Abstract Title

Session S-08C: Occurrences and Impacts of Emerging Contaminants

Proposed Abstract Title

An Introduction to the Problem of Contaminants of Emerging Concern (CECs)

Keywords

Emerging Contaminants and Emergencies

Location

Room 606

Start Date

2-5-2014 8:30 AM

End Date

2-5-2014 10:00 AM

Description

Chemicals of emerging concern (CEC) is a label primarily applied to contaminants that are known or suspected to be released to aquatic environments but not commonly regulated or monitored. The sources of CECs are diverse and the potential number of individual CECs may be in the millions. The accessibility of advanced analytical methodologies has permitted a growing number of CECs to be characterized in environmental samples. However, with improved detection comes the recognition of the widespread occurrence of many CECs, although often at very low levels. Thus, questions are also being raised with regard to the environmental importance and toxicological significance of the measurements. This also reflects the reliance on a largely retrospective approach to monitoring, which emphasizes field measurements of effects on biota and then assessing the likelihood of causation from contaminant exposure. However, rapid changes both in the number and types of CECs that may be released to the environment suggests incorporation of more prospective approaches, e.g. those that identify potentially harmful CECs before release, will be increasingly valuable. In this talk, I will provide an introduction to the sources, occurrences and categorization of CECs both in the Salish Sea and other regions along with the challenges faced for effective monitoring and risk prioritization. Recent research with select CECs such as pharmaceuticals of the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) class will also be presented. The SSRI’s exemplify many of the challenges faced in risk prioritization due to their resistance to degradation during wastewater treatment, potential for unexpected patterns of bioaccumulation and synergistic interactions with other CECs.

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May 2nd, 8:30 AM May 2nd, 10:00 AM

An Introduction to the Problem of Contaminants of Emerging Concern (CECs)

Room 606

Chemicals of emerging concern (CEC) is a label primarily applied to contaminants that are known or suspected to be released to aquatic environments but not commonly regulated or monitored. The sources of CECs are diverse and the potential number of individual CECs may be in the millions. The accessibility of advanced analytical methodologies has permitted a growing number of CECs to be characterized in environmental samples. However, with improved detection comes the recognition of the widespread occurrence of many CECs, although often at very low levels. Thus, questions are also being raised with regard to the environmental importance and toxicological significance of the measurements. This also reflects the reliance on a largely retrospective approach to monitoring, which emphasizes field measurements of effects on biota and then assessing the likelihood of causation from contaminant exposure. However, rapid changes both in the number and types of CECs that may be released to the environment suggests incorporation of more prospective approaches, e.g. those that identify potentially harmful CECs before release, will be increasingly valuable. In this talk, I will provide an introduction to the sources, occurrences and categorization of CECs both in the Salish Sea and other regions along with the challenges faced for effective monitoring and risk prioritization. Recent research with select CECs such as pharmaceuticals of the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) class will also be presented. The SSRI’s exemplify many of the challenges faced in risk prioritization due to their resistance to degradation during wastewater treatment, potential for unexpected patterns of bioaccumulation and synergistic interactions with other CECs.