acute copper toxicity database was 8.3 {micro}g/L. For acute saltwater copper data, the 10th percentile for all species was 6.3 {micro}g/L copper. The acute 10th percentile for all saltwater species was 31.7 {micro}g/L cadmium. Highest potential ecological risk from copper exposures was reported in the C and D Canal area of the northern Chesapeake Bay watershed.

  2. Juvenile Delinquency and Teenage Pregnancy: A Comparison of Ecological Risk Profiles among Midwestern White and Black Female Juvenile Offenders

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Khurana, Atika; Cooksey, Elizabeth C.; Gavazzi, Stephen M.

    2011-01-01

    The authors examined ecological risk factors associated with teen pregnancy with a sample of 1,190 court-involved female juvenile offenders between 11 and 18 years of age. Data were obtained from five Midwestern juvenile county courts using a recently developed youth risk assessment instrument called the global risk assessment device (GRAD). In…

  3. Fate, effect, and ecological risk of mercury from historic releases in the Danvers Estuary (Massachusetts)

    SciTech Connect

    Mauahan, J.; Raddatz, A.

    1995-12-31

    High concentrations (up to 400 mg/kg) of mercury were initially detected in intertidal sediments adjacent to a manufacturing area. Based on the potential for ecological risk from exposure to the sediments, a detailed investigation was initiated to determine the distribution, fate and ecological effects of the mercury. The program consisted of collecting undisturbed sediment cores from an area radiating out from the high concentration area approximately 300 meters. The cores were analyzed for total mercury, grain size, total organic carbon, and methylmercury. Blue mussels (Mytilus edulis) were also collected and analyzed for total mercury. Sediments and mussels were also collected from areas of the estuary approximately 1 km away and unaffected by historic mercury releases to serve as an estimate of background concentrations. Concentrations of total mercury, methylmercury and mercury in M. edulis tissue showed very similar distribution patterns and a strong statistical correlation (r{sup 2} of approximately 0.8). The elevated concentrations (10 to 20 mg/kg) were confined to an area with a radius less than 30 meters and dropped off very abruptly. Beyond 30 meters, concentrations were equal to or less than concentrations considered to represent background both from reference samples and sampling reported in the literature. The results were compared to ecological effects levels or benchmarks developed for the investigation. Levels outside the 30 meter radius were determined to pose no imminent hazard or risk or harm (as defined by the Massachusetts Contingency Plan and the benchmarks developed for the project). There was no imminent hazard from the sediments within the 30 meter radius but the comparison to benchmarks within the area indicated risk of ecological harm.

  4. [Pollution characteristics and ecological risk assessment of heavy metals in the surface sediments of the Yangtze River].

    PubMed

    Wang, Lan; Wang, Ya-ping; Xu, Chun-xue; An, Zi-yi

    2012-08-01

    The concentrations of Cr, Co, Ni, Cu, Zn, Pb, Cd, As and Hg in surface sediment samples of Yangtze River collected in 2007 were analyzed and evaluated. The results indicated that the concentrations of Cu, Zn, Pb, Cd, As and Hg were significantly higher than those measured in 1990s. Principal component analysis showed that the cumulative proportion of the first three components accounted for 86.75% of the total variable, indicating the three major sources of heavy metals were industrial and mining wastewater, weathering and erosion of rocks, and urban electroplating industry wastewater and natural sources. Geoaccumulation index (Igeo) and enrichment factors (EF) also showed that the surface sediments of the Yangtze River were not contaminated with Cr, Co and Ni, lightly contaminated with Cu, Zn, As and Hg, and majorly contaminated with Ph and Cd. The ecological hazards for the heavy metals in the sediments were evaluated with the Hakanson ecological risk index. It was concluded the ecological hazards for each metal in a descending order were Cd > Hg > As > Zn > Pb > Cu > Co > Ni > Cr. The comprehensive index of potential ecological risks for metals indicated that 36% of the 61 sites had moderate potential ecological risks. Three sites had a high potential ecological risk, namely, Chongqing site of the main Yangtze River, Zishui Dongting Lake and Xinjiang site, whereas Xiangjiang Hengyang section, Xiangjiang Zhuzhou section, Xiangjiang Dongting Lake entrance, Dongting Lake and Shunan River belonged to the areas with extremely high potential ecological risk. PMID:23213879

  5. Ecological risk assessment for residual coal fly ash at Watts Bar Reservoir, Tennessee: Site setting and problem formulation.

