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. Guide for ecological risk assessment

    SciTech Connect

    1998-04-01

    Ecological risk assessment evaluates the likelihood that adverse ecological effects may occur or are occurring as a result of exposure to one or more stressors. Ecological risk assessment provides a critical element for environmental decision making by giving risk managers an approach for considering available scientific information along with the other factors they need to consider (e.g., social, legal, political, or economic) in selecting a course of action. The primary audience for this document is risk assessors and risk managers at EPA, although these Guidelines also may be useful to others outside the Agency.

  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.

  5. [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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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...

  8. 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...

  9. 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.

  10. [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.

  11. 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...

  12. Enhancing the Ecological Risk Assessment Process

    SciTech Connect

    Dale, Virginia H

    2008-01-01

    The Ecological Processes and Effects Committee of the US Environmental Protection Agency Science Advisory Board conducted a self-initiated study and convened a public workshop to characterize the state of the ecological risk assessment (ERA), with a view toward advancing the science and application of the process. That survey and analysis of ERA in decision making shows that such assessments have been most effective when clear management goals were included in the problem formulation; translated into information needs; and developed in collaboration with decision makers, assessors, scientists, and stakeholders. This process is best facilitated when risk managers, risk assessors, and stakeholders are engaged in an ongoing dialogue about problem formulation. Identification and acknowledgment of uncertainties that have the potential to profoundly affect the results and outcome of risk assessments also improves assessment effectiveness. Thus we suggest (1) thorough peer review of ERAs be conducted at the problem formulation stage and (2) the predictive power of risk-based decision making be expanded to reduce uncertainties through analytical and methodological approaches like life cycle analysis. Risk assessment and monitoring programs need better integration to reduce uncertainty and to evaluate risk management decision outcomes. Postdecision audit programs should be initiated to evaluate the environmental outcomes of risk-based decisions. In addition, a process should be developed to demonstrate how monitoring data can be used to reduce uncertainties. Ecological risk assessments should include the effects of chemical and nonchemical stressors at multiple levels of biological organization and spatial scale, and the extent and resolution of the pertinent scales and levels of organization should be explicitly considered during problem formulation. An approach to interpreting lines of evidence and weight of evidence is critically needed for complex assessments, and it

  13. 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

  14. 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.

  15. 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 ...

  16. 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...

  17. Quality assurance checks on ecological risk assessments

    SciTech Connect

    Ferson, S.; Ginzburg, L.

    1995-12-31

    Three major criticisms are routinely made against probabilistic ecological risk assessments: (1) input distributions are often not available, (2) correlations and dependencies are often ignored, and (3) mathematical structure of the ecological model is often questionable. These criticisms are well understood by risk analysts, but it is generally assumed that their only solution is additional empirical effort to develop input distributions, measure correlations and validate the model. As a practical matter, since such empirical information is typically incomplete (and indeed often quite sparse), analysts are forced to make assumptions without empirical justifications. There are, however, computational methods that may allow analysts to sidestep a lack of information to partially or completely answer the three criticisms. When empirical information about the input distributions is limited, comprehensive representations of uncertainty can be estimated using traditional confidence interval or bounding procedures. Using recently developed methods, the probability distribution bounds can be used directly in calculations. When the correlation and dependency structure among variables is unknown, bounds on solutions can be computed without having to make unjustified and possibly false assumptions about independence. Finally, automated checks on the ecological model or mathematical expression used in the risk analysis can be employed to ensure the absence of several classes of structural and mathematical errors. Several kinds of profound errors which are routinely committed in practice, including dimensional or unit discordance, infeasible configurations for correlation, and multiple instantiations of a repeated variable, can all be detected using currently available methods and software.

  18. 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

  19. 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

  20. 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.

  1. 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

  2. Using landscape ecology to focus ecological risk assessment and guide risk management decision-making.

    PubMed

    Kapustka, L A; Galbraith, H; Luxon, B M; Yocum, J

    2001-06-01

    Ecological risk assessment (EcoRA) generally suffers from limited application of ecological knowledge in the definition and characterization of real-world sites. Not surprisingly, most remediation decisions, which follow, have little or no relationship to the valued ecological resources of the site or the broader region. The practice has evolved to favor engineering-based mitigation strategies, which eliminate excess chemical concentrations at sites, or otherwise break exposure pathways, but which may not be ecologically beneficial. The heavy emphasis of EcoRA on toxicity threshold levels tends to focus dollars on clean up of small areas or volumes with high concentrations. Moreover, intrusive remediation technologies often render an area uninhabitable to the very species that were to be protected. Infusion of ecological knowledge into EcoRA has been difficult. Most professional ecologists choose not to venture into the messy applied fields, leaving their impressive knowledge untapped. Moreover, narrowly defined responsibilities within government circles can limit cooperation and coordination. The realization that land use activities often have greater adverse consequences to wildlife than do chemicals provides an opportunity to change attitudes and practices. We are developing procedures that incorporate landscape features into the environmental management process. Specifically, we are using an iterative approach to: a) identify scenarios where habitat value is important in EcoRAs; b) guide selection of appropriate assessment species, i) keyed to wildlife distribution ranges; ii) keyed to a database of habitat suitability models; iii) cross-linked with the EPA exposure handbook species; iv) referenced to wildlife distributions (e.g., breeding bird survey); c) define data collection needs for reconnaissance-, screening-, and definitive-level characterization of habitat quality for potential assessment species; d) generate spatially explicit descriptions of habitat

  3. Data screening methods for baseline ecological risk assessments

    SciTech Connect

    Schmeising, L.M.

    1994-12-31

    In conducting ecological risk assessments (ERAs), it is commonplace to take a phased approach in assessing potential impacts to ecological receptors. The first phase, the baseline ecological risk assessment (BERA) often includes a component which involves the systematic screening of the analytical data for abiotic media (i.e., surface water, sediment, surface soil) versus available ecology-based criteria, standards, guidelines, and benchmark values. Examples of ecological benchmark values include applicable toxicity data, such as no observed effects levels (NOELS) , lowest observed effects levels (LOELS) , or lethal doses (LC50, LD50) for selected indicator species or surrogates. An additional step often included in the screening process, is the calculation of ecological quotients (EQs), or environmental concentration/ benchmark ratios. The intent of the data screening process in performing BERAs is to determine which contaminants at a site are potentially posing a threat to ecological receptors. These contaminants, known as the ecological contaminants of concern (COCS) , are retained for further, detailed evaluations in later phases of the risk assessment. Application of these screening methodologies is presented, along with examples of ecology-based criteria, standards, and guidelines, and benchmark values.

  4. 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…

  5. 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.

  6. 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...

  7. 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...

  8. 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...

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. Risk and response in watershed ecosystems: Expanding the value of ecological risk assessments

    SciTech Connect

    Marcy, S.K.M.

    1995-12-31

    Ecological risk assessments have primarily been used to either predict, or retrospectively evaluate, the adverse effects of chemical stressors on selected ecological resources. While useful in many applications, this focus has limited value when ecological resources are simultaneously impacted by diverse chemical, physical and biological stressors, a situation typical in watersheds. With an increased emphasis on ecosystem management and watershed protection, it is critical to provide a scientific basis for evaluating and prioritizing risk and predicting the response of resources to management efforts. An expanded ecological risk assessment methodology can provide this scientific framework for improving watershed assessments by: (1) predicting both the risk and response of ecological resources to a potential range of management options, (2) including retrospective, current status, and predictive evaluations, and (3) addressing multiple diverse stressors. The effectiveness of using ecological risk assessments to improve management and decision making at the watershed level will be discussed based on the development of five watershed case studies.

  13. 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

  14. 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.

  15. 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

  16. 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

  17. 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...

  18. 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...

  19. RESRAD-ECORISK: A computer code for ecological risk assessment

    SciTech Connect

    Cheng, J.J.

    1995-12-01

    RESRAD-ECORISK is a PC-based computer code developed by Argonne National Laboratory (ANL) to estimate risks from exposure of ecological receptors at sites contaminated with potentially hazardous chemicals. The code is based on and is consistent with the methodologies of RESRAD-CHEM, an ANL-developed computer code for assessments of human health risk. RESRAD-ECORISK uses environmental fate and transport models to estimate contaminant concentrations in environmental media from an initial contaminated soil source and food-web uptake models to estimate contaminant doses to ecological receptors. The dose estimates are then used to estimate a risk for the ecological receptor and to calculate preliminary soil guidelines for reducing risks to acceptable levels. Specifically, RESRAD-ECORISK calculates (1) a species-specific applied daily dose for each contaminant (using species-specific life history information and site-specific environmental media concentrations), (2) an ecological hazard quotient (EHQ) for each contaminant and species, and (3) preliminary soil cleanup criteria for each contaminant and receptor. RESRAD-ECORISK incorporates a user-friendly menu-driven interface, databases and default values for a variety of ecological and chemical parameters, and on-line help for easy operation. The code is sufficiently flexible to simulate different contaminated sites and incorporate site-specific ecological data.

  20. 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.

  1. The ecological risks of genetically engineered organisms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wolfenbarger, Lareesa

    2001-03-01

    Highly publicized studies have suggested environmental risks of releasing genetically engineered organisms (GEOs) and have renewed concerns over the evaluation and regulation of these products in domestic and international arenas. I present an overview of the risks of GEOs and the available evidence addressing these and discuss the challenges for risk assessment. Main categories of risk include non-target effects from GEOs, emergence of new viral diseases, and the spread of invasive (weedy) characteristics. Studies have detected non-target effects in some cases but not all; however, much less information exists on other risks, in part due to a lack of conceptual knowledge. For example, general models for predicting invasiveness are not well developed for any introduced organism. The risks of GEOs appear comparable to those for any introduced species or organism, but the magnitude of the risk or the pathway of exposure to the risk can differ among introduced organisms. Therefore, assessing the risks requires a case-by-case analysis so that any differences can be identified. Challenges to assessing risks to valued ecosystems include variability in effects and ecosystem complexity. Ecosystems are a dynamic and complex network of biological and physical interactions. Introducing a new biological entity, such as a GEO, may potentially alter any of these interactions, but evaluating all of these is unrealistic. Effects on a valued ecosystem could vary greatly depending on the geographical location of the experimental site, the GEO used, the plot size of the experiment (scaling effects), and the biological and physical parameters used in the experiment. Experiments that address these sources of variability will provide the most useful information for risk assessments.

  2. Predicting the risk of extinction from shared ecological characteristics

    PubMed Central

    Kotiaho, Janne S.; Kaitala, Veijo; Komonen, Atte; Päivinen, Jussi

    2005-01-01

    Understanding the ultimate causes of population declines and extinction is vital in our quest to stop the currently rampant biodiversity loss. Comparison of ecological characteristics between threatened and nonthreatened species may reveal these ultimate causes. Here, we report an analysis of ecological characteristics of 23 threatened and 72 nonthreatened butterfly species. Our analysis reveals that threatened butterflies are characterized by narrow niche breadth, restricted resource distribution, poor dispersal ability, and short flight period. Based on the characteristics, we constructed an ecological extinction risk rank and predicted which of the currently nonthreatened species are at the highest risk of extinction. Our analysis reveals that two species currently classified as nonthreatened are, in fact, at high risk of extinction, and that the status of a further five species should be reconsidered. PMID:15671171

  3. 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

  4. Ecological food web analysis for chemical risk assessment.

    PubMed

    Preziosi, Damian V; Pastorok, Robert A

    2008-12-01

    Food web analysis can be a critical component of ecological risk assessment, yet it has received relatively little attention among risk assessors. Food web data are currently used in modeling bioaccumulation of toxic chemicals and, to a limited extent, in the determination of the ecological significance of risks. Achieving more realism in ecological risk assessments requires new analysis tools and models that incorporate accurate information on key receptors in a food web paradigm. Application of food web analysis in risk assessments demands consideration of: 1) different kinds of food webs; 2) definition of trophic guilds; 3) variation in food webs with habitat, space, and time; and 4) issues for basic sampling design and collection of dietary data. The different kinds of food webs include connectance webs, materials flow webs, and functional (or interaction) webs. These three kinds of webs play different roles throughout various phases of an ecological risk assessment, but risk assessors have failed to distinguish among web types. When modeling food webs, choices must be made regarding the level of complexity for the web, assignment of species to trophic guilds, selection of representative species for guilds, use of average diets, the characterization of variation among individuals or guild members within a web, and the spatial and temporal scales/dynamics of webs. Integrating exposure and effects data in ecological models for risk assessment of toxic chemicals relies on coupling food web analysis with bioaccumulation models (e.g., Gobas-type models for fish and their food webs), wildlife exposure models, dose-response models, and population dynamics models. PMID:18703218

  5. 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

  6. [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.

  7. Integrated presentation of ecological risk from multiple stressors

    PubMed Central

    Goussen, Benoit; Price, Oliver R.; Rendal, Cecilie; Ashauer, Roman

    2016-01-01

    Current environmental risk assessments (ERA) do not account explicitly for ecological factors (e.g. species composition, temperature or food availability) and multiple stressors. Assessing mixtures of chemical and ecological stressors is needed as well as accounting for variability in environmental conditions and uncertainty of data and models. Here we propose a novel probabilistic ERA framework to overcome these limitations, which focusses on visualising assessment outcomes by construct-ing and interpreting prevalence plots as a quantitative prediction of risk. Key components include environmental scenarios that integrate exposure and ecology, and ecological modelling of relevant endpoints to assess the effect of a combination of stressors. Our illustrative results demonstrate the importance of regional differences in environmental conditions and the confounding interactions of stressors. Using this framework and prevalence plots provides a risk-based approach that combines risk assessment and risk management in a meaningful way and presents a truly mechanistic alternative to the threshold approach. Even whilst research continues to improve the underlying models and data, regulators and decision makers can already use the framework and prevalence plots. The integration of multiple stressors, environmental conditions and variability makes ERA more relevant and realistic. PMID:27782171

  8. Monitoring needs to perform ecological risk assessments in Switzerland

    SciTech Connect

    Kraeuchi, N.

    1999-07-01

    There is enormous pressure to come up with answers to questions asked by politicians and the public concerning the development of the environment and the potential risks society might be confronted with. Forests for example are expected to fulfill specific functions (e.g., timber production, protection of soil and water resources, recreation). As the environmental and social context itself is rapidly changing it is unknown what uses of a forest will appear in the future. The changing social and ecological context under which forestry operates is therefore calling for an appropriate management mode to deal with uncertainties. There is a need to act, monitor the results, learn from the past, adapt to new conditions through planning and to accept a philosophy of managing an ecosystem with the purpose of reducing potential future socio-ecological and environmental risk by understanding potential problems before they arise. Thus, ecosystem-based management must follow established ecological principles and appropriate guidelines must be derived from a thorough understanding of the origin of the risks potentially threatening the forests and the relevant ecosystem processes. In order to evaluate the likelihood that adverse ecological effects may occur as a result of exposure to one or more stressors long-term monitoring data, information, assumptions and uncertainties need to be systematically evaluated and analyzed. This is needed to understand and predict the relationships between stressors and ecological effects in a way that is useful for environmental decision making.

  9. 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...

  10. 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...

  11. 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...

  12. 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...

  13. 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…

  14. 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…

  15. 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...

  16. PROBABILITY SURVEYS , CONDITIONAL PROBABILITIES 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 ...

  17. 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...

  18. 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...

  19. 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.

  20. 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 ...

  1. QSAR in predictive models for ecological risk assessment

    SciTech Connect

    Passino-Reader, D.R.; Hickey, J.P.

    1994-12-31

    The end use of toxicity and exposure data is risk assessment to determine the probability that receptors experience harmful effects from exposure to environmental contaminants at a site. Determination of processes and development of predictive models precede the collection of data for risk assessment. The presence of hundreds of contaminants at a site and absence of data for many contaminants lead to the use of QSAR to implement the models. Examples of the use of linear salvation energy relationships (LSER) to provide estimates of aquatic toxicity and exposure endpoints will be provided. Integration of QSAR estimates and measured data must be addressed in the uncertainty analysis accompanying ecological risk assessment.

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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

  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. 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...

  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. [Ecological risk evaluation of heavy metals of the typical dredged mud in Shanghai].

    PubMed

    Tang, Qing-Li; Cheng, Jin-Ping; Gao, Hao-Min; Yao, Lei; Jiang, Zhen-Yi; Wu, Yang; Xie, Cui-Song; Liang, Hai; Wang, He; Pi, Shuai-Shuai; Yu, Zhao-Yi

    2013-04-01

    In order to discuss the potential ecological risk of heavy metals of the typical dredged mud in Shanghai, the Hakanson potential ecological risks method was used to analyse and assess the potential ecological risks of heavy metals, including Hg, Cd, Cu, Pb, As,Cr and Zn in dredged mud from the following three areas-the dock apron of Huangpu River, the mouth of the Yangtze River and inland waterways. The results showed that the mean values of ecological risk index (Er(i)) of the seven heavy metals are 20.05, 17.49, 8.82, 5.71, 4.68, 1.74 and 1.13, respectively, all of which belonged to the low ecological risk; Cd (one location in inland waterways) and Hg (three locations in the mouth of the Yangtze River and one location in inland waterways) are the most hazardous elements, with the Er(i) > 40, which belonged to the medium ecological risk or the high ecological risk, and other elements belonged to the low ecological risk. From the results of ecological risk indices(ERI) of the heavy metals in Shanghai dredged mud, the risk of the heavy metals belonged to the low ecological risk. The ERI of inland waterways, the mouth of the Yangtze River and the dock apron of the Huangpu River were 81.4, 57.7 and 52.5, respectively, which all belong to the low ecological risk.

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

    PubMed Central

    CHEN, You-Hua

    2014-01-01

    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 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.

  12. 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.

  13. Legal and institutional considerations in the application of ecological risk assessment at Department of Energy facilities

    SciTech Connect

    Bilyard, G.R. ); Bascietto, J.; Beckert, H. )

    1992-10-01

    As defined in EPA's Framework for Ecological Risk Assessment, ecological risk assessment is a promising tool that DOE can use to help meet its legal and institutional obligations during remediation and restoration activities. The adoption of ecological risk assessment as a tool for meeting legal and societal obligations, and as a means of providing information for resource management decisions has several implications for DOE, including the need to define a process for using ecological risk assessment to support regulatory compliance and institutionally mandated activities. This paper first identifies regulatory requirements and institutional considerations that could be important to DOE, and that could be supported by ecological risk assessments. Considering this set of regulatory requirements and institutional considerations, the often complex characteristics of DOE sites, and the elements of EPA's ecological risk assessment framework, a process for using ecological risk assessment at DOE sites is then proposed.

  14. Legal and institutional considerations in the application of ecological risk assessment at Department of Energy facilities

    SciTech Connect

    Bilyard, G.R.; Bascietto, J.; Beckert, H.

    1992-10-01

    As defined in EPA`s Framework for Ecological Risk Assessment, ecological risk assessment is a promising tool that DOE can use to help meet its legal and institutional obligations during remediation and restoration activities. The adoption of ecological risk assessment as a tool for meeting legal and societal obligations, and as a means of providing information for resource management decisions has several implications for DOE, including the need to define a process for using ecological risk assessment to support regulatory compliance and institutionally mandated activities. This paper first identifies regulatory requirements and institutional considerations that could be important to DOE, and that could be supported by ecological risk assessments. Considering this set of regulatory requirements and institutional considerations, the often complex characteristics of DOE sites, and the elements of EPA`s ecological risk assessment framework, a process for using ecological risk assessment at DOE sites is then proposed.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. [Study on ecological risk assessment technology of fluoride pollution from arid oasis soil].

    PubMed

    Xue, Su-Yin; Li, Ping; Wang, Sheng-Li; Nan, Zhong-Ren

    2014-03-01

    According to translocation regulation of fluoride in the typical oasis soil-plant system under field, an ecological risk assessment model of fluoride was established, and this model was used to assess ecological risk to fluoride pollution from suburban oasis soils in Baiyin City, which was specifically expressed with the potential ecological risk of bioavailability (ER(bc)) model to assess ecological risk of fluoride pollution in oasis regions. Results showed that the ecological risk indices of fluoride pollution from this region were 1.37-24.81, the level of risk at most sites was high to very high, the average ecological risk index was 11.28, belonged to very high risk. This indicated that in the suburb soil of Baiyin City needs to be concerned about the remediation of fluoride pollution.

  18. [Study on ecological risk assessment technology of fluoride pollution from arid oasis soil].

    PubMed

    Xue, Su-Yin; Li, Ping; Wang, Sheng-Li; Nan, Zhong-Ren

    2014-03-01

    According to translocation regulation of fluoride in the typical oasis soil-plant system under field, an ecological risk assessment model of fluoride was established, and this model was used to assess ecological risk to fluoride pollution from suburban oasis soils in Baiyin City, which was specifically expressed with the potential ecological risk of bioavailability (ER(bc)) model to assess ecological risk of fluoride pollution in oasis regions. Results showed that the ecological risk indices of fluoride pollution from this region were 1.37-24.81, the level of risk at most sites was high to very high, the average ecological risk index was 11.28, belonged to very high risk. This indicated that in the suburb soil of Baiyin City needs to be concerned about the remediation of fluoride pollution. PMID:24881399

  19. 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

  20. Quantifying population recovery rates for ecological risk assessment.

    PubMed

    Barnthouse, Lawrence W

    2004-02-01

    Ecological effects of modern agrochemicals are typically limited to brief episodes of increased mortality or reduced growth that are qualitatively similar to natural disturbance regimes. The long-term ecological consequences of agrochemical exposures depend on the intensity and frequency of the exposures relative to the rates of recovery of the exposed populations. This paper explores the feasibility of using readily available life history information to quantify recovery rates of aquatic populations. A simple modeling framework based on the logistic population growth model is used to compare population recovery rates for different types of organisms and to evaluate the influence of life history, initial percent reduction, disturbance frequency, and immigration on the time required for populations to recover from simulated agrochemical exposures. Recovery models are developed for aquatic biota ranging in size and longevity from unicellular algae to fish and turtles. Population growth rates and recovery times derived from life history data are consistent with measured recovery times reported in mesocosm and enclosure experiments, thus supporting the use of the models for quantifying population recovery rates for ecological risk assessment. PMID:14982399

  1. Prospective ecological risk assessment of sediment resuspension in an estuary.

    PubMed

    Rial, Diego; Beiras, Ricardo

    2012-08-01

    This study assesses potential ecological risk of resuspended sediment in the water column during the construction of a viaduct in the estuary of the Ulla river (Galicia, NW Iberian Peninsula), a shellfish production area. Chemical analyses and toxicity bioassays with elutriates were performed with sediments from the area where the three pillars of the viaduct will be located (CT1, CT2 and CT3) and a reference sediment (A2). Acute toxicity of the elutriate was evaluated in five species of three trophic levels (Isochrysis galbana, Paracentrotus lividus, Mytilus galloprovincialis, Venerupis pullastra and Siriella armata). The sediments of the pillars showed moderate levels of contamination by trace elements (Cu, Cr). Clam and sea urchin embryo-larval toxicity tests showed slightly higher sensitivity than mussel embryo tests, and toxicity was not detected for phytoplankton and mysid bioassays. The predicted no-effect environmental concentration (PNEC) was calculated from the arithmetic mean of the lowest calculated EC(50)s for each sampling site. The predicted environmental concentration (PEC) was estimated from a simple dilution model and the PEC/PNEC ratio was calculated according to different scenarios of resuspension. Negligible ecological risk in the water column is expected during construction of the pillars.

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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

  5. Ecological risk assessment in the context of global climate change.

    PubMed

    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.

  6. 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

  7. 78 FR 38315 - Registration Review; Draft Human Health and Ecological Risk Assessments; Notice of Availability

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-06-26

    ... registered for use as a pre-plant pineapple seed treatment. The Agency has conducted a human health risk... AGENCY Registration Review; Draft Human Health and Ecological Risk Assessments; Notice of Availability... availability of EPA's draft human health and ecological risk assessments for the registration review...

  8. [Ecological risk assessment and its management of Bailongjiang watershed, southern Gansu based on landscape pattern].

    PubMed

    Gong, Jie; Zhao, Cai-Xia; Xie, Yu-Chu; Gao, Yan-Jing

    2014-07-01

    Watershed ecological risk assessment is an important research subject of watershed ecological protection and environmental management. Research on the ecological risk focuses on addressing the influence of human activities and its spatial variation at watershed scale is vital to policy-making to control the impact of human activity and protocols for sustainable economic and societal development. A comprehensive ecological environment index, incorporating a landscape index and an assessment of ecological vulnerability, was put forward to assess the spatio-temporal characteristics of ecological risk of the Bailongjiang watershed, southern Gansu Province, Northwest China. Using ArcGIS and Fragstats software and a land use map of 2010, an ecological risk map was obtained through spatial sampling and disjunctive Kriging interpolation. The results indicated that there were some obvious spatial differences of ecological risk levels in the watershed. The ecological risk level of the north and northwest of the Bailongjiang was higher than that of the western and southern extremities of the watershed. Ecological risk index (ERI) of Wudu and Tanchang was higher than that of Wenxian and Diebu. Some measures for ecological risk management were put forward on the basis of ERI of Bailongjiang watershed. To strengthen the integrated management of human activities and land use in the watershed, to carry out the vegetation restoration and ecological reconstruction, and to reduce the ecological risks and hazards of irrational human disturbance, are vital to the realization 'multiple-win' of the economic, social and ecological protection and for the sustainable development in the hilly area in southern Gansu.

  9. 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.

  10. Refuse and the 'Risk Society': The Political Ecology of Risk in Inter-war Britain.

    PubMed

    Cooper, Timothy; Bulmer, Sarah

    2013-05-01

    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

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. Pharmaceutical metabolites in the environment: analytical challenges and ecological risks.

    PubMed

    Celiz, Mary D; Tso, Jerry; Aga, Diana S

    2009-12-01

    The occurrence of human and veterinary pharmaceuticals in the environment has been a subject of concern for the past decade because many of these emerging contaminants have been shown to persist in soil and water. Although recent studies indicate that pharmaceutical contaminants can pose long-term ecological risks, many of the investigations regarding risk assessment have only considered the ecotoxicity of the parent drug, with very little attention given to the potential contributions that metabolites may have. The scarcity of available environmental data on the human metabolites excreted into the environment or the microbial metabolites formed during environmental biodegradation of pharmaceutical residues can be attributed to the difficulty in analyzing trace amounts of previously unknown compounds in complex sample matrices. However, with the advent of highly sensitive and powerful analytical instrumentations that have become available commercially, it is likely that an increased number of pharmaceutical metabolites will be identified and included in environmental risk assessment. The present study will present a critical review of available literature on pharmaceutical metabolites, primarily focusing on their analysis and toxicological significance. It is also intended to provide an overview on the recent advances in analytical tools and strategies to facilitate metabolite identification in environmental samples. This review aims to provide insight on what future directions might be taken to help scientists in this challenging task of enhancing the available data on the fate, behavior, and ecotoxicity of pharmaceutical metabolites in the environment.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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

  18. Ecological risk assessment of small mammals at a zinc smelter

    SciTech Connect

    Mellott, R.S.; LaTier, A.J.; Garcia, P.; Pastorok, R.A.; Shields, W.; Chapin, M.

    1995-12-31

    A baseline ecological risk assessment (ERA) was conducted on a 200-acre prairie habitat (study area) immediately south of the National Zinc Site (NZS) in Bartlesville, OK, to evaluate the potential risk to small mammals from exposure to historical emissions of cadmium, lead, and zinc. The zinc facility was operated with horizontal retort smelters from 1907 until 1976 when the facility was converted to an electrolytic operation. Soil concentrations of cadmium on the study area ranged from 25 to 144 mg/kg (dw), lead from 84 to 485 mg/kg (dw), and zinc from 1,530 to 7,170 mg/kg (dw). Receptors species were the white-footed deer mouse and hispid cotton rat, common residents of the area that represent exposure through the ingestion pathways of vegetation, invertebrates, water, and soil. Assessment endpoints of this ERA were reproductive impairment and population reduction, with measurement endpoints being the mean number of embryos and implantation sites in females, reproductive condition of males, and population age structure and growth. No evidence of reproductive or growth impairment related to metals was found in either species, reproductive activity of hispid cotton rats on the study area was higher than on reference sites, and no difference in population age structure was detected. Receptor populations did show evidence of effects related to physical stressors (100-year flood event followed by record heat, drought and more flooding) that occurred prior to initiation of the study in September. Results of a food-web model of exposure for white-footed mice indicated no risk from metals concentrations in the diet. The results of this baseline ERA indicate that the concentrations of cadmium, lead, and zinc on the study area do not pose a significant risk to small mammal populations.

  19. 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

  20. 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...

  1. 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...

  2. 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...

  3. Ranking ecological risks of multiple chemical stressors on amphibians.

    PubMed

    Fedorenkova, Anastasia; Vonk, J Arie; Lenders, H J Rob; Creemers, Raymond C M; Breure, Anton M; Hendriks, A Jan

    2012-06-01

    Populations of amphibians have been declining worldwide since the late 1960s. Despite global concern, no studies have quantitatively assessed the major causes of this decline. In the present study, species sensitivity distributions (SSDs) were developed to analyze the sensitivity of anurans for ammonium, nitrate, heavy metals (cadmium, copper), pesticides (18 compounds), and acidification (pH) based on laboratory toxicity data. Ecological risk (ER) was calculated as the probability that a measured environmental concentration of a particular stressor in habitats where anurans were observed would exceed the toxic effect concentrations derived from the species sensitivity distributions. The assessment of ER was used to rank the stressors according to their potential risk to anurans based on a case study of Dutch freshwater bodies. The derived ERs revealed that threats to populations of anurans decreased in the sequence of pH, copper, diazinon, ammonium, and endosulfan. Other stressors studied were of minor importance. The method of deriving ER by combining field observation data and laboratory data provides insight into potential threats to species in their habitats and can be used to prioritize stressors, which is necessary to achieve effective management in amphibian conservation.

  4. 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.

  5. 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...

  6. 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 ...

  7. 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...

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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

  11. Ecological risk assessment of landfill air emissions from a hazardous waste management facility in Ontario

    SciTech Connect

    Durda, J.L.; Suit-Kowalski, L.; Preziosi, D.; Chrostowski, P.C.

    1997-12-31

    An ecological risk assessment was conducted to evaluate the potential for adverse environmental impacts associated with chemicals released to air as a result of a proposed expansion of a hazardous waste landfill in Ontario. The purpose of the risk assessment was to characterize ecological risks associated with the proposed expansion relative to those associated with the existing landfill and those that would exist if the current landfill was completely closed and background conditions prevailed. The ecological risk assessment was one part of a comprehensive environmental impact assessment of the proposed landfill continuation that was being performed under the requirements of Ontario`s Environmental Assessment Act. Air monitoring data from the facility were used to identify a list of 141 chemicals potentially released during landfill continuation, as well as to characterize current emissions and background chemical levels. An ecological risk-based chemical screening process that considered background concentration, source strength, environmental partitioning, bioaccumulation potential, and toxicity was used to select a group of 23 chemicals for detailed evaluation in the ecological risk assessment. Dispersion, deposition, partitioning and bioaccumulation modeling were used to predict potential exposures in ecological receptors. Receptors were selected for evaluation based on regional habitat characteristics, exposure potential, toxicant sensitivity, ecological significance, population status, and societal value. Livestock and agricultural crop and pasture species were key receptors for the assessment, given the highly agricultural nature of the study area. In addition, native wildlife species, including the endangered Henslow`s sparrow and the regionally vulnerable pugnose minnow, also were considered.

  12. 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.

  13. 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...

  14. 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...

  15. 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,…

  16. 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,...

  17. 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

  18. 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

  19. 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

    2015-11-09

    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.

  20. Ecological models in support of regulatory risk assessments of pesticides: developing a strategy for the future.

    PubMed

    Forbes, Valery E; Hommen, Udo; Thorbek, Pernille; Heimbach, Fred; Van den Brink, Paul J; Wogram, Jörn; Thulke, Hans-Hermann; Grimm, Volker

    2009-01-01

    This brief communication reports on the main findings of the LEMTOX workshop, held from 9 to 12 September 2007, at the Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research (UFZ) in Leipzig, Germany. The workshop brought together a diverse group of stakeholders from academia, regulatory authorities, contract research organizations, and industry, representing Europe, the United States, and Asia, to discuss the role of ecological modeling in risk assessments of pesticides, particularly under the European regulatory framework. The following questions were addressed: What are the potential benefits of using ecological models in pesticide registration and risk assessment? What obstacles prevent ecological modeling from being used routinely in regulatory submissions? What actions are needed to overcome the identified obstacles? What recommendations should be made to ensure good modeling practice in this context? The workshop focused exclusively on population models, and discussion was focused on those categories of population models that link effects on individuals (e.g., survival, growth, reproduction, behavior) to effects on population dynamics. The workshop participants concluded that the overall benefits of ecological modeling are that it could bring more ecology into ecological risk assessment, and it could provide an excellent tool for exploring the importance of, and interactions among, ecological complexities. However, there are a number of challenges that need to be overcome before such models will receive wide acceptance for pesticide risk assessment, despite having been used extensively in other contexts (e.g., conservation biology). The need for guidance on Good Modeling Practice (on model development, analysis, interpretation, evaluation, documentation, and communication), as well as the need for case studies that can be used to explore the added value of ecological models for risk assessment, were identified as top priorities. Assessing recovery potential of exposed

  1. An approach for balancing health and ecological risks at hazardous waste sites.

    PubMed

    Suter, G W; Cornaby, B W; Hadden, C T; Hull, R N; Stack, M; Zafran, F A

    1995-04-01

    Human health and ecological risks must be balanced at hazardous waste sites in order to ensure that remedial actions prevent unacceptable risks of either type. Actions that are designed to protect humans may fail to protect nonhuman populations and ecosystems or may damage ecosystems. However, there is no common scale of health and ecological risk that would allow comparisons to be performed. This paper presents an approach to addressing this problem based on classifying all risks (i.e., health and ecological risks due contaminants and remediation) as insignificant (de minimis), highly significant (de manifestis), or intermediate. For health risks the classification is based on standard criteria. However, in the absence of national guidance concerning the acceptability of ecological risks, new ecological criteria are proposed based on an analysis of regulatory precedents. Matrices and flow charts are presented to guide the use of these risk categories in remedial decision making. The assessment of mercury contamination of the East Fork Poplar Creek is presented as an example of the implementation of the approach.

  2. 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.

  3. 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

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. Health Risks to Ecological Workers on Contaminated Sites - the Department of Energy as a Case Study

    PubMed Central

    Burger, Joanna; Gochfeld, Michael

    2016-01-01

    Background At most contaminated sites the risk to workers focuses on those ‘hazardous waste workers’ directly exposed to chemicals or radionuclides, and to the elaborate approaches implemented to protecting their health and safety. Ecological workers generally are not considered. Objectives To explore the risks to the health and safety of ecological workers on sites with potential chemical and radiological exposures before, during or after remediation of contamination. To use the U.S. Department of Energy as a case study, and to develop concepts that apply generally to sites contaminated with hazardous or nuclear wastes, Methods Develop categories of ecological workers, describe their usual jobs, and provide information on the kinds of risks they face. Ecological activities include continued surveillance and monitoring work on any sites with residual contamination, subject to institutional controls and engineered barriers following closure as well as the restoration. Results The categories of ecological workers and their tasks include 1) Ecological characterization, mapping and monitoring, 2) biodiversity studies, 2) Contaminant fate and transport, 3) On-going industrial activities 4) Remediation activities (environmental management), 5) Environmental restoration, 6) Post-cleanup surveillance and monitoring, and 7) Post-closure future site activities. There are a set of functional activities that can occur with different frequencies and intensities, including visual inspection, collecting biological samples, collecting media physical samples, collecting biological debris, restoration planting, and maintaining ecosystems. Conclusions Ecological workers face different exposures and risks than other environmental cleanup workers. Many of their tasks mimic shift work with long hours leading to fatigue, and they are exposed to biological as well as chemical/radiological hazards. DOE and other entities need to examine the risks to ecological workers on site with an

  10. Health Risks to Ecological Workers on Contaminated Sites - the Department of Energy as a Case Study

    PubMed Central

    Burger, Joanna; Gochfeld, Michael

    2016-01-01

    Background At most contaminated sites the risk to workers focuses on those ‘hazardous waste workers’ directly exposed to chemicals or radionuclides, and to the elaborate approaches implemented to protecting their health and safety. Ecological workers generally are not considered. Objectives To explore the risks to the health and safety of ecological workers on sites with potential chemical and radiological exposures before, during or after remediation of contamination. To use the U.S. Department of Energy as a case study, and to develop concepts that apply generally to sites contaminated with hazardous or nuclear wastes, Methods Develop categories of ecological workers, describe their usual jobs, and provide information on the kinds of risks they face. Ecological activities include continued surveillance and monitoring work on any sites with residual contamination, subject to institutional controls and engineered barriers following closure as well as the restoration. Results The categories of ecological workers and their tasks include 1) Ecological characterization, mapping and monitoring, 2) biodiversity studies, 2) Contaminant fate and transport, 3) On-going industrial activities 4) Remediation activities (environmental management), 5) Environmental restoration, 6) Post-cleanup surveillance and monitoring, and 7) Post-closure future site activities. There are a set of functional activities that can occur with different frequencies and intensities, including visual inspection, collecting biological samples, collecting media physical samples, collecting biological debris, restoration planting, and maintaining ecosystems. Conclusions Ecological workers face different exposures and risks than other environmental cleanup workers. Many of their tasks mimic shift work with long hours leading to fatigue, and they are exposed to biological as well as chemical/radiological hazards. DOE and other entities need to examine the risks to ecological workers on site with an

  11. 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...

  12. 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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-09-01

    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 (C(deg)) 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 (C(i)(f)), C(deg), monomial ecological risk (E(i)(r)) 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.

  14. 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

  15. MULTIVARIATE STATISTICAL APPLICATIONS FOR ADDRESSING MULTIPLE STRESSORS IN ECOLOGICAL RISK ASSESSMENTS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Ecological risk managers more and more frequently are asking how specific risk factors act in the environment within the context of the large number of natural stressor amount of variability that always have occurred. They wish to manage for cologically relevant solutions that wi...

  16. 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

  17. Ecological risk assessment report, submerged quench incinerator, task IRA-2, basin F liquids treatment design. Version 3. 0. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1991-03-01

    The objective of this ecological risk assessment is to evaluate the potential impacts of on-site incineration of Basin F liquids. Twenty-nine chemicals were evaluated for potential adverse effects to terrestrial and aquatic wildlife and vegetation on RMA. Based on this assessment, it is concluded that the operation of the submerged quench incinerator poses no quantifiable risks to the wildlife and vegetation. The assessment is divided into the following sections: description of the area - terrestrial and aquatic ecology; contaminants of concern; ecological exposure - description of contaminant transport from incinerator to environment; ecological risk - development of risk criteria, risk characterization; assumptions and uncertainties.

  18. 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

  19. 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

  20. 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.

  1. Development of a relative risk model for evaluating ecological risk of water environment in the Haihe River Basin estuary area.

    PubMed

    Chen, Qiuying; Liu, Jingling; Ho, Kin Chung; Yang, Zhifeng

    2012-03-15

    Ecological risk assessment for water environment is significant to water resource management of basin. Effective environmental management and systems restoration such as the Haihe River Basin require holistic understanding of the relative importance of various stressor-related impacts throughout the basin. As an effective technical tool for evaluating the ecological risk, relative risk model (RRM) was applied in regional scale successfully. In this study, the risk transfer from upstream of basin was considered and the RRM was developed through 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 includes water quality, water quantity and aquatic ecosystems was selected as the assessment endpoints. We created a conceptual model which depicting potential and effect pathways from source to stressor to habitat to endpoint. The Haihe River Basin estuary (HRBE) was selected as the model case. The results showed that there were two low risk regions, one medium risk region and two high risk regions in the HRBE. The results also indicated that urbanization was the biggest source, the second was shipping and the third was industry, their risk scores are 5.65, 4.71 and 3.68 respectively. Furthermore, habitat destruction was the largest stressor with the risk scores (2.66), the second was oxygen consuming organic pollutants (1.75) and the third was pathogens (1.75). So these three stressors were the main influencing factors of the ecological pressure in the study area. For habitats, open waters (9.59) and intertidal mudflat were enduring the bigger pressure and should be taken considerable attention. Ecological service values damaged (30.54) and biodiversity decreased were facing the biggest risk pressure.

  2. 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…

  3. The Ecology of a Chicano Student at Risk.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Seda, Milagros; Bixler-Marquez, Dennis J.

    1994-01-01

    A case study is reported that identified the individual, aggregate, and interactive effect of socioeconomic status, cultural, psychosocial, and academic factors that shaped the at-risk status of a Chicano fourth grader. The most significant at-risk factors included home violence and lack of continuous positive adult contact in school.…

  4. [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

  5. [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

  6. 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

  7. 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

  8. 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

  9. Ecological function and resilience: Neglected criteria for environmental impact assessment and ecological risk analysis

    SciTech Connect

    Cairns, J. Jr.; Niederlehner, B.R. . Univ. Center for Environmental and Hazardous Materials Studies)

    1993-01-01

    The importance of establishing methods for determining ecological function and resilience transcends scientific interest; these methods are important to sustained societal use of ecosystems and long-term productivity. Essential services that ecosystems provide to human society include water purification, oxygen production, carbon storage, climate regulation, and production of food, wood, and medicinal drugs. Although man is dependent upon these services, human understanding of the dynamics of ecosystem function is limited. Man can detect gross impairment of ecosystem function or resilience after the fact. However, protecting ecosystem health necessitates detecting adverse trends in ecological function, rather than reacting when the system collapses. The information to date is inadequate for predicting subtle changes or incremental trends. Once ecosystems are damaged and therefore providing diminished services, it is important to determine when they will be restored to an approximation of their predisturbance condition. For those ecosystems unlikely to recover on their own, management techniques may enhance recovery processes. Information about response of ecosystem function to human actions and relative resilience of alternative ecosystems can facilitate decision-making under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA).

