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PresentationsHome and Personal Care Products2022

Evaluation of Environmental Stressors to Coral in the Florida Keys

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Coral decline has been observed worldwide including to reefs in Florida. Several global and local stressors have been implicated as contributors to the decline of coral populations The most pervasive and deleterious stressor is the global event of rising atmospheric CO2 levels which results in sea temperature changes and acidification. These global warming changes cause coral bleaching and ultimately coral death. Stony Coral Tissue Loss Diseases (SCTLD) is causing widespread devastation in the Florida Reef Tract. Expert coral biologists have identified the most important stressors to reefs in Florida – invasive species, unsustainable fishing practices, coastal development, untreated or poorly treated wastewater, urban and agricultural run-off, and tourism-related damage. Recently, questions have been raised about the potential for certain sunscreen active ingredients (UV filters) to contribute to the decline in coral ecological status. An investigation was conducted to evaluate environmental stressors to coral in the Florida Reef Tract with a focus on the Florida Keys through the lens of possible global and local factors. Stressors with potential to impact coral ecosystems in the Florida Keys were identified and prioritized. A weight-of-evidence did not verify sunscreens as a contributor to coral decline. Improving the ecological status of coral in the Florida Keys requires prioritizing efforts on the most significant stressors. Mitigation efforts to restore damaged coral have been successful to some extent but are labor and time intensive. Conservation efforts should focus on recreational practices such as educational efforts on boaters, divers, and other activities in and around the coral reef to reduce the spread of SCTLD and minimize structural damage to the reefs.

SETAC Europe 2022. On-Demand Only Session 4.07: Environmental Risk Assessment of Organic and Inorganic UV Filters. Oral Presentation.

R. Vamshi, N. Maples-Reynolds, M. Williams (Waterborne), S. Dyer (Waterborne and LeTourneau University), K. Reynertson (Johnson & Johnson), J. Sirois (Consumer Healthcare Products Association)

PostersCrop Protection, Home and Personal Care Products2022

Eco-Epidemiology to Assess Potential Risks of Natural and Anthropogenic Factors, Including UV Filters, to Corals in Hawaii

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Recently questions have been raised regarding the environmental safety of some UV filters used in personal, skin care and beach products to corals.  In some cases (Hawaii, Key West, Palau) regulatory actions have been precautionary, leading to bans.  Eco-epidemiology is a methodology that considers impairments to environmental species and communities from complex combinations of multiple physical and chemical factors with the intent of developing weights of evidence for potential causal relationships.  In this study a large set of natural and human influenced factors (including potential risks of measured UV filters and beach visitors) along with coral cover data were assembled to assess the potential adverse effects of UV filters on corals surrounding Oahu, Hawaii within the context of other factors.  Principal component analyses simplified the coral data into two components:  PC1 representing species diversity and PC2 representing abundance.  These components along with all other factors were correlated against each other to determine if some factors could act as proxies for other factors via multiple linear regression and boosted regression tree analyses.  Overall, there were good agreements between the two regression methods.  The boosted regression tree for PC1 (diversity) showed that 90 percent of the variance were addressed by 3 factors:  wave power, temperature (long-term mean) and benthic turf algae.  The remaining 10 percent included 13 other factors including beach visitors and UV filters.  The regression tree for PC2 (abundance) illustrated 3 factors (temperature long-term mean, latitude, and temperature long-term standard deviation) addressed 75% of the variance.  Twelve other factors, including beach visitors and UV filters) were associated with the remaining 25 percent.  Hence, it appears that UV filter hazards do not significantly address reduced coral diversity and abundance, suggesting that precautionary bans may not achieve their intended results.

SETAC Europe 2022. On-Demand Only Session 4.07: Environmental Risk Assessment of Organic and Inorganic UV Filters. Poster.

