A paradigm for ecological risk assessment

Joshua Lipton, Hector Galbraith, Joanna Burger, Daniel Wartenberg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

21 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The 1983 National Academy of Sciences paradigm for conducting human health risk assessment is considered with respect to ecological risk assessment. This four-step paradigm fails to capture key intrinsic differences between the two types of analysis, specifically: identity of risk targets and receptors; identity of the appropriate level of ecological organization at which the risk is expressed; variability of endpoint with respect to risk receptor; and the existence of risk cascades through ecological feedback loops. We propose an alternative paradigm that includes a preliminary step, receptor identification, in which chemical partitioning is combined with a conceptual model of the ecosystem to identify appropriate risk targets. In addition, we propose formal inclusion of endpoint identification and explicit consideration of risk cascades in a relationship assessment in which interactive feedback loops are considered in an iterative process. The proposed paradigm preserves the steps of hazard identification, exposure assessment, dose-response assessment (renamed response assessment) and risk characterization, although specific modifications are recommended.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-5
Number of pages5
JournalEnvironmental Management
Volume17
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 1993

Fingerprint

Risk assessment
risk assessment
Feedback
Health risks
Ecosystems
health risk
Hazards
partitioning
hazard
ecosystem

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Global and Planetary Change
  • Ecology
  • Pollution

Keywords

  • Ecological risk assessment
  • Risk

Cite this

Lipton, Joshua ; Galbraith, Hector ; Burger, Joanna ; Wartenberg, Daniel. / A paradigm for ecological risk assessment. In: Environmental Management. 1993 ; Vol. 17, No. 1. pp. 1-5.
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Lipton, J, Galbraith, H, Burger, J & Wartenberg, D 1993, 'A paradigm for ecological risk assessment', Environmental Management, vol. 17, no. 1, pp. 1-5. https://doi.org/10.1007/BF02393789

A paradigm for ecological risk assessment. / Lipton, Joshua; Galbraith, Hector; Burger, Joanna; Wartenberg, Daniel.

In: Environmental Management, Vol. 17, No. 1, 01.01.1993, p. 1-5.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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