  10. 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.

  11. 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...

  12. 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.

  13. [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

  14. [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.

  15. 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…

  16. 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

  17. Integrating water quality modeling with ecological risk assessment for nonpoint source pollution control: A conceptual framework

    SciTech Connect

    Chen, Y.D.; McCutcheon, S.C.; Rasmussen, T.C.; Nutter, W.L.; Carsel, R.F.

    1993-01-01

    The historical development of water quality protection goals and strategies in the United States is reviewed. The review leads to the identification and discussion of three components (i.e., management mechanism, environmental investigation approaches, and environmental assessment and criteria) for establishing a management framework for nonpoint source pollution control. Water quality modeling and ecological risk assessment are the two most important and promising approaches to the operation of the proposed management framework. A conceptual framework that shows the general integrative relationships between water quality modeling and ecological risk assessment is presented. (Copyright (c) 1993 IAWQ.)

  18. 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

  19. 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.

  20. 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...

  1. WEIGHING THE EVIDENCE OF ECOLOGICAL RISK OF CHEMICAL CONTAMINATION IN THE ESTUARINE ENVIRONMENT ADJACENT TO THE PORTSMOUTH NAVAL SHIPYARD, KITTERY, MAINE, USA

    EPA Science Inventory

    In characterizing ecological risks, considerable consensus building and professional judgments are required to develop conclusions about risk. This is because how to evaluate all the factors that determine ecological risk is not well defined and is subject to interpretation. Here...

  2. Ecological Risk Assessment for Selenium in the Evaluation of Restoration Alternatives for Salton Sea, California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ohlendorf, H. M.; Pulley, T. S.; Sample, B. E.; Long, S. P.; Byron, E. R.; Nielsen, K. J.

    2006-12-01

    Selenium is a chemical of ecological concern at the Salton Sea because it occurs at elevated concentrations in water, sediment, and biota of this terminal lake in southern California. The State of California is required to evaluate alternatives for restoration of long-term stable aquatic and shoreline habitats for the historic levels and diversity of fish and wildlife that depend on the Salton Sea and for protection of water quality. Ecological risks associated with selenium were evaluated under eight restoration alternatives (as well as current conditions and no action) in a programmatic-level environmental impact report. Varying types and configurations of marine, estuarine, freshwater, and terrestrial habitats would exist under the different alternatives. Ecological risks were associated primarily with existing and future selenium concentrations in sediment and inflow waters. In addition to completing an ecological risk assessment for each of the habitat types in each of the alternatives, we developed an approach for ranking risk among alternatives based on the combination of habitats, representative receptors evaluated, and area of each habitat. Results of the ranking enable a comparison of alternatives with respect to their expected selenium-associated risks for fish and aquatic birds (the main receptors of concern).

  3. 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

  4. 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

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. [Heavy metal pollution characteristics and ecological risk analysis for soil around Haining electroplating industrial park].

    PubMed

    Li, Jiong-Hui; Weng, Shan; Fang, Jing; Huang, Jia-Lei; Lu, Fang-Hua; Lu, Yu-Hao; Zhang, Hong-Ming

    2014-04-01

    The pollution status and potential ecological risks of heavy metal in soils around Haining electroplating industrial park were studied. Hakanson index approach was used to assess the ecological hazards of heavy metals in soils. Results showed that average concentrations of six heavy metals (Cu, Ni, Pb, Zn, Cd and Cr) in the soils were lower than the secondary criteria of environmental quality standard for soils, indicating limited harmful effects on the plants and the environment in general. Though the average soil concentrations were low, heavy metal concentrations in six sampling points located at the side of road still exceeded the criteria, with excessive rate of 13%. Statistic analysis showed that concentrations of Cu and Cd in roadside soils were significantly higher than those in non-roadside soils, indicating that the excessive heavy metal accumulations in the soil closely related with traffic transport. The average potential ecological hazard index of soils around Haining electroplating industrial park was 46.6, suggesting a slightly ecological harm. However, the potential ecological hazard index of soils with excessive heavy metals was 220-278, suggesting the medium ecological hazards. Cd was the most seriously ecological hazard factor.

  8. Ecological factors associated with STD risk behaviors among detained female adolescents.

    PubMed

    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 characteristics, peer relations, community factors, and media influences and their association to STD risk behaviors. Findings indicated that factors such as greater substance use, stronger risk-taking attitudes, lower perceived parental monitoring and familial support, gender roles supporting male dominance, risky peer norms, and lower student-teacher connectedness, were independently associated with increased STD risk behaviors. Findings suggest a multisystemic approach to STD prevention among this population.

  9. [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

  10. [Assessment of heavy metal pollution and potential ecological risks of urban soils in Kaifeng City, China].

    PubMed

    Li, Yi-Meng; Ma, Jian-Hua; Liu, De-Xin; Sun, Yan-Li; Chen, Yan-Fang

    2015-03-01

    Ninety-nine topsoil (0-15 cm) samples were collected from Kaifeng City, China using the grid method, and then the concentrations of As, Cd, Cr, Cu, Ni, Pb and Zn in the samples were measured by standard methods. Soil pollution levels and potential ecological risks of the heavy metals were assessed using the pollution load index (PLI) and potential ecological risk index (RI), respectively. Ordinary Kriging interpolation technique was employed to investigate the spatial distribution of PLI and RI of the city. The results showed that high pollution of Cd occurred in Kaifeng urban soils, and there was moderate pollution of Zn, slight pollution of Pb and Cu, and no pollution of Ni, Cr and As. Very high ecological risk was posed by Cd and low risk by other metals. The mean PLI of the 7 metals from all sample points was 2.53, which was categorized as moderate pollution. The average RI was 344.58 which represented a considerable ecological risk. PLI and RI shared a similar spatial distribution with high values centralized in the old industrial area in the southeast and railway stations for passengers and goods in the south of the city, followed by the old town within the ancient city wall, and low values located in the north and west areas. Cadmium was the main factor for both soil pollution and potential ecological risk primarily due to farmland topsoil in the eastern suburb of Kaifeng City with high Cd concentrations resulted from sewage irrigation deposited in the urban area by wind, human activities such as soot discharged from the chemical fertilizer plant of Kaifeng, transportation and coal combustion.

  11. 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.

  12. Ecological risk assessment of land use change in the Poyang Lake Eco-economic Zone, China.

    PubMed

    Xie, Hualin; Wang, Peng; Huang, Hongsheng

    2013-01-14

    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.

  13. Ecological risk screening to prioritize sites for cleanup at Yorktown Naval Weapons Station: A case study

    SciTech Connect

    Pehrman, D.G.; Rowles, L.K.; Thomson, R.

    1995-12-31

    Federal facilities pose a unique and difficult problem for the Superfund (CERCLA/SARA/NCP) process in that most Federal facilities have a large number of suspect areas that require some form of environmental investigation to determine the potential risk these areas present to human health and the environment. Because Federal facilities are, on the average, larger in comparison to private Superfund sites, not all of the identified suspect areas of contamination have gone through the PA/SI evaluation. Thus, some mechanism for evaluating the potential risk presented by these suspect areas is needed to determine which areas should continue in the risk assessment process, thereby allowing the remedial investigation process to focus on areas presenting the greatest threat to human health and/or the environment. Developing an ecological risk screening methodology for an areas with known or suspect contaminated media is an integral part in assessing and characterizing existing and potential overall threat presented to the environment. Sites which indicate risk in the screening phase may be prioritized and carried into the remedial investigation (RI) process. Alternately, sites which indicate risk in the screening process may be characterized for limited ecological investigation or possibly eliminated from further evaluation. This paper presents a case study of the ecological risk screening process used at the Naval Weapons Station, Yorktown, Virginia, a NPL site, to assess the effects of organic contamination to Accipitridae (eagles and hawks) and shorebirds with habitats encompassing Lee Pond, a freshwater pond tributary to the York River estuary. This discussion will include the use of the ecological risk screening process at the facility as a method of prioritizing and directing environmental restoration activities at those areas determined to have a potential threat to human health or the environment.

  14. 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...

  15. Preadolescent Psychiatric and Substance Use Disorders and the Ecology of Risk and Protection

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mason, Michael J.

    2004-01-01

    This paper examines the literature regarding preadolescent (ages 9-12) psychiatric disorders, mental health problems, substance abuse disorders and the ecology of risk and protection. The paper is divided into three primary sections. The first section addresses the challenges in defining and applying disorders for preadolescents. The next section…

  16. 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.

  17. 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...

  18. HEALTH AND ECOLOGICAL IMPACTS OF HARMFUL ALGAL BLOOMS: RISK ASSESSMENT NEEDS

    EPA Science Inventory

    The symposium session, Indicators for Effects and Predictions of Harmful Algal Blooms, explored the current state of indicators used to assess the human health and ecological risks caused by harmful algal blooms, and highlighted future needs and impediments that must be overcome...

  19. 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…

  20. 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…

  1. 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...

  2. EXTRAPOLATION IN HUMAN HEALTH AND ECOLOGICAL RISK ASSESSMENTS: PROCEEDINGS OF A SYMPOSIUM

    EPA Science Inventory

    A symposium was conducted in April 1998 by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's National Health and Environmental Effects Research Laboratory (NHEERL) to explore issues of extrapolation in human health and ecological risk assessments. Over the course of three and one half d...

  3. 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...

  4. [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.

  5. 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...

  6. 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...

  7. Variation characteristics and ecological risk of heavy metals in the south Yellow Sea surface sediments.

    PubMed

    He, Zhipeng; Song, Jinming; Zhang, Naixing; Zhang, Peng; Xu, Yayan

    2009-10-01

    Eight cruises were conducted on the south Yellow Sea (SYS) from 1998 to 2005. Variations and the potential ecological risk of heavy metals were studied using the survey data collected during October 2003. The metal content (except for As) was high in the central area where the fine grain size sediments were dominant, and low inshore area where more coarse sediments were present. This suggested that grain size was important in determining distributions of heavy metals. In some local areas, other influencing factors, such as organic content, sedimentation rate, burial efficiency and metal's existing form were discussed. The annual averages of metals showed a stable trend with appreciable fluctuations in 8 years. Using potential ecological risk index (E (RI)) to evaluate the integrated pollution effect of heavy metals, 38.7% of the investigated area was in a moderate degree of contamination, while 77.8% was under moderate ecological risk. However, no distinct correlation was found between E (RI) and plankton biomass. In conclusion, the sediment quality of SYS was good, and the ecological risk was low in general.

  8. A procedure for incorporating spatial variability in ecological risk assessment of Dutch river floodplains.

    PubMed

    Kooistra, L; Leuven, R S; Nienhuis, P H; Wehrens, R; Buydens, L M

    2001-09-01

    Floodplain soils along the river Rhine in the Netherlands show a large spatial variability in pollutant concentrations. For an accurate ecological risk characterization of the river floodplains, this heterogeneity has to be included into the ecological risk assessment. In this paper a procedure is presented that incorporates spatial components of exposure into the risk assessment by linking geographical information systems (GIS) with models that estimate exposure for the most sensitive species of a floodplain. The procedure uses readily available site-specific data and is applicable to a wide range of locations and floodplain management scenarios. The procedure is applied to estimate exposure risks to metals for a typical foodweb in the Afferdensche and Deestsche Waarden floodplain along the river Waal, the main branch of the Rhine in the Netherands. Spatial variability of pollutants is quantified by overlaying appropriate topographic and soil maps resulting in the definition of homogeneous pollution units. Next to that, GIS is used to include foraging behavior of the exposed terrestrial organisms. Risk estimates from a probabilistic exposure model were used to construct site-specific risk maps for the floodplain. Based on these maps, recommendations for future management of the floodplain can be made that aim at both ecological rehabilitation and an optimal flood defense.

  9. 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.

  10. 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

  11. 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...

  12. 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.

  13. 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

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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

  18. Ecologic and Sociodemographic Risk Determinants for Dengue Transmission in Urban Areas in Thailand

    PubMed Central

    Koyadun, Surachart; Butraporn, Piyarat; Kittayapong, Pattamaporn

    2012-01-01

    This study analyzed the association between household-level ecologic and individual-level sociodemographic determinants and dengue transmission in urban areas of Chachoengsao province, Thailand. The ecologic and sociodemographic variables were examined by univariate analysis and multivariate logistic regression. In the ecologic model, dengue risk was related to households situated in the ecotope of residential mixed with commercial and densely populated urban residential areas (RCDENPURA) (aOR = 2.23, P = 0.009), high historical dengue risk area (aOR = 2.06, P < 0.001), and presence of household window screens (aOR = 1.62, P = 0.023). In the sociodemographic model, the dengue risk was related to householders aged >45 years (aOR = 3.24, P = 0.003), secondary and higher educational degrees (aOR = 2.33, P = 0.013), household members >4 persons (aOR = 2.01, P = 0.02), and community effort in environmental management by clean-up campaign (aOR = 1.91, P = 0.035). It is possible that the preventive measures were positively correlated with dengue risk because these activities were generally carried out in particular households or communities following dengue experiences or dengue outbreaks. Interestingly, the ecotope of RCDENPURA and high historical dengue risk area appeared to be very good predictors of dengue incidences. PMID:23056042

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. Heavy metal contamination and ecological risk in Futian mangrove forest sediment in Shenzhen Bay, South China.

    PubMed

    Li, Rongyu; Li, Ruili; Chai, Minwei; Shen, Xiaoxue; Xu, Hualin; Qiu, Guoyu

    2015-12-15

    Surface sediments in the Futian mangrove forest (South China) were analyzed for heavy metals including cadmium (Cd), chromium (Cr), copper (Cu), lead (Pb) and zinc (Zn). The heavy metal distributions varied greatly in surface sediments, reflecting some sediment heterogeneity. The heavy metal concentrations decreased in the order of Zn>Cr>Pb>Cu>Cd. According to the mean probable effects level quotient, the combination of studied metals had a 21% probability of being toxic. The potential ecological risk index and geo-accumulation index also revealed high metal contamination. Cd was of primary concern due to its higher assessment values and potential for adverse biological effects. Multivariate analysis implied that clay and silt played a significant role in raising the levels of Cr, Cu and Zn. The percentage of mobile heavy metals was relatively higher, without considerable ecological risk to the biota based on the risk assessment code. PMID:26478455

  3. Heavy metal contamination and ecological risk in Futian mangrove forest sediment in Shenzhen Bay, South China.

    PubMed

    Li, Rongyu; Li, Ruili; Chai, Minwei; Shen, Xiaoxue; Xu, Hualin; Qiu, Guoyu

    2015-12-15

    Surface sediments in the Futian mangrove forest (South China) were analyzed for heavy metals including cadmium (Cd), chromium (Cr), copper (Cu), lead (Pb) and zinc (Zn). The heavy metal distributions varied greatly in surface sediments, reflecting some sediment heterogeneity. The heavy metal concentrations decreased in the order of Zn>Cr>Pb>Cu>Cd. According to the mean probable effects level quotient, the combination of studied metals had a 21% probability of being toxic. The potential ecological risk index and geo-accumulation index also revealed high metal contamination. Cd was of primary concern due to its higher assessment values and potential for adverse biological effects. Multivariate analysis implied that clay and silt played a significant role in raising the levels of Cr, Cu and Zn. The percentage of mobile heavy metals was relatively higher, without considerable ecological risk to the biota based on the risk assessment code.

  4. Ecological risk of anthropogenic pollutants to reptiles: Evaluating assumptions of sensitivity and exposure.

    PubMed

    Weir, Scott M; Suski, Jamie G; Salice, Christopher J

    2010-12-01

    A large data gap for reptile ecotoxicology still persists; therefore, ecological risk assessments of reptiles usually incorporate the use of surrogate species. This necessitates that (1) the surrogate is at least as sensitive as the target taxon and/or (2) exposures to the surrogate are greater than that of the target taxon. We evaluated these assumptions for the use of birds as surrogates for reptiles. Based on a survey of the literature, birds were more sensitive than reptiles in less than 1/4 of the chemicals investigated. Dietary and dermal exposure modeling indicated that exposure to reptiles was relatively high, particularly when the dermal route was considered. We conclude that caution is warranted in the use of avian receptors as surrogates for reptiles in ecological risk assessment and emphasize the need to better understand the magnitude and mechanism of contaminant exposure in reptiles to improve exposure and risk estimation.

  5. Sediment toxicity and ecological risk of trace metals from streams surrounding a municipal solid waste landfill.

    PubMed

    Sayadi, M H; Rezaei, M R; Rezaei, A

    2015-05-01

    The present study is an attempt to assess the pollution intensity and corresponding ecological risk of heavy metals such as Cd, Ni, Pb, Cu, Zn and Cr using various indices like geo-accumulation index, concentration factor, pollution loading and ecological risk index. In all 21 surface sediments samples were collected from the stream flowing around the solid waste disposal landfill of Qayen city in southeastern Iran. Although Igeo values for Cd varied greatly, sites 18-21 with class 5 show heavy loads of Cd (values between 4.13 and 4.45). PLI values (3.37-12.89) clearly suggest strong contamination with respect to the measured metals. This study clearly indicates that the contamination risk in the downstream reservoir is much higher than upstream sites due to transfer and accumulation of leached metals from upstream to downstream.

  6. Ecological risks of dioxin and PCBs to fish populations: A modeling assessment

    SciTech Connect

    Munns, W.R. Jr.; Black, D.

    1994-12-31

    The US Environmental Protection Agency is reevaluating ecological risks associated with 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin and similar chemicals using biologically based exposure-response models. As part of this reevaluation, dioxin and PCB effects on reproductive and other demographic characteristics of the mummichog (Fundulus heteroclitus) were quantified by EPA`s Environmental Research Laboratory in Narragansett, RI. Data from laboratory studies of dietary exposure to dioxin and from surveys of populations collected from a heavily PCB-contaminated harbor located in the northeast United States were used to parameterize stage-classified population projection models. Exposure-response models were then developed to relate population growth effects to exposure concentration for use in risk quantification exercises. The population models were also used to evaluate the sensitivity of mummichog population dynamics to changes in demographic rates to identify appropriate toxicity test endpoints. This work provides ecological relevant information concerning the potential risks of chlorinated compounds to estuarine fish populations.

  7. 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.

  8. [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

  9. 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

  10. Use of Chesapeake Bay Restoration Goals Index in ecological risk assessments

    SciTech Connect

    Biksey, T.

    1995-12-31

    Restoration goals for Chesapeake Bay benthic infaunal communities have been developed by the USEPA Chesapeake Bay Program Office and the Maryland Department of Natural Resources. The Restoration Goals Index (RGI) includes measures that describe characteristics of benthic assemblages expected in habitats having little evidence of environmental stress or disturbance. The RGI includes parameters for biodiversity, life history strategy, subsurface activity, abundance, biomass, and feeding guild. Eight habitat classes were defined by salinity and sediment type to account for natural habitat variability. Ecological risk assessments use measurement endpoints as quantitative expressions of an observed or measured effect of an environmental stressor to evaluate assessment endpoints -- the ecological value to be protected. Many of the same expressions used as measurement endpoints or effect indicators are included in the RGI. The use of the RGI in ecological risk assessments conducted at the Naval Weapons Station Yorktown helped reduced the uncertainty in the risk characterization phase. The RGIs provided a reference condition for refining the natural temporal and spatial variability inherent in benthic infaunal communities. The significance of the risk to aquatic receptors was placed in perspective to the regional conditions in the York River and lower Chesapeake Bay ecosystems.

  11. Characterization of ecological risks at the Milltown Reservoir-Clark Fork River Sediments Superfund Site, Montana

    SciTech Connect

    Pascoe, G.A.; Blanchet, R.J. ); Linder, G. )

    1994-12-01

    A comprehensive field and laboratory approach to the ecological risk assessment for the Milltown Reservoir-Clark Fork River Sediments Site, a Superfund site in the Rocky Mountains of Montana, has been described in the preceding reports of this series. The risk assessment addresses concerns over the ecological impacts of upstream releases of mining wastes to fisheries of the upper Clark Fork River (CFR) and the benthic and terrestrial habitats further downstream in Milltown Reservoir. The risk characterization component of the process integrated results from a triad of information sources: (a) chemistry studies of environmental media to identify and quantify exposures of terrestrial and aquatic organisms to site-related contaminants; (b) ecological or population studies of terrestrial vegetation, birds, benthic communities, and fish; and (c) in situ and laboratory toxicity studies with terrestrial and aquatic invertebrates and plants, small mammals, amphibians, and fish exposed to contaminated surface water, sediments, wetland soils, and food sources. Trophic transfer studies were performed on waterfowl, mammals, and predatory birds using field measurement data on metals concentrations in environmental media and lower trophic food sources. Studies with sediment exposures were incorporated into the Sediment Quality Triad approach to evaluate risks to benthic ecology. Overall results of the wetland and terrestrial studies suggested that acute adverse biological effects were largely absent from the wetland; however, adverse effects to reproductive, growth, and physiological end points of various terrestrial and aquatic species were related to metals exposures in more highly contaminated depositional areas. Feeding studies with contaminated diet collected from the upper CFR indicated that trout are at high risk from elevated metals concentrations in surface water, sediment, and aquatic invertebrates.

  12. 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.

  13. 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

  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. 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.

  17. 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.

  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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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

  2. 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

  3. 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.

  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 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.

  7. Feasibility and validity of ecological momentary assessment in the investigation of suicide risk.

    PubMed

    Husky, Mathilde; Olié, Emilie; Guillaume, Sébastien; Genty, Catherine; Swendsen, Joel; Courtet, Philippe

    2014-12-15

    Ecological Momentary Assessment has been used to investigate a wide range of behaviors and psychiatric conditions. Previous investigations have consistently obtained promising results with high acceptance and compliance rates, and with only minor reactive effects for specific variables. Despite the promise of this methodology for the study of severe psychiatric populations, little is known about its feasibility in samples at risk for suicide. In the present study, four samples at varying risk for suicide completed an Ecological Momentary Assessment study by responding to five electronic assessments per day over a one-week period. Samples included healthy controls (n=13), affective controls (n=21), past suicide attempters (n=20), and recent suicide attempters (n=42). The results demonstrate satisfactory participation rates and high compliance with daily life repeated assessments across all groups. Importantly, negative thoughts or suicidal ideation were not reactive to the duration of the study, indicating that the repeated assessment of such cognitions in daily life have little or no effect on their frequency. The findings provide support for the use of Ecological Momentary Assessment in the study of suicidal ideation and suggest that mobile technologies represent new opportunities for the assessment of high-risk cognitive states experienced by patients in daily life.

  8. Heavy metal pollution and potential ecological risks in rivers: a case study from southern Italy.

    PubMed

    Protano, Carmela; Zinnà, Loredana; Giampaoli, Saverio; Romano Spica, Vincenzo; Chiavarini, Salvatore; Vitali, Matteo

    2014-01-01

    We monitored heavy metal (As, Cd, Hg, and Pb) concentrations in surface water, sediments, and oligochaetes in four major rivers in Calabria (southern Italy) over the course of 1 year. As, Cd, and Pb showed accumulation factors of 10(3)-10(5) for water to sediment and 1-10 for sediment to oligochaetes. Hg showed a water to sediment accumulation factor of 10-100. Finally, Hg concentrations exceeded the Italian quality standard for freshwater in all of the rivers, and As concentrations in sediments exceeded the respective Canadian standard. However, the application of an ecological risk assessment method indicated low risks for all monitored rivers.

  9. [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.

  10. [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

  11. 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.

  12. An ecological risk assessment method for species exposed to contaminant mixtures

    SciTech Connect

    Logan, D.T.; Wilson, H.T. )

    1995-02-01

    The method developed here provides a quantitative, objective measure of ecological risk for natural populations exposed to mixtures of chemical contaminants. It is founded on generally accepted risk assessment concepts: use of toxic units to assess the joint toxic effects of mixtures and expression of ecological risk as a relationship between toxicological end points and estimated environmental concentrations. Toxicological end points may be regulatory levels with zero variance and species-dependent concentrations with estimates of variance. Risk is the probability that a linear combination of toxic units exceeds 1, which expresses the probability that a measurement end point will occur. Computations have three variations. One addresses concentration addition, in which chemicals act independently to produce similar biological effects. For noninteractive joint action with no addition, in which the biological response t the mixture is not significantly different from the response to the most toxic component, the method reduces to an analysis of extrapolation error. For other noninteractive joint action--antagonism, partial addition, and supra-addition--a correction factor similar to Konemann's mixture toxicity index is applied. An initial validation using published data indicated that increased in situ striped bass mortality was generally associated with elevated risk estimates. The method is applicable to many organisms and toxicant mixtures.

  13. The role of culture in moderating the links between early ecological risk and young children's adaptation.

    PubMed

    Feldman, Ruth; Masalha, Shafiq

    2007-01-01

    To examine the effects of risk on infant development within cultural contexts, 141 dual-earner Israeli and Palestinian couples and their first-born child were observed at 5 months and again at 34 months. Eight ecological determinants were examined as potential risk factors, including the infant's observed and parent-reported difficult temperament; the mother's depressive symptoms, work-family interference, and experience of childbirth; the parents' marital satisfaction and social support; and observed maternal and paternal sensitivity. Symbolic play and behavior problems were assessed at 34 months. Culture-specific effects of risk and protective factors were found. Parent sensitivity facilitated symbolic competence to a greater extent in the Israeli group. Culture moderated the effects of maternal depression and family social support on toddlers' behavior problems. Maternal depressive symptoms had a negative impact on the behavior adaptation of Israeli children and social support buffered against behavior problems in the Arab group. Implications for research on risk and resilience and the role of culture in moderating the effects of ecological risk are discussed.

  14. Human health and ecological risk assessment of a 100 ton per hour metal shredder

    SciTech Connect

    Belluck, D.; Lynott, W.; Hoff, P.

    1995-12-31

    The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) performed a first of its kind screening level ecological risk assessment (ERA) and human health risk assessment (HHRA) on a proposed 100 ton per hour metal shredder to be located in North Minneapolis. If built, the proposed facility would be located on the Mississippi River, a protected resource surrounded by several urban communities. MSDS data were used to generate numerical release rates to the ambient environment and surrounding communities. Standard risk assessment techniques were employed which calculated potentially significant human (i.e., carcinogenic) and ecological (i.e., several terrestrial receptors) risks. While responding to public comments on the HHRA and ERA reports, MPCA staff identified several additional potential emissions/releases issues requiring additional evaluation including: lead in soil attached to auto parts and other shredder feedstock; mercury in auto parts and switches; chromium and other chemicals in paints and coatings; and PCBs and asbestos in feedstock. This work has demonstrated that a facility originally thought by many to be a minor emitter of metal particulates is, because of its feedstock and location, a potential significant risk to human health and the environment that can only be considered acceptable for permitting with the inclusion of stringent pollution control permit conditions, including a permittee proposed particulate emission rate of 0.43 pounds per hour.

  15. 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

  16. 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.

  17. [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

  18. 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.

  19. 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

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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

  4. An assessment of ecological and case-control methods for estimating lung cancer risk due to indoor radon

    SciTech Connect

    Stidley, C.A.; Samet, J.M.

    1992-12-31

    Studies of underground miners indicate that indoor radon is an important cause of lung cancer. This finding has raised concern that exposure to radon also causes lung cancer in the general population. Epidemiological studies, including both case-control and ecological approaches, have directly addressed the risks of indoor residential radon; many more case-control studies are in progress. Ecological studies that associate lung-cancer rates with typical indoor radon levels in various geographic areas have not consistently shown positive associations. The results of purportedly negative ecological studies have been used as a basis for questioning the hazards of indoor radon exposure. Because of potentially serious methodologic flaws for testing hypotheses, we examined the ecological method as a tool for assessing lung-cancer risk from indoor radon exposure. We developed a simulation approach that utilizes the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) radon survey data to assign exposures to individuals within counties. Using the computer-generated data, we compared risk estimates obtained by ecological regression methods with those obtained from other regression methods and with the {open_quotes}true{close_quotes} risks used to generate the data. For many of these simulations, the ecological models, while fitting the summary data well, gave risk estimates that differed considerably from the true risks. For some models, the risk estimates were negatively correlated with exposure, although the assumed relationship was positive. Attempts to improve the ecological models by adding smoking variables, including interaction terms, did not always improve the estimates of risk, which are easily affected by model misspecification. Because exposure situations used in the simulations are realistic, our results show that ecological methods may not accurately estimate the lung-cancer risk associated with indoor radon exposure.

  5. 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.

  6. 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…

  7. 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...

  8. 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

  9. 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

  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. 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

  13. 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.

  14. Quantifying reduction in ecological risk in Penrhyn Estuary, Sydney, Australia, following groundwater remediation.

    PubMed

    Hunt, James; Birch, Gavin; Warne, Michael

    2012-01-01

    The environmental risk associated with discharge of contaminated groundwater containing a complex mixture of at least 14 volatile chlorinated hydrocarbons (VCHs) to Penrhyn Estuary, Sydney, Australia has previously been assessed. That probabilistic ecological risk assessment (ERA) was undertaken using surface water monitoring data from 2004 to 2005. Subsequently, in 2006, a groundwater remediation system was installed and commissioned to prevent further discharge of VCHs into the estuary. The present study assessed the ecological risk posed to the estuary after 2006 to evaluate the success of the remediation system. The ERA was undertaken using toxicity data derived from direct toxicity assessment (DTA) of preremediation contaminated groundwater using indigenous species, exposure data from surface water monitoring between 2007 and 2008 and the joint probability curve (JPC) methodology. The risk posed was measured in 4 zones of the entire site: source area (2), tributary (2), the inner estuary and outer estuary at high, low, and a combination of high and low tides. In the 2 source areas, risk decreased by over 2 and over 1 orders of magnitude to maximum values of less than 0.5%. In 1 estuary, risk decreased by over 1 order of magnitude, from a maximum of 36% to a maximum of 2.3%. At the other tributary and both the inner and outer estuaries, the risk decreased to less than 1%, regardless of the tide. This analysis revealed that the remediation system was very effective and that the standard level of protection required for slightly to moderately affected ecosystems (95% of species) by the Australian and New Zealand Guidelines for Fresh and Marine Water Quality was met postremediation.

  15. [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.

  16. 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

  17. Fishing in dangerous waters: Ecology, gender and economy in HIV risk.

    PubMed

    Mojola, Sanyu A

    2011-01-01

    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 74 individual and focus group interviews in communities around Lake Victoria, as well as 20 key informant interviews. 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.

  18. Addressing arsenic bioaccessibility in ecological risk assessment: a novel approach to avoid overestimating risk.

    PubMed

    Ollson, Christopher A; Koch, Iris; Smith, Paula; Knopper, Loren D; Hough, Chris; Reimer, Ken J

    2009-03-01

    The risk of arsenic exposure to deer mice (Peromyscus maniculatus) living in areas of naturally and anthropogenically elevated arsenic levels was determined using three separate calculations of arsenic daily intake: Estimated daily intake (EDI), bioaccessible EDI (BEDI), and actual daily intake (ADI). The present work is of particular interest, because the risk assessments were determined for animals naturally exposed to arsenic. Gastric fluid extraction was used to obtain bioaccessibility data for soil and plant samples collected from three study sites (background, mine forest, and tailings) in Yellowknife (NT, Canada). Calculations using the EDI indicated that deer mice living in tailings habitat (average soil arsenic concentration, 1,740 +/- 2,240 microg/g) should have been experiencing serious health effects as a result of their exposure to arsenic. Using BEDI and ADI in the risk assessment calculation, however, resulted in an order-of-magnitude decrease in calculated risk. In addition, results calculated using the BEDI and ADI were not significantly different, suggesting that using bioaccessibility provides a more realistic estimate of potential risk. The present results provide evidence that the use of EDI in traditional risk assessments may seriously overestimate the actual risk, which in some instances may result in expensive and unnecessary clean-up measures.

  19. Plant ecotoxicology: The design and evaluation of plant performance in risk assessments and forensic ecology

    SciTech Connect

    Kapustka, L.A.

    1996-12-31

    Since the emergence of ecology as a serious discipline, debates on the relevance of laboratory studies including toxicology have been prominent. Standardized phytotoxicity tests are often challenged due to the limited range of test species and the narrow range of environmental conditions described in the tests. This paper discusses the uncertainty currently associated with lab-to-field extrapolations and other aspects of standardized tests. Characterization of test parameters is critical as a first step to quantification and, ultimately, reduction of uncertainty. A conceptual context for designing studies to quantify and reduce uncertainty is presented. A step-wise procedure based on Koch`s postulates is offered as the best way to bolster linkage of toxicity data to predictions of risk and characterization of posts incidents (forensic ecology).

  20. Towards quantitative ecological risk assessment of elevated carbon dioxide levels in the marine environment.

    PubMed

    de Vries, Pepijn; Tamis, Jacqueline E; Foekema, Edwin M; Klok, Chris; Murk, Albertinka J

    2013-08-30

    The environmental impact of elevated carbon dioxide (CO2) levels has become of more interest in recent years. This, in relation to globally rising CO2 levels and related considerations of geological CO2 storage as a mitigating measure. In the present study effect data from literature were collected in order to conduct a marine ecological risk assessment of elevated CO2 levels, using a Species Sensitivity Distribution (SSD). It became evident that information currently available from the literature is mostly insufficient for such a quantitative approach. Most studies focus on effects of expected future CO2 levels, testing only one or two elevated concentrations. A full dose-response relationship, a uniform measure of exposure, and standardized test protocols are essential for conducting a proper quantitative risk assessment of elevated CO2 levels. Improvements are proposed to make future tests more valuable and usable for quantitative risk assessment.

  1. Daily life behaviors and depression risk following stroke: a preliminary study using ecological momentary assessment.

    PubMed

    Jean, François A M; Swendsen, Joel D; Sibon, Igor; Fehér, Kristoffer; Husky, Mathilde

    2013-09-01

    Approximately one-third of stroke survivors have symptoms of depression. A better understanding of the early risk factors implicated in this form of comorbidity may contribute to the development of early prevention strategies and to improving outcomes for this population. The current study uses ecological momentary assessment techniques to identify behavioral risk factors for depression 3 months after stroke. Thirty-six participants completed ambulatory monitoring of daily life circumstances (location, social environment, and activity) 5 times per day during a 1-week period after hospital discharge. Clinician-administered measures of depression were also provided before discharge and 3 months later. Ambulatory monitoring revealed that depression scores at 3 months were lower among individuals with more social interactions but higher among those who reported having sports activities and working in the week following hospital discharge. Daily life behaviors may have important implications for understanding the risk of poststroke depression, and mobile technologies may provide important contributions to their investigation.

  2. 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.

  3. [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

  4. [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.

  5. 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

  6. Ecological risk assessment for aquatic organisms from over-water uses of glyphosate.

    PubMed

    Solomon, Keith R; Thompson, Dean G

    2003-01-01

    Although the herbicide glyphosate is most widely used in agriculture, some is used for the control of emergent aquatic weeds in ditches, wetlands, and margins of water bodies, largely as the formulation Rodeo. This article presents an ecological risk assessment (ERA) of glyphosate and some of the recommended surfactants as used in or near aquatic systems. Glyphosate does not bioaccumulate, biomagnify, or persist in a biologically available form in the environment. Its mechanism of action is specific to plants and it is relatively nontoxic to animals. As a commercial product, glyphosate may be formulated with surfactants that increased efficacy but, in some cases, are more toxic to aquatic organisms than the parent material. For this risk assessment, three model exposure scenarios--static or low-flow systems such as ponds, flowing waters such as streams, and systems subjected to tidal flows such as estuaries--were chosen and application rates from 1 to 8 kg glyphosate/ha were modeled. Additional measured exposure data from several field studies were also used. As acute exposures are most likely to occur, acute toxicity data were used as effect measures for the purposes of risk assessment. Toxicity data were obtained from the literature and characterized using probabilistic techniques. Risk assessments based on estimated and measured concentrations of glyphosate that would result from its use for the control of undesirable plants in wetlands and over-water situations showed that the risk to aquatic organisms is negligible or small at application rates less than 4 kg/ha and only slightly greater at application rates of 8 kg/ha. Less is known about the environmental fate and toxicology of the surfactants commonly used in combination with the Rodeo formulation of glyphosate. The surfactants used for this purpose were judged not to be persistent nor bioaccumulative in the environment. Distributional analysis of measured deposition concentrations of LI 700, suggest that

  7. [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

  8. [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

  9. 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

    2015-11-30

    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.

  10. Ecological risks of trace metals in Guanabara Bay, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil: An index analysis approach.

    PubMed

    de Carvalho Aguiar, Valquiria Maria; de Lima, Michelle Nunes; Abuchacra, Rodrigo Coutinho; Abuchacra, Paula Ferreira Falheiro; Neto, José Antônio Baptista; Borges, Heloísa Vargas; de Oliveira, Vitor Calôr

    2016-11-01

    Total concentrations of Ni, Cr, Cu, Pb and Zn were determined in surface sediments from 30 stations in Guanabara Bay in 1999 and 2008. An approach using various environmental indices was used to assess contamination status of metals. This approach allowed the comparison with different coastal areas. Background Enrichment Index, Contamination index and Ecological Risk index (Pollution Load Index; Sediment Quality Guideline Quotient and Ecological Risk Index) were calculated for the metals. Results revealed a great load of organic matter and significant increases in Cu and Pb levels between 1999 and 2008. The concentrations of Cr and Zn were of great concern, surpassing the values of Probable Effect Level reference values. In spite of the differences of each index, results effectively revealed the striking contamination in Guanabara Bay concerning trace metals, and also suggested potential risk to local biota. The contamination of the northwest area was notably higher than the rest of the bay. In comparison with some other coastal bays around the world, Guanabara Bay stood out as a remarkably contaminated environment. PMID:27479775

  11. 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.'

  12. Heavy metals and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons: pollution and ecological risk assessment in street dust of Tehran.

    PubMed

    Saeedi, Mohsen; Li, Loretta Y; Salmanzadeh, Mahdiyeh

    2012-08-15

    50 street dust samples from four major streets in eastern and southern Tehran, the capital of Iran, were analyzed for metal pollution (Cu, Cr, Pb, Ni, Cd, Zn, Fe, Mn and Li). Hakanson's method was used to determine the Risk Index (RI) and ecological risks. Amongst these samples, 21 were also analyzed for polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs). Correlation, cluster and principal component analyses identified probable natural and anthropogenic sources of contaminants. The dust had elevated concentrations of Pb, Cd, Cu, Cr, Ni, Zn, Fe and PAHs. Enrichment factors of Cu, Pb, Cd and Zn showed that the dust is extremely enriched in these metals. Multivariate statistical analyses revealed that Cu, Pb, Zn, Fe and PAHs and, to a lesser extent, Cr and Ni have common anthropogenic sources. While Mn and Li were identified to have natural sources, Cd may have different anthropogenic origins. All samples demonstrated high ecological risk. Traffic and related activities, petrogenic and pyrogenic sources are likely to be the main anthropogenic sources of heavy metals and PAHs in Tehran dust.

  13. 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

  14. Effects analysis of time-varying or repeated exposures in aquatic ecological risk assessment of agrochemicals.

    PubMed

    Reinert, Kevin H; Giddings, Jeffrey M; Judd, Laura

    2002-09-01

    Exposure to agrochemicals in the aquatic environment often occurs as time-varying or repeated pulses. Time-varying exposures may occur due to runoff events and spray drift associated with precipitation and application events. Hydrologic dilution, dispersion, and degradation also produce pulsed exposures. Standard laboratory toxicity tests using constant exposure concentrations typically do not investigate the toxicity of time-varying or repeated exposures. Detoxification, elimination, and recovery may occur within organisms or populations during the periods between exposures. The difficulty of estimating effects of realistic time-varying exposures from measurements made under constant exposure conditions is often an important source of uncertainty in ecological risk assessment of pesticides. This article discusses the criteria and tools for deciding whether time-varying exposures are relevant in a particular risk assessment, approaches for laboratory toxicity testing with time-varying exposure, modeling approaches for addressing effects oftime-varying exposure, deterministic and probabilistic ecological risk characterization of time-varyingexposures and toxicity, and uncertainty analysis.

  15. Ecological risks of trace metals in Guanabara Bay, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil: An index analysis approach.

    PubMed

    de Carvalho Aguiar, Valquiria Maria; de Lima, Michelle Nunes; Abuchacra, Rodrigo Coutinho; Abuchacra, Paula Ferreira Falheiro; Neto, José Antônio Baptista; Borges, Heloísa Vargas; de Oliveira, Vitor Calôr

    2016-11-01

    Total concentrations of Ni, Cr, Cu, Pb and Zn were determined in surface sediments from 30 stations in Guanabara Bay in 1999 and 2008. An approach using various environmental indices was used to assess contamination status of metals. This approach allowed the comparison with different coastal areas. Background Enrichment Index, Contamination index and Ecological Risk index (Pollution Load Index; Sediment Quality Guideline Quotient and Ecological Risk Index) were calculated for the metals. Results revealed a great load of organic matter and significant increases in Cu and Pb levels between 1999 and 2008. The concentrations of Cr and Zn were of great concern, surpassing the values of Probable Effect Level reference values. In spite of the differences of each index, results effectively revealed the striking contamination in Guanabara Bay concerning trace metals, and also suggested potential risk to local biota. The contamination of the northwest area was notably higher than the rest of the bay. In comparison with some other coastal bays around the world, Guanabara Bay stood out as a remarkably contaminated environment.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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

  19. [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.

