2021 SETAC Europe Meeting
Waterborne Environmental has been busy preparing for the SETAC Europe Spring 2021 Virtual Meeting, May 3-6, and now we’re ready for the virtual conference to start! Although we’re looking forward to the day when we can meet with our clients and colleagues face-to-face at scientific conferences, we’ve adjusted to the platform of the virtual meeting and are grateful for the opportunity to share our recent work and engage with our peers. If you will be in attendance, we hope to connect with you virtually.
Over the past year we have been working hard on some novel projects and we’d like to share these with you through our posters and presentations featured at the SETAC Europe conference. Our featured work for this year’s conference includes effects modeling focused on mesocosm data, assessment of the impact of climate change on OECD crosswalks, and modeling of pesticide leaching. You may also find us participating in the various social networking events planned during the week. If you have any questions regarding our featured content, or would like to meet with someone from our team during the conference, feel free to reach out to Amelie Schmolke, Farah Abi-Akar, Raghu Vamshi, Dean Desmarteau, or Gerco Hoogeweg. We’d be happy to setup a time to meet with you during the conference or after.
Below is our 2021 SETAC Europe platform and poster line-up with links to the respective abstracts. In most cases, we are also able to make presentations available for download after the conference, so stay tuned. If you have questions about any of these presentations, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The full 2021 SETAC Europe technical program can be found here>>.
We hope to “see” you there!
Waterborne's Presentations & Posters
Identification of Patterns in Mesocosm Data: An Analysis of Untreated Control Ecosystems Across Multiple Studies
Session: Effect Modelling for Regulatory Environmental Risk Assessment of Chemicals: Where Are We and What Comes Next?
Abstract: For risk assessment, experimental mesocosms provide valuable insights into the complex responses of aquatic ecosystems to stressors. Similarly, aquatic systems models (ASMs) represent food web interactions in an aquatic species community and interactions with abiotic environmental conditions. In the context of a study to simulate mesocosms using ASMs, an analysis of control mesocosm data was conducted to identify patterns in temporal dynamics in the species communities. Control data from six mesocosm studies were anonymized, collated, and characterized using visual and statistical analyses. The data were generated during studies conducted in 2016, 2018 and 2019 by MESOCOSM GmbH. During these studies, physical parameters of temperature, oxygen, pH, water level and conductivity were measured over the study duration. Nitrate, ammonium, and phosphate concentrations and water hardness were measured prior to the beginning of each study. Additionally, weekly samples were collected for taxon and species abundance evaluation. The resulting dynamics of phytoplankton, periphyton, macrophytes, zooplankton and macroinvertebrates were analyzed for each study data set and across studies. Correlation matrices were constructed and used to examine the data and identify consistent patterns of biotic and abiotic interactions. The trends observed within and across the studies show considerable temporal variability in species composition and abundance. The characterization and understanding of similar and repeated temporal patterns in the untreated aquatic mesocosms is an important foundation for the simulation of mesocosm studies using ASMs. We provide perspectives on the challenges associated with variability observed in mesocosm controls, and offer possible explanation and insights for managing these challenges in modeling.
Authors: Farah Abi-Akar (Waterborne), Amelie Schmolke (Waterborne), Peter Ebke (Mesocosm GmbH), Jürgen Schmidt (Mesocosm GmbH), Nika Galic (Syngenta), Steven Bartell (Cardno), Isabel O’Connor (EBP), Simon Spycher (EBP), Nele Schuwirth (EAWAG), Tido Strauss (Gaiac), Damian Preziosi (Integral), Robert Pastorok (Integral), Roman Ashauer (Syngenta). SETAC Europe 2021.
Impact of Climate Change on the Relevance of OECD Crosswalks
Session: Extended submission 3 – Environmental chemistry and exposure assessment: analysis, monitoring, fate and modeling
Abstract: Climate change studies confirm that the earth is warming up and that shifts in rainfall patterns is occurring. Various computer models predict that Earth’s average temperature will rise between 1.8° and 4.0° Celsius (3.2° and 7.2° F). Consequently, these warmer temperatures will cause a higher rate of evaporation, resulting in a predicted increase of average global rainfall by 3-5%. Under OCED guidance, TFD studies conducted in one country can be applicable to other countries if the characteristics of overlapping ecoregions are the same. These assessments are conducted using the OECD ENASGIPS tool. If these characteristics change, so will the similarity assessment and therefore the potential relevance of TFD sites. With increase rainfall, TFD sites in the Southeastern US, which typically have few similar areas, may become more relevant because other areas are getting wetter. Likewise, TFD sites in arid ecoregions may see a decrease in similarity scores. In this presentation we show that TFD studies in arid regions in the US remain relevant for foreseeable future.The objective of this assessment was to determine if climate change will impact the relevance of TFD studies and OECD ENASGIPS crosswalks ecoregion similarity scores. Specifically, we were interested in determining if ecoregions overlapping TFD sites remain the same over time in terms of precipitation, temperature, and ecoregion similarity. Both statistical analysis and ecoregion crosswalk assessments were conducted. In this presentation we will focus on an arid in California’s Central Valley using the intermediate IPCC RCP4.5 and worse case RCP8.5 climate change scenarios. Results indicate that under moderate climate change scenario the arid ecoregion has an increase in the number of similar ecoregion over time but a decrease is observed under the worse case scenario. In the short-term, 30 to 40 years, TFD studies are not predicted to see an impact by of climate change and data obtained from these TFD studies can be used for registration and reregistration of pesticides for the foreseeable future.
