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Developing and evaluating distributions for probabilistic human exposure assessments

Description: This report describes research carried out at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL) to assist the U. S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in developing a consistent yet flexible approach for evaluating the inputs to probabilistic risk assessments. The U.S. EPA Office of Emergency and Remedial Response (OERR) recently released Volume 3 Part A of Risk Assessment Guidance for Superfund (RAGS), as an update to the existing two-volume set of RAGS. The update provides policy and technical guidance on performing probabilistic risk assessment (PRA). Consequently, EPA risk managers and decision-makers need to review and evaluate the adequacy of PRAs for supporting regulatory decisions. A critical part of evaluating a PRA is the problem of evaluating or judging the adequacy of input distributions PRA. Although the overarching theme of this report is the need to improve the ease and consistency of the regulatory review process, the specific objectives are presented in two parts. The objective of Part 1 is to develop a consistent yet flexible process for evaluating distributions in a PRA by identifying the critical attributes of an exposure factor distribution and discussing how these attributes relate to the task-specific adequacy of the input. This objective is carried out with emphasis on the perspective of a risk manager or decision-maker. The proposed evaluation procedure provides consistency to the review process without a loss of flexibility. As a result, the approach described in Part 1 provides an opportunity to apply a single review framework for all EPA regions and yet provide the regional risk manager with the flexibility to deal with site- and case-specific issues in the PRA process. However, as the number of inputs to a PRA increases, so does the complexity of the process for calculating, communicating and managing risk. As a result, there is increasing effort required of both ...
Date: August 1, 2002
Creator: Maddalena, Randy L. & McKone, Thomas E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Public Health Benefits of End-Use Electrical Energy Efficiency in California: An Exploratory Study

Description: This study assesses for California how increasing end-use electrical energy efficiency from installing residential insulation impacts exposures and disease burden from power-plant pollutant emissions. Installation of fiberglass attic insulation in the nearly 3 million electricity-heated homes throughout California is used as a case study. The pollutants nitrous oxides (NO{sub x}), sulfur dioxide (SO{sub 2}), fine particulate matter (PM2.5), benzo(a)pyrene, benzene, and naphthalene are selected for the assessment. Exposure is characterized separately for rural and urban environments using the CalTOX model, which is a key input to the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Tool for the Reduction and Assessment of Chemicals and other environmental Impacts (TRACI). The output of CalTOX provides for urban and rural populations emissions-to-intake factors, which are expressed as an individual intake fraction (iFi). The typical iFi from power plant emissions are on the order of 10{sup -13} (g intake per g emitted) in urban and rural regions. The cumulative (rural and urban) product of emissions, population, and iFi is combined with toxic effects factors to determine human damage factors (HDFs). HDF are expressed as disability adjusted life years (DALYs) per kilogram pollutant emitted. The HDF approach is applied to the insulation case study. Upgrading existing residential insulation to US Department of Energy (DOE) recommended levels eliminates over the assmned 50-year lifetime of the insulation an estimated 1000 DALYs from power-plant emissions per million tonne (Mt) of insulation installed, mostly from the elimination of PM2.5 emissions. In comparison, the estimated burden from the manufacture of this insulation in DALYs per Mt is roughly four orders of magnitude lower than that avoided.
Date: June 1, 2006
Creator: McKone, Thomas E. & Lobscheid, A.B.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Exposure information in environmental health research: Current opportunities and future directions for particulate matter, ozone, and toxic air pollutants