S. Dyer (Waterborne and LeTourneau Unviersity), R. Vamshi (Waterborne), C. Holmes (Applied Analysis Solutions), N. Green (Waterborne and Kennesaw Sate University), B. Kent (Waterborne), I. Davies (Personal Care Products Council). Eco-Epidemiology to Assess Potential Risks of Natural and Anthropogenic Factors, Including UV Filters, to Corals in Hawaii

PostersHome and Personal Care Products2022

A Global Environmental Exposure Modeling Framework for Risk Assessment of Chemicals Disposed Down-The-Drain

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Despite advancements in exposure modeling and the growth of global and local data resources, environmental exposure assessment of chemicals disposed down-the-drain (DtD), including consumer product ingredients at the global scale within a consistent framework, has been a challenge over the years. Most assessments have been applied to specific geographies, using simplistic approaches to building a spatially resolved global assessment infrastructure. Challenges such as inconsistent or scarce data, particularly for countries with high assessment needs, have further complicated the evolution of spatially resolved global exposure assessment tools. However, through strategic integration of existing global data resources and established modeling tools, a standardized framework and methodology for spatial exposure modeling can be developed for the global scale. Here we present a spatially resolved global environmental exposure modeling framework that incorporates the best-available data and modeling tools. The global hydrology network from HydroSHEDS and HydroBASINS, global river flow, detailed population estimates, and the best-available country-specific water use and wastewater treatment information were integrated with the iSTREEM® framework (https://www.istreem.org/) to provide a means of estimating the distribution of concentrations of a chemical disposed DtD across a river network. The framework was first developed for China and further extended to include Japan, Canada, and Mexico. Country-level case studies were generated based on chemical production volume, consumer use estimates, and chemical-specific removals at wastewater treatment. Modeling results (probabilistic and spatial) from the case studies were compared with available monitoring data from literature; results showed good agreement between modeled and measured data. The framework developed is highly adaptable to parametrize the model for countries with an abundance of data (e.g., North America) or those scarce with data (e.g., developing countries). This work highlights the practical application of the model as a ready-to-use tool for exposure assessments. The iSTREEM® model’s evolution reflects recent scientific advances in DtD exposure modeling to address global challenges and needs such as assessment over broad geographies, the incorporation of probabilistic variability, spatially explicit distributions, and accessibility of this enhanced utility for end-users.

SETAC Europe 2022. Session 3.03: Advances in exposure modelling. Exhibition Hall.

K. Stanton (American Cleaning Institute), R. Vamshi, B. Kent (Waterborne), K. McDonough, S. Csiszar (The Procter & Gamble Company), R. Heisler. A Global Environmental Exposure Modeling Framework for Risk Assessment of Chemicals Disposed Down-The-Drain. Poster.

 

PostersHome and Personal Care Products2021

Down-The-Drain Exposure Assessments in Canada and Mexico With iSTREEM®

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The iSTREEM® model (https://www.istreem.org/) integrates the locations of municipal wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) with a hydrologic network, providing a framework to assess environmental risk in a spatial context. The model has been widely applied for ecological risk assessments of down-the-drain (DtD) chemicals in the U.S. To address growing challenges outside the U.S., the model was recently expanded to include Canada and Mexico by integrating country-specific WWTP infrastructure data with river hydrology from global datasets. WWTPs are a major exposure route for a wide range of DtD chemicals that are treated and discharged to surface water. To include populations not connected to WWTP, the model utilizes a framework to account for wastewater discharged to septic/onsite systems and direct discharge to surface water. The model was applied to predict the environmental concentrations of two DtD chemicals in Canada and Mexico. Countryspecific chemical use, along with removals in wastewater and surface water were parameterized for model simulations. Results from the modeling exercise were compared with publicly available monitoring data and published literature. Additional sensitivity analyses were performed to understand the effect of varying model inputs to the results. This work highlights the practical application of the spatially resolved and probabilistic distributions generated by the model as a ready-to-use tool for exposure assessments. The evolution of the iSTREEM® model reflects recent scientific advances in DtD exposure modeling to address current global challenges and needs such as assessment over broad geographies, incorporation of probabilistic variability, spatially explicit distributions, and accessibility of this enhanced utility for end-users.

SETAC North America 2021. Session: Chemistry and Exposure Assessment (04.13.09)

R. Vamshi, B.H. Kent (Waterborne), K. McDonough, S.A. Csiszar (Procter & Gamble) R.E. Heisler, K. Stanton (American Cleaning Institute). Down-the-Drain Exposure Assessment in Canada and Mexico with iSTREEM®.

