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Integrating climate model projections into environmental risk assessment: a probabilistic modeling approach

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posted on 2024-03-01, 05:07 authored by S Jannicke Moe, Kevin V Brix, Wayne G Landis, Jenny StauberJenny Stauber, John Carriger, John Hader, Taro Kunimitsu, Sophie Mentzel, Rory Nathan, Pamela Noyes, Rik Oldenkamp, Jason Rohr, Paul Van den Brink, Julie Verheyen, Rasmus E Benestad
The Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry (SETAC) convened a Pellston workshop in 2022 to examine how information on climate change could be better incorporated into the ecological risk assessment (ERA) process for chemicals as well as other environmental stressors. A major impetus for this workshop is that climate change can affect components of ecological risks in multiple direct and indirect ways, including the use patterns and environmental exposure pathways of chemical stressors such as pesticides, the toxicity of chemicals in receiving environments, and the vulnerability of species of concern related to habitat quality and use. This article explores a modeling approach for integrating climate model projections into the assessment of near- and long-term ecological risks, developed in collaboration with climate scientists. State-of-the-art global climate modeling and downscaling techniques may enable climate projections at scales appropriate for the study area. It is, however, also important to realize the limitations of individual global climate models and make use of climate model ensembles represented by statistical properties. Here, we present a probabilistic modeling approach aiming to combine projected climatic variables as well as the associated uncertainties from climate model ensembles in conjunction with ERA pathways. We draw upon three examples of ERA that utilized Bayesian networks for this purpose and that also represent methodological advancements for better prediction of future risks to ecosystems. We envision that the modeling approach developed from this international collaboration will contribute to better assessment and management of risks from chemical stressors in a changing climate. Integr Environ Assess Manag 2024;20:367–383. © 2023 The Authors. Integrated Environmental Assessment and Management published by Wiley Periodicals LLC on behalf of Society of Environmental Toxicology & Chemistry (SETAC).


The authors are indebted to our sponsors for contributing financial or in-kind support to the SETAC Pellston (R) Workshop, 20-24 June 2022, at Oscarsborg Fortress near Oslo, Norway. The workshop was supported by the following companies and organizations: (1) BHP, (2) Chevron, (3) Corteva Agrisciences, (4) CSIRO, (5) International Copper Association, (6) NiPERA, (7) NIVA's Computational Toxicology Program, (8) Research Council of Norway, (9) Rio Tinto, (10) SETAC, (11) Shell, (12) Teck Resources, and (13) the US Environmental Protection Agency. The authors also acknowledge the organizations who sponsored the travel costs and working time of participants. Travel funding for J. D. H. and S. M. was provided by the EU Horizon 2020 program under Marie Sk & lstrok;odowska-Curie Grant Agreement No. 813124 (ECORISK2050). Funding for S. J. M. was provided from NIVA's Computational Toxicology Program. Funding for J. R. R. was provided by the National Science Foundation (DEB-2017785).


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Integrated Environmental Assessment and Management






17p. (p. 367-383)





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© 2023 The Authors. Integrated Environmental Assessment and Management published by Wiley Periodicals LLC on behalf of Society of Environmental Toxicology & Chemistry (SETAC). This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.