  20. A site-specific ecological risk assessment for corn-associated insecticides.

    PubMed

    Whiting, Sara A; Lydy, Michael J

    2015-07-01

    A site-specific ecological risk assessment (ERA) was conducted to examine the simultaneous use of genetically modified corn (Bt corn) with a neonicotinoid seed coating, clothianidin, and use of a granular insecticide, tefluthrin, to protect crops from pest damage. A field study was conducted on site, and exposure data from the literature were summarized to determine the matrices and exposure concentrations that nontarget species could typically experience within an agricultural ecosystem. To determine ecological effects on nontarget species, acute toxicity bioassays were conducted on earthworms (Eisenia fetida), amphipods (Hyalella azteca), and Elmid riffle beetle larvae (Ancyronyx spp.) in which the test species were exposed to single insecticides as well as the mixture of the 3 insecticides. In the risk characterization section of the ERA, stressor-response profiles for each species tested were compared with field distributions of the insecticides, and a margin of safety at the 10th percentile (MOS10) was calculated to estimate risk. No acute toxicity was observed in any of the 3 nontarget species after exposure to senescent Bt corn leaf tissue. Large MOS10 values were calculated for clothianidin to the nontarget species. When bioassays were compared with tefluthrin field distributions, very low MOS10 values were calculated for earthworms (0.06) and H. azteca (0.08) because the environmental concentrations often exceeded the stressor-response profile. No increased toxicity was observed when nontarget species were exposed to a mixture of the 3 insecticides. In summary, the genetically modified corn insecticidal proteins and clothianidin were not found at environmental concentrations exceeding benchmark values for ecological effects, but tefluthrin was consistently detected in the environment at levels that could be causing toxicity to nontarget species, especially if this pyrethroid is able to travel off site.

  1. A site-specific ecological risk assessment for corn-associated insecticides.

    PubMed

    Whiting, Sara A; Lydy, Michael J

    2015-07-01

    A site-specific ecological risk assessment (ERA) was conducted to examine the simultaneous use of genetically modified corn (Bt corn) with a neonicotinoid seed coating, clothianidin, and use of a granular insecticide, tefluthrin, to protect crops from pest damage. A field study was conducted on site, and exposure data from the literature were summarized to determine the matrices and exposure concentrations that nontarget species could typically experience within an agricultural ecosystem. To determine ecological effects on nontarget species, acute toxicity bioassays were conducted on earthworms (Eisenia fetida), amphipods (Hyalella azteca), and Elmid riffle beetle larvae (Ancyronyx spp.) in which the test species were exposed to single insecticides as well as the mixture of the 3 insecticides. In the risk characterization section of the ERA, stressor-response profiles for each species tested were compared with field distributions of the insecticides, and a margin of safety at the 10th percentile (MOS10) was calculated to estimate risk. No acute toxicity was observed in any of the 3 nontarget species after exposure to senescent Bt corn leaf tissue. Large MOS10 values were calculated for clothianidin to the nontarget species. When bioassays were compared with tefluthrin field distributions, very low MOS10 values were calculated for earthworms (0.06) and H. azteca (0.08) because the environmental concentrations often exceeded the stressor-response profile. No increased toxicity was observed when nontarget species were exposed to a mixture of the 3 insecticides. In summary, the genetically modified corn insecticidal proteins and clothianidin were not found at environmental concentrations exceeding benchmark values for ecological effects, but tefluthrin was consistently detected in the environment at levels that could be causing toxicity to nontarget species, especially if this pyrethroid is able to travel off site. PMID:25557061

  2. [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

  3. [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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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

  6. Assessing Ecological Flow Needs and Risks for Springs and Baseflow Streams With Growth and Climate Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Springer, A. E.; Stevens, L. E.

    2008-12-01

    Ecological flow needs assessments are beginning to become an important part of regulated river management, but are more challenging for unregulated rivers. Water needs for ecosystems are greater than just consumptive use by riparian and aquatic vegetation and include the magnitude, frequency, duration and timing of flows and the depth and annual fluctuations of groundwater levels of baseflow supported streams. An ecological flow needs assessment was adapted and applied to an unregulated, baseflow dependent river in the arid to semi-arid Southwestern U.S. A separate process was developed to determine groundwater sources potentially at risk from climate, land management, or groundwater use changes in a large regional groundwater basin in the same semi-arid region. In 2007 and 2008, workshops with ecological, cultural, and physical experts from agencies, universities, tribes, and other organizations were convened. Flow-ecology response functions were developed with either conceptual or actual information for a baseflow dependent river, and scoring systems were developed to assign values to categories of risks to groundwater sources in a large groundwater basin. A reduction of baseflow to the river was predicted to lead to a decline in cottonwood and willow tree abundance, decreases in riparian forest diversity, and increases in non-native tree species, such as tamarisk. These types of forest vegetation changes would likely cause reductions or loss of some bird species. Loss of riffle habitat through declines in groundwater discharge and the associated river levels would likely lead to declines in native fish and amphibian species. A research agenda was developed to develop techniques to monitor, assess and hopefully better manage the aquifers supporting the baseflow dependent river to prevent potential threshold responses of the ecosystems. The scoring system for categories of risk was applied to four systems (aquifers, springs, standing water bodies, and streams) in

  7. Ecological risk and resilience perspective: a theoretical framework supporting evidence-based practice in schools.

    PubMed

    Powers, Joelle D

    2010-10-01

    Multidisciplinary school practitioners are clearly being called to use evidence-based practices from reputable sources such as their own professional organizations and federal agencies. In spite of this encouragement, most schools are not regularly employing empirically supported interventions. This paper further promotes the use of this approach by describing the theoretical support for evidence-based practice in schools. The ecological risk and resilience theoretical framework presented fills a gap in the literature and advocates for evidence-based practice in schools by illustrating how it can assist practitioners such as school social workers to better address problems associated with school failure.

  8. Ecological risk and resilience perspective: a theoretical framework supporting evidence-based practice in schools.

    PubMed

    Powers, Joelle D

    2010-10-01

    Multidisciplinary school practitioners are clearly being called to use evidence-based practices from reputable sources such as their own professional organizations and federal agencies. In spite of this encouragement, most schools are not regularly employing empirically supported interventions. This paper further promotes the use of this approach by describing the theoretical support for evidence-based practice in schools. The ecological risk and resilience theoretical framework presented fills a gap in the literature and advocates for evidence-based practice in schools by illustrating how it can assist practitioners such as school social workers to better address problems associated with school failure. PMID:21082473

  9. Binational ecological risk assessment of bigheaded carps (Hypophthalmichthys spp.) for the Great Lakes Basin.

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Cudmore, B.; Mandrak, N.E.; Dettmers, J.; Chapman, D.C.; Kolar, C.S.

    2012-01-01

    Bigheaded carps (Bighead and Silver carps) are considered a potential threat to the Great Lakes basin. A binational ecological risk assessment was conducted to provide scientifically defensible advice for managers and decision-makers in Canada and the United States. This risk assessment looked at the likelihood of arrival, survival, establishment, and spread of bigheaded carps to obtain an overall probability of introduction. Arrival routes assessed were physical connections and human-mediated releases. The risk assessment ranked physical connections (specifically the Chicago Area Waterway System) as the most likely route for arrival into the Great Lakes basin. Results of the risk assessment show that there is enough food and habitat for bigheaded carp survival in the Great Lakes, especially in Lake Erie and productive embayments in the other lakes. Analyses of tributaries around the Canadian Great Lakes and the American waters of Lake Erie indicate that there are many suitable tributaries for bigheaded carp spawning. Should bigheaded carps establish in the Great Lakes, their spread would not likely be limited and several ecological consequences can be expected to occur. These consequences include competition for planktonic food leading to reduced growth rates, recruitment and abundance of planktivores. Subsequently this would lead to reduced stocks of piscivores and abundance of fishes with pelagic, early life stages. Overall risk is highest for lakes Michigan, Huron, and Erie, followed by Lake Ontario then Lake Superior. To avoid the trajectory of the invasion process and prevent or minimize anticipated consequences, it is important to continue to focus efforts on reducing the probability of introduction of these species at either the arrival, survival, establishment, or spread stage (depending on location).

  10. Ecological risks associated with the application of sewage sludge to non-agricultural ecosystems

    SciTech Connect

    Efroymson, R.A.; Sample, B.E.; Luxmoore, R.J.; Tharp, M.L.; Barnthouse, L.W.; Daniel, F.B.

    1995-12-31

    The Clean Water Act of 1977 directed EPA to establish standards for use and disposal of sewage sludge (biosolids). The application of biosolids to non-agricultural lands is becoming increasingly important as a method of waste disposal. Ecological endpoints at the population, community, and/or ecosystem level have not previously been emphasized in the development of regulatory standards for municipal sewage sludge. This risk assessment focuses on terrestrial endpoints in four ecosystem types to which substantial quantities of sludge have been applied or are expected to be applied in the future: northwest Douglas-fir forest, southeastern loblolly pine plantation, eastern deciduous forest, and semi-arid rangeland. Conceptual models suitable for all ecosystems were developed that depict the links among assessment endpoints. Estimates of risks to wildlife from contaminants and simulations of impacts of nitrogen in sewage sludge on the structure and function of forest communities are presented in detail elsewhere at this conference. This project overview integrates these two assessment components and adds contaminant risks to plants, soil invertebrates, and microbial processes and risk of leaching and erosion altered by biosolids application. Management practices and empirical measures of bioavailability are considered for each ecosystem. Concentrations of constitutents of sewage sludge used for the analyses have been obtained from the 1988 USEPA National Sewage Sludge Survey. Existing regulatory standards that are primarily human health-based are also evaluated for the adequacy of protection of ecological systems and populations. Predicted impacts of sewage sludge applications are presented, even if they may be regarded as benefits rather than risks.

  11. Occurrence and ecological risks from fipronil in aquatic environments located within residential landscapes.

    PubMed

    Wu, Jun; Lu, Jian; Lu, Hai; Lin, Youjian; Wilson, P Chris

    2015-06-15

    This study investigated the occurrence of fipronil and its metabolites in aquatic environments in residentially-developed landscapes, including five canals and three retention ponds. Fipronil was detected at four of the sites, with concentrations of 0.5-207.3 ng L(-1). Fipronil sulfone and fipronil sulfide were detected at three sampling sites, with concentrations ranging from 0.46 to 57.75 and 0.40-26.92 ng L(-1), respectively. Multiple risk assessment methods were performed to characterize potential ecological risks, including deterministic screening and probabilistic risk assessment techniques. The deterministic method indicated no risk to certain biotic groups (i.e. aquatic plants, fish, molluscs, and algae-moss-fungi), but did indicate risks to larval insects and crustaceans. Results from the probabilistic risk assessment indicated significant ecological risks (acute and chronic) ranging from 0.75 to 58.9% and 3.9-35.0% when organisms were exposed to the maximum and median concentrations detected, respectively. The potentially affected fraction of species (PAF) likely to be acutely impacted ranged from 4.6 to 8.1% (fipronil), 0.2-1.6% (fipronil sulfone), and 1.9-3.1% (fipronil sulfide) in the ponds with frequent detectable concentrations. The PAF likely to be impacted at chronic toxicity levels ranged from 16.5 to 23.8% for fipronil. Joint probability curve analysis indicated that concentrations exceeded the LC50 of the most sensitive 5% of species 8.5-18.8% of the time at two of the sites with the most frequent detections. Using the more conservative NOEC/LOEC values, there was a 75-78% probability that concentrations were high enough to negatively affect the most sensitive 5% of species at the same two sites, indicating significant risks for chronic toxicity. JPCs indicated a ≤2.6% probability of fipronil sulfone exceeding the LC50 concentrations for the most sensitive 5% of species at the same two sites; and a 4.3-6.8% probability of fipronil sulfide

  12. Occurrence and ecological risks from fipronil in aquatic environments located within residential landscapes.

    PubMed

    Wu, Jun; Lu, Jian; Lu, Hai; Lin, Youjian; Wilson, P Chris

    2015-06-15

    This study investigated the occurrence of fipronil and its metabolites in aquatic environments in residentially-developed landscapes, including five canals and three retention ponds. Fipronil was detected at four of the sites, with concentrations of 0.5-207.3 ng L(-1). Fipronil sulfone and fipronil sulfide were detected at three sampling sites, with concentrations ranging from 0.46 to 57.75 and 0.40-26.92 ng L(-1), respectively. Multiple risk assessment methods were performed to characterize potential ecological risks, including deterministic screening and probabilistic risk assessment techniques. The deterministic method indicated no risk to certain biotic groups (i.e. aquatic plants, fish, molluscs, and algae-moss-fungi), but did indicate risks to larval insects and crustaceans. Results from the probabilistic risk assessment indicated significant ecological risks (acute and chronic) ranging from 0.75 to 58.9% and 3.9-35.0% when organisms were exposed to the maximum and median concentrations detected, respectively. The potentially affected fraction of species (PAF) likely to be acutely impacted ranged from 4.6 to 8.1% (fipronil), 0.2-1.6% (fipronil sulfone), and 1.9-3.1% (fipronil sulfide) in the ponds with frequent detectable concentrations. The PAF likely to be impacted at chronic toxicity levels ranged from 16.5 to 23.8% for fipronil. Joint probability curve analysis indicated that concentrations exceeded the LC50 of the most sensitive 5% of species 8.5-18.8% of the time at two of the sites with the most frequent detections. Using the more conservative NOEC/LOEC values, there was a 75-78% probability that concentrations were high enough to negatively affect the most sensitive 5% of species at the same two sites, indicating significant risks for chronic toxicity. JPCs indicated a ≤2.6% probability of fipronil sulfone exceeding the LC50 concentrations for the most sensitive 5% of species at the same two sites; and a 4.3-6.8% probability of fipronil sulfide

  13. Military Ecological Risk Assessment Framework (MERAF) for Assessment of Risks of Military Training and Testing to Natural Resources

    SciTech Connect

    Suter II, G.W.

    2003-06-18

    The objective of this research is to provide the DoD with a framework based on a systematic, risk-based approach to assess impacts for management of natural resources in an ecosystem context. This risk assessment framework is consistent with, but extends beyond, the EPA's ecological risk assessment framework, and specifically addresses DoD activities and management needs. MERAF is intended to be consistent with existing procedures for environmental assessment and planning with DoD testing and training. The intention is to supplement these procedures rather than creating new procedural requirements. MERAF is suitable for use for training and testing area assessment and management. It does not include human health risks nor does it address specific permitting or compliance requirements, although it may be useful in some of these cases. Use of MERAF fits into the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) process by providing a consistent and rigorous way of organizing and conducting the technical analysis for Environmental Impact Statements (EISs) (Sigal 1993; Carpenter 1995; Canter and Sadler 1997). It neither conflicts with, nor replaces, procedural requirements within the NEPA process or document management processes already in place within DoD.

  14. A vibroseismic method for estimation of the ecological risk of powerful technogenic and natural explosions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Khairetdinov, Marat; Voskoboynikova, Gyulnara; Sedukhina, Galina

    2016-04-01

    This paper presents the results of experimental investigations of an original ecologically safe approach, proposed by the authors, to assessment of the geoecological risk from powerful mass explosions for the social and natural environment. In this approach, seismic vibrators are used as sources imitating explosions but having, in contrast to them, a much smaller power. Such sources can simultaneously excite in the medium seismic and acoustic (vibro-seismo-acoustic) oscillations with precision power and frequency-time characteristics. A comparative analysis of seismic and acoustic wave levels allows us to conclude that the major ecologically dangerous effect of ground-based test site explosions is due to acoustic waves whose energy is an order of magnitude greater than that of seismic waves. Calculated azimuthal dependencies of the focusing effect of acoustic waves in the infralow frequency range at different wind velocities and "source-receiver" distances by vibrator CV-40 were obtained . It was found that meteorological conditions have a greater influence on acoustic wave focusing in experiments that according to theoretical results. The effects of focusing of acoustic oscillations in space were revealed and estimated quantitatively. Specifically, it was proved that even at a weak wind of 2-4 m/s the ratio between the maximal and minimal acoustic wave levels depending on the azimuthal direction can reach 50. This can be a reason for great ecological hazard of technogenic explosions. The received results are new and original. The received results are new and original.

  15. Wastewater Treatment Plants as Chemical Observatories to Forecast Ecological and Human Health Risks of Manmade Chemicals

    PubMed Central

    Venkatesan, Arjun K.; Halden, Rolf U.

    2014-01-01

    Thousands of chemicals have been identified as contaminants of emerging concern (CECs), but prioritizing them concerning ecological and human health risks is challenging. We explored the use of sewage treatment plants as chemical observatories to conveniently identify persistent and bioaccumulative CECs, including toxic organohalides. Nationally representative samples of sewage sludge (biosolids) were analyzed for 231 CECs, of which 123 were detected. Ten of the top 11 most abundant CECs in biosolids were found to be high-production volume chemicals, eight of which representing priority chemicals, including three flame retardants, three surfactants and two antimicrobials. A comparison of chemicals detected in nationally representative biological specimens from humans and municipal biosolids revealed 70% overlap. This observed co-occurrence of contaminants in both matrices suggests that the analysis of sewage sludge can inform human health risk assessments by providing current information on toxic exposures in human populations and associated body burdens of harmful environmental pollutants. PMID:24429544

  16. Wastewater Treatment Plants as Chemical Observatories to Forecast Ecological and Human Health Risks of Manmade Chemicals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Venkatesan, Arjun K.; Halden, Rolf U.

    2014-01-01

    Thousands of chemicals have been identified as contaminants of emerging concern (CECs), but prioritizing them concerning ecological and human health risks is challenging. We explored the use of sewage treatment plants as chemical observatories to conveniently identify persistent and bioaccumulative CECs, including toxic organohalides. Nationally representative samples of sewage sludge (biosolids) were analyzed for 231 CECs, of which 123 were detected. Ten of the top 11 most abundant CECs in biosolids were found to be high-production volume chemicals, eight of which representing priority chemicals, including three flame retardants, three surfactants and two antimicrobials. A comparison of chemicals detected in nationally representative biological specimens from humans and municipal biosolids revealed 70% overlap. This observed co-occurrence of contaminants in both matrices suggests that the analysis of sewage sludge can inform human health risk assessments by providing current information on toxic exposures in human populations and associated body burdens of harmful environmental pollutants.

  17. Human Health and Ecological Risk Assessment Work Plan Mud Pit Release Sites, Amchitka Island, Alaska

    SciTech Connect

    DOE /NV

    2001-03-12

    This Work Plan describes the approach that will be used to conduct human health and ecological risk assessments for Amchitka Island, Alaska, which was utilized as an underground nuclear test site between 1965 and 1971. During this period, the U.S. Atomic Energy Commission (now the U.S. Department of Energy) conducted two nuclear tests (known as Long Shot and Milrow) and assisted the U.S. Department of Defense with a third test (known as Cannikin). Amchitka Island is approximately 42 miles long and located 1,340 miles west-southwest of Anchorage, Alaska, in the western end of the Aleutian Island archipelago in a group of islands known as the Rat Islands. Historically including deep drilling operations required large volumes of drilling mud, a considerable amount of which was left on the island in exposed mud pits after testing was completed. Therefore, there is a need for drilling mud pit remediation and risk assessment of historical mud pit releases. The scope of this work plan is to document the environmental objectives and the proposed technical site investigation strategies that will be utilized for the site characterization of the constituents in soil, surface water, and sediment at these former testing sites. Its goal is the collection of data in sufficient quantity and quality to determine current site conditions, support a risk assessment for the site surfaces, and evaluate what further remedial action is required to achieve permanent closure of these three sites that will protect both human health and the environment. Suspected compounds of potential ecological concern for investigative analysis at these sites include diesel-range organics, polyaromatic hydrocarbons, polychlorinated biphenyls, volatile organic compounds, and chromium. The results of these characterizations and risk assessments will be used to evaluate corrective action alternatives to include no further action, the implementation of institutional controls, capping on site, or off-sit e

  18. Coupling biological measurement endpoints used in ecological risk assessment with chemical measurements

    SciTech Connect

    Goodrich, M.; Mahato, M.

    1995-12-31

    Collections of surface water, sediments, and the benthic community were made in support of an ecological risk assessment for a stream on a US Air Force base in Oklahoma. Over 250 chemicals were detected within water and sediments, of which over 30 of those screened were classified as chemicals of potential ecological concern (COPEC) based on available toxicity benchmarks. Many of the chemicals detected were clustered in specific samples and in various concentration combinations, To address the complexity of this mixture of chemicals and chemical concentrations, the results of 28-day chronic Hyalella azteca bulk sediment toxicity tests, early life-stage, 7-day fathead minnow toxicity tests, 7-day survival and reproduction results with Ceriodaphnia dubia, and benthic community indices (i.e. biotic index(ices), number of taxa, number of individuals) were evaluated for correlations and associations with the chemicals detected. The resultant evaluation was useful in discriminating those COPEC`s within the various samples that were associated and predictive of the observed ecological measurement endpoints. Additional parameters such as, sulfide analysis of the overlying water from the sediment samples, was enlightening especially regarding an apparent reversal of the correlation between metal concentrations and toxicity. Benthic community indices were also useful in evaluating relationships between chemical concentrations, toxicological effects and aquatic hazard quotients. The approach presented is believed to be superior to the triad approach based on its ability to address mixtures of chemicals and variable chemical concentrations in combination. The results of this evaluation were able to more concisely identify the COPEC`s as well as, establish a priority system and clarify the risk assessment in the context of the complexity of chemical mixtures.

  19. SERAFM: AN ECOLOGICAL RISK ASSESSMENT TOOL FOR EVALUATING WILDLIFE EXPOSURE RISK ASSOCIATED WITH MERCURY-CONTAMINATED SEDIMENT IN LAKE AND RIVER SYSTEMS

    EPA Science Inventory

    A spreadsheet model, SERAFM, Spreadsheet-based Ecological Risk Assessment for the Fate of Mercury, was developed that can be used as a risk assessment tool for mercury contaminated ecosystems. In this tool, process-based understanding of the chemical, physical, and biological pro...

  20. Ecological risk assessment of heavy metals in sediment in the upper reach of the Yangtze River.

    PubMed

    Yi, Yu-Jun; Sun, Jie; Tang, Cai-Hong; Zhang, Shang-Hong

    2016-06-01

    Heavy metal pollution in China's Yangtze River basin has been of high concern. The concentrations of heavy metals (Cr, Cd, Hg, Cu, Zn, Pb, and As) in the sediment were investigated in the upper reaches of the river, China. Sediment quality guidelines (SQGs), an enrichment factor (EF), an index of geo-accumulation (I geo), and potential ecological risk were used to evaluate the extent of contamination from the heavy metal concentrations in the sediment. Among the seven metals, a noticeable degree of pollution was seen only in the case of Cd and Cd posed a considerable ecological risk at some sample sites. The Pearson correlation analysis was implemented to determine the relationships among the heavy metals, and principal component analysis (PCA) was performed to determine the most common pollution sources. The elements As, Cd, Pb, and Zn were grouped together, and the anthropogenic sources of these heavy metals were closely related. The sites with higher Cd concentrations were mainly confined to the river's reach near industrial areas. Controlling the pollution sources will effectively reduce the pollutant concentrations in the sediment.

  1. Ecological risk assessment in a large river-reservoir. 5: Aerial insectivorous wildlife

    SciTech Connect

    Baron, L.A.; Sample, B.E.; Suter, G.W. II

    1999-04-01

    Risks to aerial insectivores (e.g., rough-winged swallows, little brown bats, and endangered gray bats) were assessed for the remedial investigation of the Clinch River/Poplar Creek (CR/PC) system. Adult mayflies and sediment were collected from three locations and analyzed for contaminants. Sediment-to-mayfly contaminant uptake factors were generated from these data and used to estimate contaminant concentrations in mayflies from 13 additional locations. Contaminants of potential ecological concern (COPECs) were identified by comparing exposure estimates generated using point estimates of parameter values to NOAELs. To incorporate the variation in exposure parameters and to provide a better estimate of the potential exposure, the exposure model was recalculated using Monte Carlo methods. The potential for adverse effects was estimated based on the comparison of exposure distribution and the LOAEL. The results of this assessment suggested that population-level effects to rough-winged swallows and little brown bats are considered unlikely. However, because gray bats are endangered, effects on individuals may be significant from foraging in limited subreaches of the CR/PC system. This assessment illustrates the advantage of an iterative approach to ecological risk assessments, using fewer conservative assumptions and more realistic modeling of exposure.

  2. Assessment of Ecological Risk of Heavy Metal Contamination in Coastal Municipalities of Montenegro

    PubMed Central

    Mugoša, Boban; Đurović, Dijana; Nedović-Vuković, Mirjana; Barjaktarović-Labović, Snežana; Vrvić, Miroslav

    2016-01-01

    Assessment of heavy metal concentrations in the soil samples of urban parks and playgrounds is very important for the evaluation of potential risks for residents, especially children. Until recently, there has been very little data about urban parks pollution in Montenegro. To evaluate the sources of potential contamination and concentration of heavy metals, soil samples from coastal urban parks and kindergartens of Montenegro were collected. Based on the heavy metal concentrations, multivariate analysis combined with geochemical approaches showed that soil samples in coastal areas of Montenegro had mean Pb and Cd concentrations that were over two times higher than the background values, respectively. Based on principal component analysis (PCA), soil pollution with Pb, Cd, Cu, and Zn is contributed by anthropogenic sources. Results for Cr in the surface soils were primarily derived from natural sources. Calculation of different ecological contamination factors showed that Cd is the primary contribution to ecological risk index (RI) origins from anthropogenic, industry, and urbanization sources. This data provides evidence about soil pollution in coastal municipalities of Montenegro. Special attention should be paid to this problem in order to continue further research and to consider possible ways of remediation of the sites where contamination has been observed. PMID:27043601

  3. Assessment of Ecological Risk of Heavy Metal Contamination in Coastal Municipalities of Montenegro.

    PubMed

    Mugoša, Boban; Đurović, Dijana; Nedović-Vuković, Mirjana; Barjaktarović-Labović, Snežana; Vrvić, Miroslav

    2016-03-31

    Assessment of heavy metal concentrations in the soil samples of urban parks and playgrounds is very important for the evaluation of potential risks for residents, especially children. Until recently, there has been very little data about urban parks pollution in Montenegro. To evaluate the sources of potential contamination and concentration of heavy metals, soil samples from coastal urban parks and kindergartens of Montenegro were collected. Based on the heavy metal concentrations, multivariate analysis combined with geochemical approaches showed that soil samples in coastal areas of Montenegro had mean Pb and Cd concentrations that were over two times higher than the background values, respectively. Based on principal component analysis (PCA), soil pollution with Pb, Cd, Cu, and Zn is contributed by anthropogenic sources. Results for Cr in the surface soils were primarily derived from natural sources. Calculation of different ecological contamination factors showed that Cd is the primary contribution to ecological risk index (RI) origins from anthropogenic, industry, and urbanization sources. This data provides evidence about soil pollution in coastal municipalities of Montenegro. Special attention should be paid to this problem in order to continue further research and to consider possible ways of remediation of the sites where contamination has been observed.

  4. Assessment of Ecological Risk of Heavy Metal Contamination in Coastal Municipalities of Montenegro.

    PubMed

    Mugoša, Boban; Đurović, Dijana; Nedović-Vuković, Mirjana; Barjaktarović-Labović, Snežana; Vrvić, Miroslav

    2016-04-01

    Assessment of heavy metal concentrations in the soil samples of urban parks and playgrounds is very important for the evaluation of potential risks for residents, especially children. Until recently, there has been very little data about urban parks pollution in Montenegro. To evaluate the sources of potential contamination and concentration of heavy metals, soil samples from coastal urban parks and kindergartens of Montenegro were collected. Based on the heavy metal concentrations, multivariate analysis combined with geochemical approaches showed that soil samples in coastal areas of Montenegro had mean Pb and Cd concentrations that were over two times higher than the background values, respectively. Based on principal component analysis (PCA), soil pollution with Pb, Cd, Cu, and Zn is contributed by anthropogenic sources. Results for Cr in the surface soils were primarily derived from natural sources. Calculation of different ecological contamination factors showed that Cd is the primary contribution to ecological risk index (RI) origins from anthropogenic, industry, and urbanization sources. This data provides evidence about soil pollution in coastal municipalities of Montenegro. Special attention should be paid to this problem in order to continue further research and to consider possible ways of remediation of the sites where contamination has been observed. PMID:27043601

  5. Importance of environmental and biomass dynamics in predicting chemical exposure in ecological risk assessment.

    PubMed

    Morselli, Melissa; Semplice, Matteo; De Laender, Frederik; Van den Brink, Paul J; Di Guardo, Antonio

    2015-09-01

    In ecological risk assessment, exposure is generally modelled assuming static conditions, herewith neglecting the potential role of emission, environmental and biomass dynamics in affecting bioavailable concentrations. In order to investigate the influence of such dynamics on predicted bioavailable concentrations, the spatially-resolved dynamic model "ChimERA fate" was developed, incorporating macrophyte and particulate/dissolved organic carbon (POC/DOC) dynamics into a water-sediment system. An evaluation against three case studies revealed a satisfying model performance. Illustrative simulations then highlighted the potential spatio-temporal variability of bioavailable concentrations after a pulsed emission of four chemicals in a system composed of a pond connected to its inflow and outflow streams. Changes in macrophyte biomass and POC/DOC levels caused exposure variations which were up to a factor of 4.5 in time and even more significant (several orders of magnitude) in space, especially for highly hydrophobic chemicals. ChimERA fate thus revealed to be a useful tool to investigate such variations and to identify those environmental and ecological conditions in which risk is expected to be highest. PMID:25967479

  6. Distribution, sources and ecological risk assessment of heavy metals in surface sediments from Lake Taihu, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yin, Hongbin; Gao, Yongnian; Fan, Chengxin

    2011-10-01

    The distribution, sources and ecological risk of heavy metals in surface sediments from Lake Taihu were studied. Results showed that the measured heavy metals had varied spatial distribution patterns, indicating that they had complex origins and controlling factors. Pearson's correlation analysis revealed that the total phosphorus and the loss on ignition were positively correlated with the measured metals except Cd. Principal component analysis and cluster analysis demonstrated that Hg, Cu, Cr, Cd and Pb might originate from domestic sewage and industrial wastewater, whereas As predominantly originated from natural processes. Potential ecological risk indices indicated that sediment from Wuli Lake, Gonghu Bay and the Northwest Area suffered high pollution, whereas other areas of Lake Taihu were moderately polluted. A comparison of metal levels with the effects range low (ERL) and effects range median (ERM) showed that metals exceeded their corresponding ERL limit at 13.6-72.3% (72.3% for As, 52.4% for Pb, 27.7% for Cu, 22.8% for Cd, 16.0 for Hg and 13.6% for Cr) of the sites investigated. Moreover, 3.90% and 0.50% of the sites sampled exceeded the ERM thresholds for Hg and Pb, respectively.

  7. Development of Triad approach based system for ecological risk assessment for contaminated areas of Kyrgyzstan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kydralieva, Kamilia; Uzbekov, Beksultan; Khudaibergenova, Bermet; Terekhova, Vera; Jorobekova, Sharipa

    2014-05-01

    This research is aimed to develop a high-effective system of an ecological risk assessment and risk-based decision making for anthropogenic ecosystems, with particular focus on the soils of the Kyrgyz Republic. The study is focused on the integration of Triad data including chemical, biological and ecotoxicological soil markers to estimate the potential risk from soils of highly anthropized areas impacted by deposition of different pollutants from mining operation. We focus on technogenic areas of Kyrgyzstan, the former uranium-producing province. Triad-based ecological risk assessment for technogenic sites are not currently used in Kyrgyzstan. However, the vitality of such research is self-evident. There are about 50 tailing dumps and more than 80 tips of radioactive waste which are formed as a result of uranium and complex ores (mercury, antimony, lead, cadmium and etc) mining around the unfavorable aforementioned places. According to the Mining Wastes' Tailings and Fills Rehabilitation Centre established in 1999 by a special Government's Resolution, one of the most ecologically dangerous uranium tailings resides in Kadzhi-Say. Although uranium processing is no longer practiced in Kadzhi-Say, a large number of open landfills and uranium ore storages still remain abandoned at the vicinity of this settlement. These neglected sites have enormous problems associated with soil erosion known as "technogenic deserts". The upper soil horizons are deprived of humus and vegetation, which favor the formation of low-buffer landscapes in the zones of maximum contamination. As a result, most of these areas are not re-cultivated and remain in critical environmental condition (Bykovchenko, et al., 2005; Tukhvatshin, 2005; Suranova, 2006). Triad data for assessing environmental risk and biological vulnerability at contaminated sites will be integrated. The following Triad-based parameters will be employed: 1) chemical soil analyses (revealing the presence of potentially dangerous

  8. Assessing Freshwater Ecosystem Service Risk over Ecological, Socioeconomic, and Cultural Gradients: Problem Space Characterization and Methodology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harmon, T. C.; Villamizar, S. R.; Conde, D.; Rusak, J.; Reid, B.; Astorga, A.; Perillo, G. M.; Piccolo, M. C.; Zilio, M.; London, S.; Velez, M.; Hoyos, N.; Escobar, J.

    2014-12-01

    Freshwater ecosystems and the services they provide are under increasing anthropogenic pressure at local (e.g., irrigation diversions, wastewater discharge) and global scales (e.g., climate change, global trading). The impact depends on an ecosystem's sensitivity, which is determined by its geophysical and ecological settings, and the population and activities in its surrounding watershed. Given the importance of ecosystem services, it is critical that we improve our ability to identify and understand changes in aquatic ecosystems, and translate them to risk of service loss. Furthermore, to inspire changes in human behavior, it is equally critical that we learn to communicate risk, and pose risk mitigation strategies, in a manner acceptable to a broad spectrum of stakeholders. Quantifying the nature and timing of the risk is difficult because (1) we often fail to understand the connection between anthropogenic pressures and the timing and extent of ecosystem changes; and (2) the concept of risk is inherently coupled to human perception, which generally differs with cultural and socio-economic conditions. In this study, we endeavor to assess aquatic ecosystem risks across an international array of six study sites. The challenge is to construct a methodology capable of capturing the marked biogeographical, socioeconomic, and cultural differences among the sites, which include: (1) Muskoka River watershed in humid continental Ontario, Canada; (2) Lower San Joaquin River, an impounded snow-fed river in semi-arid Central California; (3) Ciénaga Grande de Santa Marta, a tropical coastal lagoon in Colombia; (4) Senguer River basin in the semi-arid part of Argentina; (5) Laguna de Rocha watershed in humid subtropical Uruguay; and (6) Palomas Lake complex in oceanic Chilean Patagonia. Results will include a characterization of the experimental gradient over the six sites, an overview of the risk assessment methodology, and preliminary findings for several of the sites.

  9. Assessing and classifying plant-related ecological risk under water management scenarios in China's Yellow River Delta Wetlands.

    PubMed

    Yang, Zhifeng; Qin, Yan; Yang, Wei

    2013-11-30

    The Yellow River Delta is one of the most vigorous delta areas in the world. The wetlands in this delta are ecologically important due to their hydrologic attributes and their role as ecotones between terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems. In recent years, the Yellow River Delta Wetlands have gradually shrunk and degraded due to inadequate environmental flows. Water managers have attempted to balance the needs of the environment with the need to protect water supplies for agriculture and urban needs. Despite the need for environmental protection, a broad-scale, integrated way to characterize the degree of ecological stress in the wetlands has been lacking to date. To provide a framework for evaluating various potential water regimes, we developed a model that can be used to estimate the ecological risk for wetland plants, and used the model to determine the degree of ecological risk for different soil moisture conditions based on an ecological value at risk model that we developed and the fuzzy clustering method. The results revealed the spatial distribution of areas with high, medium, or low risks associated with water stress in the study area. These results can serve as a preliminary template to guide managers in their evaluation of water stress-related risk.

  10. Assessing and classifying plant-related ecological risk under water management scenarios in China's Yellow River Delta Wetlands.

    PubMed

    Yang, Zhifeng; Qin, Yan; Yang, Wei

    2013-11-30

    The Yellow River Delta is one of the most vigorous delta areas in the world. The wetlands in this delta are ecologically important due to their hydrologic attributes and their role as ecotones between terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems. In recent years, the Yellow River Delta Wetlands have gradually shrunk and degraded due to inadequate environmental flows. Water managers have attempted to balance the needs of the environment with the need to protect water supplies for agriculture and urban needs. Despite the need for environmental protection, a broad-scale, integrated way to characterize the degree of ecological stress in the wetlands has been lacking to date. To provide a framework for evaluating various potential water regimes, we developed a model that can be used to estimate the ecological risk for wetland plants, and used the model to determine the degree of ecological risk for different soil moisture conditions based on an ecological value at risk model that we developed and the fuzzy clustering method. The results revealed the spatial distribution of areas with high, medium, or low risks associated with water stress in the study area. These results can serve as a preliminary template to guide managers in their evaluation of water stress-related risk. PMID:24095790

  11. The accumulation of heavy metals in agricultural land and the associated potential ecological risks in Shenzhen, China.

    PubMed

    Wu, Jiansheng; Song, Jing; Li, Weifeng; Zheng, Maokun

    2016-01-01

    Accumulation of heavy metals in agricultural land and their ecological risks are key issues in soil security studies. This study investigated the concentrations of six heavy metals--copper (Cu), zinc (Zn), lead (Pb), nickel (Ni), and chromium (Cr) in Shenzhen's agricultural lands and examined the potential hazards and possible sources of these metals. Eighty-two samples from agricultural topsoil were collected. Potential ecological risk index was used to calculate the potential risk of heavy metals. Principal component analysis (PCA) was applied to explore pollution sources of the metals. Finally, Kriging was used to predict the spatial distribution of the metals' potential ecological risks. The concentrations of the heavy metals were higher than their background values. Most of them presented little potential ecological risk, except for the heavy metal cadmium (Cd). Four districts (Longgang, Longhua, Pingshan, and Dapeng) exhibited some degree of potential risk, which tended to have more industries and road networks. Three major sources of heavy metals included geochemical processes, industrial pollutants, and traffic pollution. The heavy metal Cd was the main contributor to the pollution in agricultural land during the study period. It also poses the potential hazard for the future. High potential risk is closely related to industrial pollution and transportation. Since the 1980s, the sources of heavy metals have evolved from parent rock weathering, erosion, degradation of organics, and mineralization to human disturbances resulting in chemical changes in the soil.

  12. National Fire Fuels and Risks Assessment Using Remote Sensing and Ecological Modeling: Prototype Results

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhu, Z.; Rollins, M.

    2003-12-01

    Hazardous fuel reduction, ecosystem rehabilitation and restoration, and firefighting safety, are land management priorities emphasized by recent national fire policies such as the National Fire Plan. Implementation of these policies requires geospatial data of vegetation conditions, fire fuels, risks, and ecosystem status developed consistently nationwide that can be used at multiple scales (i.e., local, regional, and national). A new research and development project called LANDFIRE has been conducted to develop an integrated methodology to produce geospatial fire data and predictive models for the land management community and a broad range of other applications. Main deliverables include mapped potential and existing vegetation types and structure variables, various biophysical data layers, fire fuels models, fire risk layers, as well as state-of-the-art computer models for assessing fire risk, behavior and effects. In this presentation, we will review research results and findings of the LANDFIRE project using results from a prototype study covering central Utah Uinta and Wasatch ecosystems. Particularly we will describe how a consistent and operational vegetation mapping component may be achieved by integrating machine-learning algorithms, field reference data, satellite imagery, and ecologically significant biophysical variables. We will discuss how remotely sensed vegetation cover types and structure can be successfully converted to fire fuel classes and risk layers which are necessary input into fire behavior and fire effect models. Finally we will discuss challenges and opportunities for national implementation of the methodology.

  13. Marine ecological-risk assessment pilot study for Allen Harbor, Narragansett Bay, Rhode Island. Professional paper

    SciTech Connect

    Johnston, R.K.; Munns, W.R.; Mueller, C.; Nelson, W.G.; Pesch, G.G.

    1992-01-01

    An ecological risk assessment framework was applied to characterize aquatic risks associated with hazardous waste disposal at Naval Construction Battalion Center (NCBC) Davisville, Rhode Island. An initial screening phase (I) assessed exposure and related that exposure to toxicological endpoints for bivalves, amphipods, sea urchins, and biomarker assays. Results showed little evidence of major contamination in sediments or tissues except for relatively high levels of polychlorinated biphenols (PBC), butyltins compounds (TBT), and fecal coliforms observed in Allen Harbor. Effects were detected in mussel physiology, sea urchin fertilization and development, biomarker responses, and soft shell clam histology. Possible sources of contamination and toxicity from the landfill leachate, surface runoff, and recreational boating were examined using a temporaland spatial sampling scheme. Chemical and toxicological information obtained implicated all three sources as affecting Allen Harbor water quality. Laboratory bioassays of landfill exposure media, employing a variety of marine species using acute and chronic endpoints, are being used to provide data for the development of an exposure-response model for risk to the marine environment. The model will define current risk and provide an interpretive framework for long-term monitoring.

