Institute for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Dynamics

IBED Seminar by prof. Annemarie van Wezel

22Feb2018 16:00 - 17:00


Title: Water as integrator of uses and stakes


Annemarie P. van Wezel
KWR Watercycle Research Institute and Copernicus Institute of Sustainable Development, The Netherlands



This IBED lecture focuses on exposures to (emerging) chemicals via the water cycle, the various sources relating to societies’ use of water and chemicals, pathways, possible health effects and mitigation options.

The use of advanced analytical techniques is highlighted, i.e. suspect screening using high resolution mass spectrometry to analyze a broad set of industrial chemicals, pharmaceuticals and pesticides including their transformation products, and subsequent prioritization techniques using also in vivo and in vitro toxicity data. Also attention will be given to the analysis of nanoplastics, including field flow fractionation techniques. In addition modelling techniques to predict water quality are highlighted and examples of predictions are given based on communal and industrial emissions.

The interpretation of health risks using in vitro and in vivo toxicity data, including generalizations such as the use of thresholds of toxicological concern (TTC) to assess risks when scarce data are available, is discussed with a focus on relatively polar substances that are hard to remove using water treatment technologies. As in water because of the integration typically complex environmental mixtures occur, some attention is paid to the used of effect-directed triggers compared with triggers based on concentrations of individual substances.

The risks of new and emerging technologies and ways to manage and prevent these risks will be described, using examples form nanotechnology and new technologies for oil and gas. The awareness of these risks by technology developers can be enlarged by risk and technology assessment, ultimately in support of the technology development and it’s acceptance by society.

Finally mitigation is elaborated, connecting the water cycle and the chemical life cycle. A solution-focused and systems-oriented perspective combined with a mitigation database can offer a common perspective amongst relevant actors, inform policy making and stimulate cross-sectoral learning.


Location: G2.10

  • Science Park 904

    Science Park 904 | 1098 XH Amsterdam
    +31 (0)20 525 8626

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Published by  IBED