PostersPresentationsHome and Personal Care Products2021

Use of an Eco-Epidemiology Approach to Assess Potential Risks of Natural and Anthropogenic Factors, Including UV Filters, to Coral Community Status in Hawaii

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In the past few years, questions have been raised regarding the environmental safety of some UV filters used in personal, skin care and beach products to corals. In some cases (e.g., Hawaii, Key West, Palau) regulatory actions have been precautionary, leading to bans. Unfortunately, no regulatory authority has explicitly attempted to quantify the impacts of UV filters on corals relative to other forms of pollution or environmental factors. Eco-epidemiology is a methodology that considers species and communities as affected by complex combinations of multiple physical, chemical, and environmental conditions over time. This study assembled a large set of natural and human influenced factors (including potential risks of UV filters) along with coral cover data for the Hawaiian Island of Oahu to assess the potential adverse effects of UV filters on corals within the context of other factors. All data were spatially analyzed using a geographic information system. Principal component analyses were used to determine the relationships of coral ecological data to natural and anthropogenic factors. Results indicated that coral cover could be explained via species diversity and abundance. These aspects and all other factors were then correlated to each other to determine if some factors could act as proxies for each other (e.g., beach visitors as a proxy for UV filters) and if any factors appeared to be highly related to coral diversity and abundance. Wave power, sea surface temperatures and sedimentation were shown to be highly correlated to coral ecological status. Statistically significant regressions for coral diversity included temperature anomalies and wave power, both of which addressed the vast majority of the variance. UV filters did not significantly contribute to decreases in coral diversity. Regressions for coral abundance indicated that sewage effluent and sedimentation were more significant than UV filter hazards. Hence, it appears that UV filter hazards do not significantly address reduced coral diversity and abundance whereas wave power, temperature and sedimentation appear as the dominant factors affecting coral ecological status.

SETAC North America 2021. Session: UV Filters in Aquatic Ecosystems (2.12.04)

R. Vamshi, S.D. Dyer, B.H. Kent, F. Abi-Akar (Waterborne), C.M. Holmes (Applied Analysis Solutions), N.S. Green (Kennesaw State University, I. Davies (Personal Care Products Council). Use of an Eco-Epidemiology Approach to Assess Potential Risks of Natura and Anthropogenic Factors, Including UV Filters, to Coral Community Status in Hawaii.

PresentationsHome and Personal Care Products, Water/Wastewater Assessments2019

Development of integrated risk assessment framework and methodology for assessing environmental safety of chemicals disposed down the drain in China

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SETAC 2019, Platform 30
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Session Title: Building Bridges Between Lab-and Field-Derived Data: Methods for the Assessment of Complex Environmental Issues
Monday, November 4, 2019
10:40 am, Room 717B

Abstract:
The new Chinese regulatory chemical management scheme calls for increased development of risk-based assessment framework and tools that can address regional and national needs. Important considerations include identifying chemicals with high potential for adverse impact to humans and the environment early in the assessment, while also recognizing regional differences in the levels of economic and infrastructure development as well as environmental conditions. An integrated, tiered environmental risk assessment framework and methodology was developed for assessing the environmental safety of chemicals disposed down the drain in China. The tiers incorporate China’s specific exposure conditions as well as consideration of Chinese native species for effects assessment. The framework starts with a Low Tier utilizing the existing Chinese regulatory qualitative method, whereas Mid-Tier is quantitative using deterministic and probabilistic approaches that account for per capita residential water usage, wastewater treatment capability, as well as wastewater/in-stream dilution factors. A High Tier spatially explicit aquatic exposure model was recently created which leveraged historic work on the iSTREEM® model (American Cleaning Institute). A high-resolution river flow dataset was established based on the Curve Number method (Natural Resources Conservation Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture) and further validated by monitoring data. Case studies will be presented for consumer product ingredients which indicate Lower Tiers are conservative with greater environmental realism associated with High Tier methodology. A key aspect for the integrated framework is environmental effects assessment based on Chinese native species, as chemical registrations in China routinely involve local fish testing. The Chinese Rare Minnow (Gobiocypris rarus) and Chinese Medaka (Oryzias sinensis) are examples of leading local species. This research developed an understanding of the ecology, physiology, and other biological information allowed for the extrapolation between these two species and other OECD standard test species (e.g., zebrafish). We investigated comparative fish acute toxicity using 3,4-Dichloroaniline and NaCl with studies planned on additional chemicals and species. Chinese native species data will be utilized not only for direct hazard assessment but also for the development of statistical extrapolation methods, such as interspecies correlation estimation (ICE) models. ICE models use available toxicity data of surrogate species to predict untested species to expand the domains of ecotoxicological information for China’s integrated environmental risk assessments.