  14. Use of RAMAS to estimate ecological risk: Two fish species case studies

    SciTech Connect

    Ferson, S.; Akcakaya, R.; Ginzburg, L.; Krause, M. )

    1991-02-01

    RAMAS, (Risk Analysis Management Alternative System), a microcomputer simulation package for stochastic age-structured population models, was used to assess the population-level ecological risks associated with anthropogenic mortality in two species of fish. RAMAS facilitated comparison of the effects of fishing and entrainment/impingement mortality on Hudson River striped bass populations. The highest likely mortality levels associated with power generation did not yield increases in risk of overall population decline as large as did the pressure from sport fishing alone (33 in. limit, 5/day). Qualitative differences associated with the life stages affected by these industries account for most of the variation observed. Simulations performed under a range of assumptions about density-dependent parameters for the striped bass population gave similar conclusions. However, strengthening density dependence decreased the probability of quasi-extinction slightly. Density-dependent stochastic demographic modeling of a bluegill population in selenium (Se) affected power plant cooling lake in North Carolina revealed intrinsic cycling of population abundance. This cycling increases the risk that population abundances will fall to low levels in natural as well as anthropogenically impacted populations. The dynamics of bluegills affected by Se contrasts sharply with that of the undisturbed fish. Continuation of the Se discharge will most likely result in the suppression of the affected bluegill population. The bluegill population, however, could recover to natural levels of abundance within two or three generations if Se discharge were significantly curtailed. 9 refs., 29 figs., 7 tabs.

  15. Approach and strategy for performing ecological risk assessments for the Department of Energy Oak Ridge Field Office Environmental Restoration Program

    SciTech Connect

    Suter, G.W. II; Redfearn, A.; White, R.K.; Shaw, R.A.

    1992-07-01

    This document is intended to supplement exiting US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) guidance for ecological risk assessment at hazardous waste sites by providing guidance that is more specific and more tailored to US Department of Energy sites than the guidance available from the EPA. However, it is a conceptual strategy document and does not include specific guidance on data, assumptions, and models. That detailed guidance is under development and will be presented in subsequent documents. Ecological risk assessments are equal to human health risk assessments in regulatory importance and can use many of the same data and some of the same estimation methods. However, they also have peculiar data needs and methods. Ecological risk assessments begin with an initial scoping phase, termed hazard definition, that characterizes the sources, the potentially environment, and the assessment endpoints. In the subsequent measurement and estimation phase, in which data are obtained concerning source of the endpoint biota to the contaminants and the effects of those exposures, and assumptions and models are used to relate the data to the desired exposure and effects parameters. Finally, in an integration phase, termed risk characterization, the various exposure and effects estimates are combined to infer the existence, cause, magnitude, and extent of effects of contaminants on the ecological endpoints. This phase is much more complicated for ecological risk assessments than for human health assessments because more types of data are available. Ecological risk assessments estimate effects using laboratory toxicity test results, like human health assessments, but also use results of ambient toxicity tests and biological surveys.

  16. Demonstration of the Military Ecological Risk Assessment Framework (MERAF): Apache Longbow - Hell Missile Test at Yuma Proving Ground

    SciTech Connect

    Efroymson, R.A.

    2002-05-09

    This ecological risk assessment for a testing program at Yuma Proving Ground, Arizona, is a demonstration of the Military Ecological Risk Assessment Framework (MERAF; Suter et al. 2001). The demonstration is intended to illustrate how risk assessment guidance concerning-generic military training and testing activities and guidance concerning a specific type of activity (e.g., low-altitude aircraft overflights) may be implemented at a military installation. MERAF was developed with funding from the Strategic Research and Development Program (SERDP) of the Department of Defense. Novel aspects of MERAF include: (1) the assessment of risks from physical stressors using an ecological risk assessment framework, (2) the consideration of contingent or indirect effects of stressors (e.g., population-level effects that are derived from habitat or hydrological changes), (3) the integration of risks associated with different component activities or stressors, (4) the emphasis on quantitative risk estimates and estimates of uncertainty, and (5) the modularity of design, permitting components of the framework to be used in various military risk assessments that include similar activities. The particular subject of this report is the assessment of ecological risks associated with a testing program at Cibola Range of Yuma Proving Ground, Arizona. The program involves an Apache Longbow helicopter firing Hellfire missiles at moving targets, i.e., M60-A1 tanks. Thus, the three component activities of the Apache-Hellfire test were: (1) helicopter overflight, (2) missile firing, and (3) tracked vehicle movement. The demonstration was limited, to two ecological endpoint entities (i.e., potentially susceptible and valued populations or communities): woody desert wash communities and mule deer populations. The core assessment area is composed of about 126 km{sup 2} between the Chocolate and Middle Mountains. The core time of the program is a three-week period, including fourteen days of

  17. Ecology of Alcohol and Other Drug Use: Helping Black High-Risk Youth. Proceedings of the Howard University School of Human Ecology Forum (Washington, D.C., October 26-27, 1987). OSAP Prevention Monograph-7.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Oyemade, Ura Jean, Ed.; Brandon-Monye, Deloris, Ed.

    Five plenary session presentations and summaries of 10 panel sessions held at a forum entitled "The Ecology of Substance Abuse: Toward Primary Prevention among High-Risk Youth" are provided in this document, which focuses on black youth at high risk for alcohol and drug problems. Experts describe a comprehensive ecological approach to addressing…

  18. Traits-based approaches in bioassessment and ecological risk assessment: strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats.

    PubMed

    Van den Brink, Paul J; Alexander, Alexa C; Desrosiers, Mélanie; Goedkoop, Willem; Goethals, Peter L M; Liess, Matthias; Dyer, Scott D

    2011-04-01

    We discuss the application of traits-based bioassessment approaches in retrospective bioassessment as well as in prospective ecological risk assessments in regulatory frameworks. Both approaches address the interaction between species and stressors and their consequences at different levels of biological organization, but the fact that a specific species may be less abundant in a potentially impacted site compared with a reference site is, regrettably, insufficient to provide diagnostic information. Species traits may, however, overcome the problems associated with taxonomy-based bioassessment. Trait-based approaches could provide signals regarding what environmental factors may be responsible for the impairment and, thereby, provide causal insight into the interaction between species and stressors. For development of traits-based (TBA), traits should correspond to specific types of stressors or suites of stressors. In this paper, a strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats (SWOT) analysis of TBA in both applications was used to identify challenges and potentials. This paper is part of a series describing the output of the TERA (Traits-based ecological risk assessment: Realising the potential of ecoinformatics approaches in ecotoxicology) Workshop held between 7 and 11 September, 2009, in Burlington, Ontario, Canada. The recognized strengths were that traits are transferrable across geographies, add mechanistic and diagnostic knowledge, require no new sampling methodology, have an old tradition, and can supplement taxonomic analysis. Weaknesses include autocorrelation, redundancy, and inability to protect biodiversity directly. Automated image analysis, combined with genetic and biotechnology tools and improved data analysis to solve autocorrelation problems were identified as opportunities, whereas low availability of trait data, their transferability, their quantitative interpretation, the risk of developing nonrelevant traits, low quality of historic

  19. Potential sources of and ecological risks from heavy metals in agricultural soils, Daye City, China.

    PubMed

    Du, Ping; Xie, Yunfeng; Wang, Shijie; Zhao, Huanhuan; Zhang, Zhuo; Wu, Bin; Li, Fasheng

    2015-03-01

    Concentrations of eight heavy metals (arsenic (As), cadmium (Cd), chromium (Cr), copper (Cu), mercury (Hg), nickel (Ni), lead (Pb), and zinc (Zn)) were measured in 92 topsoil samples collected from agricultural areas in Daye City to (1) assess the distribution of these heavy metals, (2) discriminate natural and anthropic contributions, and (3) identify possible sources of pollution. Mean concentrations of As, Cd, Cu, and Zn in the investigated soils were 23.8, 1.41, 105, and 159 mg kg(-1), respectively. These values were higher, in some cases by several orders of magnitude, than their corresponding background values. Estimated ecological risks, based on contamination factors and potential ecological risk indexes, were mostly low, but were considerable for As and Cd. A range of basic and multivariate statistical analyses (Pearson's correlation analysis, hierarchical cluster analysis, and principal component analysis) clearly revealed two distinct metal groups, comprising As/Cd/Cu/Zn and Cr/Ni/Hg/Pb, whose concentrations were closely associated with the distribution and pollution characteristics of industries in and around the city. Results demonstrated that As/Cd/Cu/Zn were indicators of anthropic pollution, while Cr/Hg/Ni/Pb were from parent materials. Maps of pollutant distribution compiled for the entire arable area further indicated that non-ferrous metal smelting and mining is the main source of diffuse pollution, and also showed the contribution of point source pollution to metal concentrations in agricultural topsoil. Results of this study will be useful for planning, risk assessment, and decision making by environmental managers in this region. PMID:25242589

  20. Potential sources of and ecological risks from heavy metals in agricultural soils, Daye City, China.

    PubMed

    Du, Ping; Xie, Yunfeng; Wang, Shijie; Zhao, Huanhuan; Zhang, Zhuo; Wu, Bin; Li, Fasheng

    2015-03-01

    Concentrations of eight heavy metals (arsenic (As), cadmium (Cd), chromium (Cr), copper (Cu), mercury (Hg), nickel (Ni), lead (Pb), and zinc (Zn)) were measured in 92 topsoil samples collected from agricultural areas in Daye City to (1) assess the distribution of these heavy metals, (2) discriminate natural and anthropic contributions, and (3) identify possible sources of pollution. Mean concentrations of As, Cd, Cu, and Zn in the investigated soils were 23.8, 1.41, 105, and 159 mg kg(-1), respectively. These values were higher, in some cases by several orders of magnitude, than their corresponding background values. Estimated ecological risks, based on contamination factors and potential ecological risk indexes, were mostly low, but were considerable for As and Cd. A range of basic and multivariate statistical analyses (Pearson's correlation analysis, hierarchical cluster analysis, and principal component analysis) clearly revealed two distinct metal groups, comprising As/Cd/Cu/Zn and Cr/Ni/Hg/Pb, whose concentrations were closely associated with the distribution and pollution characteristics of industries in and around the city. Results demonstrated that As/Cd/Cu/Zn were indicators of anthropic pollution, while Cr/Hg/Ni/Pb were from parent materials. Maps of pollutant distribution compiled for the entire arable area further indicated that non-ferrous metal smelting and mining is the main source of diffuse pollution, and also showed the contribution of point source pollution to metal concentrations in agricultural topsoil. Results of this study will be useful for planning, risk assessment, and decision making by environmental managers in this region.

  1. Determining significant endpoints for ecological risk analyses. 1998 annual progress report

    SciTech Connect

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

    1998-06-01

    'The goal of this report is to establish a protocol for assessing risks to non-human populations exposed to environmental stresses typically found on many DOE sites. The authors think that they can achieve this by using novel biological dosimeters in controlled, manipulative dose/effects experiments, and by coupling changes in metabolic rates and energy allocation patterns to meaningful population response variables (such as age-specific survivorship, reproductive output, age at maturity and longevity). This research is needed to determine the relevancy of sublethal cellular damage to the performance of individuals and populations exposed to chronic, low-level radiation, and radiation with concomitant exposure to chemicals. 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. The experimental facility will allow them to develop a credible assessment tool for appraising ecological risks, and to evaluate the effects of radionuclide/chemical synergisms on non-human species. This report summarizes work completed midway of a 3-year project that began in November 1996. Emphasis to date has centered on three areas: (1) developing a molecular probe to measure stable chromosomal aberrations known as reciprocal translocations, (2) constructing an irradiation facility where the statistical power inherent in replicated mesocosms can be used to address the response of non-human organisms to exposures from low levels of radiation and metal contaminants, and (3) quantifying responses of organisms living in contaminated mesocosms and field sites.'

  2. [Heavy metal pollution characteristics and ecological risk analysis for soil in Phyllostachys praecox stands of Lin'an].

    PubMed

    Fang, Xiao-bo; Shi, Han; Liao, Xin-feng; Lou, Zhong; Zhou, Lyu-yan; Yu, Hai-xia; Yao, Lin; Sun, Li-ping

    2015-06-01

    An investigation was carried out in an attempt to reveal the characteristics of heavy metals contamination in the soils of Phyllostachys praecox forest in Lin' an. Based on the concentrations of Hg, As, Cu, Pb, Zn, Cd, Cr, Ni, Co and Mn in 160 topsoil samples, the pollution status and ecological risks of heavy metals in the soils were assessed by single factor pollution index, Nemerow integrated pollution index and Hankanson potential ecological risk index. The spatial variability of heavy metal concentrations in the soils closely related to the distribution of traffic, industrial and livestock pollution sources. The average concentrations of Hg, As, Cu, Pb, Zn, Cd, Cr, Ni, Co and Mn in the soils were 0.16, 7.41, 34.36, 87.98, 103.98, 0.26, 59.12, 29.56, 11.44 and 350.26 mg · kg(-1), respectively. Pb, Cd, Zn and Cu concentrations were as 2.89, 1.70, 1.12 and 1.12 times as the background values of soil in Zhejiang Province, respectively. But their concentrations were all lower than the threshold values of the National Environmental Quality Standard for Soil (GB 15618-1995). The average single factor pollution index revealed that the level of heavy metal pollution in the soils was in order of Pb>Cd>Cu= Zn>Hg>As>Ni>Co>Cr>Mn. Pb pollution was of moderate level while Cd, Cu and Zn pollutions were slight. There was no soil pollution caused by the other heavy metals. However, the Nemerow integrated pollution index showed that all the 160 soil samples were contaminated by heavy metals to a certain extent. Among total 160 soil samples, slight pollution level, moderate pollution level and heavy pollution level accounted for 55.6%, 29.4% and 15.0%, respectively. The average single factor potential ecological risk index (Er(i)) implied that the potential ecological risk related to Cd reached moderate level, while the others were of slight level. Furthermore, Cd and Hg showed higher potential ecological risk indices which reached up to 256.82 and 187.33 respectively

  3. Predicted no-effect concentrations for mercury species and ecological risk assessment for mercury pollution in aquatic environment.

    PubMed

    Du, Meng; Wei, Dongbin; Tan, Zhuowei; Lin, Aiwu; Du, Yuguo

    2015-02-01

    Mercury (Hg) exists in different chemical forms presenting varied toxic potentials. It is necessary to explore an ecological risk assessment method for different mercury species in aquatic environment. The predicted no-effect concentrations (PNECs) for Hg(II) and methyl mercury (MeHg) in the aqueous phase, calculated using the species sensitivity distribution method and the assessment factor method, were 0.39 and 6.5×10(-3)μg/L, respectively. The partition theory of Hg between sediment and aqueous phases was considered, along with PNECs for the aqueous phase to conduct an ecological risk assessment for Hg in the sediment phase. Two case studies, one in China and one in the Western Black Sea, were conducted using these PNECs. The toxicity of mercury is heavily dependent on their forms, and their potential ecological risk should be respectively evaluated on the basis of mercury species. PMID:25662241

  4. A method of ecological and economic risk assessment during the development of the shelf based on mathematical modelling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Solovyova, N. V.; Lobkovsky, L. I.

    2015-09-01

    This paper proposes a method of mathematical modelling of ecological risk based on a synthesis of dynamic and probabilistic risk assessment techniques. The probability of assessment of an acceptable probability of an anthropogenic impact to minimize economic costs is proposed. The dependence of an acceptable probability of an anthropogenic impact on the ecological risk is demonstrated with an example calculation. The results of the modelling of the state of a shelf ecosystem based on the dynamic model are used for the calculation as source information. Based on this synthesis, the calculation results bring about the opportunity to balance ecological-economic goals of achieving safe development of the shelf and to satisfy the involuntary necessity to reduce the costs on environmental protection measures, while maintaining the priority of environmental requirements.

  5. Heavy Metal Pollution, Fractionation, and Potential Ecological Risks in Sediments from Lake Chaohu (Eastern China) and the Surrounding Rivers

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Lei; Liao, Qianjiahua; Shao, Shiguang; Zhang, Nan; Shen, Qiushi; Liu, Cheng

    2015-01-01

    Heavy metal (Cr, Ni, Cu, Zn, Cd, and Pb) pollution, fractionation, and ecological risks in the sediments of Lake Chaohu (Eastern China), its eleven inflowing rivers and its only outflowing river were studied. An improved BCR (proposed by the European Community Bureau of Reference) sequential extraction procedure was applied to fractionate heavy metals within sediments, a geoaccumulation index was used to assess the extent of heavy metal pollution, and a risk assessment code was applied to evaluate potential ecological risks. Heavy metals in the Shuangqiao and Nanfei Rivers were generally higher than the other studied sites. Of the three Lake Chaohu sites, the highest concentrations were identified in western Chaohu. Heavy metal pollution and ecological risks in the lake’s only outflowing river were similar to those in the eastern region of the lake, to which the river is connected. Heavy metal concentrations occurred in the following order: Cd > Zn > Cu > Pb ≈ Ni ≈ Cr. Cr, Ni, and Cu made up the largest proportion of the residual fraction, while Cd was the most prominent metal in the exchangeable and carbonate-included fraction. Cd posed the greatest potential ecological risk; the heavy metals generally posed risks in the following order: Cd > Zn > Cu > Ni > Pb > Cr. PMID:26561822

  6. Heavy Metal Pollution, Fractionation, and Potential Ecological Risks in Sediments from Lake Chaohu (Eastern China) and the Surrounding Rivers.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Lei; Liao, Qianjiahua; Shao, Shiguang; Zhang, Nan; Shen, Qiushi; Liu, Cheng

    2015-11-06

    Heavy metal (Cr, Ni, Cu, Zn, Cd, and Pb) pollution, fractionation, and ecological risks in the sediments of Lake Chaohu (Eastern China), its eleven inflowing rivers and its only outflowing river were studied. An improved BCR (proposed by the European Community Bureau of Reference) sequential extraction procedure was applied to fractionate heavy metals within sediments, a geoaccumulation index was used to assess the extent of heavy metal pollution, and a risk assessment code was applied to evaluate potential ecological risks. Heavy metals in the Shuangqiao and Nanfei Rivers were generally higher than the other studied sites. Of the three Lake Chaohu sites, the highest concentrations were identified in western Chaohu. Heavy metal pollution and ecological risks in the lake's only outflowing river were similar to those in the eastern region of the lake, to which the river is connected. Heavy metal concentrations occurred in the following order: Cd > Zn > Cu > Pb ≈ Ni ≈ Cr. Cr, Ni, and Cu made up the largest proportion of the residual fraction, while Cd was the most prominent metal in the exchangeable and carbonate-included fraction. Cd posed the greatest potential ecological risk; the heavy metals generally posed risks in the following order: Cd > Zn > Cu > Ni > Pb > Cr.

  7. Levels and ecological risk assessment of metals in soils from a typical e-waste recycling region in southeast China.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Weituo; Ding, Lei; Gu, Xiaowen; Luo, Jie; Liu, Yunlang; Guo, Li; Shi, Yi; Huang, Ting; Cheng, Shenggao

    2015-11-01

    Due to the high threat to human health and the ecosystem from metals, the levels and distribution of As, Hg, Cr, Co, Ni, Cu, Zn, Cd, Pb, Mn, V, Sn, Sb, Li and Be in various layers of soil from an e-waste recycling area in Guiyu, China were investigated. The extent of pollution from the metals in soil was assessed using enrichment factors (EFs) and the Nemerow pollution index (P N ). To determine the metals' integrated potential ecological risks, the potential ecological risk index (RI) was chosen. The concentrations of Hg, Ni, Cu, Cd, Pb, Sn and Sb were mainly enriched in the topsoil. EF values (2-5) of the elements Hg, Co, Ni, Zn, Sn, Li and Be revealed their moderate enrichment status in the topsoil, derived from e-waste recycling activities. P N presented a decreasing trend in different layers in the order topsoil (0-20 cm) > deep soil (100-150 cm) > middle soil (50-100 cm) > shallow soil (20-50 cm). With higher potential ecological risk factor (E(i)), Hg and Cd are the main contributors to the potential ecological risk. With respect to the RI, all the values in soil from the study area exceeded 300, especially for the soil at sites S2, S4, S5, S7 and S8, where RI was greater than 600. Therefore, immediate remediation of the contaminated soil is necessary to prevent the release of metals and potential ecological harm.

  8. [Regional distribution and ecological risk evaluation of heavy metals in surface sediments from coastal wetlands of the Yellow River Delta].

    PubMed

    Liu, Zhi-Jie; Li, Pei-Ying; Zhang, Xiao-Long; Li, Ping; Zhu, Long-Hai

    2012-04-01

    Characteristics of heavy metal distributions in surface sediments of different areas in the Yellow River Delta coastal wetland are analyzed, and the influences of sediment environment on heavy metal distributions are discussed. Heavy metal pollution and potential ecological risk in surface sediments of the Yellow River Delta coastal wetland are estimated by using Hakanson potential ecological risk (PER) factors method. The analyzed results indicate that the average contents of Hg, Cu, Pb, Zn, Cd and Cr are 0.034, 18.733, 19.393, 65.317, 0.235 and 62.940 microg x g(-1), respectively. The heavy metal distributions vary with regional environment changes. The accumulating index of heavy metals in the current outfall area is the highest of the three regions assigned by author,the second is that of the ancient Yellow River Delta in the north of Shandong province, and the lowest is that of the abandoned delta. Heavy metal distributions in the Yellow River Delta coastal wetland are affected significantly by hydrodynamic system. In addition, the content of clay in surface sediments plays an important role in the distribution and accumulation of heavy metals. The results also suggest that the heavy metal pollution in the Yellow River Delta coastal wetland is in a low pollution level, with a comprehensive pollution index varying from 0.10 to 4.14. And element Cr is the major pollution factor and its average of single pollution index is 0.63. The order of pollution extents of six typical pollutants is Cr > Cu > Zn > Cd > Pb > Hg. The comprehensive potential ecological risk index is between 0.46 and 51.88, indicating a low potential ecological risk. The order of potential ecological risk parameter is Cd > Hg > Cu > Cr > Pb > Zn. Element Cd is also the major factor of potential ecological risks in the Yellow River Delta coastal wetland.

  9. [Uncertainty characterization approaches for ecological risk assessment of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon in Taihu Lake].

    PubMed

    Guo, Guang-Hui; Wu, Feng-Chang; He, Hong-Ping; Feng, Cheng-Lian; Zhang, Rui-Qing; Li, Hui-Xian

    2012-04-01

    Probabilistic approaches, such as Monte Carlo Sampling (MCS) and Latin Hypercube Sampling (LHS), and non-probabilistic approaches, such as interval analysis, fuzzy set theory and variance propagation, were used to characterize uncertainties associated with risk assessment of sigma PAH8 in surface water of Taihu Lake. The results from MCS and LHS were represented by probability distributions of hazard quotients of sigma PAH8 in surface waters of Taihu Lake. The probabilistic distribution of hazard quotient were obtained from the results of MCS and LHS based on probabilistic theory, which indicated that the confidence intervals of hazard quotient at 90% confidence level were in the range of 0.000 18-0.89 and 0.000 17-0.92, with the mean of 0.37 and 0.35, respectively. In addition, the probabilities that the hazard quotients from MCS and LHS exceed the threshold of 1 were 9.71% and 9.68%, respectively. The sensitivity analysis suggested the toxicity data contributed the most to the resulting distribution of quotients. The hazard quotient of sigma PAH8 to aquatic organisms ranged from 0.000 17 to 0.99 using interval analysis. The confidence interval was (0.001 5, 0.016 3) at the 90% confidence level calculated using fuzzy set theory, and the confidence interval was (0.000 16, 0.88) at the 90% confidence level based on the variance propagation. These results indicated that the ecological risk of sigma PAH8 to aquatic organisms were low. Each method has its own set of advantages and limitations, which was based on different theory; therefore, the appropriate method should be selected on a case-by-case to quantify the effects of uncertainties on the ecological risk assessment. Approach based on the probabilistic theory was selected as the most appropriate method to assess the risk of sigma PAH8 in surface water of Taihu Lake, which provided an important scientific foundation of risk management and control for organic pollutants in water. PMID:22720551

  10. Predicted distribution and ecological risk assessment of a "segregated" hydrofluorrother in the Japanese environment.

    PubMed

    Newsted, John L; Nakanishi, Junko; Cousins, Ian; Werner, Kurt; Giesy, John P

    2002-11-15

    An assessment of HFE-7500, a 'segregated' hydrofluoroether, was conducted to evaluate the potential for exposure to and subsequent effects on humans and wildlife in Japan. The segregated hydrofluoroethers belong to a class of fluorochemicals currently being proposed as replacements for traditional fluorochemicals (CFCs and PFCs) that are currently being used in several industries, in particular, the semiconductor industry. These traditional compounds have been implicated as ozone-depleting or potent "greenhouse gases". The segregated hydrofluoroethers have useful physical and chemical properties, but do not contribute to ozone depletion and have lower "global warming potential" (GWP) indices. Although the physical properties of these materials (low H2O solubility and high vapor pressure) suggest there would be a very low level of risk to aquatic systems, a thorough analysis had not been previously performed. Predicted environmental concentrations (PECs) of HFE-7500 in Japan were determined with the Higashino model, a Gausian puff and plume model that used an approximation of environmental releases to the atmosphere as input to the model. Allowable concentrations to protect aquatic life, wildlife, and humans from noncancer effects were determined as detailed in USEPA's final Water Quality Guidance for the Great Lakes Systems. Potential risk to ecological receptors and humans was determined by calculating hazard quotients and margins of safety. The results of the risk assessment indicate that HFE-7500 poses no significant risk to either aquatic or terrestrial wildlife species or humans living in the Japanese environment. The least margin of safety for any ecological receptor was 100,000, and a margin of safety greater than 100,000,000 for most receptors indicated that HFE-7500 poses no threat to human health. Because of a scarcity of toxicity and exposure data, the risk assessment was based on very conservative assumptions. Therefore, the actual margins of safety for

  11. Ecological Risk Assessment Framework for Low-Altitude Overflights by Fixed-Wing and Rotary-Wing Military Aircraft

    SciTech Connect

    Efroymson, R.A.

    2001-01-12

    This is a companion report to the risk assessment framework proposed by Suter et al. (1998): ''A Framework for Assessment of Risks of Military Training and Testing to Natural Resources,'' hereafter referred to as the ''generic framework.'' The generic framework is an ecological risk assessment methodology for use in environmental assessments on Department of Defense (DoD) installations. In the generic framework, the ecological risk assessment framework of the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA 1998) is modified for use in the context of (1) multiple and diverse stressors and activities at a military installation and (2) risks resulting from causal chains, e.g., effects on habitat that indirectly impact wildlife. Both modifications are important if the EPA framework is to be used on military installations. In order for the generic risk assessment framework to be useful to DoD environmental staff and contractors, the framework must be applied to specific training and testing activities. Three activity-specific ecological risk assessment frameworks have been written (1) to aid environmental staff in conducting risk assessments that involve these activities and (2) to guide staff in the development of analogous frameworks for other DoD activities. The three activities are: (1) low-altitude overflights by fixed-wing and rotary-wing aircraft (this volume), (2) firing at targets on land, and (3) ocean explosions. The activities were selected as priority training and testing activities by the advisory committee for this project.

  12. Ecological risk assessment of the fish community of the Clinch River/Poplar Creek system

    SciTech Connect

    Suter, G.; Barnthouse, L.; Efroymson, R.; Jaeger, H.; Beauchamp, J.

    1995-12-31

    The CERCLA remedial investigation for the Clinch River/Poplar Creek included the fish community as an endpoint. The assessment endpoint was defined as a 20% reduction in the species richness or abundance of the fish community in the Poplar Creek embayment or in any of three reaches of the Clinch River. Screening of chemicals in water against benchmarks determined that Ag, Cd, Cu, Hg, Ni, Zn, PCBs, and bis(2-ethylhexyl)phthalate were contaminants of potential ecological concern (COPECs). Comparison of the distributions of COPEC concentrations with the distributions of literature toxicity values indicated that none of the COPECs was routinely toxic but episodic concentrations (< 10% of the distribution) of some COPECs were in the toxic range. Aqueous toxicity tests gave unclear results except for regularly high lethality to fish embryos in Poplar Creek. Bioindicators analysis found elevated histopathologies and disrupted reproductive indicators in Centrarchids from Poplar Creek, but their implications for the community are unclear. Body burdens of PCBs in some channel catfish exceeded levels associated with sublethal effects on that species in the laboratory. Electrofishing and gill netting found that the fish community of Poplar Creek had low species number and abundance, but habitat quality was also low. These mixed results present a challenge to ecological risk characterization based on weight-of-evidence. The process of weighing the evidence will be presented.

  13. Estimating functional connectivity of wildlife habitat and its relevance to ecological risk assessment

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Johnson, A.R.; Allen, C.R.; Simpson, K.A.N.

    2004-01-01

    Habitat fragmentation is a major threat to the viability of wildlife populations and the maintenance of biodiversity. Fragmentation relates to the sub-division of habitat intq disjunct patches. Usually coincident with fragmentation per se is loss of habitat, a reduction in the size of the remnant patches, and increasing distance between patches. Natural and anthropogenic processes leading to habitat fragmentation occur at many spatial scales, and their impacts on wildlife depend on the scales at which species interact with the landscape. The concept of functional connectivity captures this organism-based view of the relative ease of movement or degree of exchange between physically disjunct habitat patches. Functional connectivity of a given habitat arrangement for a given wildlife species depends on details of the organism's life history and behavioral ecology, but, for broad categories of species, quantities such as home range size and dispersal distance scale allometrically with body mass. These relationships can be incorporated into spatial analyses of functional connectivity, which can be quantified by indices or displayed graphically in maps. We review indices and GIS-based approaches to estimating functional connectivity, presenting examples from the literature and our own work on mammalian distributions. Such analyses can be readily incorporated within an ecological risk framework. Estimates of functional connectivity may be useful in a screening-level assessment of the impact of habitat fragmentation relative to other stressors, and may be crucial in detailed population modeling and viability analysis.

  14. Veterinary antibiotic resistance, residues, and ecological risks in environmental samples obtained from poultry farms, Egypt.

    PubMed

    Dahshan, Hesham; Abd-Elall, Amr Mohamed Mohamed; Megahed, Ayman Mohamed; Abd-El-Kader, Mahdy A; Nabawy, Ehab Elsayed

    2015-02-01

    In Egypt, poultry production constitutes one of the main sources of pollution with veterinary antibiotics (VAs) into the environment. About 80 % of meat production in Egypt is of poultry origin, and the potential environmental risks associated with the use of VAs in these farms have not yet been properly evaluated. Thus, the main purpose of this research was to evaluate the prevalence of antibiotic-resistant enteric key bacteria and the incidence of residual antibiotics in poultry farm environmental samples and to determine whether fertilizing soils with poultry litter from farms potentially brings ecological risks. From December 2011 to September 2012, a total of 225 litter, bird dropping, and water samples were collected from 75 randomly selected boiler poultry farms. A high prevalence of Escherichia coli (n = 179; 79.5 %) in contrast to the low prevalence of Salmonella spp. (n = 7; 3.1 %) was detected. Amongst E. coli isolates, serotypes O142:K86, O125:K70, O91:K, and O119:K69 were the most common. Meanwhile, Salmonella enterica serotypes emek and enteritidis were recovered. The antibiograms using the disc diffusion method revealed significantly more common resistant and multi-resistant isolates in broiler poultry farms. Residues of tetracycline and ciprofloxacin were detected at 2.125 and 1.401 mg kg(-1) mean levels, respectively, in environmental samples contaminated with E. coli-resistant strains by HPLC. The risk evaluations highlighted that tetracycline residues in poultry litter significantly display environmental risks with a hazard quotient value above 1 (1.64). Our study implies that ineffective implementation of veterinary laws which guide and guard against incorrect VA usage may potentially bring health and environmental risks. PMID:25600402

  15. Veterinary antibiotic resistance, residues, and ecological risks in environmental samples obtained from poultry farms, Egypt.

    PubMed

    Dahshan, Hesham; Abd-Elall, Amr Mohamed Mohamed; Megahed, Ayman Mohamed; Abd-El-Kader, Mahdy A; Nabawy, Ehab Elsayed

    2015-02-01

    In Egypt, poultry production constitutes one of the main sources of pollution with veterinary antibiotics (VAs) into the environment. About 80 % of meat production in Egypt is of poultry origin, and the potential environmental risks associated with the use of VAs in these farms have not yet been properly evaluated. Thus, the main purpose of this research was to evaluate the prevalence of antibiotic-resistant enteric key bacteria and the incidence of residual antibiotics in poultry farm environmental samples and to determine whether fertilizing soils with poultry litter from farms potentially brings ecological risks. From December 2011 to September 2012, a total of 225 litter, bird dropping, and water samples were collected from 75 randomly selected boiler poultry farms. A high prevalence of Escherichia coli (n = 179; 79.5 %) in contrast to the low prevalence of Salmonella spp. (n = 7; 3.1 %) was detected. Amongst E. coli isolates, serotypes O142:K86, O125:K70, O91:K, and O119:K69 were the most common. Meanwhile, Salmonella enterica serotypes emek and enteritidis were recovered. The antibiograms using the disc diffusion method revealed significantly more common resistant and multi-resistant isolates in broiler poultry farms. Residues of tetracycline and ciprofloxacin were detected at 2.125 and 1.401 mg kg(-1) mean levels, respectively, in environmental samples contaminated with E. coli-resistant strains by HPLC. The risk evaluations highlighted that tetracycline residues in poultry litter significantly display environmental risks with a hazard quotient value above 1 (1.64). Our study implies that ineffective implementation of veterinary laws which guide and guard against incorrect VA usage may potentially bring health and environmental risks.

  16. Ecological, Social and Biological Risk Factors for Continued Trypanosoma cruzi Transmission by Triatoma dimidiata in Guatemala

    PubMed Central

    Bustamante, Dulce M.; De Urioste-Stone, Sandra M.; Juárez, José G.; Pennington, Pamela M.

    2014-01-01

    Background Chagas disease transmission by Triatoma dimidiata persists in Guatemala and elsewhere in Central America under undefined ecological, biological and social (eco-bio-social) conditions. Methodology Eco-bio-social risk factors associated with persistent domiciliary infestation were identified by a cross-sectional survey and qualitative participatory methods. Quantitative and qualitative data were generated regarding Trypanosoma cruzi reservoirs and triatomine hosts. Blood meal analysis and infection of insects, dogs and rodents were determined. Based on these data, multimodel inference was used to identify risk factors for domestic infestation with the greatest relative importance (>0.75). Principal Findings Blood meal analysis showed that 64% of 36 bugs fed on chickens, 50% on humans, 17% on dogs; 24% of 34 bugs fed on Rattus rattus and 21% on Mus musculus. Seroprevalence among 80 dogs was 37%. Eight (17%) of 46 M. musculus and three (43%) of seven R. rattus from households with infected triatomines were infected with T. cruzi Distinct Typing Unit I. Results from interviews and participatory meetings indicated that vector control personnel and some householders perceived chickens roosting and laying eggs in the house as bug infestation risk factors. House construction practices were seen as a risk factor for bug and rodent infestation, with rodents being perceived as a pest by study participants. Multimodel inference showed that house infestation risk factors of high relative importance are dog density, mouse presence, interior wall plaster condition, dirt floor, tile roofing and coffee tree presence. Conclusions/Significance Persistent house infestation is closely related to eco-bio-social factors that maintain productive T. dimidiata habitats associated with dogs, chickens and rodents. Triatomine, dog and rodent infections indicate active T. cruzi transmission. Integrated vector control methods should include actions that consider the role of

  17. Sustainable and safe design of footwear integrating ecological footprint and risk criteria.

    PubMed

    Herva, Marta; Álvarez, Antonio; Roca, Enrique

    2011-09-15

    The ecodesign of a product implies that different potential environmental impacts of diverse nature must be taken into account considering its whole life cycle, apart from the general design criteria (i.e. technical, functional, ergonomic, aesthetic or economic). In this sense, a sustainability assessment methodology, ecological footprint (EF), and environmental risk assessment (ERA), were combined for the first time to derive complementary criteria for the ecodesign of footwear. Four models of children's shoes were analyzed and compared. The synthetic shoes obtained a smaller EF (6.5 gm(2)) when compared to the leather shoes (11.1 gm(2)). However, high concentrations of hazardous substances were detected in the former, even making the Hazard Quotient (HQ) and the Cancer Risk (CR) exceed the recommended safety limits for one of the synthetic models analyzed. Risk criteria were prioritized in this case and, consequently, the design proposal was discarded. For the other cases, the perspective provided by the indicators of different nature was balanced to accomplish a fairest evaluation. The selection of fibers produced under sustainable criteria and the reduction of the materials consumption was recommended, since the area requirements would be minimized and the absence of hazardous compounds would ensure safety conditions during the use stage. PMID:21802845

  18. Sustainable and safe design of footwear integrating ecological footprint and risk criteria.

    PubMed

    Herva, Marta; Álvarez, Antonio; Roca, Enrique

    2011-09-15

    The ecodesign of a product implies that different potential environmental impacts of diverse nature must be taken into account considering its whole life cycle, apart from the general design criteria (i.e. technical, functional, ergonomic, aesthetic or economic). In this sense, a sustainability assessment methodology, ecological footprint (EF), and environmental risk assessment (ERA), were combined for the first time to derive complementary criteria for the ecodesign of footwear. Four models of children's shoes were analyzed and compared. The synthetic shoes obtained a smaller EF (6.5 gm(2)) when compared to the leather shoes (11.1 gm(2)). However, high concentrations of hazardous substances were detected in the former, even making the Hazard Quotient (HQ) and the Cancer Risk (CR) exceed the recommended safety limits for one of the synthetic models analyzed. Risk criteria were prioritized in this case and, consequently, the design proposal was discarded. For the other cases, the perspective provided by the indicators of different nature was balanced to accomplish a fairest evaluation. The selection of fibers produced under sustainable criteria and the reduction of the materials consumption was recommended, since the area requirements would be minimized and the absence of hazardous compounds would ensure safety conditions during the use stage.

  19. Ecological risk assessment in a large river-reservoir. 3: Benthic invertebrates

    SciTech Connect

    Jones, D.S.; Barnthouse, L.W.; Suter, G.W. II; Efroymson, R.A.; Field, J.M.; Beauchamp, J.J.

    1999-04-01

    The sediments of Poplar Creek and the Clinch River are contaminated with a wide variety of chemicals, including heavy metals, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, and PCBs. Sources include the US Department of Energy`s Oak Ridge Reservation as well as both known and unidentified upstream activities. The authors investigated the risks to benthic invertebrates posed by chemicals in these sediments as part of a comprehensive ecological risk assessment performed to support Superfund clean-up decisions. Poplar Creek was the only river reach for which significant risks were determined. This conclusion was based on several lines of reasoning: sediment-associated organisms at most sites were exposed to levels of several contaminants that have been observed to be toxic; the biosurvey results show a greater than 20% reduction relative to reference sites in taxa richness and abundance; the statistical analysis of the physical, contaminant, and biosurvey data did not exclude contaminants as possible causal factors; and the sediment toxicity tests were too ambiguous to definitively exclude impacts in this reach. This assessment demonstrates the importance of collecting biological data, including sediment toxicity tests and biological surveys; statistically analyzing the relationships of chemicals, physical variables, and measured effects (e.g., toxicity or benthic invertebrate densities); and using sediment chemical and effects distributions in addition to point estimates of exposure and screening benchmarks.

  20. Use, fate and ecological risks of antibiotics applied in tilapia cage farming in Thailand.

    PubMed

    Rico, Andreu; Oliveira, Rhaul; McDonough, Sakchai; Matser, Arrienne; Khatikarn, Jidapa; Satapornvanit, Kriengkrai; Nogueira, António J A; Soares, Amadeu M V M; Domingues, Inês; Van den Brink, Paul J

    2014-08-01

    The use, environmental fate and ecological risks of antibiotics applied in tilapia cage farming were investigated in the Tha Chin and Mun rivers in Thailand. Information on antibiotic use was collected through interviewing 29 farmers, and the concentrations of the most commonly used antibiotics, oxytetracycline (OTC) and enrofloxacin (ENR), were monitored in river water and sediment samples. Moreover, we assessed the toxicity of OTC and ENR on tropical freshwater invertebrates and performed a risk assessment for aquatic ecosystems. All interviewed tilapia farmers reported to routinely use antibiotics. Peak water concentrations for OTC and ENR were 49 and 1.6 μg/L, respectively. Antibiotics were most frequently detected in sediments with concentrations up to 6908 μg/kg d.w. for OTC, and 2339 μg/kg d.w. for ENR. The results of this study indicate insignificant short-term risks for primary producers and invertebrates, but suggest that the studied aquaculture farms constitute an important source of antibiotic pollution.