    PubMed

    Walls, Suzanne J; Jones, Daniel S; Stojak, Amber R; Carriker, Neil E

    2015-01-01

    A baseline ecological risk assessment (BERA) was performed for residual ash in the Watts Bar Reservoir following a release of fly ash from the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) Kingston Fossil Plant. The site consists of parts of 3 rivers in eastern Tennessee comprising over 32 river kilometers. The purpose of the assessment was to determine if residual ash negatively impacts maintenance and reproduction of balanced communities or populations of potentially exposed ecological receptor groups in these rivers. This introductory article summarizes the site and environmental setting, assessment and measurement endpoints, risk characterization methods, and the study approach. Subsequent articles describe ecological risks to fish, benthic invertebrates, aquatic- and riparian-feeding wildlife, and aerial-feeding insectivores; and the role ecological risk characterization played in determining the most effective management of the residual ash, setting project remediation objectives and targets, and designing long-term monitoring to measure the effectiveness of the selected removal action. PMID:25234753

  6. Ecological Risk Assessment in the 21st Century: The Role of Ecotoxicogenomics and the Need for Multi-disciplinary Research

    EPA Science Inventory

    Ecological risk assessments have traditionally relied on analytical chemistry for exposure assessment and whole animal toxicity testing for hazard/effects assessment. However, these approaches are costly and limited in their applicability to a broad diversity of chemical and non...

  7. Ecological risk assessment of the presence of pharmaceutical residues in a French national water survey.

    PubMed

    Bouissou-Schurtz, Camille; Houeto, Paul; Guerbet, Michel; Bachelot, Morgane; Casellas, Claude; Mauclaire, Anne-Cécile; Panetier, Pascale; Delval, Cécile; Masset, Dominique

    2014-08-01

    In this study, we focused on the list of 33 chemicals that was established through a French national prioritisation strategy. Assessing the potential risks to the environment was a step-wise procedure: (i) we determined the Predicted Environmental Concentration (PEC) of all molecules measured in the national survey based on the highest recommended dose used, (ii) we used the Measured Environmental Concentration (MEC) and the Predicted No-Effect Concentration (PNEC) to establish the Risk Quotient (RQ) based on either a PEC/PNEC (estimated risk) or MEC/PNEC (real risk) ratio. The risk assessment was performed using a binary ecological classification suggesting that appreciable risk is likely (RQ⩾1). Of the 15 molecules quantified in the survey, 12 had a PEC higher than the action limit value of 0.01μg/L. According to the EU Guideline, environmental risk was estimated as likely for the following five compounds: acetaminophen (RQ=1.6), ibuprofen (RQ=600), diclofenac (RQ=15), oxazepam (RQ=2.1) and carbamazepine (RQ=3.2). Only ibuprofen was identified as posing real environmental risk based on its MEC (RQ=1.9). PMID:24768990

  8. [Potential ecological risks assessment of heavy metals in the reservoir sediment of the western Haihe River basin].

    PubMed

    Cheng, Xian; Wang, Rui-lin; Wang, Jian-li; Sun, Ran-hao

    2015-05-01

    The reservoirs distributed in the western part of Haihe River basin play a key role in drinking water supply in the densely populated region. The potential ecological risk of heavy metals stored in the reservoir sediments has drawn more attention during recent decades. In this study, a total of 10 reservoirs in the western Haihe River basin were sampled. The sediment samples were assessed by the Hakanson potential ecological risk evaluation index. The sediments of upstream and downstream rivers were also sampled for comparative analysis with those of the reservoirs. The results indicated the concentration of Cd was significantly higher than the background value in this region, it was 1.67 times of the background value on average and the highest was 2.77 times. The concentration of Pb was higher than the background value for more than half of the reservoirs. The potential ecological risk was evaluated by the toxic coefficient. The ecological risk level was decreased in the order of Cd>As>Pb>Ni>Cu>Cr>Zn. The ecological risk of Cd in most reservoir sediments belonged to a moderate harm. Xidayang Reservior, which supplied the drinking water for Beijing and Baoding, had the highest level of Cd pollution. The ecological risk of Cd in the upstream and downstream rivers was significantly higher than that of the reservoirs. In addition, the ecological risks of Pb, Cu and Ni in the upstream rivers were also higher than the reservoirs. The difference of ecological risks of Zn and Cr was not significant between reservoirs and rivers. PMID:26571670

  9. An ecological risk assessment for insecticides used in adult mosquito management.

    PubMed

    Davis, Ryan S; Peterson, Robert K D; Macedo, Paula A

    2007-07-01

    West Nile virus (WNV) has been a concern for people across the United States since the disease was initially observed in the summer of 1999. Since 1999, WNV has caused the largest arboviral encephalitis epidemic in US history. Vector control management programs have been intensively implemented to control mosquitoes that carry WNV. Our deterministic ecological risk assessment focused on 6 common mosquito adulticides used in vector control, including 3 pyrethroids (d-phenothrin, resmethrin, and permethrin), pyrethrins, and 2 organophosphates (malathion and naled). Piperonyl butoxide, a synergist for the pyrethroids, was also assessed. Both aquatic and terrestrial nontarget organisms were considered for acute and chronic exposures to the adulticides. Tier I exposure estimates were derived from ISCST3 and AERMOD for deposition and air concentrations affecting terrestrial organisms and PRZM-EXAMS for standard pond concentrations affecting aquatic organisms. Nontargets exposed to adulticides included small mammals, birds, as well as aquatic vertebrates and invertebrates in a pond subject to receiving the chemical via drift and runoff. Risk quotients were obtained by comparing exposures to toxic endpoints. All risk quotients were low indicating that risks to ecological receptors most likely were small. PMID:17695110