Authors: Cornelis Hoogeweg, Amy Ritter, Raghu Vamshi, Dean Desmarteau (Waterborne). SETAC Europe 2021.
Modelling Ecosystems in Mesocosms: A Ring Study Approach With Four Aquatic Systems Models
Session: Effect Modelling for Regulatory Environmental Risk Assessment of Chemicals: Where Are We and What Comes Next?
Abstract: Aquatic systems models (ASMs) represent food-web interactions in an aquatic community and interactions with environmental conditions. Ecological models, including ASMs, are valuable tools in pesticide risk assessments because they can be applied to a range of biotic and abiotic conditions, as well as to a variety of exposure scenarios which would be impractical to test empirically. Four ASMs (Streambugs, AQUATOX, CASM, and StoLam with STREAMcom) that have been developed, published and applied in pesticide risk assessments and other contexts are the subjects of this ring study. Model inputs and outputs are compared among the ASMs, using mesocosm data generated and provided by MESOCOSM GmbH. The ASM ring study includes: a) analysis and preparation of mesocosm control and treatment data, b) definition of the food web represented across ASMs, c) parameterization of the ASMs, d) calibration of the ASMs to mesocosm control data, e) validation of the calibrated ASMs against mesocosm control data not used in the calibration, f) calibration of the ASMs to mesocosm treatment data. All steps are documented in detail, following the recommendations of the good modeling practice. We will present methods and results of the steps a) – d). We outline an approach for defining a mesocosm food web that can be represented by multiple ASMs, and the parameterization and calibration of the ASMs to the available mesocosm data. The approach provides important insights into the strengths and limitations of different ASMs for this particular modelling exercise through comparison of the model outputs with each other and with empirical data. In the next steps of the ring study, we will evaluate the ASMs using independent mesocosm data from the same test site, and simulate treatment effects for an example pesticide.
Authors: Amelie Schmolke (Waterborne), Nika Galic (Syngenta), Steven Bartell (Cardno), Isabel O’Connor (EBP), Simon Spycher (EBP), Nele Schuwirth (EAWAG), Tido Strauss (Gaiac), Damian Preziosi (Integral), Robert Pastorok (Integral), Peter Ebke (Mesocosm GmbH), Jürgen Schmidt (Mesocosm GmbH), Farah Abi-Akar (Waterborne), Jennifer Collins (Waterborne), Roman Ashauer (Syngenta). SETAC Europe 2021.
Problem Definition of a Harmonised Framework for Spatially Distributed Leaching Modelling (SDLM) of Pesticides
Session: Measuring, Monitoring and Modelling of Pesticide Fate and Mitigation in a Regulatory Context
Abstract: Spatially distributed leaching modelling (SDLM) of pesticides is a methodology to estimate the leaching potential of plant protection products over an extensive spatial scale such as national or European. It is described as a higher tier in the current European Guidance for groundwater risk assessment. Whereas this option is an integral part of the tiered assessment scheme only little guidance is provided on how to conduct such spatial assessments with SDLM. Guidance on how to perform such leaching assessments is therefore needed, as well as version control for high-resolution spatial databases for the EU. It was therefore decided to establish a working group under the umbrella of the SETAC Environmental Monitoring Advisory Group on Pesticides (SETAC EMAG-PEST). This document describes the aim and scope of the work to be performed by this working group. The main products of the working group will be a harmonised modelling framework including the data needed to run these models, and documents describing the use of the framework in regulatory assessments. The framework will serve two different Tiers of the groundwater risk assessment scheme, i.e. Tier-3b and Tier-4. At Tier-3b, the framework will deliver the same exposure assessment goal as currently used in FOCUS groundwater, i.e. the 80th-spatial and temporal percentiles of the leaching concentration at 1-m depth. This exposure assessment goal is considered a conservative estimate of the real groundwater concentration. To ensure consistency of the tiered approach, the modelling framework will support all parameter refinements carried out at Tier-2. At Tier-4, the measured groundwater concentration in groundwater wells is assessed. The modelling framework plays a crucial role for the selection of vulnerable regions in which to install monitoring wells. It can also be used to demonstrate whether existing groundwater monitoring studies have been carried out at locations that are sufficiently vulnerable in view of the existing FOCUS exposure assessment goal. The modelling framework will, however, not simulate the actual concentration in the groundwater wells, because additional processes occur between 1 m depth and the position of the groundwater wells. The Working Group will consist of members from academia, regulators and industry. It will consist of a Steering Committee, a subgroup on spatial data and a subgroup on modelling. The Working Group will deliver two years after the start of the project.
Authors: Bernhard Jene (BASF), Aaldrik Tiktak (PBL), Abdul Ghafoor (KEMI), Anton Poot (CTGB), Erik van den Berg (Wageningen University), Cornelis Hoogeweg (Waterborne), Michael Klein (Fraunhofer IME), Michael Stemmer (AGES), Paul Sweeney (Syngenta), Robin Sur (Bayer AG)