M. Fan (P&G), K. McDonough (P&G), S. Belanger (P&G), Z. Liu (Chinese Research Academy of Environmental Sciences), R. Vamshi (Waterborne), S. Csiszar (P&G), J. Menzies (P&G), X. Wang (Chinese Research Academy of Environmental Sciences), K. Kapo (Waterborne).  Development of integrated risk assessment framework and methodology for assessing environmental safety of chemicals disposed down the drain in China. Platform 30, SETAC 2019. Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

PostersHome and Personal Care Products, Water/Wastewater Assessments2019

Moving toward a spatially-resolved global surface water flow and aquatic exposure model for consumer-use down-the-drain ingredients: Japan case study

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SETAC 2019, MP123
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Session Title: Challenges in Characterizing Exposures to Organic Chemicals: Multiple Sources, Multiple Pathways and Multiple Scales
Monday, November 4, 2019
8:00 am, Exhibit Hall

Abstract:
Exposure assessment is a key factor in the environmental risk assessment (ERA) of consumer products that are disposed down-the-drain and involves estimating concentrations of ingredients in receiving waters. There is an opportunity to develop a globally-harmonized spatially explicit aquatic exposure model for down-the-drain ingredients by leveraging the growing availability of computational methods and large spatial datasets. Current models often assume average conditions across a country/region in a deterministic calculation, while, in reality, there can be substantial spatial variation in input parameters (e.g., emissions, per capita water use, and waste water treatment) across a region. While spatial variability has been addressed by some models, they have focused on a single country/region; and there is a need for a user-friendly, global aquatic exposure model on a single platform with a consistent approach, using best available data. The iSTREEM® model (American Cleaning Institute) is a spatially-explicit aquatic exposure model parameterized and evaluated primarily for the United States. The model has also been extended to China and evaluation has indicated excellent agreement between modeled and measured river flow data. There was also excellent agreement between case study modeled and monitored chemical concentrations. This platform was leveraged and extended to cover Japan and follows a framework that uses global datasets to estimate river flow on a catchment level, rout chemicals between catchments, and estimate catchment-specific concentrations. Each catchment is parameterized with a specific population, per capita water use, and waste water treatment plant (WWTP) information; and allows for spatial variation in emissions. For Japan, spatial locations of WWTPs were incorporated into the model and the resulting population served by WWTP treatment corresponds well with published reports of treatment levels. Direct discharge of grey water was included to represent current practice in some areas of Japan. Measured river flow data and case study chemicals with available monitoring data were used to evaluate the flow predictions and concentration distributions estimated by the model. Thus, this model framework provides a promising platform for expansion as a global aquatic exposure model for down-the-drain ingredients.

S. Csiszar (P&G), R. Vamshi (Waterborne), M. Fan (P&G), K. McDonough (P&G).  Moving toward a spatially-resolved global surface water flow and aquatic exposure model for consumer-use down-the-drain ingredients: Japan case study. Poster, SETAC 2019. MP123. Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

PresentationsHome and Personal Care Products2019

Using eco-epidemiology to assess the potential risks of UV filters to corals

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Abstract:
A recent study in Archives of Environmental Contamination and Toxicology (Downs et al 2016) indicating potential ecotoxicity issues for coral exposed to UV filters, such as benzophenone-3, has gained a global-level of visibility. This single study has provided laboratory evidence that calls into question the sufficiency of environmental risk assessments associated with benzophenone-3 via sunscreen use, particularly for swimmers and sunbathers. For sub-tropical and tropical climates, the potential occurrence for exposure of BP-3 may be year-around. Spatial coincidence of BP-3 exposure and marine ecosystems highly dependent on corals amplifies the potential issues highlighted in the Downs et al study. However, coral reefs have been shown to be adversely affected by numerous other chemical, biological and physical stressors, ranging from local to global scales. Hence, the protection of corals requires a multi-faceted approach that considers not only potential chemicals stressors, but physical stress – including temperature and changes in habitat quality. We advocate the use of eco-epidemiology to evaluate the relationships between environmental stressors and ecological status within a realistic ecological context. This approach supports the recognition that ecosystem status is driven by a multitude of physical, chemical and other environmental factors. Since the foundation of the evaluation relies on measured ecological status, recommendations from such an assessment have great potential for decision-making (including regulations) that will yield fruitful management actions. Our initial analysis utilizes data obtained from experts at the University of Hawaii (e.g., Coral Reef Assessment and Monitoring Program (CRAMP) http://cramp.wcc.hawaii.edu/default.htm). Measured UV filter and surrogate exposure data were collected for the island of Oahu from Mitchelmore et al (2018). To date, published works by the CRAMP experts indicate that both natural and anthropogenic factors may influence coral cover and species richness. Importantly, no single factor has been found to serve as a proxy for coral cover. Hence, it is clear that coral cover and species richness is dependent upon many factors. Based on CRAMP data alone, there appears to be a lack of data supporting the hypothesis that UV filters provide an adverse influence on corals. Our study places into context UV filters amongst several physical and chemical factors that potentially affect coral community health.

