Tools for Evaluating Ecological Risks and Foodweb Modeling of Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances
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Ecological Risk Assessments (ERAs) for PFAS require specific data needs and tools, many of which have been historically lacking.

Recently, under a Department of Defense Strategic Environmental Research and Development Program (SERDP) statement of need, a number of practicable tools for completing ERAs for PFAS were developed. This presentation will highlight two new tools available under SERDP: 1) Excel based foodweb modeling tools for aquatic and terrestrial foodwebs, and 2) a comprehensive set of wildlife screening criteria. To support refined-SLERA and baseline ERAs, SERDP Project ER18-1614 developed a foodweb modeling framework for aquatic and terrestrial foodwebs following a critical review of over 1000 bioaccumulation metrics for PFAS (e.g. bioconcentration, bioaccumulation, and biota-soil accumulation factors). The modeling framework has been developed into an Excel-based modeling tool where concentrations of PFAS in abiotic media can be input by users with minimal additional data needs, to facilitate foodweb modeling and risk characterization for wildlife. To support screening level ERAs, SERDP Project ER18-1653 developed screening levels for aquatic life (aquatic plants, invertebrates, fish, and amphibians) using the Great Lakes Initiative methodology, and for terrestrial plants, soil invertebrates, and terrestrial and aquatic wildlife (birds and mammals) following USEPA Ecological Soil Screening Levels methodology. Along with highlighting these new tools for PFAS ERAs, ongoing data gaps and research needs will be discussed.

Publication Summary

  • Geosyntec Authors: Jennifer Arblaster
  • All Authors: Jennifer Arblaster
  • Title: The Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry (SETAC) North America 41st Annual Meeting
  • Event or Publication: Event
  • Practice Areas: Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS)
  • Citation: Jason Conder, Ph.D., (California), Jennifer Arblaster (Vermont), and Alice Wang, Ph.D., (Massachusetts) will present at the Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry (SETAC) North America 41st Annual Meeting at 8:00-12:00 PM CST on November 15, 2020.
  • Date: November 15, 2020
  • Location: Virtual
  • Publication Type: Platform Presentation