Environmental fate and modelling/Human and ecotoxicological risk assessments
Simulation models are a very useful tool for assessing and estimating the environmental, ecotoxicological and human health risk of pesticides, chemicals and biocides.
For environmental exposure assessments, we use a number of models including those which are recognised from the FOCUS group (Forum for the coordination of pesticide fate models and their use). The use of these models enables us to characterise substance properties that are relevant to their environmental fate and estimate the predicted environmental concentration (PEC) in soil, groundwater, surface water and air. The PEC values calculated are used by us to perform ecotoxicological risk assessments based on characterisation of exposure and effects.
Higher tier studies can be employed in order to solve critical assessments.
We perform ecotoxicological risk assessments according to current guidance documents and regulations and also take into consideration recent developments in the regulatory framework of the European Union and the rest of the world. The development of strategies for environmental risk assessments based on the results of higher tier studies on community level or under complex exposure conditions becomes more and more important and is also part of our teams concerning environmental fate and ecotoxicological aspects.
For human risk assessment, we use all current exposure models for the prediction of acute and chronic consumer exposure (e.g. EFSA model, WHO models, various national models) as well as operator, worker, bystander and resident exposure. Available background or supporting data are taken into consideration on a case-by-case basis in order to refine the risk assessment (including probabilistic approaches).