Scott Dyer (Waterborne Environmental), Christopher Holmes (Waterborne Environmental), Iain Davies (Personal Care Products Council), and Carys Mitchelmore (UMCES Chesapeake Biological Laboratory). Using eco-epidemiology to assess the potential risks of UV filters to corals.
Platform Presentation SETAC Europe 2019. Helsinki, Finland.

Papers & ReportsHome and Personal Care Products, Water/Wastewater Assessments2017

Use of Prospective and retrospective risk assessment methods that simplify chemical mixtures associated with treated domestic wastewater discharges

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A framework is presented that is intended to facilitate the evaluation of potential aquatic ecological risks resulting from discharges of down‐the‐drain chemicals. A scenario is presented using representatives of many of the types of chemicals that are treated domestically. Predicted environmental chemical concentrations are based on reported loading rates and routine removal rates for 3 types of treatment: trickling filter, activated sludge secondary treatment, and activated sludge plus advanced oxidation process as well as instream effluent dilution. In tier I, predicted effluent concentrations were compared with the lowest predicted‐no‐effect concentration (PNEC) obtained from the literature using safety factors as needed. A cumulative risk characterization ratio (cumRCR) < 1.0 indicates that risk is unlikely and no further action is needed. Otherwise, a tier 2 assessment is used, in which PNECs are based on trophic level. If tier 2 indicates a possible risk, then a retrospective assessment is recommended. In tier 1, the cumRCR was > 1.0 for all 3 treatment types in our scenario, even though no chemical exceeded a hazard quotient of 1.0 in activated sludge or advanced oxidation process. In tier 2, activated sludge yielded a lower cumRCR than trickling filter because of higher removal rates, and the cumRCR in the advanced oxidation process was << 1.0. Based on the maximum cumulative risk ratio (MCR), more than one‐third of the predicted risk was accounted for by one chemical, and at least 90% was accounted for by 3 chemicals, indicating that few chemicals influenced the mixture risk in our scenario. We show how a retrospective assessment can test whether certain chemicals hypothesized as potential drivers in the prospective assessment could have, or are having, deleterious effects on aquatic life.

Diamond, J., Altenburger, R., Coors, A., Dyer, S.D., Focazio, M., Kidd, K., Koelmans, A.A., Leung, K.M.Y., Servos, M.R., Snape, J., Tolls, J., Zhang, X. (2017), Use of prospective and retrospective risk assessment methods that simplify chemical mixtures associated with treated domestic wastewater discharges. Environ Toxicol Chem. 37: 690-702. doi.org/10.1002/etc.4013

Papers & ReportsHome and Personal Care Products, Human Pharmaceuticals, Water/Wastewater Assessments2015

A framework for screening sites at risk from contaminants of emerging concern

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Trace levels of a variety of currently unregulated organic chemicals have been detected in treated wastewater effluents and surface waters that receive treated effluents. Many of these chemicals of emerging concern (CECs) originate from pharmaceuticals and personal care products that are used widely and that frequently are transported “down the drain” to a wastewater treatment plant (WWTP). Actual effects of CECs on aquatic life have been difficult to document, although biological effects consistent with effects of some CECs have been noted. There is a critical need to find appropriate ways to screen wastewater sites that have the greatest potential of CEC risk to biota. Building on the work of several researchers, the authors present a screening framework, as well as examples based on the framework, designed to identify high‐risk versus lower‐risk sites that are influenced by WWTP effluent. It is hoped that this framework can help researchers, utilities, and the larger water resource community focus efforts toward improving CEC risk determinations and management of these risks.

Diamond, J., Munkittrick, K., Kapo, K.E., Flippin, J. (2015), A framework for screening sites at risk from contaminants of emerging concern. Environ Toxicol Chem. 34: 2671-2681. doi:10.1002/etc.3177