  1. Lead bioaccessibility in food web intermediates and the influence on ecological risk characterization.

    PubMed

    Kaufman, Claire A; Bennett, Joseph R; Koch, Iris; Reimer, Kenneth J

    2007-08-15

    Models simulating gastric conditions of mammalian (eastern cottontail, Sylvilagus floridanus; short-tailed shrew, Blarina brevicauda) and avian (American robin, Turdus migratorius) receptors were used to investigate the proportion of lead (Pb) mobilized into the digestive juices (the bioaccessible fraction) from soil, earthworms, and vegetation collected at a rifle and pistol (RP) range in eastern Ontario, Canada. Pb concentrations averaged 5044 mg kg(-1) in RP range surface soils, 727 mg kg(-1) in earthworm tissue, and 2945 mg kg(-1) in unwashed vegetation. For mammalian gastric models, the bioaccessible fraction of Pb in soils was 66 +/- 22%, in earthworm tissue was 77 +/- 14%, and in unwashed vegetation was 50 +/- 37%. For the avian gastric model, the bioaccessible fraction of Pb in soil was 53 +/- 43% and in earthworm tissue was 73 +/- 13%. The incorporation of soil and food web intermediate bioaccessibility data into standard risk calculations resulted in predicted risk being reduced for all receptors. The inclusion of bioaccessibility during ecological risk assessment affords a more realistic estimate of contaminant exposure, and is a valuable tool for use in contaminated sites management. PMID:17874804

  2. Description of Spreadsheet Calculations for Populating Data Tables of the Ecological Risk Assessment (Appendix B of the Human Health and Ecological Risk Assessment Document) for the Explosives Waste Treatment Facility (EWTF) at Site 300

    SciTech Connect

    Daniels, J

    2007-10-01

    This ecological risk assessment (ERA) is a supplement to the human health risk assessment (HRA) for the Explosive Waste Treatment Facility (EWTF). The EWTF is located near the center of Site 300 in a small, isolated canyon (see Figures 2 through 6 in the text). The ERA described in detail in Appendix B was prepared in accordance with guidance on currently accepted practice provided by the Human and Ecological Risk Division (HERD) at the Department of Toxic Substances Control (DSTC) of the State of California Environmental Protection Agency (CalEPA) in Sacramento, California. The technical basis for this ERA is an analysis that involves a series of screening calculations to assess each of 21 contaminants of potential ecological concern (CPECs) for its potential to produce an adverse ecological impact in particular wildlife species, including vegetation, considered representative receptors of ecological interest (RREI) in the trophic levels of the food network at Site 300. This series of screening calculations is designed to illustrate whether CPECs identified as being of possible consequence in the most conservative screening calculation actually may be of lesser or no significance when more information is considered in subsequent screening calculations.

  3. How uncertainty analysis in ecological risk assessment is used in the courtroom

    SciTech Connect

    Hacker, C.; Watson, J.

    1995-12-31

    The prevalence of uncertainty analysis in environmental decision-making is increasing. Specific methods for estimating and expressing uncertainty are available and continually being improved. Although these methods are intended to provide a measure of the suitability of the data upon which a decision is based, their application in litigation may result in outcomes that are unanticipated by some in the scientific community. This divergence between those estimating uncertainty in assessing ecological risk and those judging its application can be attributed in part to the different ways evidence is used in science and law. This presentation will explain how scientific evidence is used in the courtroom. This explanation will use examples from case law to describe how courts decide who can be qualified to present evidence, what evidence can be presented, and how this evidence will be used in reaching a decision.

  4. Spatially interpolated disease prevalence estimation using collateral indicators of morbidity and ecological risk.

    PubMed

    Congdon, Peter

    2013-10-01

    This paper considers estimation of disease prevalence for small areas (neighbourhoods) when the available observations on prevalence are for an alternative partition of a region, such as service areas. Interpolation to neighbourhoods uses a kernel method extended to take account of two types of collateral information. The first is morbidity and service use data, such as hospital admissions, observed for neighbourhoods. Variations in morbidity and service use are expected to reflect prevalence. The second type of collateral information is ecological risk factors (e.g., pollution indices) that are expected to explain variability in prevalence in service areas, but are typically observed only for neighbourhoods. An application involves estimating neighbourhood asthma prevalence in a London health region involving 562 neighbourhoods and 189 service (primary care) areas. PMID:24129116

  5. Effects of environmental change on zoonotic disease risk: an ecological primer.

    PubMed

    Estrada-Peña, Agustín; Ostfeld, Richard S; Peterson, A Townsend; Poulin, Robert; de la Fuente, José

    2014-04-01

    Impacts of environmental changes on zoonotic disease risk are the subject of speculation, but lack a coherent framework for understanding environmental drivers of pathogen transmission from animal hosts to humans. We review how environmental factors affect the distributions of zoonotic agents and their transmission to humans, exploring the roles they play in zoonotic systems. We demonstrate the importance of capturing the distributional ecology of any species involved in pathogen transmission, defining the environmental conditions required, and the projection of that niche onto geography. We further review how environmental changes may alter the dispersal behaviour of populations of any component of zoonotic disease systems. Such changes can modify relative importance of different host species for pathogens, modifying contact rates with humans.

  6. Ecological Niche Modeling of Risk Factors for H7N9 Human Infection in China.

    PubMed

    Xu, Min; Cao, Chunxiang; Li, Qun; Jia, Peng; Zhao, Jian

    2016-01-01

    China was attacked by a serious influenza A (H7N9) virus in 2013. The first human infection case was confirmed in Shanghai City and soon spread across most of eastern China. Using the methods of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and ecological niche modeling (ENM), this research quantitatively analyzed the relationships between the H7N9 occurrence and the main environmental factors, including meteorological variables, human population density, bird migratory routes, wetland distribution, and live poultry farms, markets, and processing factories. Based on these relationships the probability of the presence of H7N9 was predicted. Results indicated that the distribution of live poultry processing factories, farms, and human population density were the top three most important determinants of the H7N9 human infection. The relative contributions to the model of live poultry processing factories, farms and human population density were 39.9%, 17.7% and 17.7%, respectively, while the maximum temperature of the warmest month and mean relative humidity had nearly no contribution to the model. The paper has developed an ecological niche model (ENM) that predicts the spatial distribution of H7N9 cases in China using environmental variables. The area under the curve (AUC) values of the model were greater than 0.9 (0.992 for the training samples and 0.961 for the test data). The findings indicated that most of the high risk areas were distributed in the Yangtze River Delta. These findings have important significance for the Chinese government to enhance the environmental surveillance at multiple human poultry interfaces in the high risk area.

  7. Spatial distribution and ecological risk assessment of trace metals in urban soils in Wuhan, central China.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Chutian; Yang, Yong; Li, Weidong; Zhang, Chuanrong; Zhang, Ruoxi; Mei, Yang; Liao, Xiangsen; Liu, Yingying

    2015-09-01

    Surface soil samples from 467 sample sites were collected in urban area of Wuhan City in 2013, and total concentrations of five trace metals (Pb, Zn, Cu, Cr, and Cd) were measured. Multivariate and geostatistical analyses showed that concentrations of Pb, Zn, and Cu are higher along Yangtze River in the northern area of Wuhan, gradually decrease from city center to suburbs, and are mainly controlled by anthropogenic activities, while those of Cr and Cd are relatively spatially homogenous and mainly controlled by soil parent materials. Pb, Zn, Cu, and Cd have generally higher concentrations in roadsides, industrial areas, and residential areas than in school areas, greenbelts, and agricultural areas. Areas with higher road and population densities and longer urban construction history usually have higher trace metal concentrations. According to estimated results of the potential ecological risk index and Nemero synthesis pollution index, almost the whole urban area of Wuhan is facing considerable potential ecological risk caused by soil trace metals. These results reveal obvious trends of trace metal pollution, and an important impact of anthropogenic activities on the accumulation of trace metals in soil in Wuhan. Vehicular emission, industrial activities, and household wastes may be the three main sources for trace metal accumulation. Increasing vegetation cover may reduce this threat. It should be pointed out that Cd, which is strongly accumulated in soil, could be the largest soil pollution factor in Wuhan. Effective measures should be taken as soon as possible to deal with Cd enrichment, and other trace metals in soil should also be reduced, so as to protect human health in this important large city. PMID:26251059

  8. Spatial distribution and ecological risk assessment of trace metals in urban soils in Wuhan, central China.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Chutian; Yang, Yong; Li, Weidong; Zhang, Chuanrong; Zhang, Ruoxi; Mei, Yang; Liao, Xiangsen; Liu, Yingying

    2015-09-01

    Surface soil samples from 467 sample sites were collected in urban area of Wuhan City in 2013, and total concentrations of five trace metals (Pb, Zn, Cu, Cr, and Cd) were measured. Multivariate and geostatistical analyses showed that concentrations of Pb, Zn, and Cu are higher along Yangtze River in the northern area of Wuhan, gradually decrease from city center to suburbs, and are mainly controlled by anthropogenic activities, while those of Cr and Cd are relatively spatially homogenous and mainly controlled by soil parent materials. Pb, Zn, Cu, and Cd have generally higher concentrations in roadsides, industrial areas, and residential areas than in school areas, greenbelts, and agricultural areas. Areas with higher road and population densities and longer urban construction history usually have higher trace metal concentrations. According to estimated results of the potential ecological risk index and Nemero synthesis pollution index, almost the whole urban area of Wuhan is facing considerable potential ecological risk caused by soil trace metals. These results reveal obvious trends of trace metal pollution, and an important impact of anthropogenic activities on the accumulation of trace metals in soil in Wuhan. Vehicular emission, industrial activities, and household wastes may be the three main sources for trace metal accumulation. Increasing vegetation cover may reduce this threat. It should be pointed out that Cd, which is strongly accumulated in soil, could be the largest soil pollution factor in Wuhan. Effective measures should be taken as soon as possible to deal with Cd enrichment, and other trace metals in soil should also be reduced, so as to protect human health in this important large city.

  9. Ecological risk assessment of the benthic invertebrate community of the Clinch River/Poplar Creek system

    SciTech Connect

    Jones, D.; Suter, G.; Barnthouse, L.; Efroymson, R.; Field, J.; Gonzalez, A.

    1995-12-31

    The CERCLA remedial investigation for the Clinch River/Poplar Creek included the benthic invertebrate community as an endpoint. The assessment endpoint was defined as a 20% reduction in species richness or abundance of the benthic invertebrate community in the Poplar Creek embayment or in any of three reaches of the Clinch River. Screening of chemical concentrations in sediment and pore water against benchmarks determined that 38 chemicals were contaminants of potential ecological concern (COPECs). Pore water COPECs were limited to fifteen metals, benzoic acid, and bis(2-ethylhexyl)phthalate. Many COPEC concentrations exceeded benchmarks by two to three orders of magnitude. Mercury was the primary sediment COPEC, although PCBs, PAHs, and other metals were also potentially toxic. Comparison of the distributions of COPEC concentrations with the distributions of literature toxicity values indicated widespread toxicity of several COPECs. Sediment toxicity tests indicated that a few sediment samples were toxic, but in general very little toxicity and no clear spatial trends were observed. Whole sediment tests were more sensitive than pore water tests. This may indicate that sediment-associated contaminants contribute more to risks. The benthic invertebrate community data were evaluated using canonical discriminant analyses. Communities in the Operable Unit (OU) were less diverse than in lower Tennessee Valley mainstem reservoirs, but similar to other upper valley reservoir communities. Abundance and taxa richness were reduced at some sites, but were not consistently reflective of contaminant sources. Decreased taxa richness and abundance in upper Poplar Creek may indicate contaminant sources upstream of the OU. These conflicting results are a challenge to ecological risk characterization based on weight-of-evidence. The process of weighing the evidence will be presented.

  10. Ecological Niche Modeling of Risk Factors for H7N9 Human Infection in China

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Min; Cao, Chunxiang; Li, Qun; Jia, Peng; Zhao, Jian

    2016-01-01

    China was attacked by a serious influenza A (H7N9) virus in 2013. The first human infection case was confirmed in Shanghai City and soon spread across most of eastern China. Using the methods of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and ecological niche modeling (ENM), this research quantitatively analyzed the relationships between the H7N9 occurrence and the main environmental factors, including meteorological variables, human population density, bird migratory routes, wetland distribution, and live poultry farms, markets, and processing factories. Based on these relationships the probability of the presence of H7N9 was predicted. Results indicated that the distribution of live poultry processing factories, farms, and human population density were the top three most important determinants of the H7N9 human infection. The relative contributions to the model of live poultry processing factories, farms and human population density were 39.9%, 17.7% and 17.7%, respectively, while the maximum temperature of the warmest month and mean relative humidity had nearly no contribution to the model. The paper has developed an ecological niche model (ENM) that predicts the spatial distribution of H7N9 cases in China using environmental variables. The area under the curve (AUC) values of the model were greater than 0.9 (0.992 for the training samples and 0.961 for the test data). The findings indicated that most of the high risk areas were distributed in the Yangtze River Delta. These findings have important significance for the Chinese government to enhance the environmental surveillance at multiple human poultry interfaces in the high risk area. PMID:27322296

  11. Ecological Niche Modeling of Risk Factors for H7N9 Human Infection in China.

    PubMed

    Xu, Min; Cao, Chunxiang; Li, Qun; Jia, Peng; Zhao, Jian

    2016-01-01

    China was attacked by a serious influenza A (H7N9) virus in 2013. The first human infection case was confirmed in Shanghai City and soon spread across most of eastern China. Using the methods of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and ecological niche modeling (ENM), this research quantitatively analyzed the relationships between the H7N9 occurrence and the main environmental factors, including meteorological variables, human population density, bird migratory routes, wetland distribution, and live poultry farms, markets, and processing factories. Based on these relationships the probability of the presence of H7N9 was predicted. Results indicated that the distribution of live poultry processing factories, farms, and human population density were the top three most important determinants of the H7N9 human infection. The relative contributions to the model of live poultry processing factories, farms and human population density were 39.9%, 17.7% and 17.7%, respectively, while the maximum temperature of the warmest month and mean relative humidity had nearly no contribution to the model. The paper has developed an ecological niche model (ENM) that predicts the spatial distribution of H7N9 cases in China using environmental variables. The area under the curve (AUC) values of the model were greater than 0.9 (0.992 for the training samples and 0.961 for the test data). The findings indicated that most of the high risk areas were distributed in the Yangtze River Delta. These findings have important significance for the Chinese government to enhance the environmental surveillance at multiple human poultry interfaces in the high risk area. PMID:27322296

  12. Emerging pollutants in the environment: present and future challenges in biomonitoring, ecological risks and bioremediation.

    PubMed

    Gavrilescu, Maria; Demnerová, Kateřina; Aamand, Jens; Agathos, Spiros; Fava, Fabio

    2015-01-25

    Emerging pollutants reach the environment from various anthropogenic sources and are distributed throughout environmental matrices. Although great advances have been made in the detection and analysis of trace pollutants during recent decades, due to the continued development and refinement of specific techniques, a wide array of undetected contaminants of emerging environmental concern need to be identified and quantified in various environmental components and biological tissues. These pollutants may be mobile and persistent in air, water, soil, sediments and ecological receptors even at low concentrations. Robust data on their fate and behaviour in the environment, as well as on threats to ecological and human health, are still lacking. Moreover, the ecotoxicological significance of some emerging micropollutants remains largely unknown, because satisfactory data to determine their risk often do not exist. This paper discusses the fate, behaviour, (bio)monitoring, environmental and health risks associated with emerging chemical (pharmaceuticals, endocrine disruptors, hormones, toxins, among others) and biological (bacteria, viruses) micropollutants in soils, sediments, groundwater, industrial and municipal wastewaters, aquaculture effluents, and freshwater and marine ecosystems, and highlights new horizons for their (bio)removal. Our study aims to demonstrate the imperative need to boost research and innovation for new and cost-effective treatment technologies, in line with the uptake, mode of action and consequences of each emerging contaminant. We also address the topic of innovative tools for the evaluation of the effects of toxicity on human health and for the prediction of microbial availability and degradation in the environment. Additionally, we consider the development of (bio)sensors to perform environmental monitoring in real-time mode. This needs to address multiple species, along with a more effective exploitation of specialised microbes or enzymes

  13. Ecological risk assessment using RAPD and distribution pattern of a rare and endangered species.

    PubMed

    Liu, P; Yang, Y S; Hao, C Y; Guo, W D

    2007-07-01

    Environmental and ecological risk assessment always provide useful evidence for characterisation and conservation of the rare and endangered species, e.g. seven-son flower (Heptacodium miconioides Rehd.). Seven-son flower is a deciduous arbor species, but endangered, with a restricted distribution in the subtropical forests of China. Genetic risk assessment of 56 samples of the flower from nine main populations in Zhejiang (China) was carried out by using the RAPD analysis. This was to study the ecological characteristics, spatial distribution and genetic features of the seven-son flower communities and establish a feasible conservation plan. Twenty-one primers screened from 50 yielded 119 RAPD bands with 72 polymorphic products and 60.50% of total bands. The genetic variation was found to be partitioned mainly among rather than within populations. Percentages of genetic diversity among populations were quantified by Shannon index and the Nei's gene diversity coefficient. AMOVA also demonstrated that these relict populations were highly differentiated. The high level of population variation observed is in contrast to that expected for a primarily outcrossed woody perennial plant, and suggests that there may be a degree of inbreeding. The dendrogram constructed from genetic distances through UPGMA method based on Nei's coefficients shows two groups among nine population clusters, which is further supported by a principle components analysis (PCA) of RAPD phenotypic data. The analysis showed that the biologic characteristics and habitat fragmentation were the reasons of the great genetic variation among populations. Some strategies of its genetic diversity conservation were proposed in the fragmented habitats based on its genetic structure and its biological characteristics in this study.

  14. Applications of contaminant fate and bioaccumulation models in assessing ecological risks of chemicals: A case study for gasoline hydrocarbons

    SciTech Connect

    MacLeod, Matthew; McKone, Thomas E.; Foster, Karen L.; Maddalena, Randy L.; Parkerton, Thomas F.; Mackay, Don

    2004-02-01

    Mass balance models of chemical fate and transport can be applied in ecological risk assessments for quantitative estimation of concentrations in air, water, soil and sediment. These concentrations can, in turn, be used to estimate organism exposures and ultimately internal tissue concentrations that can be compared to mode-of-action-based critical body residues that correspond to toxic effects. From this comparison, risks to the exposed organism can be evaluated. To illustrate the practical utility of fate models in ecological risk assessments of commercial products, the EQC model and a simple screening level biouptake model including three organisms, (a bird, a mammal and a fish) is applied to gasoline. In this analysis, gasoline is divided into 24 components or ''blocks'' with similar environmental fate properties that are assumed to elicit ecotoxicity via a narcotic mode of action. Results demonstrate that differences in chemical properties and mode of entry into the environment lead to profound differences in the efficiency of transport from emission to target biota. We discuss the implications of these results and insights gained into the regional fate and ecological risks associated with gasoline. This approach is particularly suitable for assessing mixtures of components that have similar modes of action. We conclude that the model-based methodologies presented are widely applicable for screening level ecological risk assessments that support effective chemicals management.

  15. Atmospheric deposition of mercury in Atlantic Forest and ecological risk to soil fauna

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cristhy Buch, Andressa; Cabral Teixeira, Daniel; Fernandes Correia, Maria Elizabeth; Vieira Silva-Filho, Emmanoel

    2014-05-01

    The increasing levels of mercury (Hg) found in the atmosphere nowadays has a great contribution from anthropogenic sources and has been a great concern in the past two decades in industrialized countries. Brazil is the seventh country with the highest rate of mercury in the atmosphere. Certainly, the petroleum refineries have significant contribution, seen that 100 million m3 of crude oil are annually processed. These refineries contribute with low generation of solid waste; however, a large fraction of Hg can be emitted to the atmosphere. There are sixteen refineries in Brazil, three of them located in the state of Rio de Janeiro. The Hg is a toxic and hazardous trace element, naturally found in the earth crust. The major input of Hg to ecosystems is through atmospheric deposition (wet and dry), being transported in the atmosphere over large distances. The forest biomes are of great importance in the atmosphere/soil cycling of elemental Hg through foliar uptake and subsequent transfer to the soil through litterfall, which play an important role as Hg sink. The Atlantic Forest of Brazil is the greater contributor of fauna and flora biodiversity in the world and, according to recent studies, this biome has the highest concentrations of mercury in litter in the world, as well as in China, at Subtropical Forest. Ecotoxicological assessments can predict the potential ecological risk of Hg toxicity in the soil can lead to impact the soil fauna and indirectly other trophic levels of the food chain within one or more ecosystems. This study aims to determine mercury levels that represent risks to diversity and functioning of soil fauna in tropical forest soils. The study is conducted in two forest areas inserted into conservation units of Rio de Janeiro state. One area is located next to an important petroleum refinery in activity since fifty-two years ago, whereas the other one is located next to other refinery under construction (beginning activities in 2015), which will

  16. Environmental Risk of Climate Change and Groundwater Abstraction on Ecological Conditions in a Danish Catchment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Seaby, L. P.; Boegh, E.; Jensen, N. H.

    2014-12-01

    The Danish drinking water supply is sourced almost entirely from groundwater. Balancing water abstraction demands and the ecological conditions in streams is one of the major challenges for water resource managers. With projected climate change, characterised by increased annual temperature, precipitation, and evapotranspiration rates for Denmark, the impact to low flows and groundwater levels are especially of interest, as they relate to aquatic habitat and nitrate leaching, respectively. On the island Sjælland, which includes urban and agricultural regions, a doubling of groundwater abstraction rates has been proposed in selected areas to meet water resource demands. This study evaluates the risk to stream ecological conditions for a lowland Danish catchment under multiple scenarios of climate change and groundwater abstraction. Projections of future climate (i.e. precipitation, temperature, reference evapotranspiration) come from the ENSEMBLES climate modelling project. Climate variables from 11 climate models are first bias corrected with a distribution based scaling (DBS) method (Seaby et al., 2013) and then used to force hydrological simulations of stream discharge, groundwater recharge, and nitrate leaching from the root zone under present (1991-2010) and future (2071-2100) climate conditions. Hydrological modelling utilises a sequential coupling methodology with DAISY, a one dimensional crop model describing soil water dynamics in the root zone, and MIKE SHE, a distributed groundwater-surface water model which the National Water Resources Model (DK-model) is set up in (Henriksen et al., 2003). We find low flow and annual discharge to be most impacted by scenarios of climate change, with high variation across climate models (+/- 40% change). Doubling of current groundwater abstraction rates reduces annual discharge by approximately 20%, with higher reductions to low flows seen around 40%. The combined effects of climate change and increased groundwater

  17. Perceptions of ecological risk associated with mountain pine beetle (Dendroctonus ponderosae) infestations in Banff and Kootenay National Parks of Canada.

    PubMed

    McFarlane, Bonita L; Watson, David O T; Witson, David O T

    2008-02-01

    Western Canada is experiencing an unprecedented outbreak of the mountain pine beetle (MPB). The MPB has the potential to impact some of Canada's national parks by affecting park ecosystems and the visitor experience. Controls have been initiated in some parks to lessen the impacts and to prevent the beetle from spreading beyond park boundaries. We examine the perception of ecological risk associated with MPB in two of Canada's national parks, the factors affecting perceptions of risk, and the influence of risk judgments on support for controlling MPB outbreaks in national parks. Data were collected using two studies of park visitors: a mail survey in 2003 and an onsite survey in 2005. The MPB was rated as posing a greater risk to the health and productivity of park ecosystems than anthropogenic hazards and other natural disturbance agents. Visitors who were familiar with MPB rated the ecological and visitor experience impacts as negative, unacceptable, and eliciting negative emotion. Knowledge and residency were the most consistent predictors of risk judgments. Of knowledge, risk, and demographic variables, only sex and risk to ecosystem domains influenced support for controlling the MPB in national parks. Implications for managing MPB in national parks, visitor education, and ecological integrity are discussed.

  18. Applicability of toxicity bioassays to ecological risk assessment in arid and semiarid ecosystems.

    SciTech Connect

    Markwiese, J. T.; Ryti, R. T.; Hooten, M. M.; Michael, D. I.; Hlohowskyj, I.; Environmental Assessment; Neptune and Company, Inc.

    2001-01-01

    Substantial tracts of land in the southwestern and western U.S. are undergoing or will require ERA. Toxicity bioassays employed in baseline ERAs are, for the most part. representative of mesic systems, and highly standardized test species (e.g., lettuce, earthworm) are generally not relevant to arid system toxicity testing. Conversely, relevant test species are often poorly characterized with regard to toxicant sensitivity and culture conditions. The applicability of toxicity bioassays to ecological risk assessment in arid and semiarid ecosystems was reviewed for bacteria and fungi, plants, terrestrial invertebrates, and terrestrial vertebrates. Bacteria and fungi are critical to soil processes, and understanding their ecology is important to understanding the ecological relevance of bioassays targeting either group. Terrestrial bacteria require a water film around soil particles to be active, while soil fungi can remain active in extremely dry soils. It is therefore expected that fungi will be of greater importance to arid and semiarid systems (Whitford 1989). If microbial processes are to be measured in soils of arid environments, it is recommended that bioassays target fungi. Regardless of the taxa studied, problems are associated with the standardization and interpretability of microbial tests, and regulatory acceptance may hinder widespread incorporation of microbial toxicity bioassays in arid system risk assessments. Plant toxicity bioassays are gaining recognition as sensitive indicators of soil conditions because they can provide a cost-effective and relatively rapid assessment of soil quality for both pre- and postremediation efforts. Although the choices of suitable plant species for assessing mesic system soils are numerous, the choices for arid system soils are limited. Guidance is provided for evaluating plant species with regard to their suitability for serving as representative arid system flora. Terrestrial invertebrates can survive and flourish in

  19. [Pollution Characteristics and Ecological Risk Assessment of PAHs in Water and Fishes from Daqing Lakes].

    PubMed

    Wang, Xiao-di; Zang, Shu-ying; Zhang, Yu-hong; Wang, Fan; Yang, Xing; Zuo, Yi-long

    2015-11-01

    The concentrations of 16 polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in 30 water samples and 5 tissues (gill, liver, brain, kidney and muscle) of 36 fishes which were collected from 18 typical lakes of the Daqing lakes group, China were measured between February and April 2012. The results of PAHs concentrations in the water showed that the range of total concentrations was 0.2-1.21 μg x L(-1) and the highest concentration was found in the Yueliangpao Lake. Clustering analysis of statistical method was used to classify the concentrations of PAHs in the water of 18 lakes, and PAHs source and evaluation of ecological risk in different lake groups were obtained respectively based on the analysis of PAHs ratio and the species sensitivity distributions method. The results of cluster analysis about PAHs concentrations in the water of 18 lakes showed that all the lakes were divided into 4 lake groups. Yueliangpao (YLP) and dongdahai (DDH) lakes were respectively divided into a separate group and the other 14 lakes were divided into two groups named XHH group and DQSK group. PAHs in the water of lakes were mainly from wood and coal burning except that the PAHs of the water in YLP group was caused by oil contamination. According to the surface water quality standard of the world and China, the concentrations of PAHs in the water of 4 lake groups all exceeded the standard variously. The PAHs concentrations of most water samples in YLP group and XHH group exceeded the 16 PAHs limit value of Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA) standard, especially, the concentration of Benz[a] pyrene with the strongest carcinogenicity of YLP group exceeded Chinese surface water quality standard. While in the DQSK lake group and the DDH lake group, several PAHs contaminations of water samples exceeded the standard. The tested and statistical results of 16 PAHs concentrations in 5 tissues of Cyprinus carpio and Hypophthalmichthys molitrix fish species in Daqing lakes showed the concentrations

  20. Mapping the potential risk of mycetoma infection in Sudan and South Sudan using ecological niche modeling.

    PubMed

    Samy, Abdallah M; van de Sande, Wendy W J; Fahal, Ahmed Hassan; Peterson, A Townsend

    2014-10-01

    In 2013, the World Health Organization (WHO) recognized mycetoma as one of the neglected tropical conditions due to the efforts of the mycetoma consortium. This same consortium formulated knowledge gaps that require further research. One of these gaps was that very few data are available on the epidemiology and transmission cycle of the causative agents. Previous work suggested a soil-borne or Acacia thorn-prick-mediated origin of mycetoma infections, but no studies have investigated effects of soil type and Acacia geographic distribution on mycetoma case distributions. Here, we map risk of mycetoma infection across Sudan and South Sudan using ecological niche modeling (ENM). For this study, records of mycetoma cases were obtained from the scientific literature and GIDEON; Acacia records were obtained from the Global Biodiversity Information Facility. We developed ENMs based on digital GIS data layers summarizing soil characteristics, land-surface temperature, and greenness indices to provide a rich picture of environmental variation across Sudan and South Sudan. ENMs were calibrated in known endemic districts and transferred countrywide; model results suggested that risk is greatest in an east-west belt across central Sudan. Visualizing ENMs in environmental dimensions, mycetoma occurs under diverse environmental conditions. We compared niches of mycetoma and Acacia trees, and could not reject the null hypothesis of niche similarity. This study revealed contributions of different environmental factors to mycetoma infection risk, identified suitable environments and regions for transmission, signaled a potential mycetoma-Acacia association, and provided steps towards a robust risk map for the disease. PMID:25330098

  1. Spatial ecology of refuge selection by an herbivore under risk of predation

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wilson, Tammy L.; Rayburn, Andrew P.; Edwards, Thomas C.

    2012-01-01

    Prey species use structures such as burrows to minimize predation risk. The spatial arrangement of these resources can have important implications for individual and population fitness. For example, there is evidence that clustered resources can benefit individuals by reducing predation risk and increasing foraging opportunity concurrently, which leads to higher population density. However, the scale of clustering that is important in these processes has been ignored during theoretical and empirical development of resource models. Ecological understanding of refuge exploitation by prey can be improved by spatial analysis of refuge use and availability that incorporates the effect of scale. We measured the spatial distribution of pygmy rabbit (Brachylagus idahoensis) refugia (burrows) through censuses in four 6-ha sites. Point pattern analyses were used to evaluate burrow selection by comparing the spatial distribution of used and available burrows. The presence of food resources and additional overstory cover resources was further examined using logistic regression. Burrows were spatially clustered at scales up to approximately 25 m, and then regularly spaced at distances beyond ~40 m. Pygmy rabbit exploitation of burrows did not match availability. Burrows used by pygmy rabbits were likely to be located in areas with high overall burrow density (resource clusters) and high overstory cover, which together minimized predation risk. However, in some cases we observed an interaction between either overstory cover (safety) or understory cover (forage) and burrow density. The interactions show that pygmy rabbits will use burrows in areas with low relative burrow density (high relative predation risk) if understory food resources are high. This points to a potential trade-off whereby rabbits must sacrifice some safety afforded by additional nearby burrows to obtain ample forage resources. Observed patterns of clustered burrows and non-random burrow use improve

  2. Ecological risk assessments for protected migratory birds and marine species at Midway Atoll

    SciTech Connect

    Scatolini, S.; Hope, B.; Lees, D.

    1995-12-31

    In June 1997, the US Navy plans to close its Naval Air Facility on Sand Island and transfer the atoll to the US Fish and Wildlife Service for use as a National Wildlife Refuge. Midway provides breeding and feeding habitat for migratory seabirds, terrestrial and marine mammals, sea turtles and other reptiles, and a variety of reef fishes and invertebrates. As part of the base closure and transfer process, 36 sites of potential environmental concern were identified on Sand and Eastern islands. These sites include landfills and uncontrolled disposal areas, hazardous materials storage areas, abandoned transformers, sewer outfalls, and other potential hazardous waste sites. Potential contaminants include pesticides, PAHs, PCBs, and heavy metals. A screening ecological risk assessment was performed at each site with a goal of determining whether contaminants could pose any current or future risks to protected migratory bird or marine mammal wildlife species. Specific exposure pathways investigated were dermal and inhalation routes for ground-nesting and burrowing seabirds; incidental soil ingestion for shore birds; consumption for monk seals and sea turtles. Exposure analysis involved sediment and soil chemistry, marine invertebrate tissue chemistry, bioassays (bioavailability), and food web modeling. Effects analysis involved benthic infauna community analysis, acute and chronic invertebrate sediment bioassays, and extensive literature reviews. Risk characterization used both toxicity quotient methods and weight-of-evidence analysis. Because work by other investigators suggests that birds and perhaps marine wildlife acquire significant contaminant loads while feeding away from the atoll, on-atoll risk investigations had to consider whether atoll sites made significant marginal contributions to existing contaminant loads, particularly with respect to PCBs.

  3. Study on heavy metals and ecological risk assessment from Gansu, Ningxia and Inner Mongolia sections of the Yellow River, China.

    PubMed

    Liu, Jing-Jun; Liu, Ying

    2013-12-01

    The Yellow River is the most important resource of water supply in northern China. The purpose of this work are to investigate the concentrations and potential ecological risk of heavy metals in the upper reaches of the Yellow River, the concentrations of eight heavy metals including As, Hg, Cd, Pb, Cr, Ni, Cu and Zn in filtered water and suspended particles from 12 sampling sites of Gansu, Ningxia and Inner Mongolia sections of the Yellow River of China were studied by atomic fluorescence spectrometry (AFS) and high resolution inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometer (HR-ICP-MS) in this paper. The results implied that all heavy metals in filtered water were lower than the limit standards for drinking water except for Cr (56.9 approximately 71. 5 microg L-1 ). Water quality parameters such as total nitrogen (TN), total phosphorus (TP) and pH were also determined and the contents were low along the river except for TN at S1 (2.48) and S9 (2.38), which exceeded the maximum permitted concentration of Class V for the protection of surface water. In suspended particles, the concentrations of Hg, Cd, Pb and Zn were much higher than those in the background value of soil from local section. Cluster analysis (CA) indicated that same sources for Ni, Cu, Cr, Zn and Pb could be stainless steel and petrochemical industrial activities, while As, Cd and Hg derived from agrochemicals, fertilizers, mining, fuel and coal combustion, respectively. Ecological risk assessment was undertaken using risk index (RI) for sampling sites and ecological risk factor (Er) for heavy metals. Eleven suspension samples existed considerable ecological risk (300.6< RI< 508. 6), while S1 was moderate ecological risk (RI, 299.3). According to Er, Hg had considerable or high ecological risk in Inner Mongolia section, while very high ecological risk for Cd at S11 (396.0), S9 (384. 0) and S5 (373. 3), respectively, implied a high pollution in these sampling sites. The results could provide reliable

  4. Heavy metals in estuarine surface sediments of the Hai River Basin, variation characteristics, chemical speciation and ecological risk.

    PubMed

    Lei, Pei; Zhang, Hong; Shan, Baoqing; Lv, Shucong; Tang, Wenzhong

    2016-04-01

    The Hai River Basin (HRB) is considered to be one of the most polluted areas in China due to the high regional population density and rapid economic development. The estuaries of the HRB, which receive pollutants from terrestrial rivers, may subsequently suffer potential pollution and result in ecological risk of heavy metals. Six heavy metals (Cd, Cr, Cu, Ni, Pb, and Zn) were measured in estuarine surface sediments from 10 estuaries of the HRB to investigate their variation characteristics and ecological risks. The spatial difference of Cr, Ni, Pb, and Zn in sediments was higher than that of the rest two elements. The Yongdingxin Estuary (YDX) and Ziyaxin Estuary (ZYX) in the Northern Hai River System (NHRS) were the most severe in terms of heavy metal contamination. According to the Risk Assessment Code (RAC) classification, Cd associated with the exchangeable and carbonate fraction (the average of 21.3 %) indicated medium risk to high risk. More than 50 % of Cr, Cu, Ni, and Zn on average were associated with the residual fraction. Based on the sum of the first three fractions (exchangeable and carbonate + reducible + oxidizable), the mobility order of these heavy metals was Cd >Pb > Zn ≈ Cu > Ni > Cr. Compared to the background values of cinnamon soil, the potential ecological risk index (RI) values ranged from 25.6 to 168, with an average of 91.2, indicating a low ecological risk in estuarine sites of the HRB. Cd and Pb were the dominant contributors to the toxic-response factor (45.8 and 25.5 %, respectively). The results give insight into the different control measures pertaining to heavy metal pollution and risk for both relatively clean estuaries and urban seriously polluted areas, respectively, for the formation of protect strategies of aquatic environment in the HRB. PMID:26758307

  5. Ecological risks of polycyclic musk in soils irrigated with reclaimed municipal wastewater.

    PubMed

    Wang, Meie; Peng, Chi; Chen, Weiping; Markert, Bernd

    2013-11-01

    HHCB (1,3,4,6,7,8-hexahydro-4,6,6,7,8-hexamethylcyclopenta-c-2-benzopyrane) and AHTN (7-acetyl-1,1,3,4,4,6-hexamethyl-1,2,3,4-tetrahydronaphthalene) are found in reclaimed municipal wastewater. They may accumulate in soils receiving long-term application of reclaimed water thus adversely impact the soil biota. We evaluated the extent of their accumulation in receiving soils using HYDRUS-1D based on reclaimed municipal wastewater irrigation data at a public park in Beijing. The potential for ecological harms were assessed according to tested and reported outcomes of acute toxicity tests using wheat (Triticum aetivum L), earthworm (Eisenia fetida) and springtail (Bourletiella hortensis) as target organisms. Results of comparison among EC50 values from wheat, earthworm and springtail showed the EC50 value for root elongation inhibition of wheat germination was the least. Based on the least EC50, predicted no effect concentration in soils were 290 and 320ng /g for HHCB and ATHN, respectively. Comparable results from simulation to experimental and field investigating date validated the using of HYDRUS-1D in the work. Results of risk prediction showed it would take 243 and 666 years for HHCB and AHTN accumulated in soils at current irrigation practice to reach the levels for the resulting risk characterization ratios (RCRs) to cause potential ecosystem harms. PMID:23978598

  6. Self-monitoring effects of ecological momentary assessment on smokers' perceived risk and worry.

    PubMed

    Magnan, Renee E; Köblitz, Amber R; McCaul, Kevin D; Dillard, Amanda J

    2013-06-01

    Using ecological momentary assessment (EMA), we sought to determine whether differences in reporting would exist for smokers who self-monitored their smoking-related negative thoughts five times daily in comparison to a non-EMA control group. One hundred seventeen smokers were randomly assigned to two conditions. Eighty-eight smokers carried personal digital assistants (PDAs) for 2 weeks and monitored negative thoughts each day, and 29 smokers did not self-monitor their negative thoughts. All smokers completed pretest and posttest assessments reporting their perceived risk and worry associated with smoking consequences. The data revealed evidence of self-monitoring effects, as smokers in the EMA condition reported less worry after 2 weeks of self-monitoring compared to smokers in the control condition. The two conditions did not differ in their reports of perceived risk of smoking consequences. These data suggest that EMA procedures asking respondents to self-monitor their thoughts about smoking may influence feelings about their smoking behavior.

  7. Assessing ecological risk at a hazardous waste site containing vernal pools

    SciTech Connect

    DeLong, T.; Millard, J.; Timmer, E.; Dobroski, C.

    1995-12-31

    An ecological risk assessment was conducted for a Superfund site in central California. As part of this assessment an evaluation of vernal pools was conducted. Vernal pools are amphibious ecosystems that support unique biotic communities. Many of the endemic species associated with vernal pools in central California are currently listed as state or Federally endangered, threatened, or rare species and include: Contra Costa goldfields (Lasthenia conjugens), vernal pool fairy shrimp (Branchinecta lynchl), vernal pool tadpole shrimp (Lepidurus packardi) and the California tiger salamander (Ambystoma tigrinum califomiense). The protection of these habitats is essential for the preservation of the special status species dependent on them for survival. As part of the risk assessment, vernal pools in the study area were identified and surveyed for special status flora and fauna for two consecutive years. Information regarding the relative quality of each pool was also collected. In order to assess potential impacts from chemical exposures to communities inhabiting these vernal pools, a weight-of-evidence approach was employed that included: evaluation of vernal pool biological composition; assessment of physical and chemical conditions; invertebrate sediment toxicity evaluations, and Frog Embryo Teratogenesis Analysis -- Xenopus (FETAX) testing.

  8. Phenol removal efficiencies of sewage treatment processes and ecological risks associated with phenols in effluents.

    PubMed

    Zhong, Wenjue; Wang, Donghong; Xu, Xiaowei

    2012-05-30

    Phenols pose a risk to the environment and to human health. Phenols found in rivers mainly originate from sewage treatment plants (STPs). In this paper, analytical procedures, based on deconvolution technology and retention time locking technology, were investigated to simultaneously identify and determine the concentrations of fifty different phenols in sewage water and effluents. Seventeen different phenols were found in sewage and five - including two regulated phenols (phenol and 2,4,6-trichlorophenol) and three un-regulated phenols (2-chlorophenol, 2,5-dichlorophenol and 2,4-dichloro-3-ethyl-6-nitrophenol) - were identified in effluents of five STPs. A number of processes undertaken in five STPs were also investigated. These processes can be used to remove phenols at efficiency levels of between 88.95% and 99.97%. Among the processes tested, a combination of anaerobic/anoxic/oxic (A(2)/O), continuous microfiltration (CMF), ozone oxidation (O(3)), and chlorination, appeared to be the best option for the removal of key phenols. Among the five phenols identified in effluents, 2,5-dichlorophenol (1.89 μg/L) and 2,4-dichloro-3-ethyl-6-nitrophenol (22.6 μg/L) pose the greatest ecological risk to receiving waters.

  9. Application of ecological risk indicators for the assessment of Greek surficial sediments contaminated by toxic metals.