Description: Understanding and quantifying outdoor and indoor sources of human exposure are essential but often not adequately addressed in health-effects studies for air pollution. Air pollution epidemiology, risk assessment, health tracking and accountability assessments are examples of health-effects studies that require but often lack adequate exposure information. Recent advances in exposure modeling along with better information on time-activity and exposure factors data provide us with unique opportunities to improve the assignment of exposures for both future and ongoing studies linking air pollution to health impacts. In September 2006, scientists from the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) along with scientists from the academic community and state health departments convened a symposium on air pollution exposure and health in order to identify, evaluate, and improve current approaches for linking air pollution exposures to disease. This manuscript presents the key issues, challenges and recommendations identified by the exposure working group, who used cases studies of particulate matter, ozone, and toxic air pollutant exposure to evaluate health-effects for air pollution. One of the over-arching lessons of this workshop is that obtaining better exposure information for these different health-effects studies requires both goal-setting for what is needed and mapping out the transition pathway from current capabilities to meeting these goals. Meeting our long-term goals requires definition of incremental steps that provide useful information for the interim and move us toward our long-term goals. Another over-arching theme among the three different pollutants and the different health study approaches is the need for integration among alternate exposure assessment approaches. For example, different groups may advocate exposure indicators, biomonitoring, mapping methods (GIS), modeling, environmental media monitoring, and/or personal exposure modeling. However, emerging research reveals that the greatest progress comes from integration among two or more of these efforts.
Date: February 1, 2007
Creator: McKone, Thomas E.; Ryan, P. Barry & Ozkaynak, Haluk
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

CKow -- A More Transparent and Reliable Model for Chemical Transfer to Meat and Milk

Description: The objective of this study is to increase the understanding and transparency of chemical biotransfer modeling into meat and milk and explicitly confront the uncertainties in exposure assessments of chemicals that require such estimates. In cumulative exposure assessments that include food pathways, much of the overall uncertainty is attributable to the estimation of transfer into biota and through food webs. Currently, the most commonly used meat and milk-biotransfer models date back two decades and, in spite of their widespread use in multimedia exposure models few attempts have been made to advance or improve the outdated and highly uncertain Kow regressions used in these models. Furthermore, in the range of Kow where meat and milk become the dominant human exposure pathways, these models often provide unrealistic rates and do not reflect properly the transfer dynamics. To address these issues, we developed a dynamic three-compartment cow model (called CKow), distinguishing lactating and non-lactating cows. For chemicals without available overall removal rates in the cow, a correlation is derived from measured values reported in the literature to predict this parameter from Kow. Results on carry over rates (COR) and biotransfer factors (BTF) demonstrate that a steady-state ratio between animal intake and meat concentrations is almost never reached. For meat, empirical data collected on short term experiments need to be adjusted to provide estimates of average longer term behaviors. The performance of the new model in matching measurements is improved relative to existing models--thus reducing uncertainty. The CKow model is straight forward to apply at steady state for milk and dynamically for realistic exposure durations for meat COR.
Date: March 1, 2009
Creator: Rosenbaum, Ralph K.; McKone, Thomas E. & Jolliet, Olivier
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Insecticide Exposures on Commercial Aircraft: A Literature Review and Screening Level Assessment

Description: The objective of this project was to provide initial estimates of the relationship between insecticide use on passenger aircraft and exposure levels present in the cabin environment. The work was initially divided into three tasks including 1) a review of insecticide application practices in commercial aircraft, 2) exploratory measurements of insecticide concentrations in treated aircraft and 3) screening level exposure modeling. Task 1 gathered information that is needed to assess the time-concentration history of insecticides in the airline cabin. The literature review focused on application practices, information about the cabin environment and existing measurements of exposure concentrations following treatment. Information from the airlines was not available for estimating insecticide application rates in the U.S. domestic fleet or for understanding how frequently equipment rotate into domestic routes following insecticide treatment. However, the World Health Organization (WHO) recommends several methods for treating aircraft with insecticide. Although there is evidence that these WHO guidelines may not always be followed, and that practices vary by airline, destination, and/or applicator company, the guidelines in combination with information related to other indoor environments provides a plausible basis for estimating insecticide loading rates on aircraft. The review also found that while measurements of exposure concentrations following simulated aerosol applications are available, measurements following residual treatment of aircraft or applications in domestic aircraft are lacking. Task 2 focused on developing an approach to monitor exposure concentrations in aircraft using a combination of active and passive sampling methods. An existing active sampling approach was intended to provide data immediately following treatment while a passive sampler was developed to provide wider coverage of the fleet over longer sampling periods. The passive sampler, based on a thin-film polymer-coated glass design, was developed specifically for deployment in the airliner ventilation system for long-term unattended monitoring of insecticide loading in the aircraft. Because ...
Date: October 1, 2008
Creator: Maddalena, Randy I. & McKone, Thomas E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Mass Transport within Soils