  10. Ecological Recovery Potential of Freshwater Organisms: Consequences for Environmental Risk Assessment of Chemicals.

    PubMed

    Gergs, Andre; Classen, Silke; Strauss, Tido; Ottermanns, Richard; Brock, Theo C M; Ratte, Hans Toni; Hommen, Udo; Preuss, Thomas G

    2016-01-01

    Chemical contaminants released into the in the environment may have adverse effects on (non-target) species, populations and communities. The return of a stressed system to its pre-disturbance or other reference state, i.e. the ecological recovery, may depend on various factors related to the affected taxon, the ecosystem of concern and the type of stressor with consequences for the assessment and management of risks associated with chemical contaminants. Whereas the effects caused by short-term exposure might be acceptable to some extent, the conditions under which ecological recovery can serve as a decision criterion in the environmental risk assessment of chemical stressors remains to be evaluated. For a generic consideration of recovery in the risk assessment of chemicals, we reviewed case studies of natural and artificial aquatic systems and evaluate five aspects that might cause variability in population recovery time: (1) taxonomic differences and life-history variability, (2) factors related to ecosystem type and community processes, (3) type of disturbance, (4) comparison of field and semi-field studies, and (5) effect magnitude, i.e., the decline in population size following disturbance. We discuss our findings with regard to both retrospective assessments and prospective risk assessment. PMID:26423077

  11. Occurrence, profiles, and ecological risks of polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) in river sediments of Shanghai, China.

    PubMed

    Wang, Xue-Tong; Chen, Lei; Wang, Xi-Kui; Zhang, Yuan; Zhou, Jun; Xu, Si-Yue; Sun, Yan-Feng; Wu, Ming-Hong

    2015-08-01

    Fifty-two PBDE congeners in river sediments from Shanghai were analyzed in the present study. The concentrations of Σ51PBDEs (defined as the sum of 51 BDE congeners except BDE209) and BDE209 ranged from 0.231 to 119 ng g(-1) and from nd to 189 ng g(-1), respectively. The most abundant BDE congeners in surface sediments were BDE118, 207, 208, 99, 49, 75, 47, 71 and 209, with median values of 1.67, 1.81, 1.83, 1.87, 1.98, 2.52, 2.73, 4.62 and 45.7 ng g(-1) dw, respectively. The concentrations of Σ52PBDEs were significantly correlated with total organic carbon (TOC) content in sediments (p < 0.05). Weak correlations between all PBDE homologues and TOC (r < 0.32) suggest that TOC had a little influence on sediment PBDE transport and distribution patterns in river sediments of Shanghai. Correspondence analysis (CA) showed that PBDEs in sediments in the studied area originated from commercial BDE formulations, combustion emission sources, and debromination of highly brominated PBDEs by aerobic/anaerobic microbes or sunlight. Risk assessment based on risk quotients (RQ) showed that PBDEs in all river sediments collected from Shanghai posed a high potential ecological risk (RQ > 1) to the sediment dwelling organisms, and pentaBDE, decaBDE and tetraBDE were the major ecological risk drivers. PMID:25840411

  12. Assessment of ecological risks linked to the discharge of saline industrial effluent into a river.

    PubMed

    Perrodin, Yves; Volatier, Laurence; Bazin, Christine; Boisson, Jean-Claude

    2013-03-01

    Discharges of saline effluents into rivers can lead to risks for local aquatic ecosystems. A specific ecological risk assessment methodology has been developed to propose a management tool to organisations responsible for managing rivers and industrial companies producing saline effluents. This methodology involves the detailed description of the spatiotemporal system concerned, the choice of ecological targets to be preserved, and the performance of bioassays adapted to each of the compartments of the river. Following development, it was applied to an industrial effluent in eastern France. For the scenario studied, results obtained suggest a high risk for the organisms of the water column and a low risk for the organisms of the periphyton. This difference can be explained by the structure of the latter which integrate extracellular polymers secreted by the organisms of the biofilm, forming a gel with a porous structure that acts as a barrier to diffusion. The methodology formulated permitted identifying the critical points of the spatiotemporal system studied and then using them as the basis for making well-grounded proposals for management. Lastly, proposals to improve the methodology itself are made, especially concerning the integration of the sediment compartment in the version formulated initially. PMID:22684878

  13. Fishing in Dangerous Waters: Ecology, Gender and Economy in HIV Risk

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    This paper focuses on a neglected factor in literature on the HIV epidemic in sub-Saharan Africa: the role of the eco-social environment in shaping HIV risk. I argue that the changing ecological environment of Lake Victoria, Africa’s largest freshwater lake, mapping onto a gendered economy, shaped fisherfolk’s sexual relationships and sexual mixing patterns in ways that were consequential for their HIV risk. Specifically, I show how disrupted lake and fish ecology had an impact on fishermen’s sexual, domestic and economic partnerships, as well as how it contributed to the “sex for fish” economy in Nyanza Province, Kenya. I also show the consequences of fishermen’s relative wealth on transactional relationships with school girls and women in lakeside communities. The paper is based on ethnographic fieldwork over a seven month period among the Luo ethnic group, which has the highest HIV rates in Kenya. The study included 94 individual, focus group and key informant interviews in communities around Lake Victoria. Additionally, literature reviews on fishing and sexual economies as well as on ecological research in Lake Victoria are employed. Exploring linkages between these literatures and fieldwork findings forms the basis of this paper. I argue that solely focusing on individual level HIV prevention strategies is limited without taking into account the eco-social context of individual sexual decision making. PMID:21146910

  14. A Social Ecological Model of Syndemic Risk affecting Women with and At-Risk for HIV in Impoverished Urban Communities.