    PubMed

    Hahladakis, John Ν; Vasilaki, Georgia; Smaragdaki, Eleftheria; Gidarakos, Evangelos

    2016-05-01

    Τhe present research investigates the partitioning of six selected toxic metals (Ni, Cr, Pb, Zn, Cu, and As) in eight sediment samples; half of them were collected from Elefsis Gulf, and the other half were taken from Koumoundourou Lake, Athens, Greece. Each one of them was treated by applying Tessier's five-step sequential extraction procedure. Regarding gulf sediments, the results indicated that Cu exhibits a strong affinity to the organic matter with percentages ranging from 65 to 78 %. Considerable amount of Zn (32-40 %) is bound to the Fe-Mn fraction and the non-residual fraction, while Cr and Ni are bound to the organic fraction, an observation that suits all toxic metals examined. Regarding lake sediments, Pb is the predominant metal bound to Fe-Mn (48-51 %). It is also noteworthy that the percentage of Zn bound to carbonated fraction (5-15 %), indicating biological availability. In conclusion, the application of several ecological risk indicators demonstrated that Elefsis Gulf sediments correspond to a moderate pollution level, with Pb and Ni being less bioavailable than in the lake's samples, in contrast to Zn which is more bioavailable. Finally, Koumoundourou Lakes' basin is characterized of "low risk."

  10. Spatiotemporal characteristics of organic contaminant concentrations and ecological risk assessment in the Songhua River, China.

    PubMed

    Wang, Ce; Cyterski, Mike; Feng, Yujie; Gao, Peng; Sun, Qingfang

    2015-11-01

    To control source pollution and improve water quality, an understanding of the spatiotemporal characteristics of organic contaminant concentrations in affected receiving waters is necessary. The Songhua River in northeast China is the country's third-largest domestic river and loadings of organic contaminants along an industrialized section have made it the focal point of a national pollution reduction plan. In addition to water quality issues, management of the Songhua River basin must also address local economic development, aquatic ecosystem sustainability and political relationships with Russia. In three periods spanning 2006 to 2010, eight polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and eight phenols were measured in surface waters at ten monitoring sites along the river. A generalized linear model (GLM) was used to characterize water quality at different sites and time periods. Chemical concentrations of the organic compounds showed significant sinusoidal seasonal patterns and the concentrations declined significantly from 2006 to 2010, possibly due to management practices designed to control water pollution. A critical body residue analysis showed that water concentrations measured during the winter of 2007 across all monitoring sites, but especially at S1-Shaokou and S2-Songhuajiangcun, presented a high risk for fish species. The spatiotemporal characteristics of water quality and estimated ecological risks shown here add to the body of knowledge to develop policies on industrial output and pollution management strategies for the Songhua River basin. PMID:26442573

  11. Using the weight-of-evidence approach for ecological risk assessment at a DOE facility

    SciTech Connect

    Hull, R.N.; Suter, G.W.

    1994-12-31

    The Portsmouth Gaseous Diffusion Plant (PORTS), an uranium enrichment plant, has released various contaminants into the environment. An ecological risk assessment is underway for the site, which includes an evaluation of Little Beaver Creek, which flows along the eastern and northern sides of PORTS. For this assessment, the creek was divided into reaches which were defined in terms of contaminant sources. This creek receives contaminants from permitted outfalls, groundwater discharge, non-point sources, and accidental releases. Metal contamination is the major concern at the site. Receptors include the fish and benthic communities in the creek, and soil invertebrates and plants in the floodplain. A weight-of-evidence approach was used to evaluate risks to those receptors, based on chemical analyses, toxicity tests and field surveys. The fish and benthic communities are impacted on Little Beaver Creek in a reach near a permitted discharge, with improvements seen downstream of this location. Ambient water, sediment and soil samples were not toxic to laboratory organisms. Either these toxicity tests were not sufficiently sensitive to detect toxicity, or the observed changes in the aquatic communities did not result from toxicity. Because conditions improved downstream from the permitted discharge, it was concluded that this is the major source of toxicity in the creek.

  12. Coordinating ecological risk assessment with natural resource damage assessment: A panel discussion.

    PubMed

    Sanders, Brenda; Ammann, Mike; Hoff, Rebecca; Huston, Mark; Jenkins, Kenneth; Palagyi, Tony; Pelto, Karen; Rettig, Todd; Wagner, Anne

    2016-10-01

    Contaminated sites in the United States undergo remediation and restoration through regulatory programs that lead the 2 processes through independent but often parallel pathways with different objectives. The objective of remediation is to reduce risk to human health and the environment, whereas that of restoration is to restore injured resources and compensate the public for lost use of the services that natural resources provide. More complex sites, such as those associated with large river systems and urban waterways, have resulted in increasingly larger-scale ecological risk assessments (ERAs) and natural resource damage assessments (NRDAs) that take many years and involve diverse practitioners including scientists, economists, and engineers. Substantial levels of effort are now frequently required, creating a need for more efficient and cost-effective approaches to data collection, analyses, and assessments. Because there are commonalities in the data needs between ERAs and NRDAs, coordination of the design and implementation of site-specific studies that meet the needs of both programs could result in increased efficiency and lower costs. The Association for Environmental Health and Sciences Foundation convened a panel of environmental practitioners from industry, consulting, and regulatory bodies to examine the benefits and challenges associated with coordinating ERA and NRDA activities in the context of a broad range of regulatory programs. This brief communication presents the opinions and conclusions of the panelists on these issues and reports 2 case studies for which coordinated ERA and NRDA activities produced a positive outcome. Integr Environ Assess Manag 2016;12:616-621. © 2015 SETAC.

  13. Incremental ecological exposure risks from contaminated sediments in an urban estuarine river.

    PubMed

    Ludwig, David F; Iannuzzi, Timothy J

    2005-11-01

    Estuaries in urban regions present unique environmental management challenges. Ecosystems in urban estuaries are typically impacted by habitat loss and degradation, watershed modification, and nonpoint and point sources of many chemicals. Restoring such systems requires an understanding of the relative contribution of various stressors to overall ecological conditions and an understanding of shifting patterns of stress over time. In this article, we present the results of a multiparameter environmental assessment of a quintessential urbanized waterway: the lower Passaic River in the vicinity of Newark, New Jersey, USA. To provide the foundation for effective management decision making, we quantified baseline conditions (habitat losses and degradation), chemical concentrations in sediment and biota relative to published toxic effect levels, direct toxicity of sediments to benthic organisms, and food-web mediated risks to fish-eating birds. Habitat losses have been severe (greater than 85% of wetlands, nearly 100% of the total length of tidal and nontidal tributaries, and 100% of natural shoreline habitat have been lost), resulting in substantial habitat constraints on biota. Despite this, biological communities are present in the lower Passaic. In general, concentrations of toxic chemicals in surface sediments have fallen with time, and natural recovery processes are proceeding. Chemical concentrations remain high enough to impair survival of amphipods, but not amphipod growth or polychaete growth or survival as measured in laboratory bioassays using field-collected sediment. Fish and blue crab body burdens of some metals, PCBs, and the pesticide, DDT, are at concentrations sufficiently high to exceed toxicity thresholds. The resident fish-eating bird--the belted kingfisher--is at exposure risk from some metals, PCBs, and polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins and dibenzo furans (PCDD/Fs). Migratory waders--the herons and egrets--are not at risk from chemical exposure

  14. Adolescents' Educational Outcomes in a Social Ecology of Parenting, Family, and Community Risks in Northern Ireland

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Goeke-Morey, Marcie C.; Taylor, Laura K.; Merrilees, Christine E.; Cummings, E. Mark; Cairns, Ed; Shirlow, Peter

    2013-01-01

    This study examines the influence of social ecological risks within the domains of parenting, family environment, and community in the prediction of educational outcomes for 770 adolescents (49% boys, 51% girls, "M"?=?13.6 years, "SD"?=?2.0) living in a setting of protracted political conflict, specifically working class areas…

  15. Contamination characteristics, ecological risk and source identification of trace metals in sediments of the Le'an River (China).

    PubMed

    Chen, Haiyang; Chen, Ruihui; Teng, Yanguo; Wu, Jin

    2016-03-01

    Recognizing the pollution characteristics of trace metals in river sediments and targeting their potential sources are of key importance for proposing effective strategies to protect watershed ecosystem health. In this study, a comprehensive investigation was conducted to identify the contamination and risk characteristics of trace metals in sediments of Le'an River which is a main tributary of the largest freshwater lake in China, Poyang Lake. To attain this objective, several tools and models were considered. Geoaccumulation index and enrichment factor were used to understand the general pollution characteristic of trace metals in sediments. Discriminant analysis was applied to identify the spatial variability of sediment metals. Sediment quality guidelines and potential ecological risk index were employed for ecological risk evaluation. Multivariate curve resolution-alternating least square was proposed to extract potential pollution sources, as well as the application of Monte-Carlo simulation for uncertainty analysis of source identification. Results suggested that the sediments in Le'an River were considerably polluted by the investigated trace metals (Cd, Cr, As, Hg, Pb, Cu, Zn and Ni). Sediment concentrations of these metals showed significant spatial variations. The potential ecological risk lay in high level. Comparatively speaking, the metals of Cd, Cu and Hg were likely to result in more harmful effects. Mining activities and the application of fertilizers and agrochemicals were identified as the main anthropogenic sources. To protect the ecological system of Le'an River and Poyang Lake watershed, industrial mining and agricultural activities in this area should to be strictly regulated.

  16. [Ecological risk assessment of rural-urban ecotone based on landscape pattern: A case study in Daiyue District of Tai' an City, Shandong Province of East China].

    PubMed

    Shi, Hao-Peng; Yu, Kai-Qin; Feng, Yong-jun

    2013-03-01

    Based on the remote sensing data in 2000, 2005, and 2010, this paper analyzed the variation trends of the land use type and landscape pattern in Daiyue District of Tai' an City from 2000 to 2010. The ecological risk index was built, that of the District was re-sampled and spatially interpolated, and the spatiotemporal pattern of the ecological risk in the rural-urban ecotone of the District was analyzed. In 2000-2010, the main variation trend of the land use type in the District was the shift from natural landscape to artificial landscape. The intensity of human disturbance was larger in cultivated land, garden plot, and forestland than in other landscape types, while the human disturbance in water area was smaller. The ecological loss degree of cultivated land and water area decreased somewhat, while that of the other land use types presented an increasing trend. The ecological risk distribution in the District was discrete in 2000 and 2010, but most centralized in 2005. The ecological risk of each ecological risk sub-area had an increasing trend in 2000-2005, but was in adverse in 2005-2010. In 2000-2010, the ecological risk of the District was mainly at medium level. Spatially, the distribution of the ecological risk in the District had an obvious differentiation, with an overall diffusive increasing from forestland as the center to the surrounding areas. In the District, the ecological risk was mainly at medium and higher levels, the area with lower ecological risk had an obvious dynamic change, while that with the lowest and highest ecological risk had less change. PMID:23755484

  17. Toxicity bioassays for ecological risk assessment in arid and semiarid ecosystems.

    PubMed

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

    2001-01-01

    Substantial tracts of land in the southwestern and western U.S. are undergoing or will require ERA. Toxicity bioassays employed in baseline ERAs are, for the most part. representative of mesic systems, and highly standardized test species (e.g., lettuce, earthworm) are generally not relevant to arid system toxicity testing. Conversely, relevant test species are often poorly characterized with regard to toxicant sensitivity and culture conditions. The applicability of toxicity bioassays to ecological risk assessment in arid and semiarid ecosystems was reviewed for bacteria and fungi, plants, terrestrial invertebrates, and terrestrial vertebrates. Bacteria and fungi are critical to soil processes, and understanding their ecology is important to understanding the ecological relevance of bioassays targeting either group. Terrestrial bacteria require a water film around soil particles to be active, while soil fungi can remain active in extremely dry soils. It is therefore expected that fungi will be of greater importance to arid and semiarid systems (Whitford 1989). If microbial processes are to be measured in soils of arid environments, it is recommended that bioassays target fungi. Regardless of the taxa studied, problems are associated with the standardization and interpretability of microbial tests, and regulatory acceptance may hinder widespread incorporation of microbial toxicity bioassays in arid system risk assessments. Plant toxicity bioassays are gaining recognition as sensitive indicators of soil conditions because they can provide a cost-effective and relatively rapid assessment of soil quality for both pre- and postremediation efforts. Phytotoxicity evaluations commonly target germination because environmental stressors have the greatest potential for exerting adverse effects in the early stages of growth. In arid systems, seeds respond rapidly to precipitation events, and it is typically after germination has occurred that plants must cope with water

  18. Characterization of the ecological interactions of Roundup Ready 2 Yield® soybean, MON 89788, for use in ecological risk assessment.

    PubMed

    Horak, Michael J; Rosenbaum, Eric W; Phillips, Samuel L; Kendrick, Daniel L; Carson, David; Clark, Pete L; Nickson, Thomas E

    2015-01-01

    As part of an ecological risk assessment, Roundup Ready 2 Yield® soybean (MON 89788) was compared to a conventional control soybean variety, A3244, for disease and arthropod damage, plant response to abiotic stress and cold, effects on succeeding plant growth (allelopathic effects), plant response to a bacterial symbiont, and effects on the ability of seed to survive and volunteer in a subsequent growing season. Statistically significant differences between MON 89788 and A3244 were considered in the context of the genetic variation known to occur in soybean and were assessed for their potential impact on plant pest (weed) potential and adverse environmental impact. The results of these studies revealed no effects of the genetic modification that would result in increased pest potential or adverse environmental impact of MON 89788 compared with A3244. This paper illustrates how such characterization studies conducted in a range of environments where the crop is grown are used in an ecological risk assessment of the genetically modified (GM) crop. Furthermore, risk assessors and decision makers use this information when deciding whether to approve a GM crop for cultivation in-or grain import into-their country. PMID:26177011

  19. Characterization of the ecological interactions of Roundup Ready 2 Yield® soybean, MON 89788, for use in ecological risk assessment

    PubMed Central

    Horak, Michael J; Rosenbaum, Eric W; Phillips, Samuel L; Kendrick, Daniel L; Carson, David; Clark, Pete L; Nickson, Thomas E

    2015-01-01

    Abstract As part of an ecological risk assessment, Roundup Ready 2 Yield® soybean (MON 89788) was compared to a conventional control soybean variety, A3244, for disease and arthropod damage, plant response to abiotic stress and cold, effects on succeeding plant growth (allelopathic effects), plant response to a bacterial symbiont, and effects on the ability of seed to survive and volunteer in a subsequent growing season. Statistically significant differences between MON 89788 and A3244 were considered in the context of the genetic variation known to occur in soybean and were assessed for their potential impact on plant pest (weed) potential and adverse environmental impact. The results of these studies revealed no effects of the genetic modification that would result in increased pest potential or adverse environmental impact of MON 89788 compared with A3244. This paper illustrates how such characterization studies conducted in a range of environments where the crop is grown are used in an ecological risk assessment of the genetically modified (GM) crop. Furthermore, risk assessors and decision makers use this information when deciding whether to approve a GM crop for cultivation in—or grain import into—their country. PMID:26177011

  20. Sediment and water toxicity evaluations for the Clinch River ecological risk assessment

    SciTech Connect

    Gonzalez, A.M.; Phipps, T.L.; Kszos, L.A.

    1995-12-31

    The sediment and surface water at three sites in the Clinch River and six sites in Poplar Creek were evaluated by means of toxicity tests with aquatic organisms. The results of these tests were used as one of the lines of evidence in an assessment of ecological risk due to contaminants, transported from the Oak Ridge Reservation, to the off-site sediment and water environment. Results from a suite of six whole sediment, elutriate and pore water toxicity tests were summarized in terms of survival (Hyalella azteca, Daphnia magna, Anodonta imbecillis, Ceriodaphnia dubia), fecundity (Daphnia magna) or light output reduction (Microtox{reg_sign}). Results from the water toxicity tests were summarized in terms of reduction in survival or fecundity of C. dubia, and survival or growth of Pimephales promelas. Toxicity test results (covering a period of about 1 6 months) showed little difference between reference site media and media from sites of concern. They also showed no strong spatial or temporal response pattern. These results are further supported by the presence of indigenous Chironomus and Hexagenia spp. in the sediment samples. Toxicity results will be discussed with respect to three issues. Two criteria were used to define significant differences between reference sites and sites of concern: a difference of 20%, and statistical significance at a = 0.05. Secondly, the relevance of comparing mean responses to control vs. reference site will be discussed. Lastly, toxicity results are consistent with site characterization information which suggest that contaminants of concern in sediment are buried under clean sediment, effectively isolating the material from potential human or ecological exposure.

  1. Neighborhoods and Adolescent Health-Risk Behavior: An Ecological Network Approach1

    PubMed Central

    Browning, Christopher R.; Soller, Brian; Jackson, Aubrey L.

    2014-01-01

    This study integrates insights from social network analysis, activity space perspectives, and theories of urban and spatial processes to present an innovative approach to neighborhood effects on health-risk behavior among youth. We suggest spatial patterns of neighborhood residents’ non-home routine activities may be conceptualized as ecological, or “eco”-networks, which are two-mode networks that indirectly link residents through socio-spatial overlap in routine activities. We further argue structural configurations of eco-networks are consequential for youth’s behavioral health. In this study we focus on a key structural feature of eco-networks—the neighborhood-level extent to which households share two or more activity locations, or eco-network reinforcement—and its association with two dimensions of health-risk behavior, substance use and delinquency/sexual activity. Using geographic data on non-home routine activity locations among respondents from the Los Angeles Family and Neighborhood Survey (L.A.FANS), we constructed neighborhood-specific eco-networks by connecting sampled households to “activity clusters,” which are sets of spatially-proximate activity locations. We then measured eco-network reinforcement and examined its association with adolescent dimensions of health risk behavior employing a sample of 830 youth ages 12-17 nested in 65 census tracts. We also examined whether neighborhood-level social processes (collective efficacy and intergenerational closure) mediate the association between eco-network reinforcement and the outcomes considered. Results indicated eco-network reinforcement exhibits robust negative associations with both substance use and delinquency/sexual activity scales. Eco-network reinforcement effects were not explained by potential mediating variables. In addition to introducing a novel theoretical and empirical approach to neighborhood effects on youth, our findings highlight the importance of eco

  2. Occurrence, spatiotemporal distribution, mass balance and ecological risks of antibiotics in subtropical shallow Lake Taihu, China.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Li-Jun; Wu, Qinglong L; Zhang, Bei-Bei; Zhao, Yong-Gang; Zhao, Bi-Ying

    2016-04-01

    The objective of this study was to evaluate the occurrence, spatiotemporal distribution, mass balance and ecological risks of 43 commonly used human and veterinary antibiotics in both aqueous and sedimentary phases in a large subtropical shallow lake, Lake Taihu. In the aqueous phase, sulfonamides (2.64-344 ng L(-1)), lincomycin (ND to 53.8 ng L(-1)) and florfenicol (0.15-963 ng L(-1)) were the main compounds with high concentrations and detection frequencies. In the sedimentary phase, fluoroquinolones (ND to 174 ng g(-1), dry weight) and tetracyclines (ND to 39.6 ng g(-1), dry weight) were the predominant compounds. Antibiotic concentrations in Lake Taihu were generally lower relative to data documented in previous studies on China and other countries. The composition of antibiotics showed that livestock wastewater might be the main source of antibiotics in Lake Taihu, followed by domestic wastewater. Antibiotics in the lake water showed slight spatial variation in summer and significant spatial variation in winter; whereas, antibiotic concentrations in the sediments varied obviously, with high concentrations found in the sites close to potential pollution sources. Mass balance showed that sediments are an important sink and potential source for fluoroquinolones and tetracyclines. In addition to antibiotics' physicochemical properties, the spatiotemporal distribution of antibiotics in the lake was influenced by both pollution sources and lake hydrodynamics. The environmental risk assessment results showed that sulfamethoxazole could pose high risks on the algae in the aquatic ecosystem, followed by tetracyclines (algae) and fluoroquinolones (bacteria). Overall, our study reveals complex compositions and clear spatiotemporal dynamics in Lake Taihu, which were the consequence of pollution sources and lake hydrodynamics. PMID:27048777

  3. Neighborhoods and adolescent health-risk behavior: an ecological network approach.

    PubMed

    Browning, Christopher R; Soller, Brian; Jackson, Aubrey L

    2015-01-01

    This study integrates insights from social network analysis, activity space perspectives, and theories of urban and spatial processes to present an novel approach to neighborhood effects on health-risk behavior among youth. We suggest spatial patterns of neighborhood residents' non-home routines may be conceptualized as ecological, or "eco"-networks, which are two-mode networks that indirectly link residents through socio-spatial overlap in routine activities. We further argue structural configurations of eco-networks are consequential for youth's behavioral health. In this study we focus on a key structural feature of eco-networks--the neighborhood-level extent to which household dyads share two or more activity locations, or eco-network reinforcement--and its association with two dimensions of health-risk behavior, substance use and delinquency/sexual activity. Using geographic data on non-home routine activity locations among respondents from the Los Angeles Family and Neighborhood Survey (L.A.FANS), we constructed neighborhood-specific eco-networks by connecting sampled households to "activity clusters," which are sets of spatially-proximate activity locations. We then measured eco-network reinforcement and examined its association with dimensions of adolescent health risk behavior employing a sample of 830 youth ages 12-17 nested in 65 census tracts. We also examined whether neighborhood-level social processes (collective efficacy and intergenerational closure) mediate the association between eco-network reinforcement and the outcomes considered. Results indicated eco-network reinforcement exhibits robust negative associations with both substance use and delinquency/sexual activity scales. Eco-network reinforcement effects were not explained by potential mediating variables. In addition to introducing a novel theoretical and empirical approach to neighborhood effects on youth, our findings highlight the importance of intersecting conventional routines for

  4. Association of extinction risk of saproxylic beetles with ecological degradation of forests in Europe.

    PubMed

    Seibold, Sebastian; Brandl, Roland; Buse, Jörn; Hothorn, Torsten; Schmidl, Jürgen; Thorn, Simon; Müller, Jörg

    2015-04-01

    To reduce future loss of biodiversity and to allocate conservation funds effectively, the major drivers behind large-scale extinction processes must be identified. A promising approach is to link the red-list status of species and specific traits that connect species of functionally important taxa or guilds to resources they rely on. Such traits can be used to detect the influence of anthropogenic ecosystem changes and conservation efforts on species, which allows for practical recommendations for conservation. We modeled the German Red List categories as an ordinal index of extinction risk of 1025 saproxylic beetles with a proportional-odds linear mixed-effects model for ordered categorical responses. In this model, we estimated fixed effects for intrinsic traits characterizing species biology, required resources, and distribution with phylogenetically correlated random intercepts. The model also allowed predictions of extinction risk for species with no red-list category. Our model revealed a higher extinction risk for lowland and large species as well as for species that rely on wood of large diameter, broad-leaved trees, or open canopy. These results mirror well the ecological degradation of European forests over the last centuries caused by modern forestry, that is the conversion of natural broad-leaved forests to dense conifer-dominated forests and the loss of old growth and dead wood. Therefore, conservation activities aimed at saproxylic beetles in all types of forests in Central and Western Europe should focus on lowlands, and habitat management of forest stands should aim at increasing the amount of dead wood of large diameter, dead wood of broad-leaved trees, and dead wood in sunny areas. PMID:25429849

  5. Association of extinction risk of saproxylic beetles with ecological degradation of forests in Europe.

    PubMed

    Seibold, Sebastian; Brandl, Roland; Buse, Jörn; Hothorn, Torsten; Schmidl, Jürgen; Thorn, Simon; Müller, Jörg

    2015-04-01

    To reduce future loss of biodiversity and to allocate conservation funds effectively, the major drivers behind large-scale extinction processes must be identified. A promising approach is to link the red-list status of species and specific traits that connect species of functionally important taxa or guilds to resources they rely on. Such traits can be used to detect the influence of anthropogenic ecosystem changes and conservation efforts on species, which allows for practical recommendations for conservation. We modeled the German Red List categories as an ordinal index of extinction risk of 1025 saproxylic beetles with a proportional-odds linear mixed-effects model for ordered categorical responses. In this model, we estimated fixed effects for intrinsic traits characterizing species biology, required resources, and distribution with phylogenetically correlated random intercepts. The model also allowed predictions of extinction risk for species with no red-list category. Our model revealed a higher extinction risk for lowland and large species as well as for species that rely on wood of large diameter, broad-leaved trees, or open canopy. These results mirror well the ecological degradation of European forests over the last centuries caused by modern forestry, that is the conversion of natural broad-leaved forests to dense conifer-dominated forests and the loss of old growth and dead wood. Therefore, conservation activities aimed at saproxylic beetles in all types of forests in Central and Western Europe should focus on lowlands, and habitat management of forest stands should aim at increasing the amount of dead wood of large diameter, dead wood of broad-leaved trees, and dead wood in sunny areas.

  6. Biological quality of soils containing hydrocarbons and efficacy of ecological risk reduction by bioremediation alternatives

    SciTech Connect

    Stewart, A.J.; Napolitano, G.E.; Sample, B.E.

    1996-06-01

    This project provides technical support to the Petroleum Environmental Research Forum (PERF; a consortium of petroleum companies) on environmentally acceptable endpoints that may be used to help assess the ecological risk of petroleum hydrocarbon residuals in soils. The project, was designed in consultation with PERF representatives and focuses on the relationship between {open_quotes}chemically available{close_quotes} and {open_quotes}biologically available{close_quotes} measurements of petroleum hydrocarbon compounds in soils, a discrepancy of considerable interest to the petroleum industry. Presently, clean-up standards for soils contaminated with total petroleum hydrocarbon (TPH) constituents are based on concentrations of TPH, as measured in solvent extracts of soil samples. Interestingly, TPH includes a complex mixture of compounds which differ from one another in molecular weight and toxicity. Based on various studies with insecticides, herbicides and metals, some compounds apparently can slowly permeate into soil particles. If this situation occurs, the particle-embedded compounds may be extractable by use of organic solvents, and yet be unavailable biologically. This hypothesis serves as the central focus for our study. If this hypothesis is correct, then soil clean-up standards based on solvent-extractable TPH data may be more stringent than necessary to achieve a desired level of environmental risk. The economic significance of this possibility is considerable, because clean-up costs to achieve a low-risk status would, in most cases, be lower than those needed to achieve a standard based on present limits, which are based on measurements of {open_quotes}extractable{close_quotes} TPH.

  7. Ecological risk assessment of bisphenol A in surface waters of China based on both traditional and reproductive endpoints.

    PubMed

    Guo, Lei; Li, Zhengyan; Gao, Pei; Hu, Hong; Gibson, Mark

    2015-11-01

    Bisphenol A (BPA) occurs widely in natural waters with both traditional and reproductive toxicity to various aquatic species. The water quality criteria (WQC), however, have not been established in China, which hinders the ecological risk assessment for the pollutant. This study therefore aims to derive the water quality criteria for BPA based on both acute and chronic toxicity endpoints and to assess the ecological risk in surface waters of China. A total of 15 acute toxicity values tested with aquatic species resident in China were found in published literature, which were simulated with the species sensitivity distribution (SSD) model for the derivation of criterion maximum concentration (CMC). 18 chronic toxicity values with traditional endpoints were simulated for the derivation of traditional criterion continuous concentration (CCC) and 12 chronic toxicity values with reproductive endpoints were for reproductive CCC. Based on the derived WQC, the ecological risk of BPA in surface waters of China was assessed with risk quotient (RQ) method. The results showed that the CMC, traditional CCC and reproductive CCC were 1518μgL(-1), 2.19μgL(-1) and 0.86μgL(-1), respectively. The acute risk of BPA was negligible with RQ values much lower than 0.1. The chronic risk was however much higher with RQ values of between 0.01-3.76 and 0.03-9.57 based on traditional and reproductive CCC, respectively. The chronic RQ values on reproductive endpoints were about threefold as high as those on traditional endpoints, indicating that ecological risk assessment based on traditional effects may not guarantee the safety of aquatic biota. PMID:26081577

  8. Integration of bioavailability, ecology and ecotoxicology by three lines of evidence into ecological risk indexes for contaminated soil assessment.

    PubMed

    Semenzin, Elena; Critto, Andrea; Rutgers, Michiel; Marcomini, Antonio

    2008-01-15

    A Weight of Evidence approach was applied to define three integrated effect indexes estimating the impairment on terrestrial ecosystems caused by the stressor(s) of concern. According to a Triad approach, the integrated effect indexes combined the information provided by the measurement endpoints of each line of evidence (chemistry/bioavailability, ecology and ecotoxicology) and allowed to analyse the impairment degree highlighted by each measurement endpoint as difference from the reference condition. Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis (MCDA) was used for the aggregation of the complementary Triad information, including expert judgement and a weighted procedure based on the endpoint sensitivity and the sensitivity of the test for ecosystem effects. The developed methodology was implemented in the DSS-ERAMANIA, Module 2, and is presented in this paper as "Integrated Effect Indexes" (IEI) sub-module. The latter has been preliminary applied to the Acna di Cengio (Italy) contaminated site; the results of this application are presented and discussed. PMID:17904618

  9. Effect of dissolved humic acid on the Pb bioavailability in soil solution and its consequence on ecological risk.

    PubMed

    An, Jinsung; Jho, Eun Hea; Nam, Kyoungphile

    2015-04-01

    Current risk characterization in ecological risk assessment does not consider bioavailability of heavy metals, which highly depends on physicochemical properties of environmental media. This study was set to investigate the effect of humic acid (HA), used as a surrogate of organic matter, on Pb toxicity and the subsequent effect on risk characterization in ecological risk assessment. Pb toxicity was assessed using Microtox(®) in the presence and absence of two different forms of HA, particulate HA (pHA) and dissolved HA (dHA). With increasing contact time, the EC10 values increased (i.e., the toxic effects decreased) and the dissolved Pb concentrations of the filtrates decreased. The high correlation (R = 0.88, p < 0.001) between toxic effects determined using both the mixture and its filtrate as exposure media leads us to conclude that the Pb toxicity highly depends on the soluble fraction. Also, reduced Pb toxicity with increasing dHA concentrations, probably due to formation of Pb-dHA complexes, indicated that Pb toxicity largely comes from free Pb ions. Overall, this study shows the effect of HA on metal toxicity alleviation, and emphasizes the need for incorporating the bioavailable heavy metal concentrations in environmental media as a point of exposure in ecological risk assessment.

  10. Species sensitivity weighted distribution for ecological risk assessment of engineered nanomaterials: the n-TiO2 case study.

    PubMed

    Semenzin, Elena; Lanzellotto, Elisa; Hristozov, Danail; Critto, Andrea; Zabeo, Alex; Giubilato, Elisa; Marcomini, Antonio

    2015-11-01

    Societal concerns about the environmental risks of engineered nanomaterials (ENMs) have recently increased, but nano-ecological risk assessments are constrained by significant gaps in basic information on long-term effects and exposures, for example. An approach to the ecological risk assessment of ENMs is proposed that can operate in the context of high uncertainty. This approach further develops species sensitivity weighted distribution (SSWD) by including 3 weighting criteria (species relevance, trophic level abundance, and nanotoxicity data quality) to address nano-specific needs (n-SSWD). The application of n-SSWD is illustrated for nanoscale titanium dioxide (n-TiO2 ), which is available in different crystal forms; it was selected because of its widespread use in consumer products (e.g., cosmetics) and the ample availability of data from ecotoxicological studies in the literature (including endpoints for algae, invertebrates, bacteria, and vertebrates in freshwater, saltwater, and terrestrial compartments). The n-SSWD application resulted in estimation of environmental quality criteria (hazard concentration affecting 5% and 50% of the species) and ecological risk (potentially affected fraction of species), which were then compared with similar results obtained by applying the traditional species sensitivity distribution (SSD) approach to the same dataset. The n-SSWDs were also built for specific trophic levels (e.g., primary producers) and taxonomic groups (e.g., algae), which helped to identify the most sensitive organisms. These results showd that n-SSWD is a valuable risk tool, although further testing is suggested. PMID:26058704

  11. Distribution and ecological risk assessment of heavy metals in surface sediments along southeast coast of the Caspian Sea.

    PubMed

    Bastami, Kazem Darvish; Bagheri, Hossein; Kheirabadi, Vahid; Zaferani, Ghasem Ghorbanzadeh; Teymori, Mohammad Bagher; Hamzehpoor, Ali; Soltani, Farzaneh; Haghparast, Sarah; Harami, Sayyed Reza Moussavi; Ghorghani, Nasrin Farzaneh; Ganji, Sahar

    2014-04-15

    The present study aimed to evaluate heavy metal concentrations of Arsenic (As), Copper (Cu), Nickel (Ni), Lead (Pb) and Zinc (Zn), their spatial distribution, enrichment factor index (EF), the pollution load index (PLI) and potential ecological risk (PER) in two different seasons of the year (winter and summer) in surface sediments along southeast coast of the Caspian Sea. The results indicated that there were significant differences between concentrations of As, Ni and Pb in two different seasons. Considering PER, sediments from southeast Caspian coast had low ecological risk. According to PLI, sediment from the southeast coast had no pollution. Risk assessment showed that As threshold concentrations to occasionally be exceeded in the study area.

  12. Antibiotics in riverine runoff of the Pearl River Delta and Pearl River Estuary, China: concentrations, mass loading and ecological risks.

    PubMed

    Xu, Weihai; Yan, Wen; Li, Xiangdong; Zou, Yongde; Chen, Xiaoxiang; Huang, Weixia; Miao, Li; Zhang, Ruijie; Zhang, Gan; Zou, Shichun

    2013-11-01

    Ten antibiotics belonging to three groups (macrolides, fluoroquinolones and sulfonamides) were investigated in riverine runoff of the Pearl River Delta (PRD) and Pearl River Estuary (PRE), South China for assessing the importance of riverine runoff in the transportation of contaminants from terrestrial sources to the open ocean. All antibiotics were detected in the eight outlets with concentrations ranging from 0.7 to 127 ng L(-1). The annual mass loadings of antibiotics from the PRD to the PRE and coast were 193 tons with 102 tons from the fluoroquinolone group. It showed that antibiotics decreased from the riverine outlets to the PRE and open ocean. Risk assessment showed that most of these antibiotics showed various ecological risks to the relevant aquatic organisms, in which ofloxacin (OFL), erythromycin (ETM) and ciprofloxacin (CIP) posed high ecological risks to the studied aquatic environments.

  13. Effects of urbanization expansion on landscape pattern and region ecological risk in Chinese coastal city: a case study of Yantai city.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Di; Shi, Ping; Wu, Xiaoqing; Ma, Jinwei; Yu, Junbao

    2014-01-01

    Applied with remote sensing, GIS, and mathematical statistics, the spatial-temporal evolution characteristics of urbanization expansion of Yantai city from 1974 to 2009 was studied. Based on landscape pattern metrics and ecological risk index, the landscape ecological risk from the landscape pattern dynamics was evaluated. The results showed that the area of urban land increased by 189.77 km(2) with average expansion area of 5.42 km(2) y(-1) from 1974 to 2009. The urbanization intensity index during 2004-2009 was 3.92 times of that during 1974-1990. The land use types of urban land and farmland changed greatly. The changes of landscape pattern metrics for land use patterns indicated that the intensity of human activities had strengthened gradually in study period. The landscape ecological risk pattern of Yantai city shaped half-round rings along the coastline. The ecological risk index decreased with increase of the distance to the coastline. The ratio of high ecological risk to subhigh ecological risk zones in 2009 was 2.23 times of that in 1990. The significant linear relationship of urbanization intensity index and regional ecological risk indicated that the anthropological economic activities were decisive factors for sustainable development of costal ecological environment.

  14. Approach and strategy for performing ecological risk assessments for the U.S. Department of Energy`s Oak Ridge Reservation: 1994 revision

    SciTech Connect

    Suter, G.W. II; Sample, B.E.; Jones, D.S.; Ashwood, T.L.

    1994-08-01

    This report provides guidance for planning and performing ecological risk assessments on the Oak Ridge Reservation (ORR). The tiered approach to ecological risk assessment has been implemented, generic conceptual models have been developed, and a general approach for developing ecological assessment endpoints and measurement endpoints has been agreed upon. The document also includes changes in terminology to agree with the terminology in the US Environmental Protection Agency`s (EPA`s) framework for ecological risk assessment. Although ecological risks are equal in regulatory importance to human health risks, formal procedures for ecological risk assessment are poorly developed. This report will provide specific guidance and promote the use of consistent approaches for ecological risk assessments at individual sites on the ORR. The strategy discussed in this report is consistent with the overall strategy for site management and Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA) compliance and with relevant EPA guidance. The general approach and strategy presented herein was developed for the ORR, but it should be applicable to other complex CERCLA sites that possess significant ecological resources.

  15. Effects of Urbanization Expansion on Landscape Pattern and Region Ecological Risk in Chinese Coastal City: A Case Study of Yantai City

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Di; Shi, Ping; Wu, Xiaoqing; Ma, Jinwei

    2014-01-01

    Applied with remote sensing, GIS, and mathematical statistics, the spatial-temporal evolution characteristics of urbanization expansion of Yantai city from 1974 to 2009 was studied. Based on landscape pattern metrics and ecological risk index, the landscape ecological risk from the landscape pattern dynamics was evaluated. The results showed that the area of urban land increased by 189.77 km2 with average expansion area of 5.42 km2 y−1 from 1974 to 2009. The urbanization intensity index during 2004–2009 was 3.92 times of that during 1974–1990. The land use types of urban land and farmland changed greatly. The changes of landscape pattern metrics for land use patterns indicated that the intensity of human activities had strengthened gradually in study period. The landscape ecological risk pattern of Yantai city shaped half-round rings along the coastline. The ecological risk index decreased with increase of the distance to the coastline. The ratio of high ecological risk to subhigh ecological risk zones in 2009 was 2.23 times of that in 1990. The significant linear relationship of urbanization intensity index and regional ecological risk indicated that the anthropological economic activities were decisive factors for sustainable development of costal ecological environment. PMID:24983003

  16. Esturaine ecological risk assessment for Portsmouth Naval Shipyard, Kittery, Maine. Phase. 1. Problem formulation. Final report, September 1991-May 1993

    SciTech Connect

    Johnston, R.K.; Munns, W.R.; Mills, L.J.; Short, F.T.; Walker, H.A.

    1994-12-01

    An ecological risk assessment framework was applied to assess the ecological risk of the operations of the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard (PNSY) in Kittery, ME, on the Piscataqua River and Great Bay Estuary located in NH and ME. Measures of contamination and biological impact were made on samples collected in depositional areas (eelgrass beds) at sites in the immediate vicinity of the Shipyard and at reference sites located in the Estuary and the York River, ME. Data were collected on sediment texture and sediment toxicity to benthic amphipeds. Water quality parameters, water column toxicity to sea urchin gametes, microbial contaminants in sediment and water samples, current patterns, deployed mussel physiology, chemical contamination in sediment, tissue (mussels, oysters, eelgaass, fucoid algae, lobster, and flounder) and water samples, and organic chemical markers. Eelgrass, fucoid algae, lobster, flounder, mussel and benthic habitats were assessed in the lower estuary. Although important ecological resources in the estuary appear to be healthy, indications of ecological stress were identified. Results from chemical analyses showed that lead, mercury, nickel, zinc, chromium, and, to a lesser degree, polychlorinated biphenyls are contaminants of concern in the estuary. Results were used to determine appropriate follow-on investigations to characterize risk.

  17. Ecological risk analysis as a key factor in environmental safety system development in the Arctic region of the Russian Federation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bolsunovskaya, Y. A.; Bolsunovskaya, L. M.

    2015-02-01

    Due to specific natural and climatic conditions combined with human intervention, the Arctic is regarded as a highly sensitive region to any environmental pressures. Arctic projects require continuous environmental monitoring. This poses for the government of the Russian Federation (RF) a tremendous task concerning the formation and implementation of sustainable nature management policy within the international framework. The current article examines the basic constraints to the effective ecological safety system implementation in the Arctic region of the RF. The ecological risks and their effects which influence the sustainable development of the region were analyzed. The model of complex environmental safety system was proposed.

  18. Assessments of levels, potential ecological risk, and human health risk of heavy metals in the soils from a typical county in Shanxi Province, China.

    PubMed

    Pan, Libo; Ma, Jin; Hu, Yu; Su, Benying; Fang, Guangling; Wang, Yue; Wang, Zhanshan; Wang, Lei; Xiang, Bao

    2016-10-01

    A total of 128 surface soil samples were collected, and eight heavy metals, including As, Cd, Cr, Cu, Pb, Ni, Zn, and Hg, were analyzed for their concentrations, potential ecological risks, and human health risks. The mean concentrations of these eight metals were lower than the soil environmental quality standards in China, while they were slightly higher than the background values in Shanxi Province. The enrichment factor, coefficient variation, and potential ecological risk index were used to assess the pollution and eco-risk level of heavy metals, among which, Cd and Hg showed higher pollution levels and potential risks than the others in the studied area. Moreover, multivariate geostatistical analysis suggested that Hg originated mainly from point sources such as industrial emissions, while agricultural activity is the predominant factor for Cd. The human health risk assessment indicated that non-carcinogenic values were below the threshold values. The total carcinogenic risks due to As, Cr, and Ni were within the acceptable range for adults, while for children, they were higher than the threshold value (1.0E-04), indicating that children are facing higher threat to heavy metals in soils. These results provide basic information on heavy metal pollution control and human health risk assessment management in the study regions. PMID:27370534

  19. [Heavy metal pollution in street dusts from different functional zones of Luoyang City and its potential ecological risk].