Description: Contaminants in soil can impact human health and the environment through a complex web of interactions. Soils exist where the atmosphere, hydrosphere, geosphere, and biosphere converge. Soil is the thin outer zone of the earth's crust that supports rooted plants and is the product of climate and living organisms acting on rock. A true soil is a mixture of air, water, mineral, and organic components. The relative proportions of these components determine the value of the soil for agricultural and for other human uses. These proportions also determine, to a large extent, how a substance added to soil is transported and/or transformed within the soil (Spositio, 2004). In mass-balance models, soil compartments play a major role, functioning both as reservoirs and as the principal media for transport among air, vegetation, surface water, deeper soil, and ground water (Mackay, 2001). Quantifying the mass transport of chemicals within soil and between soil and atmosphere is important for understanding the role soil plays in controlling fate, transport, and exposure to multimedia pollutants. Soils are characteristically heterogeneous. A trench dug into soil typically reveals several horizontal layers having different colors and textures. As illustrated in Figure 1, these multiple layers are often divided into three major horizons: (1) the A horizon, which encompasses the root zone and contains a high concentration of organic matter; (2) the B horizon, which is unsaturated, lies below the roots of most plants, and contains a much lower organic carbon content; and (3) the C horizon, which is the unsaturated zone of weathered parent rock consisting of bedrock, alluvial material, glacial material, and/or soil of an earlier geological period. Below these three horizons lies the saturated zone - a zone that encompasses the area below ground surface in which all interconnected openings within the geologic media are completely filled ...
Date: March 1, 2009
Creator: McKone, Thomas E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Can fuzzy logic bring complex problems into focus? Modeling imprecise factors in environmental policy

Description: In modeling complex environmental problems, we often fail to make precise statements about inputs and outcome. In this case the fuzzy logic method native to the human mind provides a useful way to get at these problems. Fuzzy logic represents a significant change in both the approach to and outcome of environmental evaluations. Risk assessment is currently based on the implicit premise that probability theory provides the necessary and sufficient tools for dealing with uncertainty and variability. The key advantage of fuzzy methods is the way they reflect the human mind in its remarkable ability to store and process information which is consistently imprecise, uncertain, and resistant to classification. Our case study illustrates the ability of fuzzy logic to integrate statistical measurements with imprecise health goals. But we submit that fuzzy logic and probability theory are complementary and not competitive. In the world of soft computing, fuzzy logic has been widely used and has often been the ''smart'' behind smart machines. But it will require more effort and case studies to establish its niche in risk assessment or other types of impact assessment. Although we often hear complaints about ''bright lines,'' could we adapt to a system that relaxes these lines to fuzzy gradations? Would decision makers and the public accept expressions of water or air quality goals in linguistic terms with computed degrees of certainty? Resistance is likely. In many regions, such as the US and European Union, it is likely that both decision makers and members of the public are more comfortable with our current system in which government agencies avoid confronting uncertainties by setting guidelines that are crisp and often fail to communicate uncertainty. But some day perhaps a more comprehensive approach that includes exposure surveys, toxicological data, epidemiological studies coupled with fuzzy modeling will go a ...
Date: June 14, 2004
Creator: McKone, Thomas E. & Deshpande, Ashok W.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Plant Uptake of Organic Pollutants from Soil: A Critical Review of Bioconcentration Estimates Based on Modelsand Experiments