    PubMed

    Batchelder, A W; Gonzalez, J S; Palma, A; Schoenbaum, E; Lounsbury, D W

    2015-12-01

    Syndemic risk is an ecological construct, defined by co-occurring interdependent socio-environmental, interpersonal and intrapersonal determinants. We posited syndemic risk to be a function of violence, substance use, perceived financial hardship, emotional distress and self-worth among women with and at-risk for HIV in an impoverished urban community. In order to better understand these interrelationships, we developed and validated a system dynamics (SD) model based upon peer-reviewed literature; secondary data analyses of a cohort dataset including women living with and at-risk of HIV in Bronx, NY (N = 620); and input from a Bronx-based community advisory board. Simulated model output revealed divergent levels and patterns of syndemic risk over time across different sample profiles. Outputs generated new insights about how to effectively explore multicomponent multi-level programs in order to strategically develop more effective services for this population. Specifically, the model indicated that effective multi-level interventions might bolster women's resilience by increasing self-worth, which may result in decreased perceived financial hardship and risk of violence. Overall, our stakeholder-informed model depicts how self-worth may be a major driver of vulnerability and a meaningful addition to syndemic theory affecting this population. PMID:26370203

  15. Ecological risk assessment of heavy metal (HM) pollution in the ambient air using a new bio-indicator.

    PubMed

    Miri, Mohammad; Allahabadi, Ahmad; Ghaffari, Hamid Reza; Fathabadi, Zeynab Abaszadeh; Raisi, Zahra; Rezai, Mehrab; Aval, Mohsen Yazdani

    2016-07-01

    The aim of this descriptive-analytical study was to measure the concentration of heavy metals (HMs) in the leaf and bark of Ulmus carpinifolia as new biological indicators, and the ecological risk assessment of these metals in the ambient air. To achieve these goals, 48 sampling locations were selected in the city and concentration of four HMs-zinc (Zn), copper (Cu), lead (Pb), and cadmium (Cd)-was measured in the mentioned indicator using atomic absorption spectroscopy method. After this, ecological risk assessment, source appointment, and spatial distribution were conducted. In this regard, the enrichment factor (EF), potential ecological risk factor (E r), potential ecological risk index (RI), correlation coefficient (r), and other indices were calculated. The results showed that the concentration of HMs in the leaf and bark in ascending order is as Cdecological risk in terms of surveyed HMs. The leaf and bark of U. carpinifolia can be applied as bio-indicators of the presence of heavy metals in the ambient air and ecological risk imposed by them. PMID:27053049

  16. Patterning ecological risk of pesticide contamination at the river basin scale.

    PubMed

    Faggiano, Leslie; de Zwart, Dick; García-Berthou, Emili; Lek, Sovan; Gevrey, Muriel

    2010-05-01

    Ecological risk assessment was conducted to determine the risk posed by pesticide mixtures to the Adour-Garonne river basin (south-western France). The objectives of this study were to assess the general state of this basin with regard to pesticide contamination using a risk assessment procedure and to detect patterns in toxic mixture assemblages through a self-organizing map (SOM) methodology in order to identify the locations at risk. Exposure assessment, risk assessment with species sensitivity distribution, and mixture toxicity rules were used to compute six relative risk predictors for different toxic modes of action: the multi-substance potentially affected fraction of species depending on the toxic mode of action of compounds found in the mixture (msPAF CA(TMoA) values). Those predictors computed for the 131 sampling sites assessed in this study were then patterned through the SOM learning process. Four clusters of sampling sites exhibiting similar toxic assemblages were identified. In the first cluster, which comprised 83% of the sampling sites, the risk caused by pesticide mixture toward aquatic species was weak (mean msPAF value for those sites<0.0036%), while in another cluster the risk was significant (mean msPAF<1.09%). GIS mapping allowed an interesting spatial pattern of the distribution of sampling sites for each cluster to be highlighted with a significant and highly localized risk in the French department called "Lot et Garonne". The combined use of the SOM methodology, mixture toxicity modelling and a clear geo-referenced representation of results not only revealed the general state of the Adour-Garonne basin with regard to contamination by pesticides but also enabled to analyze the spatial pattern of toxic mixture assemblage in order to prioritize the locations at risk and to detect the group of compounds causing the greatest risk at the basin scale. PMID:20206965

  17. An ecological-transactional model of significant risk factors for child psychopathology in outer mongolia.

    PubMed

    Kohrt, Holbrook E; Kohrt, Brandon A; Waldman, Irwin; Saltzman, Kasey; Carrion, Victor G