    PubMed

    Liu, De-Hong; Wang, Fa-Yuan; Zhou, Wen-Li; Yang, Yu-Jian

    2012-01-01

    The concentrations of heavy metals (Cu, Zn, Pb, Cr, Cd) in street dusts were investigated in six different functional zones of Luoyang City, i.e., urban-rural continuum, urban artery, industrial district, urban green space, residential district, and business district. The pollution levels and potential ecological risk of heavy metals were assessed by the methods of potential ecological risk index suggested by Håkanson. The results showed that heavy metal concentrations in street dusts from different functional zones of Luoyang City were all higher than soil background values in Henan, with average concentrations of Zn (1019.75 mg x kg(-1)) > Cr (401.63 mg x kg(-1)) > Cu (240.94 mg x kg(-1)) > Pb (176.04 mg x kg(-1)) > Cd (2.33 mg x kg(-1)). Cd was the most seriously polluted metal in all functional zones, and the average pollution index (Cf(i)) reached 35.84, following by Zn (16.32) > Cu (12.05) > Pb (7.90) > Cr (6.36). Heavy metal concentrations and pollution levels varied greatly in different functional zones, and industrial zone had the highest total contents and the heaviest pollution. The integrated potential ecological risk index (RI) in different functional zones all reached very strong levels, with an order of industrial district (1709.51) > urban green space (1581.50) > business district (1 297.45) > residential district (1 111.25) > urban artery (889.97) > urban-rural continuum (641.39). Among the surveyed heavy metals, Cd accounted for the major potential ecological risk, and the average potential ecological risk index (Er(i)) reached 1075.16 (extremely strong risk level) in all six functional zones. The average Er(i) of Cu and Pb reached 60.23 and 40.77 respectively, belonging to moderate risk level, while Zn (16.32) and Cr (12.71) only reached slight risk level. A reduction in industrial and traffic pollution might be the key measure to decrease the heavy metal pollution and potential risk in street dusts.

  20. Radionuclides in the Arctic seas from the former Soviet Union: Potential health and ecological risks

    SciTech Connect

    Layton, D W; Edson, R; Varela, M; Napier, B

    1999-11-15

    The primary goal of the assessment reported here is to evaluate the health and environmental threat to coastal Alaska posed by radioactive-waste dumping in the Arctic and Northwest Pacific Oceans by the FSU. In particular, the FSU discarded 16 nuclear reactors from submarines and an icebreaker in the Kara Sea near the island of Novaya Zemlya, of which 6 contained spent nuclear fuel (SNF); disposed of liquid and solid wastes in the Sea of Japan; lost a {sup 90}Sr-powered radioisotope thermoelectric generator at sea in the Sea of Okhotsk; and disposed of liquid wastes at several sites in the Pacific Ocean, east of the Kamchatka Peninsula. In addition to these known sources in the oceans, the RAIG evaluated FSU waste-disposal practices at inland weapons-development sites that have contaminated major rivers flowing into the Arctic Ocean. The RAIG evaluated these sources for the potential for release to the environment, transport, and impact to Alaskan ecosystems and peoples through a variety of scenarios, including a worst-case total instantaneous and simultaneous release of the sources under investigation. The risk-assessment process described in this report is applicable to and can be used by other circumpolar countries, with the addition of information about specific ecosystems and human life-styles. They can use the ANWAP risk-assessment framework and approach used by ONR to establish potential doses for Alaska, but add their own specific data sets about human and ecological factors. The ANWAP risk assessment addresses the following Russian wastes, media, and receptors: dumped nuclear submarines and icebreaker in Kara Sea--marine pathways; solid reactor parts in Sea of Japan and Pacific Ocean--marine pathways; thermoelectric generator in Sea of Okhotsk--marine pathways; current known aqueous wastes in Mayak reservoirs and Asanov Marshes--riverine to marine pathways; and Alaska as receptor. For these waste and source terms addressed, other pathways, such as

  1. Areca Nut Chewing and Risk of Atrial Fibrillation in Taiwanese Men: A Nationwide Ecological Study

    PubMed Central

    Tsai, Wei-Chung; Chen, Chung-Yu; Kuo, Hsuan-Fu; Wu, Ming-Tsang; Tang, Wei-Hua; Chu, Chih-Sheng; Lin, Tsung-Hsien; Su, Ho-Ming; Hsu, Po-Chao; Jhuo, Shih-Jie; Lin, Ming-Yen; Lee, Kun-Tai; Sheu, Sheng-Hsiung; Lai, Wen-Ter

    2013-01-01

    Background: Areca nut chewing is associated with the risk of obesity, metabolic syndrome, hypertension, and cardiovascular mortality. Although a few case reports or case series have suggested the link between areca nut chewing and cardiac arrhythmias, information about the relationship between areca nut chewing and atrial fibrillation (AF) is lacking. Thus, a nationwide ecological study was conducted to investigate this. Methods: Two national datasets, the nationwide population-based 2005 Taiwan National Health Insurance Research dataset (NHIRD) and the 2005 National Health Interview Survey (NHIS), were used for analyses. The clinical characteristics, inhabited area and medical histories for 375,360 eligible males were retrieved from the 2005 NHIRD. Health related behaviors including areca nut chewing, cigarette smoking, infrequent vegetable eating, and exercise habit were collected from the 2005 NHIS. The prevalence of AF and the areca nut chewing rate were evaluated by multivariate analysis. Results: Of the 375,360 males (mean age, 44 years old), 1,326 (0.35%) were diagnosed with AF. The higher areca nut chewing rate, the higher prevalence rate of AF in Taiwan (Spearman correlation coefficient r = 0.558, p = 0.007). After adjusting for other covariates, the current areca nut chewing rate was found to be independently associated with the prevalence of AF. The adjusted odd ratio for areca nut chewing was 1.02 (95% CI = 1.00-1.04) in risk of AF prevalence. Conclusions: Areca nut chewing is independently associated with the prevalence of AF in Taiwanese men. However, further exploration of the underlying mechanisms is necessary. PMID:23794944

  2. Adolescents' Educational Outcomes in a Social Ecology of Parenting, Family, and Community Risks in Northern Ireland

    PubMed Central

    Goeke-Morey, Marcie C.; Taylor, Laura K.; Cairns, Ed; Merrilees, Christine E.; Shirlow, Peter; Cummings, E. Mark

    2015-01-01

    This study examines the influence of social ecological risks within the domains of parenting, family environment, and community in the prediction of educational outcomes for 770 adolescents (49% boys, 51% girls, M = 13.6 years, SD = 2.0) living in a setting of protracted political conflict, specifically working class areas of Belfast, Northern Ireland. Controlling for religious community, age, and gender, youths' lower academic achievement was associated with family environments characterized by high conflict and low cohesion. School ehaviour problems were related to greater exposure to community violence, or sectarian and nonsectarian antisocial behaviour. Youths' expectations about educational attainment were undermined by conflict in the family environment and antisocial behaviour in the community, as well as parenting low in warmth and behavioural control. Findings underscore the importance of considering family and community contributions to youths' educational outcomes. Suggestions regarding targeted interventions toward promoting resilience are discussed, such as assessing both child and family functioning, developing multidimensional interventions for parents, and building community partnerships, among others. PMID:26834298

  3. Ecotoxicological and analytical assessment of hydrocarbon-contaminated soils and application to ecological risk assessment

    SciTech Connect

    Saterbak, A.; Toy, R.J.; Wong, D.C.L.; McMain, B.J.; Williams, M.P.; Dorn, P.B.; Brzuzy, L.P.; Chai, E.Y.; Salanitro, J.P.

    1999-07-01

    Ecotoxicological assessments of contaminated soil aim to understand the effect of introduced chemicals on the soil flora and fauna. Ecotoxicity test methods were developed and conducted on hydrocarbon-contaminated soils and on adjacent uncontaminated control soils from eight field locations. Tests included 7-d, 14-d, and chronic survival tests and reproduction assays for the earthworm (Eisenia fetida) and seed germination, root length, and plant growth assays for corn, lettuce, mustard, and wheat. Species-specific responses were observed with no-observed effect concentrations (NOECs) ranging from <1 to 100% contaminated soil. The 14-d earthworm survival NOEC was equal to or greater than the reproduction NOEC values for numbers of cocoons and juveniles, which were similar to one another. Cocoon and juvenile production varied among the control soils. Germination and root length NOECs for mustard and lettuce were less than NOECs for corn and wheat. Root length NOECs were similar to or less than seed germination NOECs. Statistically significant correlations for earthworm survival and seed germination as a function of hydrocarbon measurements were found. The 14-d earthworm survival and the seed germination tests are recommended for use in the context of a risk-based framework for the ecological assessment of contaminated sites.

  4. Environmental (Saprozoic) Pathogens of Engineered Water Systems: Understanding Their Ecology for Risk Assessment and Management.

    PubMed

    Ashbolt, Nicholas J

    2015-01-01

    Major waterborne (enteric) pathogens are relatively well understood and treatment controls are effective when well managed. However, water-based, saprozoic pathogens that grow within engineered water systems (primarily within biofilms/sediments) cannot be controlled by water treatment alone prior to entry into water distribution and other engineered water systems. Growth within biofilms or as in the case of Legionella pneumophila, primarily within free-living protozoa feeding on biofilms, results from competitive advantage. Meaning, to understand how to manage water-based pathogen diseases (a sub-set of saprozoses) we need to understand the microbial ecology of biofilms; with key factors including biofilm bacterial diversity that influence amoebae hosts and members antagonistic to water-based pathogens, along with impacts from biofilm substratum, water temperature, flow conditions and disinfectant residual-all control variables. Major saprozoic pathogens covering viruses, bacteria, fungi and free-living protozoa are listed, yet today most of the recognized health burden from drinking waters is driven by legionellae, non-tuberculous mycobacteria (NTM) and, to a lesser extent, Pseudomonas aeruginosa. In developing best management practices for engineered water systems based on hazard analysis critical control point (HACCP) or water safety plan (WSP) approaches, multi-factor control strategies, based on quantitative microbial risk assessments need to be developed, to reduce disease from largely opportunistic, water-based pathogens. PMID:26102291

  5. Temporal and spatial bioassessment of ecological risk of Amazonian Itchyofauna associated to Hg exposure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Castilhos, Z. C.; Almonsy, N.; Souto, P. S.; Pereira da Silva, L. C. C.; Bidone, E. D.

    2003-05-01

    In Amazon artisan gold mining, mercury (Hg) is released to environment during its use to amalgamate the fine particles of gold. Once mercury entries in aquatic ecosystems, it might be methylated to methylmercury (MeHg). The objectives of this work were: (i) to establish and compare the dose-response relationship for Hg accumulation by Tucunaré for a contaminated and a background area; (ii) to test the DRAC methodology to proceed field sampling of fish; (iii) to conduct a temporal analysis of magnitude of mercury contamination in fish during the last decade by using DRAC methodology and (v) to investigate the relationship between hematological parameters (erythrocytes, hematocrit, leukocytes and mean corpuscular volume) and Hg exposure in fish.. Close to 100 Tucunarés were caught in the Tapajós River region. The results showed significant differences in hematological parameters and Hg concentration considering contaminated and background areas and the temporal assessment suggest increase the Hg bio-availability during last decade in Tapajos River Region. One could suggest that those hematological parameters might be used as physiological biomarkers of Hg exposure in ecological risk assessment process and that Hg used by or remaining from gold mining “garimpos” might be continuous bio-available to Amazonian biota.

  6. Terrestrial ecological risk evaluation for triclosan in land-applied biosolids.

    PubMed

    Fuchsman, Phyllis; Lyndall, Jennifer; Bock, Michael; Lauren, Darrel; Barber, Timothy; Leigh, Katrina; Perruchon, Elyse; Capdevielle, Marie

    2010-07-01

    Triclosan is an antimicrobial compound found in many consumer products including soaps and personal care products. Most triclosan is disposed of down household drains, whereupon it is conveyed to wastewater treatment plants. Although a high percentage of triclosan biodegrades during wastewater treatment, most of the remainder is adsorbed to sludge, which may ultimately be applied to land as biosolids. We evaluated terrestrial ecological risks related to triclosan in land-applied biosolids for soil microbes, plants, soil invertebrates, mammals, and birds. Exposures are estimated using a probabilistic fugacity-based model. Triclosan concentrations in biosolids and reported biosolids application rates are compiled to support estimation of triclosan concentrations in soil. Concentrations in biota tissue are estimated using an equilibrium partitioning model for plants and worms and a steady-state model for small mammals; the resulting tissue concentrations are used to model mammalian and avian dietary exposures. Toxicity benchmarks are identified from a review of published and proprietary studies. The results indicate that adverse effects related to soil fertility (i.e., disruption of nitrogen cycling) would be expected only under "worst-case" exposures, under certain soil conditions and would likely be transient. The available data indicate that adverse effects on plants, invertebrates, birds, and mammals due to triclosan in land-applied biosolids are unlikely.

  7. Development and application of the SSD approach in scientific case studies for ecological risk assessment.

    PubMed

    Del Signore, Anastasia; Hendriks, A Jan; Lenders, H J Rob; Leuven, Rob S E W; Breure, A M

    2016-09-01

    Species sensitivity distributions (SSDs) are used in ecological risk assessment for extrapolation of the results of toxicity tests with single species to a toxicity threshold considered protective of ecosystem structure and functioning. The attention to and importance of the SSD approach has increased in scientific and regulatory communities since the 1990s. Discussion and criticism have been triggered on the concept of the approach as well as its technical aspects (e.g., distribution type, number of toxicity endpoints). Various questions remain unanswered, especially with regard to different endpoints, statistical methods, and protectiveness of threshold levels, for example. In the present literature review (covering the period 2002-2013), case studies are explored in which the SSD approach was applied, as well as how endpoint types, species choice, and data availability affect SSDs. How statistical methods may be used to construct reliable SSDs and whether the lower 5th percentile hazard concentrations (HC5s) from a generic SSD can be protective for a specific local community are also investigated. It is shown that estimated protective concentrations were determined by taxonomic groups rather than the statistical method used to construct the distribution. Based on comparisons between semifield and laboratory-based SSDs, the output from a laboratory SSD was protective of semifield communities in the majority of studies. Environ Toxicol Chem 2016;35:2149-2161. © 2016 SETAC. PMID:27144499

  8. Quantitative structure-activity relationships and ecological risk assessment: an overview of predictive aquatic toxicology research.

    PubMed

    Bradbury, S P

    1995-09-01

    In the field of aquatic toxicology, quantitative structure-activity relationships (QSARs) have developed as scientifically credible tools for predicting the toxicity of chemicals when little or no empirical data are available. A fundamental understanding of toxicological principles has been considered an important component to the acceptance and application of QSAR approaches as biologically relevant in ecological risk assessments. As a consequence, there has been an evolution of QSAR development and application from that of a chemical-class perspective to one that is more consistent with assumptions regarding modes of toxic action. In this review, techniques to assess modes of toxic action from chemical structure are discussed, with consideration that toxicodynamic knowledge bases must be clearly defined with regard to exposure regimes, biological models/endpoints and compounds that adequately span the diversity of chemicals anticipated for future applications. With such knowledge bases, classification systems, including rule-based expert systems, have been established for use in predictive aquatic toxicology applications. The establishment of QSAR techniques that are based on an understanding of toxic mechanisms is needed to provide a link to physiologically based toxicokinetic and toxicodynamic models, which can provide the means to extrapolate adverse effects across species and exposure regimes. PMID:7570660

  9. Predation risk is an ecological constraint for helper dispersal in a cooperatively breeding cichlid.

    PubMed Central

    Heg, Dik; Bachar, Zina; Brouwer, Lyanne; Taborsky, Michael

    2004-01-01

    Environmental conditions are thought to be responsible for the extent and benefits of cooperative breeding in many animal societies, but experimental tests are scarce. We manipulated predator pressure in the cooperatively breeding cichlid Neolamprologus pulcher in Lake Tanganyika, where predators have been suggested to influence helper and breeder survival, helper dispersal and group reproductive success. We varied the type and intensity of predation by releasing medium, large, or no predators inside large underwater cages enclosing two or three group territories. Helper and breeder survival, helper dispersal and group reproductive success decreased from the control, to the medium- and large-predator treatments. These effects were modified by helper body size and the number of adults protecting the group from predators, supporting the 'group augmentation hypothesis'. Predators forced helpers to stay closer to, and spend more time inside, protective shelters. The results demonstrate the importance of predators for group living in this species, and support the 'ecological constraints hypothesis' of cooperative breeding, in the sense that subordinates stay at home rather than leave and breed independently under the risk of predation. PMID:15556889

  10. Environmental (Saprozoic) Pathogens of Engineered Water Systems: Understanding Their Ecology for Risk Assessment and Management

    PubMed Central

    Ashbolt, Nicholas J.

    2015-01-01

    Major waterborne (enteric) pathogens are relatively well understood and treatment controls are effective when well managed. However, water-based, saprozoic pathogens that grow within engineered water systems (primarily within biofilms/sediments) cannot be controlled by water treatment alone prior to entry into water distribution and other engineered water systems. Growth within biofilms or as in the case of Legionella pneumophila, primarily within free-living protozoa feeding on biofilms, results from competitive advantage. Meaning, to understand how to manage water-based pathogen diseases (a sub-set of saprozoses) we need to understand the microbial ecology of biofilms; with key factors including biofilm bacterial diversity that influence amoebae hosts and members antagonistic to water-based pathogens, along with impacts from biofilm substratum, water temperature, flow conditions and disinfectant residual—all control variables. Major saprozoic pathogens covering viruses, bacteria, fungi and free-living protozoa are listed, yet today most of the recognized health burden from drinking waters is driven by legionellae, non-tuberculous mycobacteria (NTM) and, to a lesser extent, Pseudomonas aeruginosa. In developing best management practices for engineered water systems based on hazard analysis critical control point (HACCP) or water safety plan (WSP) approaches, multi-factor control strategies, based on quantitative microbial risk assessments need to be developed, to reduce disease from largely opportunistic, water-based pathogens. PMID:26102291

  11. Ecological risk assessment and natural resource damage assessment: synthesis of assessment procedures.

    PubMed

    Gala, William; Lipton, Joshua; Cernera, Phil; Ginn, Thomas; Haddad, Robert; Henning, Miranda; Jahn, Kathryn; Landis, Wayne; Mancini, Eugene; Nicoll, James; Peters, Vicky; Peterson, Jennifer

    2009-10-01

    The Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry (SETAC) convened an invited workshop (August 2008) to address coordination between ecological risk assessment (ERA) and natural resource damage assessment (NRDA). Although ERA and NRDA activities are performed under a number of statutory and regulatory authorities, the primary focus of the workshop was on ERA and NRDA as currently practiced in the United States under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA). This paper presents the findings and conclusions of the Synthesis Work Group, 1 of 3 work groups convened at the workshop. The Synthesis Work Group concluded that the different programmatic objectives and legal requirements of the 2 processes preclude development of a single, integrated ERA/NRDA process. However, although institutional and programmatic impediments exist to integration of the 2 processes, parties are capitalizing on opportunities to coordinate technical and scientific elements of the assessments at a number of locations. Although it is important to recognize and preserve the distinctions between ERA and NRDA, opportunities for data sharing exist, particularly for the characterization of environmental exposures and derivation of ecotoxicological information. Thus, effective coordination is not precluded by the underlying science. Rather, willing participants, accommodating schedules, and recognition of potential efficiencies associated with shared data collection can lead to enhanced coordination and consistency between ERA and NRDA. PMID:19545186

  12. Effective coordination and cooperation between ecological risk assessments and natural resource damage assessments: a new synthesis.

    PubMed

    Gouguet, Ronald G; Charters, David W; Champagne, Larry F; Davis, Mark; Desvouges, William; Durda, Judi L; Hyatt, William H; Jacobson, Rachel; Kapustka, Larry; Longoria, Rose M

    2009-10-01

    Although ecological risk assessments (ERAs) and natural resource damage assessments (NRDAs) are performed under different statutory and regulatory authorities, primarily the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA), as currently practiced, the activities typically overlap. ERAs performed as part of the response process (typically by the US Environmental Protection Agency [USEPA]) should be closely coordinated with the natural resource trustees' (trustees') NRDAs. Trustees should actively participate in the early stages of the remedial investigation (RI) and work with USEPA, including the potentially responsible parties (PRPs), when appropriate, to coordinate NRDA data needs with those of the RI. Close coordination can present opportunities to avoid inefficiencies, such as unnecessary resampling or duplicate data gathering, and provide the opportunity to fulfill both process requirements with a few well-designed investigations. Early identification of opportunities for practical combined assessment can save money and time as the restoration process proceeds and facilitate a cooperative resolution of the entire site's CERCLA liability. The Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry (SETAC) convened an invited workshop (August 2008) to address coordination between ERA and NRDA efforts. This paper presents the findings and conclusions of the Framework Work Group, which considered technical issues common to each process, while mindful of the current legal and policy landscape, and developed recommendations for future practice. PMID:19545190

  13. Food chain dynamics and potential ecological risks of mercury at the Carson River site

    SciTech Connect

    Peterson, S.C.

    1995-12-31

    The USEPA is conducting a remedial investigation of mercury contamination in the Carson River watershed, located near Carson City in central west Nevada. As a component of this investigation, water, sediment, and tissue samples were collected for mercury speciation and other analyses. Tissues analyses from the seven site-investigation areas and four background areas include: whole-body and fillet analyses of five species of fish, composite and individual analyses of three species of benthic macroinvertebrates, blood, feather and liver analyses of two bird species, composite analyses of zooplankton, and whole-body analyses of lizards. The data are used to develop site-specific estimates of mercury bioaccumulation in aquatic food chains of riverine/riparian, open-water, and mudflat habitats at the Carson River site. Because the behavior and food chain dynamics of mercury in semi-arid ecosystems of the southwestern US is poorly understood, these data can be compared and contrasted with bioaccumulation estimates derived from well-studied ecosystems such as northern temperate lakes. Potential ecological risks of mercury exposure through the food chain and through ingestion of and contact with contaminated media are evaluated for important wildlife receptors occurring at the Carson River site.

  14. Microbial ecology of terrestrial Antarctica: Are microbial systems at risk from human activities?

    SciTech Connect

    White, G.J.

    1996-08-01

    Many of the ecological systems found in continental Antarctica are comprised entirely of microbial species. Concerns have arisen that these microbial systems might be at risk either directly through the actions of humans or indirectly through increased competition from introduced species. Although protection of native biota is covered by the Protocol on Environmental Protection to the Antarctic Treaty, strict measures for preventing the introduction on non-native species or for protecting microbial habitats may be impractical. This report summarizes the research conducted to date on microbial ecosystems in continental Antarctica and discusses the need for protecting these ecosystems. The focus is on communities inhabiting soil and rock surfaces in non-coastal areas of continental Antarctica. Although current polices regarding waste management and other operations in Antarctic research stations serve to reduce the introduction on non- native microbial species, importation cannot be eliminated entirely. Increased awareness of microbial habitats by field personnel and protection of certain unique habitats from physical destruction by humans may be necessary. At present, small-scale impacts from human activities are occurring in certain areas both in terms of introduced species and destruction of habitat. On a large scale, however, it is questionable whether the introduction of non-native microbial species to terrestrial Antarctica merits concern.

  15. Trace organic pollutants in sediments from Huaihe River, China: Evaluation of sources and ecological risk

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Ji-Zhong; Chen, Tian-Hu; Zhu, Cheng-Zhu; Peng, Shu-Chuan

    2014-05-01

    In the present study, a combination of multiple molecular markers was used to improve the identification of pollution sources in sediment samples collected from Huaihe River, China. No significant spatial variation of aliphatic hydrocarbons (normal alkanes, n-alkanes) was observed, whereas, relatively high concentrations of 28 polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (Σ28PAH) and 20 linear alkylbenzenes (Σ20LAB) in urban sediments and low concentrations of Σ28PAH and Σ20LAB in farm areas were determined. Overall, sediment samples collected from urban areas contained high concentration of Σ20LAB with low concentration of Σ28PAH which mostly originated from pyrolysis, while rural sediments had opposite trends, reflecting the significant input of domestic sewage in urban areas. Residual n-alkanes were mostly from natural sources with relatively low proportion of petrogenic input. For PAHs, the concentrations of diagentic perylene and pyrolytic PAHs from farm areas to urban areas tend to decrease and increase, respectively. Likely origins of pyrolytic PAHs were considered combustion of coal and petroleum related. In the village areas, pyrolytic PAHs were mostly contributed from coal and diesel combustion. Poor domestic wastewater treatment in rural areas caused low ratio of I/E. On the other hand, the results of total toxic benzo[a]pyrene (BaP) equivalent reveal the ecological risk by PAHs was negligible in Huaihe River.

  16. Community ecology and disease risk: lizards, squirrels, and the Lyme disease spirochete in California, USA.

    PubMed

    Salkeld, Daniel J; Lane, Robert S

    2010-01-01

    Vector-borne zoonotic diseases are often maintained in complex transmission cycles involving multiple vertebrate hosts and their arthropod vectors. In the state of California, U.S.A., the spirochete Borrelia burgdorferi, which causes Lyme disease, is transmitted between vertebrate hosts by the western black-legged tick, Ixodes pacificus. Several mammalian species serve as reservoir hosts of the spirochete, but levels of tick infestation, reservoir competence, and Borrelia-infection prevalence vary widely among such hosts. Here, we model the host (lizards, Peromyscus mice, Californian meadow voles, dusky-footed wood rats, and western gray squirrels), vector, and pathogen community of oak woodlands in northwestern California to determine the relative importance of different tick hosts. Observed infection prevalence of B. burgdorferi in host-seeking I. pacificus nymphs was 1.8-5.3%, and our host-community model estimated an infection prevalence of 1.6-2.2%. The western gray squirrel (Sciurus griseus) was the only source of infected nymphs. Lizards, which are refractory to Borrelia infection, are important in feeding subadult ticks but reduce disease risk (nymphal infection prevalence). Species identity is therefore critical in understanding and determining the local disease ecology. PMID:20380218

  17. Preliminary assessment of the ecological risks to wide-ranging wildlife species on the Oak Ridge Reservation

    SciTech Connect

    Sample, B.E.; Baron, L.A.; Jackson, B.L.

    1995-08-01

    Historically, ecological risk assessment at CERCLA sites [such as the Oak Ridge Reservation (ORR)], has focused on species that may be definitively associated with a contaminated area or source operable unit. Consequently the species that are generally considered are those with home ranges small enough such that multiple individuals or a distinct population can be expected to reside within the boundaries of the contaminated site. This approach is adequate for sites with single, discrete areas of contamination that only provide habitat for species with limited requirements. This approach is not adequate however for large sites with multiple, spatially separated contaminated areas that provide habitat for wide-ranging wildlife species. Because wide-ranging wildlife species may travel between and use multiple contaminated sites they may be exposed to and be at risk from contaminants from multiple locations. Use of a particular contaminated site by wide-ranging species will be dependent upon the amount of suitable habitat available at that site. Therefore to adequately evaluate risks to wide-ranging species at the ORR-wide scale, the use of multiple contaminated sites must be weighted by the amount of suitable habitat on OUs. This reservation-wide ecological risk assessment is intended to identify which endpoints are significantly at risk; which contaminants are responsible for this risk; and which OUs significantly contribute to risk.

  18. The ecology of early childhood risk: a canonical correlation analysis of children's adjustment, family, and community context in a high-risk sample.

    PubMed

    Vilsaint, Corrie L; Aiyer, Sophie M; Wilson, Melvin N; Shaw, Daniel S; Dishion, Thomas J

    2013-08-01

    The ecology of the emergence of psychopathology in early childhood is often approached by the analysis of a limited number of contextual risk factors. In the present study, we provide a comprehensive analysis of ecological risk by conducting a canonical correlation analysis of 13 risk factors at child age 2 and seven narrow-band scales of internalizing and externalizing problem behaviors at child age 4, using a sample of 364 geographically and ethnically diverse, disadvantaged primary caregivers, alternative caregivers, and preschool-age children. Participants were recruited from Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children sites and were screened for family risk. Canonical correlation analysis revealed that (1) a first latent combination of family and individual risks of caregivers predicted combinations of child emotional and behavioral problems, and that (2) a second latent combination of contextual and structural risks predicted child somatic complaints. Specifically, (1) the combination of chaotic home, conflict with child, parental depression, and parenting hassles predicted a co-occurrence of internalizing and externalizing behaviors, and (2) the combination of father absence, perceived discrimination, neighborhood danger, and fewer children living in the home predicted child somatic complaints. The research findings are discussed in terms of the development of psychopathology, as well as the potential prevention needs of families in high-risk contexts.

  19. Distribution, fraction, and ecological risk assesment of heavy metals in sediment-plant system in mangrove forest, South China Sea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    LI, R.; Shen, X.; Li, Y. H.; Chai, M. W.; Qiu, G. Y.

    2015-12-01

    Overlying water, sediment, rhizosphere sediment and mangrove seedlings in Futian mangrove forest were analyzed for heavy metals. The results showed that mangrove plant acidified sediment and increased organic matter contents. Except for chromium (Cr), nickel (Ni) and copper (Cu) in Aegiceras corniculatum sediment, heavy metals in all sediments were higher than in overlying water, rhizosphere sediment and mangrove root. Heavy metals in Avicennia marina sediments were higher than other sediments. The lower heavy metal biological concentration factors (BCFs) and translocation factors (TFs) indicated that mangrove plant adopted exclusion strategy. The geo-accumulation index, potential ecological risk index and risk assessment code (RAC) demonstrated that heavy metals have posed a considerable ecological risk, especially for cadmium (Cd). Heavy metals (Cr, Ni, Cu and Cd) mainly existed in the reducible fractions. The RAC values of heavy metals indicated that heavy metals have posed a considerable ecological risk to the biota, especially for Cd. These findings provide actual heavy metal accumulations in sediment-plant ecosystems in mangrove forest, being important in designing the long-term management and conservation policies for managers of mangrove forest.

  20. An ecological risk assessment of lead shot exposure in non-waterfowl avian species: Upland game birds and raptors

    SciTech Connect

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

    1996-01-01

    There is increasing concern that birds in terrestrial ecosystems may be exposed to spent lead shot. Evidence exists that upland birds, particularly mourning doves (Zenaida macroura), ingest spent lead shot and that raptors ingest lead shot by consuming wounded game. Mortality, neurological dysfunction, immune suppression, and reproductive impairment are documented effects of exposure to lead in birds. An ecological risk assessment on the impact of lead shot exposure in upland birds was conducted and is presented in the context of the new United States Environmental Protection Agency`s Ecological Risk Assessment Paradigm. A considerable amount of spent lead shot is released into the environment each year from shooting and hunting. Doves collected from fields that are cultivated to attract mourning doves for hunting activities show evidence of ingestion of spent lead shot. Because lead can cause both acute and chronic toxicity if ingested by birds, and because there is evidence of widespread deposition of lead shot in terrestrial ecosystems, concern for impacts on upland game birds and raptors seems warranted. Although this ecological risk assessment does not clearly define a significant risk of lead shot exposure to upland game birds, this issue merits continued scrutiny to protect upland game bird and raptor resources.

  1. [GIS Spatial Distribution and Ecological Risk Assessment of Heavy Metals in Surface Sediments of Shallow Lakes in Jiangsu Province].

    PubMed

    Li, Ying-jie; Zhang, Lie-yu; Wu, Yi-wen; Li, Cao-le; Yang, Tian-xue; Tang, Jun

    2016-04-15

    To understand pollution of heavy metals in surface sediments of shallow lakes, surface sediments samples of 11 lakes in Jiangsu province were collected to determine the content of six heavy metals including As, Cr, Cu, Pb, Zn and Ni. GIS was used to analyze the spatial distribution of heavy metals, and geological accumulation index (Igeo), modified contamination index (mCd) pollution load index (PLI) and potential ecological risk index (RI) were used to evaluate heavy metal contamination in the sediments. The results showed that: in the lakes' surface sediments, the average content of As, Cu, Zn, Cr, Pb, Ni in multiples of soil background of Jiangsu province were 1.74-3.85, 0.65-2.66, 0.48-3.56, 0.43-1.52, 0.02-1.49 and 0.12-1.42. According to the evaluation results of Igeo and RI, As, which had high degree of enrichment and great potential ecological risk, was the main pollutant, followed by Cu, and pollution of the rest of heavy metals was relatively light. Combining the results of several evaluation methods, in surface sediments of Sanjiu Lake, Gaoyou Lake and Shaobo Lake, these heavy metals had the most serious pollution, the maximum pollution loading and moderate potential ecological risk; in surface sediments of Gehu Lake, Baima Lake and Hongze Lake, some regions were polluted by certain metals, the overall trend of pollution was aggravating, the pollution loading was large, and the potential ecological risk reached moderate; in the other 5 lakes, the risk of sediments polluted by heavy metals, as well as the pollution loading, was small, and the overall was not polluted.

  2. [GIS Spatial Distribution and Ecological Risk Assessment of Heavy Metals in Surface Sediments of Shallow Lakes in Jiangsu Province].

    PubMed

    Li, Ying-jie; Zhang, Lie-yu; Wu, Yi-wen; Li, Cao-le; Yang, Tian-xue; Tang, Jun

    2016-04-15

    To understand pollution of heavy metals in surface sediments of shallow lakes, surface sediments samples of 11 lakes in Jiangsu province were collected to determine the content of six heavy metals including As, Cr, Cu, Pb, Zn and Ni. GIS was used to analyze the spatial distribution of heavy metals, and geological accumulation index (Igeo), modified contamination index (mCd) pollution load index (PLI) and potential ecological risk index (RI) were used to evaluate heavy metal contamination in the sediments. The results showed that: in the lakes' surface sediments, the average content of As, Cu, Zn, Cr, Pb, Ni in multiples of soil background of Jiangsu province were 1.74-3.85, 0.65-2.66, 0.48-3.56, 0.43-1.52, 0.02-1.49 and 0.12-1.42. According to the evaluation results of Igeo and RI, As, which had high degree of enrichment and great potential ecological risk, was the main pollutant, followed by Cu, and pollution of the rest of heavy metals was relatively light. Combining the results of several evaluation methods, in surface sediments of Sanjiu Lake, Gaoyou Lake and Shaobo Lake, these heavy metals had the most serious pollution, the maximum pollution loading and moderate potential ecological risk; in surface sediments of Gehu Lake, Baima Lake and Hongze Lake, some regions were polluted by certain metals, the overall trend of pollution was aggravating, the pollution loading was large, and the potential ecological risk reached moderate; in the other 5 lakes, the risk of sediments polluted by heavy metals, as well as the pollution loading, was small, and the overall was not polluted. PMID:27548952

  3. Component modeling in ecological risk assessment: Disturbance in interspecific interactions caused by air toxics introduced into terrestrial ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Swider, Jan Zenon

    The human health risk assessment (HRA), initiated by the onset of nuclear industry, has been a well established methodology for assessing the impacts of human created contamination on an individual human being and entire population. The wide spread of applications and tools grown upon this methodology allows one not only to identify the hazards, but also to manage the risks. Recently, there has existed an increased awareness of the need to conduct ecological risk assessments (ERA) in addition to HRAs. The ERAs are, by and large, more complex than typical HRAs and involve not only different species but whole ecological systems. Such complex analyses require a thorough understanding of the processes underway in the ecosystem, including the contaminant transport through the food web, population dynamics as well as intra- and inter-specific relationships. The exposure pathways change radically depending on the consumer tier. Plants produce their nutriment from the sunlight and raw inorganic compounds. Animals and other living forms obtain energy by eating plants, other animals and detritus. Their double role as food consumers and food producers causes a trophic structure of the ecological system, where nutrients and energy are transferred from one trophic level to another. This is a dynamic process of energy flow, mostly in the form of food, varying with time and space. In order to conduct an efficient ERA, a multidisciplinary framework is needed. This framework can be enhanced by analyzing predator-prey interactions during the environmental disturbances caused by a pollutant emission, and by assessing the consequences of such disturbances. It is necessary to develop a way to describe how human industrial activity affects the ecosystems. Existing ecological studies have mostly been focused either on pure ecological interdependencies or on limited perspectives of human activities. In this study, we discuss the issues of air pollution and its ecological impacts from the

  4. Ecological risks of an old wood impregnation mill: application of the Triad approach.

    PubMed

    Karjalainen, Anne-Mari; Kilpi-Koski, Johanna; Väisänen, Ari O; Penttinen, Sari; van Gestel, Cornelius A M; Penttinen, Olli-Pekka

    2009-07-01

    Although many studies deal with the distribution and mobility of chromated copper arsenate (CCA) metals in soil, the ecotoxicity of CCA-contaminated soils is rarely studied. The Triad approach was applied to determine the ecological risks posed by a CCA mixture at a decommissioned wood impregnation mill in southern Finland. A combination of (1) chemical analyses; (2) toxicity tests with plants (aquatic: Lemna minor; terrestrial: Lactuca sativa), earthworms (Lumbricus rubellus), and enchytraeids (Enchytraeus albidus) conducted on contaminated soils, their aqueous extracts, and well water collected from the site; and (3) determination of the abundance of enchytraeids and nematodes and the bioaccumulation of metals in plants (horsetail) collected from the field were used to assess the actual risk. Although metal concentrations were low, L. minor growth appeared to be reduced by As contamination of the well water. In soil, metals were heterogeneously distributed with total concentrations of 14.8 to 4360 mg As/kg, 15.2 to 1740 mg Cr/kg, and 4.83 to 790 mg Cu/kg. In several samples, concentrations were above Finnish regulatory guideline values and exceeded the half maximal effective concentration (EC50) or 50% lethal concentration (LC50) values for the toxicity of the individual metals to earthworms and enchytraeids, indicating hazards to the ecosystem. (Bio)availability of metals was high, as indicated by weak electrolyte extractions and body residues in L. rubellus and E. albidus exposed in bioassays. Earthworm survival correlated significantly with body metal concentrations, but not with soil total metal concentrations. Enchytraeid responses in the soil bioassays were less sensitive to CCA metal exposure. Plant growth was affected by CCA pollution, with L. sativa root elongation correlating significantly with total and available As concentrations and L. minor development being significantly reduced in H2O extracts of the most contaminated soil sample. Abundance of

  5. Using remote sensing, ecological niche modeling, and Geographic Information Systems for Rift Valley fever risk assessment in the United States

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tedrow, Christine Atkins

    The primary goal in this study was to explore remote sensing, ecological niche modeling, and Geographic Information Systems (GIS) as aids in predicting candidate Rift Valley fever (RVF) competent vector abundance and distribution in Virginia, and as means of estimating where risk of establishment in mosquitoes and risk of transmission to human populations would be greatest in Virginia. A second goal in this study was to determine whether the remotely-sensed Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) can be used as a proxy variable of local conditions for the development of mosquitoes to predict mosquito species distribution and abundance in Virginia. As part of this study, a mosquito surveillance database was compiled to archive the historical patterns of mosquito species abundance in Virginia. In addition, linkages between mosquito density and local environmental and climatic patterns were spatially and temporally examined. The present study affirms the potential role of remote sensing imagery for species distribution prediction, and it demonstrates that ecological niche modeling is a valuable predictive tool to analyze the distributions of populations. The MaxEnt ecological niche modeling program was used to model predicted ranges for potential RVF competent vectors in Virginia. The MaxEnt model was shown to be robust, and the candidate RVF competent vector predicted distribution map is presented. The Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) was found to be the most useful environmental-climatic variable to predict mosquito species distribution and abundance in Virginia. However, these results indicate that a more robust prediction is obtained by including other environmental-climatic factors correlated to mosquito densities (e.g., temperature, precipitation, elevation) with NDVI. The present study demonstrates that remote sensing and GIS can be used with ecological niche and risk modeling methods to estimate risk of virus establishment in mosquitoes and

  6. An ecological risk assessment of nonnative boas and pythons as potentially invasive species in the United States.

    PubMed

    Reed, Robert N

    2005-06-01

    The growing international trade in live wildlife has the potential to result in continuing establishment of nonnative animal populations in the United States. Snakes may pose particularly high risks as potentially invasive species, as exemplified by the decimation of Guam's vertebrate fauna by the accidentally introduced brown tree snake. Herein, ecological and commercial predictors of the likelihood of establishment of invasive populations were used to model risk associated with legal commercial imports of 23 species of boas, pythons, and relatives into the United States during the period 1989-2000. Data on ecological variables were collected from multiple sources, while data on commercial variables were collated from import records maintained by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Results of the risk-assessment models indicate that species including boa constrictors (Boa constrictor), ball pythons (Python regius), and reticulated pythons (P. reticulatus) may pose particularly high risks as potentially invasive species. Recommendations for reducing risk of establishment of invasive populations of snakes and/or pathogens include temporary quarantine of imports to increase detection rates of nonnative pathogens, increasing research attention to reptile pathogens, reducing the risk that nonnative snakes will reach certain areas with high numbers of federally listed species (such as the Florida Keys), and attempting to better educate individuals purchasing reptiles.

  7. The Apache Longbow-Hellfire Missile Test at Yuma Proving Ground: Ecological Risk Assessment for Missile Firing

    SciTech Connect

    Jones, Daniel Steven; Efroymson, Rebecca Ann; Hargrove, William Walter; Suter, Glenn; Pater, Larry

    2008-01-01

    A multiple stressor risk assessment was conducted at Yuma Proving Ground, Arizona, as a demonstration of the Military Ecological Risk Assessment Framework. The focus was a testing program at Cibola Range, which involved an Apache Longbow helicopter firing Hellfire missiles at moving targets, M60- A1 tanks. This paper describes the ecological risk assessment for the missile launch and detonation. The primary stressor associated with this activity was sound. Other minor stressors included the detonation impact, shrapnel, and fire. Exposure to desert mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus crooki) was quantified using the Army sound contour program BNOISE2, as well as distances from the explosion to deer. Few effects data were available from related studies. Exposure-response models for the characterization of effects consisted of human "disturbance" and hearing damage thresholds in units of C-weighted decibels (sound exposure level) and a distance-based No Observed Adverse Effects Level for moose and cannonfire. The risk characterization used a weight-of-evidence approach and concluded that risk to mule deer behavior from the missile firing was likely for a negligible number of deer, but that no risk to mule deer abundance and reproduction is expected.