Description: The role of terrestrial vegetation in transferring chemicals from soil and air into specific plant tissues (stems, leaves, roots, etc.) is still not well characterized. We provide here a critical review of plant-to-soil bioconcentration ratio (BCR) estimates based on models and experimental data. This review includes the conceptual and theoretical formulations of the bioconcentration ratio, constructing and calibrating empirical and mathematical algorithms to describe this ratio and the experimental data used to quantify BCRs and calibrate the model performance. We first evaluate the theoretical basis for the BCR concept and BCR models and consider how lack of knowledge and data limits reliability and consistency of BCR estimates. We next consider alternate modeling strategies for BCR. A key focus of this evaluation is the relative contributions to overall uncertainty from model uncertainty versus variability in the experimental data used to develop and test the models. As a case study, we consider a single chemical, hexahydro-1,3,5-trinitro-1,3,5-triazine (RDX), and focus on variability of bioconcentration measurements obtained from 81 experiments with different plant species, different plant tissues, different experimental conditions, and different methods for reporting concentrations in the soil and plant tissues. We use these observations to evaluate both the magnitude of experimental variability in plant bioconcentration and compare this to model uncertainty. Among these 81 measurements, the variation of the plant/soil BCR has a geometric standard deviation (GSD) of 3.5 and a coefficient of variability (CV-ratio of arithmetic standard deviation to mean) of 1.7. These variations are significant but low relative to model uncertainties--which have an estimated GSD of 10 with a corresponding CV of 14.
Date: January 1, 2007
Creator: McKone, Thomas E. & Maddalena, Randy L.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Integrated Environmental Assessment Part III: ExposureAssessment

Description: Human exposure assessment is a key step in estimating the environmental and public health burdens that result chemical emissions in the life cycle of an industrial product or service. This column presents the third in a series of overviews of the state of the art in integrated environmental assessment - earlier columns described emissions estimation (Frey and Small, 2003) and fate and transport modeling (Ramaswami, et al., 2004). When combined, these first two assessment elements provide estimates of ambient concentrations in the environment. Here we discuss how both models and measurements are used to translate ambient concentrations into metrics of human and ecological exposure, the necessary precursors to impact assessment. Exposure assessment is the process of measuring and/or modeling the magnitude, frequency and duration of contact between a potentially harmful agent and a target population, including the size and characteristics of that population (IPCS, 2001; Zartarian, et al., 2005). Ideally the exposure assessment process should characterize the sources, routes, pathways, and uncertainties in the assessment. Route of exposure refers to the way that an agent enters the receptor during an exposure event. Humans contact pollutants through three routes--inhalation, ingestion, and dermal uptake. Inhalation occurs in both outdoor environments and indoor environments where most people spend the majority of their time. Ingestion includes both water and food, as well as soil and dust uptake due to hand-to-mouth activity. Dermal uptake occurs through contacts with consumer products; indoor and outdoor surfaces; the water supply during washing or bathing; ambient surface waters during swimming or boating; soil during activities such as work, gardening, and play; and, to a lesser extent, from the air that surrounds us. An exposure pathway is the course that a pollutant takes from an ambient environmental medium (air, soil, water, biota, etc), to an exposure medium (indoor air, food, ...
Date: June 1, 2006
Creator: McKone, Thomas E. & Small, Mitchell J.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Bioaccumulation Potential Of Air Contaminants: Combining Biological Allometry, Chemical Equilibrium And Mass-Balances To Predict Accumulation Of Air Pollutants In Various Mammals

Description: In the present study we develop and test a uniform model intended for single compartment analysis in the context of human and environmental risk assessment of airborne contaminants. The new aspects of the model are the integration of biological allometry with fugacity-based mass-balance theory to describe exchange of contaminants with air. The developed model is applicable to various mammalian species and a range of chemicals, while requiring few and typically well-known input parameters, such as the adult mass and composition of the species, and the octanol-water and air-water partition coefficient of the chemical. Accumulation of organic chemicals is typically considered to be a function of the chemical affinity forlipid components in tissues. Here, we use a generic description of chemical affinity for neutral and polar lipids and proteins to estimate blood-air partition coefficients (Kba) and tissue-air partition coefficients (Kta) for various mammals. This provides a more accurate prediction of blood-air partition coefficients, as proteins make up a large fraction of total blood components. The results show that 75percent of the modeled inhalation and exhalation rate constants are within a factor of 2 from independent empirical values for humans, rats and mice, and 87percent of the predicted blood-air partition coefficients are within a factor of 5 from empirical data. At steady-state, the bioaccumulation potential of air pollutants is shown to be mainly a function of the tissue-air partition coefficient and the biotransformation capacity of the species and depends weakly on the ventilation rate and the cardiac output of mammals.
Date: March 1, 2009
Creator: Veltman, Karin; McKone, Thomas E.; Huijbregts, Mark A.J. & Hendriks, A. Jan
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Human intake fraction of toxic pollutants: a model comparison between caltox and uses-lca