    2004-01-01

    The present study examined significant risk factors, including child maltreatment, for child psychopathology in a cross-cultural setting. Ninety-nine Mongolian boys, ages 3-10 years, were assessed. Primary caregivers (PCG) completed structured interviews including the Emory Combined Rating Scale (ECRS) and the Mood and Feelings Questionnaire (MFQ). Structural equation modeling identifies eight risk factors affecting child psychopathology: Three with direct effects (severity of physical punishment, PCG's MFQ score, and PCG's education), three with indirect effects (cultural acceptance of violence as discipline, presence of community violence, and contact with extended family), and two with direct and indirect effects (quality of marriage/presence of spousal abuse, and household size). Results support the ecological-transactional theory of developmental psychopathology in a cross-cultural setting. Structural equation modeling provides a useful technique to isolate specific sites for intervention, while maintaining a comprehensive perspective of risk factor interaction. PMID:15577280

  18. [Landscape ecological risk assessment and its spatio-temporal variations in Ebinur Lake region of inland arid area].

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yue; Zhang, Fei; Zhou, Mei; Li, Xiao-hang; Ren, Yan; Wang, Juan

    2016-01-01

    The typical region of the Ebinur Lake Basin was chosen as study area. Landsat TM/OLI images for 1998, 2011 and 2013 were obtained. In the study area, landscape was classified into six types, including cropland, woodland, grassland, water body, bare lake bed, salinized land and unutilized land. Landscape indices and ecological risk index were calculated and spatially interpolated for the whole region, which was divided into five different risk zones: extremely low, low, moderate, high and extremely high ecological risk. They were carried out for assessing the spatio-temporal changes in ecological risk for each landscape pattern. The results showed that the regional landscape patterns had experienced significant changes, and the increase in the area of croplands was the main trend in landscape evolution from 1998-2013. The main part of the regional ecosystem faced extremely high risk in 1998, high risk in 2011 and low risk in 2013. The ecological risk level of the study area was significantly decreased in the overall period, and the total area of change from high to low risk was much greater than those from low to high risk. PMID:27228614

  19. Ecological risk assessment in a large river-reservoir. 4: Piscivorous wildlife

    SciTech Connect

    Sample, B.E.; Suter, G.W. II

    1999-04-01

    Over 50 years of operations of facilities on the Oak Ridge Reservation (ORR), Tennessee, has resulted in the release of contaminants into the water, sediment, and biota of the Clinch River and Poplar Creek, downstream of the ORR. An iterative, weight-of-evidence approach was employed to assess risks these contaminants present to four piscivorous wildlife species (osprey [Pandion haliatus], great blue heron [Ardea herodias], mink [Mustela vison], and river otter [Lutra canadensis]) in the Clinch River/Poplar Creek (CR/PC) watershed. Available data consisted of literature-derived NOAELs and LOAELs, field surveys, and toxicity tests. Contaminants of potential ecological concern (COPECs) were identified by comparing point estimates of exposure to NOAELs and included mercury and PCBs. Exposure to COPECs was reestimated using Monte Carlo methods, first at individual locations, then over ecologically relevant spatial scales. These exposure distributions were compared to LOAELs. Estimated exposure for mink was not sufficient to present a risk from any COPEC. Mercury and PCBs presented a significant risk to river otter at one location each. Exposure of osprey and great blue herons to mercury represented a significant risk at one and two locations, respectively. Field surveys of heron rookeries and osprey nests indicated no adverse effects on reproduction. Mink red fish from the Clinch River displayed reduced reproduction only in the most contaminated of five toxicity test diets; this reduction was not statistically significant, however. The maximum mercury and PCB exposures estimated for mink along the Clinch River were significantly lower than the toxicity test exposures associated with adverse effects. The weight of evidence indicates that contaminants from the ORR do not present a risk to mink, great blue heron, or osprey along the Clinch River; river otter, however, may be at risk from mercury and PCBs.

  20. Ecological status classification of the Taizi River Basin, China: a comparison of integrated risk assessment approaches.

    PubMed

    Fan, Juntao; Semenzin, Elena; Meng, Wei; Giubilato, Elisa; Zhang, Yuan; Critto, Andrea; Zabeo, Alex; Zhou, Yun; Ding, Sen; Wan, Jun; He, Mengchang; Lin, Chunye