  8. ASTER: An integration of the AQUIRE database and the QSAR system for use in ecological risk assessments

    SciTech Connect

    Russom, C.L.; Anderson, E.B.; Greenwood, B.E.; Pilli, A.

    1990-01-01

    Ecological risk assessments are used by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) and other governmental agencies to assist in determining the probability and magnitude of deleterious effects of hazardous chemicals on plants and animals. These assessments are important steps in formulating regulatory decisions. The completion of an ecological risk assessment requires the gathering of ecotoxicological hazard and environmental exposure information. The information is evaluated in the risk characterization section to assist in making the final risk assessment. ASTER (Assessment Tools for the Evaluation of Risk) was designed by the USEPA Environmental Research Laboratory-Duluth (ERL-D) to assist regulators in producing risk assessments. ASTER is an integration of the AQUIRE (AQUatic toxicity Information Retrieval System) and QSAR (Quantitative Structure Activity Relationships) systems. AQUIRE is a database of aquatic toxicity tests and QSAR is comprised of a database of measured physicochemical properties, and various QSAR models that estimate physicochemical and ecotoxicological endpoints. ASTER will be available to international governmental agencies through the USEPA National Computing Center.

  9. A Review of Human Health and Ecological Risks due to CO2 Exposure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hepple, R. P.; Benson, S. M.

    2001-05-01

    This paper presents an overview of the human health and ecological consequences of exposure to elevated levels of carbon dioxide (CO2) in the context of geologic carbon sequestration. The purpose of this effort is to provide a baseline of information to guide future efforts in risk assessment for CO2 sequestration. Scenarios for hazardous CO2 exposure include surface facility leaks, leaks from abandoned or aging wells, and leakage from geologic CO2 storage structures. Amounts of carbon in various reservoirs, systems, and applications were summarized, and the levels of CO2 encountered in nature and everyday life were compared along with physiologically relevant concentrations. Literature pertaining to CO2 occupational exposure limits, regulations, monitoring, and ecological consequences was reviewed. The OSHA, NIOSH, and ACGIH occupational exposure standards are 0.5% CO2 averaged over a 40 hour week, 3% average for a short-term (15 minute) exposure, and 4% as the maximum instantaneous limit considered immediately dangerous to life and health. All three conditions must be satisfied at all times. Any detrimental effects of low-level CO2 exposure are reversible, including the long-term metabolic compensation required by chronic exposure to 3% CO2. Breathing rate doubles at 3% CO2 and is four times the normal rate at 5% CO2. According to occupational exposure and controlled atmosphere research into CO2 toxicology, CO2 is hazardous via direct toxicity at levels above 5%, concentrations not encountered in nature outside of volcanic settings and water-logged soils. Small leaks do not present any danger to people unless the CO2 does not disperse quickly enough through atmospheric mixing but accumulates instead in depressions and confined spaces. These dangers are the result of CO2 being more dense than air. Carbon dioxide is regulated for diverse purposes but never as a toxic substance. Catastrophic incidents involving large amounts and/or rapid release of CO2 such as Lake

  10. Ecological risk assessment of heavy metals in surface seawater and sediment near the outlet of a zinc factory in Huludao City, Liaoning Province, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Feng, Yongliang; Chen, Yanzhen; Wang, Jing; Gong, Yufeng; Liu, Xigang; Mu, Gang; Tian, Hua

    2016-03-01

    At present, the methods widely applied to assess ecological risk of heavy metals are essentially single-point estimates in which exposure and toxicity data cannot be fully used and probabilities of adverse biological eff ects cannot be achieved. In this study, based on investigation of concentrations of six heavy metals (As, Hg, Pb, Cd, Cu, and Zn) in the surface seawater and sediment near the outlet of a zinc factory, located in Huludao City, Liaoning Province, China, a tiered approach consisting of several probabilistic options was used to refine ecological risk assessment for the individuals. A mixture of various heavy metals was detected in the surface seawater, and potential ecological risk index (PERI) was adopted to assess the potential ecological risk of heavy metals in the surface sediment. The results from all levels of aquatic ecological risk assessment in the tiered framework, ranging from comparison of single eff ects and exposure values to the use of distribution-based Hazard Quotient obtained through Monte Carlo simulation, are consistent with each other. Briefly, aquatic Zn and Cu posed a clear ecological risk, while Cd, Pb, Hg, and As in the water column posed potential risk. As expected, combined ecological risk of heavy metal mixture in the surface seawater was proved significantly higher than the risk caused by any individual heavy metal, calculated using the concept of total equivalent concentration. According to PERI, the severity of pollution by the six heavy metals in the surface sediment decreased in the following sequence: Cd>Hg>As>Pb>Cu>Zn, and the total heavy metals in the sediment posed a very high risk to the marine environment. This study provides a useful mathematical framework for ecological risk assessment of heavy metals.

  11. Ecological risk assessment of heavy metals in surface seawater and sediment near the outlet of a zinc factory in Huludao City, Liaoning Province, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Feng, Yongliang; Chen, Yanzhen; Wang, Jing; Gong, Yufeng; Liu, Xigang; Mu, Gang; Tian, Hua

    2016-11-01

    At present, the methods widely applied to assess ecological risk of heavy metals are essentially single-point estimates in which exposure and toxicity data cannot be fully used and probabilities of adverse biological eff ects cannot be achieved. In this study, based on investigation of concentrations of six heavy metals (As, Hg, Pb, Cd, Cu, and Zn) in the surface seawater and sediment near the outlet of a zinc factory, located in Huludao City, Liaoning Province, China, a tiered approach consisting of several probabilistic options was used to refine ecological risk assessment for the individuals. A mixture of various heavy metals was detected in the surface seawater, and potential ecological risk index (PERI) was adopted to assess the potential ecological risk of heavy metals in the surface sediment. The results from all levels of aquatic ecological risk assessment in the tiered framework, ranging from comparison of single eff ects and exposure values to the use of distribution-based Hazard Quotient obtained through Monte Carlo simulation, are consistent with each other. Briefly, aquatic Zn and Cu posed a clear ecological risk, while Cd, Pb, Hg, and As in the water column posed potential risk. As expected, combined ecological risk of heavy metal mixture in the surface seawater was proved significantly higher than the risk caused by any individual heavy metal, calculated using the concept of total equivalent concentration. According to PERI, the severity of pollution by the six heavy metals in the surface sediment decreased in the following sequence: Cd>Hg>As>Pb>Cu>Zn, and the total heavy metals in the sediment posed a very high risk to the marine environment. This study provides a useful mathematical framework for ecological risk assessment of heavy metals.

  12. The results of an ecological risk assessment screening at the Idaho National Engineering`s waste area group 2

    SciTech Connect

    VanHorn, R.

    1995-11-01

    The Idaho National Engineering Laboratory (INEL) is a Department of Energy (DOE) facility located in southeastern Idaho and occupies approximately 890 square miles on the northwestern portion of the eastern Snake River Plain. INEL has been devoted to nuclear energy research and related activities since its establishment in 1949. In the process of fulfilling this mission, wastes were generated, including radioactive and hazardous materials. Most materials were effectively stored or disposed of, however, some release of contaminants to the environment has occurred. For this reason, the INEL was listed by the US environmental Protection Agency on the National Priorities List (NPL), in November, 1989. This report describes the results of an ecological risk assessment performed for the Waste Area Groups 2 (WAG 2) at the INEL. It also summarizes the performance of screening level ecological risk assessments (SLERA).

  13. Genetic variation of Lymnaea stagnalis tolerance to copper: A test of selection hypotheses and its relevance for ecological risk assessment.

    PubMed

    Côte, Jessica; Bouétard, Anthony; Pronost, Yannick; Besnard, Anne-Laure; Coke, Maïra; Piquet, Fabien; Caquet, Thierry; Coutellec, Marie-Agnès

    2015-10-01

    The use of standardized monospecific testing to assess the ecological risk of chemicals implicitly relies on the strong assumption that intraspecific variation in sensitivity is negligible or irrelevant in this context. In this study, we investigated genetic variation in copper sensitivity of the freshwater snail Lymnaea stagnalis, using lineages stemming from eight natural populations or strains found to be genetically differentiated at neutral markers. Copper-induced mortality varied widely among populations, as did the estimated daily death rate and time to 50% mortality (LT50). Population genetic divergence in copper sensitivity was compared to neutral differentiation using the QST-FST approach. No evidence for homogenizing selection could be detected. This result demonstrates that species-level extrapolations from single population studies are highly unreliable. The study provides a simple example of how evolutionary principles could be incorporated into ecotoxicity testing in order to refine ecological risk assessment.

  14. Contamination characteristics, ecological risk and source identification of trace metals in sediments of the Le'an River (China).

    PubMed

    Chen, Haiyang; Chen, Ruihui; Teng, Yanguo; Wu, Jin

    2016-03-01

    Recognizing the pollution characteristics of trace metals in river sediments and targeting their potential sources are of key importance for proposing effective strategies to protect watershed ecosystem health. In this study, a comprehensive investigation was conducted to identify the contamination and risk characteristics of trace metals in sediments of Le'an River which is a main tributary of the largest freshwater lake in China, Poyang Lake. To attain this objective, several tools and models were considered. Geoaccumulation index and enrichment factor were used to understand the general pollution characteristic of trace metals in sediments. Discriminant analysis was applied to identify the spatial variability of sediment metals. Sediment quality guidelines and potential ecological risk index were employed for ecological risk evaluation. Multivariate curve resolution-alternating least square was proposed to extract potential pollution sources, as well as the application of Monte-Carlo simulation for uncertainty analysis of source identification. Results suggested that the sediments in Le'an River were considerably polluted by the investigated trace metals (Cd, Cr, As, Hg, Pb, Cu, Zn and Ni). Sediment concentrations of these metals showed significant spatial variations. The potential ecological risk lay in high level. Comparatively speaking, the metals of Cd, Cu and Hg were likely to result in more harmful effects. Mining activities and the application of fertilizers and agrochemicals were identified as the main anthropogenic sources. To protect the ecological system of Le'an River and Poyang Lake watershed, industrial mining and agricultural activities in this area should to be strictly regulated. PMID:26685780

  15. Ecological and human health risks from metal(loid)s in peri-urban soil in Nanjing, China.

    PubMed

    Ding, Zhuhong; Hu, Xin

    2014-06-01

    In order to investigate the ecological and human health risks of metal(loid)s (Cu, Pb, Zn, Ni, Cd, Mn, Cr, and As) in peri-urban soils, 43 surface soil samples were collected from the peri-urban area around Nanjing, a megacity in China. The average contents were 1.19, 67.8, 37.6, 105, 167, 44.6, 722, and 50.8 mg kg(-1) for Cd, Cr, Ni, Pb, Zn, Cu, Mn, and As, respectively. A significant positive correlation was found between Cu, Pb, Zn, Cd, Mn, and As (p < 0.01), and Cr had a significant positive correlation with Ni (p < 0.01). Geoaccumulation indices indicate the presence of Cd and As contamination in all of the peri-urban soil samples. Potential ecological risk indices show that the metal(loid)s in the soil could result in higher ecological risks. Cd is the main contributor to the risk, followed by As. The levels of Cu, Pb, Zn, Cd, Mn, and As in stomach and intestinal phases show a positive linear correlation with their total contents. Mn, Zn, Ni, Cd, and Pb in stomach phase showed higher bioaccessibility, while in intestinal phase, Cu, Cr, and As had the higher bioaccessibility. The carcinogenic risk in children and adults posed by As, Pb, and Cr via ingestion was deemed acceptable. The non-carcinogenic risks posed by these metal(loid)s via ingestion to children are higher than to adults and mainly result from As.

  16. Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons associated with road deposited solid and their ecological risk: Implications for road stormwater reuse.

    PubMed

    Liu, Liang; Liu, An; Li, Yang; Zhang, Lixun; Zhang, Guijuan; Guan, Yuntao

    2016-09-01

    Reusing stormwater is becoming popular worldwide. However, urban road stormwater commonly contains toxic pollutants, such as polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), which could undermine reuse safety. This study investigated pollution level of PAHs and their composition build-up on urban roads in a typical megacity in South China. The potential ecological risk posed by PAHs associated with road deposited solid (RDS) was also assessed. Results showed that ecological risk levels varied based on different land use types, which could be significantly influenced by the composition of PAHs and characteristics of RDS. A higher percentage of high-ring PAHs, such as more than four rings, could pose higher ecological risk and are more likely to undermine stormwater reuse safety. Additionally, the degree of traffic congestion rather than traffic volume was found to exert a more significant influence on the generation of high-ring PAH generation. Therefore, stormwater from more congested roads might need proper treatment (particularly for removing high-ring PAHs) before reuse or could be suitable for purposes requiring low-water-quality. The findings of this study are expected to contribute to adequate stormwater reuse strategy development and to enhance the safety of urban road stormwater reuse.

  17. The Use of Ecological Niche Modeling to Infer Potential Risk Areas of Snakebite in the Mexican State of Veracruz

    PubMed Central

    Yañez-Arenas, Carlos; Peterson, A. Townsend; Mokondoko, Pierre; Rojas-Soto, Octavio; Martínez-Meyer, Enrique

    2014-01-01

    Background Many authors have claimed that snakebite risk is associated with human population density, human activities, and snake behavior. Here we analyzed whether environmental suitability of vipers can be used as an indicator of snakebite risk. We tested several hypotheses to explain snakebite incidence, through the construction of models incorporating both environmental suitability and socioeconomic variables in Veracruz, Mexico. Methodology/Principal Findings Ecological niche modeling (ENM) was used to estimate potential geographic and ecological distributions of nine viper species' in Veracruz. We calculated the distance to the species' niche centroid (DNC); this distance may be associated with a prediction of abundance. We found significant inverse relationships between snakebites and DNCs of common vipers (Crotalus simus and Bothrops asper), explaining respectively 15% and almost 35% of variation in snakebite incidence. Additionally, DNCs for these two vipers, in combination with marginalization of human populations, accounted for 76% of variation in incidence. Conclusions/Significance Our results suggest that niche modeling and niche-centroid distance approaches can be used to mapping distributions of environmental suitability for venomous snakes; combining this ecological information with socioeconomic factors may help with inferring potential risk areas for snakebites, since hospital data are often biased (especially when incidences are low). PMID:24963989

  18. Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons associated with road deposited solid and their ecological risk: Implications for road stormwater reuse.

    PubMed

    Liu, Liang; Liu, An; Li, Yang; Zhang, Lixun; Zhang, Guijuan; Guan, Yuntao

    2016-09-01

    Reusing stormwater is becoming popular worldwide. However, urban road stormwater commonly contains toxic pollutants, such as polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), which could undermine reuse safety. This study investigated pollution level of PAHs and their composition build-up on urban roads in a typical megacity in South China. The potential ecological risk posed by PAHs associated with road deposited solid (RDS) was also assessed. Results showed that ecological risk levels varied based on different land use types, which could be significantly influenced by the composition of PAHs and characteristics of RDS. A higher percentage of high-ring PAHs, such as more than four rings, could pose higher ecological risk and are more likely to undermine stormwater reuse safety. Additionally, the degree of traffic congestion rather than traffic volume was found to exert a more significant influence on the generation of high-ring PAH generation. Therefore, stormwater from more congested roads might need proper treatment (particularly for removing high-ring PAHs) before reuse or could be suitable for purposes requiring low-water-quality. The findings of this study are expected to contribute to adequate stormwater reuse strategy development and to enhance the safety of urban road stormwater reuse. PMID:27135582

  19. Demographic risk factors for injury among Hispanic and non-Hispanic white children: an ecologic analysis

    PubMed Central

    Anderson, C.; Agran, P.; Winn, D.; Tran, C.

    1998-01-01

    Objectives—To determine the effects of neighborhood levels of poverty, household crowding, and acculturation on the rate of injury to Hispanic and non-Hispanic white children. Setting—Orange County, California. Methods—An ecologic study design was used with census block groups as the unit of analysis. Measures of neighborhood poverty, household crowding, and acculturation were specific to each ethnic group. Poisson regression was used to calculate mutually adjusted incidence rate ratios (IRRs) corresponding to a 20% difference in census variables. Results—Among non-Hispanic white children, injury rates were more closely associated with neighborhood levels of household crowding (adjusted IRR 2.36, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.22 to 4.57) than with neighborhood poverty (adjusted IRR 1.06, 95% CI 0.89 to 1.26). For Hispanic children, the strongest risk factors were the proportion of Hispanic adults who spoke only some English (compared with the proportion who spoke little or no English, adjusted IRR 1.26, 95% CI 1.04 to 1.53) and the proportion who were US residents for <5 years (adjusted IRR 1.20, 95% CI 1.001 to 1.43). Neighborhood levels of household crowding were not related to injury among Hispanic children (adjusted IRR 0.98, 95% CI 0.89 to 1.08), but surprisingly, neighborhood poverty was associated with lower injury rates (adjusted IRR 0.89, 95% CI 0.81 to 0.97). Conclusions—Cultural and geographic transitions, as well as socioeconomic differences, appear to contribute to differences in childhood injury rates between ethnic groups. PMID:9595329

  20. Predictors of re-entry into the child protection system in Singapore: a cumulative ecological-transactional risk model.

    PubMed

    Li, Dongdong; Chu, Chi Meng; Ng, Wei Chern; Leong, Wai

    2014-11-01

    This study examines the risk factors of re-entry for 1,750 child protection cases in Singapore using a cumulative ecological-transactional risk model. Using administrative data, the present study found that the overall percentage of Child Protection Service (CPS) re-entry in Singapore is 10.5% based on 1,750 cases, with a range from 3.9% (within 1 year) to 16.5% (within 8 years after case closure). One quarter of the re-entry cases were observed to occur within 9 months from case closure. Seventeen risk factors, as identified from the extant literature, were tested for their utility to predict CPS re-entry in this study using a series of Cox regression analyses. A final list of seven risk factors (i.e., children's age at entry, case type, case closure result, duration of case, household income, family size, and mother's employment status) was used to create a cumulative risk score. The results supported the cumulative risk model in that higher risk score is related to higher risk of CPS re-entry. Understanding the prevalence of CPS re-entry and the risk factors associated with re-entry is the key to informing practice and policy in a culturally relevant way. The results from this study could then be used to facilitate critical case management decisions in order to enhance positive outcomes of families and children in Singapore's care system.

  1. Baseline ecological risk assessment of the Calcasieu Estuary, Louisiana: 3. An evaluation of the risks to benthic invertebrates associated with exposure to contaminated sediments

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    MacDonald, Donald D.; Ingersoll, Christopher G.; Kemble, Nile E.; Smorong, Dawn E.; Sinclair, Jesse A.; Lindskoog, Rebekka; Gaston, Gary; Sanger, Denise; Carr, R. Scott; Biedenbach, James; Gouguet, Ron; Kern, John; Shortelle, Ann; Field, L. Jay; Meyer, John

    2011-01-01

    The sediments in the Calcasieu Estuary are contaminated with a wide variety of chemicals of potential concern (COPCs), including heavy metals, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, polychlorinated biphenyls, phthalates, chlorinated benzenes, and polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins and dibenzofurans. The sources of these COPCs include both point and non-point source discharges. As part of a baseline ecological risk assessment, the risks to benthic invertebrates posed by exposure to sediment-associated COPCs were assessed using five lines of evidence, including whole-sediment chemistry, pore-water chemistry, whole-sediment toxicity, pore-water toxicity, and benthic invertebrate community structure. The results of this assessment indicated that exposure to whole sediments and/or pore water from the Calcasieu Estuary generally posed low risks to benthic invertebrate communities (i.e., risks were classified as low for 68% of the sampling locations investigated). However, incremental risks to benthic invertebrates (i.e., compared with those associated with exposure to conditions in reference areas) were indicated for 32% of the sampling locations within the estuary. Of the three areas of concern (AOCs) investigated, the risks to benthic invertebrates were highest in the Bayou d'Inde AOC; risks were generally lower in the Upper Calcasieu River AOC and Middle Calcasieu River AOC. The areas showing the highest risks to sediment-dwelling organisms were generally located in the vicinity of point source discharges of COPCs. These results provided risk managers with the information required to make decisions regarding the need for remedial actions at the site.

  2. Risk-based ecological soil quality criteria for the characterization of contaminated soils. Combination of chemical and biological tools.

    PubMed

    Fernández, María Dolores; Vega, María Milagrosa; Tarazona, José Vicente

    2006-08-01

    This paper describes the development of soil quality criteria for the characterization of soils focused on the potential risk to the ecosystem. The approach combines both Generic Soil Quality standards (GSQs) for individual chemicals and direct ecotoxicity assays on soil samples taken from the site. Criteria establish three main risk levels with their corresponding trigger values. The trigger values to determine high risk or "polluted" soils are exclusively based on direct toxicity assessments. The trigger values for the other categories are established by a combination of the application of GSQs and the results of bioassays. Low-risk is assumed when no toxicity is observed and GSQs based on precautionary ecotoxicity thresholds are not exceeded; high-risk must be considered if acute toxicity above the proposed trigger value is observed in soil or leachate samples. In between these levels, the risk cannot be elucidated and a site-specific assessment is required. The GSQs take into account the current or future land use, thus defining three categories: industrial soils, urban/residential soils and natural/agricultural/forest soils, each of them with different ecological requirements. The GSQ values are established following an inverse risk assessment methodology, integrating ecotoxicity and exposure models and setting the soil levels associated to pre-established criteria for the assumption of low risk. The proposed methodology covers all relevant ecological receptors and processes, soil organisms, potential contamination of ground and surface waters, and exposure of terrestrial vertebrates due to bioaccumulation and biomagnification. Exposure routes and protection criteria are defined in each protection goal. The relevance of each receptor and route is established according to the land use.

  3. Elder Abuse by Adult Children: An Applied Ecological Framework for Understanding Contextual Risk Factors and the Intergenerational Character of Quality of Life.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schiamberg, Lawrence B.; Gans, Daphna

    2000-01-01

    Using an applied ecological model, this study focuses on contextual risk factors of elder abuse. Five levels of environment were used to interpret existing research on risk factors. Configuration of risk factors provides a framework for understanding the intergenerational character of quality of life for older adults, developing recommendations…

  4. USING FISHER INFORMATION TO ASSESS THE RISK OF DYNAMIC REGIME CHANGES IN ECOLOGICAL SYSTEMS

    EPA Science Inventory

    The sustainable nature of particular dynamic regimes of ecosystems is an increasingly integral aspect of many ecological, economic, and social decisions. As ecosystems experience perturbations of varying regularity and intensity, they may either remain within the state space neig...

  5. Ecotoxicogenomics to Support Ecological Risk Assessment: A Case Study with Bisphenol A in Fish

    EPA Science Inventory

    Toxicogenomic approaches are being increasingly applied in the field of ecotoxicology. Given the growing availability of ecotoxicogenomic data, the Agency and the broader scientific community are actively engaged in considering how best to use those data to support ecological ris...

  6. Mathematical models and methods of risk assessment in ecologically hazardous industries

    SciTech Connect

    Mikhalevich, V.S.; Knopov, P.S.; Golodnikov, A.N.

    1994-11-01

    Analysis of critical industrial situations leading to accidents or catastrophes has shown that the main factors responsible for accidents include technological inadequacy of ecologically hazardous facilities, equipment design errors, and insufficient preventive maintenance of facilities with an enhanced level of environmental hazard. The scale of the accident after-effects essentially depends on the location of the ecologically hazardous facility, timely development of preventive measures, and prompt implementations of these measures in emergency in compliance with strict deadlines for decision making.

  7. Site specific risk assessment of an energy-from-waste/thermal treatment facility in Durham Region, Ontario, Canada. Part B: Ecological risk assessment.

    PubMed

    Ollson, Christopher A; Whitfield Aslund, Melissa L; Knopper, Loren D; Dan, Tereza

    2014-01-01

    The regions of Durham and York in Ontario, Canada have partnered to construct an energy-from-waste (EFW) thermal treatment facility as part of a long term strategy for the management of their municipal solid waste. In this paper we present the results of a comprehensive ecological risk assessment (ERA) for this planned facility, based on baseline sampling and site specific modeling to predict facility-related emissions, which was subsequently accepted by regulatory authorities. Emissions were estimated for both the approved initial operating design capacity of the facility (140,000 tonnes per year) and the maximum design capacity (400,000 tonnes per year). In general, calculated ecological hazard quotients (EHQs) and screening ratios (SRs) for receptors did not exceed the benchmark value (1.0). The only exceedances noted were generally due to existing baseline media concentrations, which did not differ from those expected for similar unimpacted sites in Ontario. This suggests that these exceedances reflect conservative assumptions applied in the risk assessment rather than actual potential risk. However, under predicted upset conditions at 400,000 tonnes per year (i.e., facility start-up, shutdown, and loss of air pollution control), a potential unacceptable risk was estimated for freshwater receptors with respect to benzo(g,h,i)perylene (SR=1.1), which could not be attributed to baseline conditions. Although this slight exceedance reflects a conservative worst-case scenario (upset conditions coinciding with worst-case meteorological conditions), further investigation of potential ecological risk should be performed if this facility is expanded to the maximum operating capacity in the future. PMID:23895787

  8. Site specific risk assessment of an energy-from-waste/thermal treatment facility in Durham Region, Ontario, Canada. Part B: Ecological risk assessment.

    PubMed

    Ollson, Christopher A; Whitfield Aslund, Melissa L; Knopper, Loren D; Dan, Tereza

    2014-01-01

    The regions of Durham and York in Ontario, Canada have partnered to construct an energy-from-waste (EFW) thermal treatment facility as part of a long term strategy for the management of their municipal solid waste. In this paper we present the results of a comprehensive ecological risk assessment (ERA) for this planned facility, based on baseline sampling and site specific modeling to predict facility-related emissions, which was subsequently accepted by regulatory authorities. Emissions were estimated for both the approved initial operating design capacity of the facility (140,000 tonnes per year) and the maximum design capacity (400,000 tonnes per year). In general, calculated ecological hazard quotients (EHQs) and screening ratios (SRs) for receptors did not exceed the benchmark value (1.0). The only exceedances noted were generally due to existing baseline media concentrations, which did not differ from those expected for similar unimpacted sites in Ontario. This suggests that these exceedances reflect conservative assumptions applied in the risk assessment rather than actual potential risk. However, under predicted upset conditions at 400,000 tonnes per year (i.e., facility start-up, shutdown, and loss of air pollution control), a potential unacceptable risk was estimated for freshwater receptors with respect to benzo(g,h,i)perylene (SR=1.1), which could not be attributed to baseline conditions. Although this slight exceedance reflects a conservative worst-case scenario (upset conditions coinciding with worst-case meteorological conditions), further investigation of potential ecological risk should be performed if this facility is expanded to the maximum operating capacity in the future.

  9. Environmental occurrence and ecological risk assessment of organic UV filters in marine organisms from Hong Kong coastal waters.

    PubMed

    Sang, Ziye; Leung, Kelvin Sze-Yin

    2016-10-01

    Organic UV filters, now considered to be emerging contaminants in aquatic ecosystems, are being intensively tracked in environmental waters worldwide. However, their environmental fate and impact of these contaminants on marine organisms remains largely unknown, especially in Asia. This work elucidates the occurrence and the ecological risks of seven UV filters detected in farmed fish, wild mussels and some other wild organisms collected from local mariculture farms in Hong Kong. For all of the organisms, ethylhexyl methoxycinnamate (EHMC) and octyl dimethyl p-aminobenzoic acid (OD-PABA) were the predominant contaminants with the highest concentrations up to 51.3 and 24.1ng/g (dw), respectively; lower levels were found for benzophenone-8 (BP-8), octocrylene (OC) and benzophenone-3 (BP-3) from ecological risk assessment specific to the marine aquatic environment was carried out. The risk quotient (RQ) values of EHMC and BP-3 were calculated as 3.29 and 2.60, respectively, indicating these two UV filters may pose significant risks to the marine aquatic environment. PMID:27235899

  10. Environmental occurrence and ecological risk assessment of organic UV filters in marine organisms from Hong Kong coastal waters.

    PubMed

    Sang, Ziye; Leung, Kelvin Sze-Yin

    2016-10-01

    Organic UV filters, now considered to be emerging contaminants in aquatic ecosystems, are being intensively tracked in environmental waters worldwide. However, their environmental fate and impact of these contaminants on marine organisms remains largely unknown, especially in Asia. This work elucidates the occurrence and the ecological risks of seven UV filters detected in farmed fish, wild mussels and some other wild organisms collected from local mariculture farms in Hong Kong. For all of the organisms, ethylhexyl methoxycinnamate (EHMC) and octyl dimethyl p-aminobenzoic acid (OD-PABA) were the predominant contaminants with the highest concentrations up to 51.3 and 24.1ng/g (dw), respectively; lower levels were found for benzophenone-8 (BP-8), octocrylene (OC) and benzophenone-3 (BP-3) from ecological risk assessment specific to the marine aquatic environment was carried out. The risk quotient (RQ) values of EHMC and BP-3 were calculated as 3.29 and 2.60, respectively, indicating these two UV filters may pose significant risks to the marine aquatic environment.

  11. Using a probabilistic approach in an ecological risk assessment simulation tool: test case for depleted uranium (DU).

    PubMed

    Fan, Ming; Thongsri, Tepwitoon; Axe, Lisa; Tyson, Trevor A

    2005-06-01

    A probabilistic approach was applied in an ecological risk assessment (ERA) to characterize risk and address uncertainty employing Monte Carlo simulations for assessing parameter and risk probabilistic distributions. This simulation tool (ERA) includes a Window's based interface, an interactive and modifiable database management system (DBMS) that addresses a food web at trophic levels, and a comprehensive evaluation of exposure pathways. To illustrate this model, ecological risks from depleted uranium (DU) exposure at the US Army Yuma Proving Ground (YPG) and Aberdeen Proving Ground (APG) were assessed and characterized. Probabilistic distributions showed that at YPG, a reduction in plant root weight is considered likely to occur (98% likelihood) from exposure to DU; for most terrestrial animals, likelihood for adverse reproduction effects ranges from 0.1% to 44%. However, for the lesser long-nosed bat, the effects are expected to occur (>99% likelihood) through the reduction in size and weight of offspring. Based on available DU data for the firing range at APG, DU uptake will not likely affect survival of aquatic plants and animals (<0.1% likelihood). Based on field and laboratory studies conducted at APG and YPG on pocket mice, kangaroo rat, white-throated woodrat, deer, and milfoil, body burden concentrations observed fall into the distributions simulated at both sites.

  12. Source identification and potential ecological risk assessment of heavy metals in PM2.5 from Changsha.

    PubMed

    Zhai, Yunbo; Liu, Xiaoting; Chen, Hongmei; Xu, Bibo; Zhu, Lu; Li, Caiting; Zeng, Guangming

    2014-09-15

    The probable sources and potential ecological risks of Cu, Zn, Cd and Pb in PM2.5 in Changsha were analyzed. The intelligent medium-flow total suspended particle sampler was used to collect the PM2.5 samples from Yuelu (YL), Kaifu (KF), and Yuhua (YH) districts of Changsha in March-April of 2013. The total concentration of heavy metals (HMs) in PM2.5 was used for source identification by correlation coefficients and principal component analysis (PCA). Otherwise the potential ecological risks indices (RIs) were calculated based on the bioavailable fractions of HMs which were obtained through BCR sequential extraction. Almost 50% of Cu, Cd and Pb in PM2.5 of all sites were accumulated in soluble and reducible fractions by speciation analysis. The correlation coefficients and PCA analysis showed that HMs in PM2.5 of Changsha in spring were mainly from vehicular emissions, fuel combustion, resuspension of dust and other pollution sources. The average potential ecological RIs of HMs in PM2.5 of Changsha were 6193.80 which suggests that HMs in PM2.5 was extremely serious. These results would be a good reference for health studies and formulation of environmental regulations.

  13. Ecological risks of shale oil and gas development to wildlife, aquatic resources and their habitats

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Brittingham, Margaret C.; Maloney, Kelly O.; Farag, Aida M.; Harper, David D.; Bowen, Zachary H.

    2014-01-01

    Technological advances in hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling have led to the exploration and exploitation of shale oil and gas both nationally and internationally. Extensive development of shale resources has occurred within the United States over the past decade, yet full build out is not expected to occur for years. Moreover, countries across the globe have large shale resources and are beginning to explore extraction of these resources. Extraction of shale resources is a multistep process that includes site identification, well pad and infrastructure development, well drilling, high-volume hydraulic fracturing and production; each with its own propensity to affect associated ecosystems. Some potential effects, for example from well pad, road and pipeline development, will likely be similar to other anthropogenic activities like conventional gas drilling, land clearing, exurban and agricultural development and surface mining (e.g., habitat fragmentation and sedimentation). Therefore, we can use the large body of literature available on the ecological effects of these activities to estimate potential effects from shale development on nearby ecosystems. However, other effects, such as accidental release of wastewaters, are novel to the shale gas extraction process making it harder to predict potential outcomes. Here, we review current knowledge of the effects of high-volume hydraulic fracturing coupled with horizontal drilling on terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems in the contiguous United States, an area that includes 20 shale plays many of which have experienced extensive development over the past decade. We conclude that species and habitats most at risk are ones where there is an extensive overlap between a species range or habitat type and one of the shale plays (leading to high vulnerability) coupled with intrinsic characteristics such as limited range, small population size, specialized habitat requirements, and high sensitivity to disturbance

  14. Identifying sources of stress to native aquatic fauna using a watershed ecological risk assessment framework.

    PubMed

    Diamond, J M; Serveiss, V B

    2001-12-15

    The free-flowing Clinch and Powell River Basin, located in southwestern Virginia, United States, historically had one of the richest assemblages of native fish and freshwater mussels in the world. Nearly half of the species once residing here are now extinct, threatened, or endangered. The United States Environmental Protection Agency's framework for conducting an ecological risk assessment was used to structure a watershed-scale analysis of human land use, in-stream habitat quality, and their relationship to native fish and mussel populations in order to develop future management strategies and prioritize areas in need of enhanced protection. Our analyses indicate that agricultural and urban land uses as well as proximity to mining activities and transportation corridors are inversely related to fish index of biotic integrity (IBI) and mussel species diversity. Forward stepwise multiple regression analyses indicated that coal mining had the most impact on fish IBI followed by percent cropland and urban area in the riparian corridor (R2 = 0.55, p = 0.02); however, these analyses suggest that other site-specific factors are important. Habitat quality measures accounted for as much as approximately half of the variability in fish IBI values if the analysis was limited to sites within a relatively narrow elevation range. These results, in addition to other data collected in this watershed, suggest that nonhabitat-related stressors (e.g., accidental chemical spills) also have significant effects on biota in this basin. The number of co-occurring human land uses was inversely related to fish IBI (r = -0.49, p < 0.01). Sites with > or = 2 co-occurring land uses had >90% probability of having <2 mussel species present. Our findings predict that many mussel concentration sites are vulnerable to future extirpation. In addition, our results suggest that protection and enhancement of naturally vegetated riparian corridors, better controls of mine effluents and urban runoff

  15. Ecological risks of shale oil and gas development to wildlife, aquatic resources and their habitats.

    PubMed

    Brittingham, Margaret C; Maloney, Kelly O; Farag, Aïda M; Harper, David D; Bowen, Zachary H

    2014-10-01

    Technological advances in hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling have led to the exploration and exploitation of shale oil and gas both nationally and internationally. Extensive development of shale resources has occurred within the United States over the past decade, yet full build out is not expected to occur for years. Moreover, countries across the globe have large shale resources and are beginning to explore extraction of these resources. Extraction of shale resources is a multistep process that includes site identification, well pad and infrastructure development, well drilling, high-volume hydraulic fracturing and production; each with its own propensity to affect associated ecosystems. Some potential effects, for example from well pad, road and pipeline development, will likely be similar to other anthropogenic activities like conventional gas drilling, land clearing, exurban and agricultural development and surface mining (e.g., habitat fragmentation and sedimentation). Therefore, we can use the large body of literature available on the ecological effects of these activities to estimate potential effects from shale development on nearby ecosystems. However, other effects, such as accidental release of wastewaters, are novel to the shale gas extraction process making it harder to predict potential outcomes. Here, we review current knowledge of the effects of high-volume hydraulic fracturing coupled with horizontal drilling on terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems in the contiguous United States, an area that includes 20 shale plays many of which have experienced extensive development over the past decade. We conclude that species and habitats most at risk are ones where there is an extensive overlap between a species range or habitat type and one of the shale plays (leading to high vulnerability) coupled with intrinsic characteristics such as limited range, small population size, specialized habitat requirements, and high sensitivity to disturbance

  16. Ecological risks of shale oil and gas development to wildlife, aquatic resources and their habitats.

    PubMed

    Brittingham, Margaret C; Maloney, Kelly O; Farag, Aïda M; Harper, David D; Bowen, Zachary H

    2014-10-01

    Technological advances in hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling have led to the exploration and exploitation of shale oil and gas both nationally and internationally. Extensive development of shale resources has occurred within the United States over the past decade, yet full build out is not expected to occur for years. Moreover, countries across the globe have large shale resources and are beginning to explore extraction of these resources. Extraction of shale resources is a multistep process that includes site identification, well pad and infrastructure development, well drilling, high-volume hydraulic fracturing and production; each with its own propensity to affect associated ecosystems. Some potential effects, for example from well pad, road and pipeline development, will likely be similar to other anthropogenic activities like conventional gas drilling, land clearing, exurban and agricultural development and surface mining (e.g., habitat fragmentation and sedimentation). Therefore, we can use the large body of literature available on the ecological effects of these activities to estimate potential effects from shale development on nearby ecosystems. However, other effects, such as accidental release of wastewaters, are novel to the shale gas extraction process making it harder to predict potential outcomes. Here, we review current knowledge of the effects of high-volume hydraulic fracturing coupled with horizontal drilling on terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems in the contiguous United States, an area that includes 20 shale plays many of which have experienced extensive development over the past decade. We conclude that species and habitats most at risk are ones where there is an extensive overlap between a species range or habitat type and one of the shale plays (leading to high vulnerability) coupled with intrinsic characteristics such as limited range, small population size, specialized habitat requirements, and high sensitivity to disturbance

  17. Assessing ecological risks to the fish community from residual coal fly ash in Watts Bar Reservoir, Tennessee

    SciTech Connect

    Rigg, David K.; Wacksman, Mitch N.; Iannuzzi, Jacqueline; Baker, Tyler F.; Adams, Marshall; Greeley, Jr., Mark Stephen

    2014-12-18

    For this research, extensive site-specific biological and environmental data were collected to support an evaluation of risks to the fish community in Watts Bar Reservoir from residual ash from the December 2008 Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) Kingston ash release. This paper describes the approach used and results of the risk assessment for the fish community, which consists of multiple measurement endpoints (measures of exposure and effects) for fish. The lines of evidence included 1) comparing postspill annual fish community assessments with nearby prespill data and data from other TVA reservoirs, 2) evaluating possible effects of exposures of fish eggs and larval fish to ash in controlled laboratory toxicity tests, 3) evaluating reproductive competence of field-exposed fish, 4) assessing individual fish health through physical examination, histopathology, and blood chemistry, 5) comparing fish tissue concentrations with literature-based critical body residues, and 6) comparing concentrations of ash-related contaminants in surface waters with US Environmental Protection Agency's (USEPA) Ambient Water Quality Standards for Fish and Aquatic Life. These measurement endpoints were treated as independent lines of evidence that were integrated into an overall weight-of-evidence estimate of risk to the fish community. Collectively, the data and analysis presented here indicate that ash and ash-related constituents pose negligible risks to the fish communities in Watts Bar Reservoir. This conclusion contradicts the predictions by some researchers immediately following the ash release of devastating effects on the aquatic ecology of Watts Bar Reservoir. The information presented in this article reaffirms the wisdom of carefully evaluating the evidence before predicting probable ecological effects of a major event such as the TVA Kingston ash release. Lastly, this study demonstrates that a thorough and detailed investigation using multiple measurement endpoints is needed

  18. Assessing ecological risks to the fish community from residual coal fly ash in Watts Bar Reservoir, Tennessee.

    PubMed

    Rigg, David K; Wacksman, Mitch N; Iannuzzi, Jacqueline; Baker, Tyler F; Adams, Marshall; Greeley, Mark S

    2015-01-01

    Extensive site-specific biological and environmental data were collected to support an evaluation of risks to the fish community in Watts Bar Reservoir from residual ash from the December 2008 Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) Kingston ash release. This article describes the approach used and results of the risk assessment for the fish community, which consists of multiple measurement endpoints (measures of exposure and effects) for fish. The lines of evidence included 1) comparing postspill annual fish community assessments with nearby prespill data and data from other TVA reservoirs, 2) evaluating possible effects of exposures of fish eggs and larval fish to ash in controlled laboratory toxicity tests, 3) evaluating reproductive competence of field-exposed fish, 4) assessing individual fish health through physical examination, histopathology, and blood chemistry, 5) comparing fish tissue concentra