Description: In Life Cycle Assessment and Comparative Risk Assessment potential human exposure to toxic pollutants can be expressed as the human intake fraction (iF), representing the fraction of the quantity emitted that enters the human population. To assess model uncertainty in the human intake fraction, ingestion and inhalation iFs of 367 substances emitted to air and freshwater were calculated with two commonly applied multi-media fate and exposure models, CalTOX and USES-LCA. Comparison of the model outcomes reveal that uncertainty in the ingestion iFs was up to a factor of 70. The uncertainty in the inhalation iFs was up to a factor of 865,000. The comparison showed that relatively few model differences account for the uncertainties found. An optimal model structure in the calculation of human intake fractions can be achieved by including (1) rain and no-rain scenarios, (2) a continental sea water compartment, (3) drinking water purification, (4) pH-correction of chemical properties, and (5) aerosol-associated deposition on plants. Finally, vertical stratification of the soil compartment combined with a chemical-dependent soil depth may be considered in future intake fraction calculations.
Date: January 6, 2004
Creator: Huijbregts, Mark A.J.; Geelen, Loes M.J.; Hertwich, Edgar G.; McKone, Thomas E. & van de Meent, Dik
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

A fugacity-based indoor residential pesticide fate model

Description: Dermal and non-dietary pathways are potentially significant exposure pathways to pesticides used in residences. Exposure pathways include dermal contact with residues on surfaces, ingestion from hand- and object-to-mouth activities, and absorption of pesticides into food. A limited amount of data has been collected on pesticide concentrations in various residential compartments following an application. But models are needed to interpret this data and make predictions about other pesticides based on chemical properties. In this paper, we propose a mass-balance compartment model based on fugacity principles. We include air (both gas phase and aerosols), carpet, smooth flooring, and walls as model compartments. Pesticide concentrations on furniture and toys, and in food, are being added to the model as data becomes available. We determine the compartmental fugacity capacity and mass transfer-rate coefficient for wallboard as an example. We also present the framework and equations needed for a dynamic mass-balance model.
Date: June 1, 2002
Creator: Bennett, Deborah H.; Furtaw, Edward J. & McKone, Thomas E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Factors affecting the concentration of outdoor particles indoors (COPI): Identification of data needs and existing data

Description: The process of characterizing human exposure to particulate matter requires information on both particle concentrations in microenvironments and the time-specific activity budgets of individuals among these microenvironments. Because the average amount of time spent indoors by individuals in the US is estimated to be greater than 75%, accurate characterization of particle concentrations indoors is critical to exposure assessments for the US population. In addition, it is estimated that indoor particle concentrations depend strongly on outdoor concentrations. The spatial and temporal variations of indoor particle concentrations as well as the factors that affect these variations are important to health scientists. For them, knowledge of the factors that control the relationship of indoor particle concentrations to outdoor levels is particularly important. In this report, we identify and evaluate sources of data for those factors that affect the transport to and concentration of outdoor particles in the indoor environment. Concentrations of particles indoors depend upon the fraction of outdoor particles that penetrate through the building shell or are transported via the air handling (HVAC) system, the generation of particles by indoor sources, and the loss mechanisms that occur indoors, such as deposition. To address these issues, we (i) identify and assemble relevant information including the behavior of particles during air leakage, HVAC operations, and particle filtration; (ii) review and evaluate the assembled information to distinguish data that are directly relevant to specific estimates of particle transport from those that are only indirectly useful and (iii) provide a synthesis of the currently available information on building air-leakage parameters and their effect on indoor particle matter concentrations.
Date: December 1, 2001
Creator: Thatcher, Tracy L.; McKone, Thomas E.; Fisk, William J.; Sohn, Michael D.; Delp, Woody W.; Riley, William J. et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Evaluating indoor exposure modeling alternatives for LCA: A case study in the vehicle repair industry