    2015-10-01

    Integrated risk assessment approaches allow to achieve a sound evaluation of ecological status of river basins and to gain knowledge about the likely causes of impairment, useful for informing and supporting the decision-making process. In this paper, the integrated risk assessment (IRA) methodology developed in the EU MODELKEY project (and implemented in the MODELKEY Decision Support System) is applied to the Taizi River (China), in order to assess its Ecological and Chemical Status according to EU Water Framework Directive (WFD) requirements. The available dataset is derived by an extensive survey carried out in 2009 and 2010 across the Taizi River catchment, including the monitoring of physico-chemical (i.e. DO, EC, NH3-_N, chemical oxygen demand (COD), biological oxygen demand in 5 days (BOD5) and TP), chemical (i.e. polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and metals), biological (i.e. macroinvertebrates, fish, and algae), and hydromorphological parameters (i.e. water quantity, channel change and morphology diversity). The results show a negative trend in the ecological status from the highland to the lowland of the Taizi River Basin. Organic pollution from agriculture and domestic sources (i.e. COD and BOD5), unstable hydrological regime (i.e. water quantity shortage) and chemical pollutants from industry (i.e. PAHs and metals) are found to be the main stressors impacting the ecological status of the Taizi River Basin. The comparison between the results of the IRA methodology and those of a previous study (Leigh et al. 2012) indicates that the selection of indicators and integrating methodologies can have a relevant impact on the classification of the ecological status. The IRA methodology, which integrates information from five lines of evidence (i.e., biology, physico-chemistry, chemistry, ecotoxicology and hydromorphology) required by WFD, allows to better identify the biological communities that are potentially at risk and the stressors that are most

  1. [Human ecology and interdisciplinary cooperation for primary prevention of environmental risk factors for public health].

    PubMed

    Dobrowolski, Jan W

    2007-01-01

    Human ecology makes a scientific base for more effective prevention against contamination of the air, water and food, and other environmental factors making common risk factors for human health. It integrates interdisciplinary cooperation of experts from natural, technological, socio-economical and other sciences. Complex study is necessary for better estimation of real risk factors for an individual person. This risk is connected with the exposure of people to pollutants in working places, housing environment, areas for recreation and by food (including synergistic effects). Such study implicates real tasks for representatives of different sciences (technological and agricultural in particular) as well as for teachers and journalists. Especially dangerous are environmental risk factors when principles of human ecology are not taking into consideration at the intensification of food production, processing and conservation, as well as at designing of housing environment (where the exposure to harmful physical, chemical and biological factors is the longest) and also while selecting of the main directions of development of technical infrastructure for motorization (e.g. designing of cars, roads and their surrounding). EU recognize study of the human ecology as basis for sustainable development (sponsoring e.g. diploma and doctoral studies in this field at the Free University of Brussels). Author's experiences connected with the participation as a visiting professor taking part in related training activity at this University as well as during study visits in several countries were useful for the introduction of human ecology in linkage with ecotoxicology and environmental biotechnology as the subject of study at environmental engineering at the Faculty of Mining Surveying and Environmental Engineering at AGH-UST. Methodological experience of 40 years of interdisciplinary case studies and problem-oriented education in this field may be useful for modernization of

  2. Use of an ecologically relevant modelling approach to improve remote sensing-based schistosomiasis risk profiling.

    PubMed

    Walz, Yvonne; Wegmann, Martin; Leutner, Benjamin; Dech, Stefan; Vounatsou, Penelope; N'Goran, Eliézer K; Raso, Giovanna; Utzinger, Jürg

    2015-01-01

    Schistosomiasis is a widespread water-based disease that puts close to 800 million people at risk of infection with more than 250 million infected, mainly in sub-Saharan Africa. Transmission is governed by the spatial distribution of specific freshwater snails that act as intermediate hosts and the frequency, duration and extent of human bodies exposed to infested water sources during human water contact. Remote sensing data have been utilized for spatially explicit risk profiling of schistosomiasis. Since schistosomiasis risk profiling based on remote sensing data inherits a conceptual drawback if school-based disease prevalence data are directly related to the remote sensing measurements extracted at the location of the school, because the disease transmission usually does not exactly occur at the school, we took the local environment around the schools into account by explicitly linking ecologically relevant environmental information of potential disease transmission sites to survey measurements of disease prevalence. Our models were validated at two sites with different landscapes in Côte d'Ivoire using high- and moderate-resolution remote sensing data based on random forest and partial least squares regression. We found that the ecologically relevant modelling approach explained up to 70% of the variation in Schistosoma infection prevalence and performed better compared to a purely pixel-based modelling approach. Furthermore, our study showed that model performance increased as a function of enlarging the school catchment area, confirming the hypothesis that suitable environments for schistosomiasis transmission rarely occur at the location of survey measurements. PMID:26618326

  3. Occurrence, fate and ecological risk of chlorinated paraffins in Asia: A review.

    PubMed

    Wei, Gao-Ling; Liang, Xiao-Liang; Li, Ding-Qiang; Zhuo, Mu-Ning; Zhang, Si-Yi; Huang, Qiu-Xin; Liao, Yi-Shan; Xie, Zhen-Yue; Guo, Tai-Long; Yuan, Zai-Jian

    2016-01-01

    Chlorinated paraffins (CPs), complex mixtures of polychlorinated alkanes, are widely used in various industries and are thus ubiquitous in the receiving environment. The present study comprehensively reviewed the occurrence, fate and ecological risk of CPs in various environmental matrices in Asia. Releases from the production and consumption of CPs or CP-containing materials, wastewater discharge and irrigation, sewage sludge application, long-range atmospheric transport and aerial deposition have been found to be most likely sources and transport mechanisms for the dispersion of CPs in various environmental matrices, such as air, water, sediment, soil and biota. CPs can be bioaccumulated in biota and biomagnified through food webs, likely causing toxic ecological effects in organisms and posing health risks to humans. Inhalation, dust ingestion and dietary intake are strongly suggested as the major routes of human exposure. Research gaps are discussed to highlight the perspectives of future research to improve future efforts regarding the analysis of CPs, the environmental occurrence and elimination of CPs, the total environmental pressure, and the risks to organisms and populations. PMID:27132163