Description: We evaluated three exposure models with data obtained from measurements among workers who use"aerosol" solvent products in the vehicle repair industry and with field experiments using these products to simulate the same exposure conditions. The three exposure models were the: 1) homogeneously-mixed-one-box model, 2) multi-zone model, and 3) eddy-diffusion model. Temporally differentiated real-time breathing zone volatile organic compound (VOC) concentration measurements, integrated far-field area samples, and simulated experiments were used in estimating parameters, such as emission rates, diffusivity, and near-field dimensions. We assessed differences in model input requirements and their efficacy for predictive modeling. The One-box model was not able to resemble the temporal profile of exposure concentrations, but it performed well concerning time-weighted exposure over extended time periods. However, this model required an adjustment for spatial concentration gradients. Multi-zone models and diffusion-models may solve this problem. However, we found that the reliable use of both these models requires extensive field data to appropriately define pivotal parameters such as diffusivity or near-field dimensions. We conclude that it is difficult to apply these models for predicting VOC exposures in the workplace. However, for comparative exposure scenarios in life-cycle assessment they may be useful.
Date: May 1, 2009
Creator: Demou, Evangelia; Hellweg, Stefanie; Wilson, Michael P.; Hammond, S. Katharine & McKone, Thomas E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Indoor Pollutants Emitted by Electronic Office Equipment

Description: The last few decades have seen major changes in how people collect and process information at work and in their homes. More people are spending significant amounts of time in close proximity to computers, video display units, printers, fax machines and photocopiers. At the same time, efforts to improve energy efficiency in buildings by reducing leaks in building envelopes are resulting in tighter (i.e., less ventilated) indoor environments. Therefore, it is critical to understand pollutant emission rates for office equipment because even low emissions in areas that are under-ventilated or where individuals are in close proximity to the pollutant source can result in important indoor exposures. We reviewed existing literature reports on pollutant emission by office equipment, and measured emission factors of equipment with significant market share in California. We determined emission factors for a range of chemical classes including volatile and semivolatile organic compounds (VOCs and SVOCs), ozone and particulates. The measured SVOCs include phthalate esters, brominated and organophosphate flame retardants and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons. Measurements were carried out in large and small exposure chambers for several different categories of office equipment. Screening experiments using specific duty cycles in a large test chamber ({approx}20 m{sup 3}) allowed for the assessment of emissions for a range of pollutants. Results from the screening experiments identified pollutants and conditions that were relevant for each category of office equipment. In the second phase of the study, we used a smaller test chamber ({approx}1 m{sup 3}) to measure pollutant specific emission factors for individual devices and explored the influence of a range of environmental and operational factors on emission rates. The measured emission factors provide a data set for estimating indoor pollutant concentrations and for exploring the importance of user proximity when estimating exposure concentrations.
Date: July 1, 2008
Creator: Maddalena, Randy L.; Destaillats, Hugo; Russell, Marion L.; Hodgson, Alfred T. & McKone, Thomas E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Integrating Human Indoor Air Pollutant Exposure within Life Cycle Impact Assessment

Description: Neglecting health effects from indoor pollutant emissions and exposure, as currently done in Life Cycle Assessment (LCA), may result in product or process optimizations at the expense of workers? or consumers? health. To close this gap, methods for considering indoor exposure to chemicals are needed to complement the methods for outdoor human exposure assessment already in use. This paper summarizes the work of an international expert group on the integration of human indoor and outdoor exposure in LCA, within the UNEP/SETAC Life Cycle Initiative. A new methodological framework is proposed for a general procedure to include human-health effects from indoor exposure in LCA. Exposure models from occupational hygiene and household indoor air quality studies and practices are critically reviewed and recommendations are provided on the appropriateness of various model alternatives in the context of LCA. A single-compartment box model is recommended for use as a default in LCA, enabling one to screen occupational and household exposures consistent with the existing models to assess outdoor emission in a multimedia environment. An initial set of model parameter values was collected. The comparison between indoor and outdoor human exposure per unit of emission shows that for many pollutants, intake per unit of indoor emission may be several orders of magnitude higher than for outdoor emissions. It is concluded that indoor exposure should be routinely addressed within LCA.
Date: December 21, 2008
Creator: Hellweg, Stefanie; Demou, Evangelia; Bruzzi, Raffaella; Meijer, Arjen; Rosenbaum, Ralph K.; Huijbregts, Mark A.J. et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Merging Models and Biomonitoring Data to Characterize Sources andPathways of Human Exposure to Organophosphorous Pesticides in the SalinasValley of California

Description: By drawing on human biomonitoring data and limited environmental samples together with outputs from the CalTOX multimedia, multipathway source-to-dose model, we characterize cumulative intake of organophosphorous (OP) pesticides in an agricultural region of California. We assemble regional OP pesticide use, environmental sampling, and biological tissue monitoring data for a large and geographically dispersed population cohort of 592 pregnant Latina women in California (the CHAMACOS cohort). We then use CalTOX with regional pesticide usage data to estimate the magnitude and uncertainty of exposure and intake from local sources. We combine model estimates of intake from local sources with food intake based on national residue data to estimate for the CHAMACOS cohort cumulative median OP intake, which corresponds to expected levels of urinary dialkylphosphate (DAP) metabolite excretion for this cohort. From these results we develop premises about relative contributions from different sources and pathways of exposure. We evaluate these premises by comparing the magnitude and variation of DAPs in the CHAMACOS cohort with the whole U.S. population using data from the National Health and Nutrition Evaluation Survey (NHANES). This comparison supports the premise that in both populations diet is the common and dominant exposure pathway. Both the model results and biomarker comparison supports the observation that the CHAMACOS population has a statistically significant higher intake of OP pesticides that appears as an almost constant additional dose among all participants. We attribute the magnitude and small variance of this intake to non-dietary exposure in residences from local sources.
Date: June 1, 2006
Creator: McKone, Thomas E.; Castorina, Rosemary; Kuwabara, Yu; Harnly,Martha E.; Eskenazi, Brenda & Bradman, Asa
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Constraining uncertainties about the sources and magnitude of ambient air exposures to polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs): The state of Minnesota as a case study

Description: Emissions data are often lacking or uncertain for many airborne contaminants. Chemicals, such as polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), emitted from combustion sources, fall into this category. Currently available ambient-air emission inventories of PAHs either fail to account for population-based activities (such as residential wood combustion and motor vehicle activity) and/or report ''total PAH'' or particulate organic matter emissions instead of individual compounds. We measure the degree of overlap between predicted concentrations from estimated emissions with measured concentrations. Our analysis is, based on probabilistic analysis of measured outdoor air concentrations with those predicted from mass-balance models. Based on available information, we estimate the relative magnitude of emissions from four major sources of PAHs to outdoor air- (1) on-road motor vehicles, including light-duty gasoline vehicles and diesel-powered buses and medium and heavy duty trucks; (2) residential wood combustion; and (3) power generation from external combustion boilers. We use the CalTOX regional multimedia mass-balance model to evaluate our emissions estimates in rural and urban regions of the state of Minnesota, USA. We compare model estimates of outdoor PAH airborne concentrations with those reported by the Minnesota Children's Pesticide Exposure Study (MNCPES). With these measured concentrations we probabilistically evaluate our emissions and interpret the reliability of our emissions estimates for specific PAHs. The median estimates of our predicted outdoor air concentrations agree within an order of magnitude of measured concentrations. For four representative PAHs, we were able to obtain a reasonable degree of overlap between empirical and predicted distributions of outdoor air concentrations. Our combination of models, emissions estimates, and empirical concentration data estimate exposure in a manner that is more reliable than any of these tools alone. Thereby, we increase our confidence about our plausible ranges of emissions and predicted concentrations.
Date: February 1, 2004
Creator: Lobscheid, Agnes B. & McKone, Thomas E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Standardized approach for developing probabilistic exposure factor distributions