  4. Ecological risk analysis of pesticides used on irrigated rice crops in southern Brazil.

    PubMed

    Vieira, Danielle Cristina; Noldin, José Alberto; Deschamps, Francisco C; Resgalla, Charrid

    2016-11-01

    Based on studies conducted in the past decade in the southern region of Brazil to determine residue levels of the pesticides normally used on irrigated rice crops, changes can be observed in relation to the presence of pesticides in the waters of the main river basins in Santa Catarina State. In previous harvests, the presence of residues of 7 pesticides was determined, with the herbicide bentazon and the insecticide carbofuran being the products showing highest frequency. Following toxicological tests conducted with 8 different test organisms, deterministic and probabilistic risk analysis was performed to assess the situation of the river basins in areas used for the production of irrigated rice. Of the species tested, the herbicide bentazon showed greatest toxicity toward plants, but did not present an ecological risk because in the worst-case scenario the highest concentration of this pesticide in the environment is 37 times lower than the lowest EC50/LC50 value obtained in the tests. The insecticide carbofuran, which had the highest toxicity toward the organisms used in the tests, presented an ecological risk in the deterministic analysis, but without any associated probability. The results highlight the need for increased efforts in training farmers in crop management practices and for the continual monitor of water bodies for the presence of pesticide residues. PMID:27479455

  5. Determining significant endpoints for ecological risk analyses. 1997 annual progress report

    SciTech Connect

    Hinton, T.G.; Congdon, J.; Rowe, C.; Scott, D.; Bedford, J.; Whicker, F.W.

    1997-11-01

    'This report summarizes the first year''s progress of research funded under the Department of Energy''s Environmental Management Science Program. The research was initiated to better determine ecological risks from toxic and radioactive contaminants. More precisely, the research is designed to determine the relevancy of sublethal cellular damage to the performance of individuals and to identify characteristics of non-human populations exposed to chronic, low-level radiation, as is typically found on many DOE sites. The authors propose to establish a protocol to assess risks to non-human species at higher levels of biological organization by relating molecular damage to more relevant responses that reflect population health. They think that they can achieve this by coupling changes in metabolic rates and energy allocation patterns to meaningful population response variables, and by using novel biological dosimeters in controlled, manipulative dose/effects experiments. They believe that a scientifically defensible endpoint for measuring ecological risks can only be determined once its understood the extent to which molecular damage from contaminant exposure is detrimental at the individual and population levels of biological organization.'

  6. Application of ecological risk assessment principles to evaluation of oil spill impacts

    SciTech Connect

    Brannon, E.L.; Neff, J.M.; Pearson, W.H.; Stubblefield, W.A.; Maki, A.W.

    1995-12-31

    Ecological risk assessments are often used prospectively to predict the consequences of human activities on the environment. Laboratory and field studies were conducted to evaluate the ecological impacts to commercial fishery resources resulting from the Exxon Valdez oil spill. Using the ecorisk paradigm, each of the studies correlated concentrations of petroleum hydrocarbons in different environmental compartments with observed biological effects in local populations of herring and pink salmon. Hydrocarbon concentrations in the water column of the Sound were elevated for a short time after the spill, but 99.7% of the samples remained below the Alaska water quality standard and returned to background levels within a few months. PAH concentrations in sediments and eggs correlated with a very low degree of injury to early life stages of herring and salmon. Overall, effects of the spill on populations of herring and pink salmon were minimal and post-spill harvests of the year classes at greater risk of spill injury in the two years following the spill were at or near record levels. The program underscores the utility and strength of the risk assessment paradigm to identify contaminant related injury while considering effects attributable to natural ecosystem variability.

  7. Simulating pesticides in ditches to assess ecological risk (SPIDER): I. Model description.

    PubMed

    Renaud, Fabrice G; Bellamy, Pat H; Brown, Colin D

    2008-05-01

    Risk assessment for pesticides in the aquatic environment relies on a comparison between estimated exposure concentrations in surface water bodies and endpoints from a series of effect tests. Many field- and catchment-scale models have been developed, ranging from simple empirical models to comprehensive, physically-based, distributed models that require complex parameterisation, often through inverse modelling methods. Routine use of catchment models for assessment and management of pesticides requires a tool that is comprehensive in being able to address all major routes of entry of pesticides into surface water and that has reasonable parameter requirements. Current models either focus primarily on transport of pesticides in surface runoff or are restricted in application because they require calibration against data from detailed monitoring programmes. SPIDER (Simulating Pesticides In Ditches to assess Ecological Risk) was developed to address the gap in models available to simulate pesticide exposure within networks of small surface water bodies (ditches and streams) in support of ecological risk assessment for pesticides. SPIDER is a locally distributed, capacitance-based model that accounts for pesticide entry into surface water bodies via spray drift, surface runoff, interlayer flow and drainflow and that can be used for small agricultural catchments. This paper provides a detailed description of the model. PMID:18275984

  8. [Temporal characteristics of ecological risk assessment indicators in coal-mining city with the application of LVQ method].