Description: The effectiveness of a probabilistic risk assessment (PRA) depends critically on the quality of input information that is available to the risk assessor and specifically on the probabilistic exposure factor distributions that are developed and used in the exposure and risk models. Deriving probabilistic distributions for model inputs can be time consuming and subjective. The absence of a standard approach for developing these distributions can result in PRAs that are inconsistent and difficult to review by regulatory agencies. We present an approach that reduces subjectivity in the distribution development process without limiting the flexibility needed to prepare relevant PRAs. The approach requires two steps. First, we analyze data pooled at a population scale to (1) identify the most robust demographic variables within the population for a given exposure factor, (2) partition the population data into subsets based on these variables, and (3) construct archetypal distributions for each subpopulation. Second, we sample from these archetypal distributions according to site- or scenario-specific conditions to simulate exposure factor values and use these values to construct the scenario-specific input distribution. It is envisaged that the archetypal distributions from step 1 will be generally applicable so risk assessors will not have to repeatedly collect and analyze raw data for each new assessment. We demonstrate the approach for two commonly used exposure factors--body weight (BW) and exposure duration (ED)--using data for the U.S. population. For these factors we provide a first set of subpopulation based archetypal distributions along with methodology for using these distributions to construct relevant scenario-specific probabilistic exposure factor distributions.
Date: March 2003
Creator: Maddalena, Randy L.; McKone, Thomas E. & Sohn, Michael D.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Overall multi-media persistence as an indicator of potential for population-level intake of environmental contaminants

Description: Although it is intuitively apparent that population-level exposure to contaminants dispersed in the environment must related to the persistence of the contaminant, there has been little effort to formally quantify this link. In this paper we investigate the relationship between overall persistence in a multimedia environment and the population-level exposure as expressed by intake fraction (iF), which is the cumulative fraction of chemical emitted to the environment that is taken up by members of the population. We first confirm that for any given chemical contaminant and emission scenario the definition of iF implies that it is directly proportional to the overall multi-media persistence, P{sub OV}. We show that the proportionality constant has dimensions of time and represents the characteristic time for population intake (CTI) of the chemical from the environment. We then apply the CalTOX fate and exposure model to explore how P{sub OV} and CTI combine to determine the magnitude of iF. We find that CTI has a narrow range of possible values relative to P{sub OV} across multiple chemicals and emissions scenarios. We use data from the Canadian Environmental Protection Act Priority Substance List (PSL1) Assessments to show that exposure assessments based on empirical observation are consistent with interpretations from the model. The characteristic time for intake along different dominant exposure pathways is discussed. Results indicate that P{sub OV} derived from screening-level assessments of persistence, bioaccumulation potential, and toxicity (PBT) is a useful indicator of the potential for population-level exposure.
Date: June 1, 2003
Creator: MacLeod, Matthew & McKone, Thomas E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Residential ventilation standards scoping study

Description: The goals of this scoping study are to identify research needed to develop improved ventilation standards for California's Title 24 Building Energy Efficiency Standards. The 2008 Title 24 Standards are the primary target for the outcome of this research, but this scoping study is not limited to that timeframe. We prepared this scoping study to provide the California Energy Commission with broad and flexible options for developing a research plan to advance the standards. This document presents the findings of a scoping study commissioned by the Public Interest Energy Research (PIER) program of the California Energy Commission to determine what research is necessary to develop new residential ventilation requirements for California. This study is one of three companion efforts needed to complete the job of determining the ventilation needs of California residences, determining the bases for setting residential ventilation requirements, and determining appropriate ventilation technologies to meet these needs and requirements in an energy efficient manner. Rather than providing research results, this scoping study identifies important research questions along with the level of effort necessary to address these questions and the costs, risks, and benefits of pursuing alternative research questions. In approaching these questions and corresponding levels of effort, feasibility and timing were important considerations. The Commission has specified Summer 2005 as the latest date for completing this research in time to update the 2008 version of California's Energy Code (Title 24).
Date: October 1, 2003
Creator: McKone, Thomas E. & Sherman, Max H.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department