    PubMed

    Peng, Jian; Tao, Jing-Xian; Liu, Yan-xu

    2015-03-01

    Because the ability of selected indicators in assessing ecological risk at different temporal scales is not the same, it is necessary to clear the definite comparability of such indicators at temporal scale to explore a new method for dynamic assessing the ecological risk. In this case, five mining cities in Liaoning Province were selected as the study area, with the application of learning vector quantization (LVQ) neural network, the significance of the indicators for the ecological risk assessment was quantitatively analyzed to clarify their characteristics at temporal scale. The expression with two-dimension (long-term and short-term) of temporal scale was put forward as a new method to assess the ecological risk for mining cities. The results showed that the amount of industrial SO2 removed per output value, the amount of industrial dust removed per output value, coverage rate of urban green space, precipitation, coordination degree among subsystems, percentage of mining practitioners, and current year investment on pollution abatement projects were effective at long-term temporal scale, while the other indicators acted at short-term temporal scale. With the combination of long-term and short-term temporal scales, the dynamic assessment of ecological risk for mining cities could be expressed on two-dimension of temporal scale. It was found that Fuxin City got the highest ecological risk in current status, with the risk increasing most in Fushun City at the short-term temporal scale as well as in Chaoyang City at the long-term temporal scale. The method adopted in this study might act as a significant guidance in dynamic controlling and integrative management of ecological risk for mining cities. PMID:26211071

  9. Heavy metal pollution and ecological risk assessment of the paddy soils near a zinc-lead mining area in Hunan.

    PubMed

    Lu, Sijin; Wang, Yeyao; Teng, Yanguo; Yu, Xuan

    2015-10-01

    Soil pollution by Cd, Hg, As, Pb, Cr, Cu, and Zn was characterized in the area of the mining and smelting of metal ores at Guiyang, northeast of Hunan Province. A total of 150 topsoil (0-20 cm) samples were collected in May 2012 with a nominal density of one sample per 4 km(2). High concentrations of heavy metals especially, Cd, Zn, and Pb were found in many of the samples taken from surrounding paddy soil, indicating a certain extent of spreading of heavy metal pollution. Sequential extraction technique and risk assessment code (RAC) were used to study the mobility of chemical forms of heavy metals in the soils and their ecological risk. The results reveal that Cd represents a high ecological risk due to its highest percentage of the exchangeable and carbonate fractions. The metals of Zn and Cu pose a medium risk, and the rest of the metals represent a low environmental risk. The range of the potential ecological risk of soil calculated by risk index (RI) was 123.5~2791.2 and revealed a considerable-high ecological risk in study area especially in the neighboring and surrounding the mining activities area. Additionally, cluster analyses suggested that metals such as Pb, As, Hg, Zn, and Cd could be from the same sources probably related to the acidic drainage and wind transport of dust. Cluster analysis also clearly distinguishes the samples with similar characteristics according to their spatial distribution. The results could be used during the ecological risk screening stage, in conjunction with total concentrations and metal fractionation values to better estimate ecological risk. PMID:26373302

  10. [Contamination and Ecological Risk Assessment of Mercury in Hengshuihu Wetland, Hebei Province].

    PubMed

    Wang, Nai-shan; Zhang, Man-yin; Cui, Li-juan; Ma, Mu-yuan; Yan, Liang; Mu, Yong-lin; Qin, Peng

    2016-05-15

    Investigation on the concentrations and the distribution characteristics of total mercury in atmosphere, water surface and soil/ sediments of Hengshuihu wetland was carried out based on a uniform set point sampling method. The geoaccumulation index and potential ecological risk index methods were simultaneously used to assess the mercury pollution in Hengshuihu wetland ecosystem. The results showed that: the total mercury content in Hengshuihu wetland atmosphere ranged from 1.0 to 5.0 ng · m⁻³, with an average of (2.9 ± 0.85) ng · m⁻³; the total mercury content in water surface ranged from 0.010 to 0.57 µg · L⁻¹, with the average value of (0.081 ± 0.053) µg · L⁻¹; the total mercury content in soil/sediment ranged from 0.001 0 to 0.058 mg · kg⁻¹, with an average of (0.027 ± 0.013) mg · kg⁻¹. The distribution features of total mercury in Hengshuihu wetland were as follows: the total mercury concentration in surface water of the shore was significantly higher than that in the center (P < 0.05), but the total mercury concentration of sediments in the center of the lake was significantly higher than that at the shore (P < 0.05); the total mercury in the soil of shore had a consistent trend with that in the atmosphere; high concentrations of total mercury pollution were accompanied by severe human activities. The geoaccumulation index showed that mercury pollution in Hengshuihu wetland was at clean level; potential ecological risk index showed mercury contamination had a low ecological risk in Hengshuihu wetland. PMID:27506028