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Assessment of information availability for environmental impact assessment of engineered nanomaterials

  • Michelle Romero-Franco
  • Muhammad Bilal
  • Hilary A. Godwin
  • Yoram Cohen
Perspectives
  • 2 Downloads

Abstract

Environmental impact assessments of engineered nanomaterials can be hampered by the lack of data/information and thus delay the development of effective regulatory policies. To address this issue, a systematic approach (termed here “IANano”) was developed and demonstrated for assessing information availability for environmental impact assessment (EIA) of engineered nanomaterials. In IANano, following the typical EIA process, the required information elements for exposure and hazard potential assessments are classified based on major categories, sub-categories, and attributes. Scores for the different information attributes are then assigned, based on a selected scoring scale and weights, and aggregated up to the level of exposure and hazard potential information (EPI and hazard potential information [HPI], respectively), considering both available and unavailable information, via the Dempster-Shafer algorithm. The utility of IANano was demonstrated for several specific EIA scenarios for nano-TiO2, nano-Cu-CuO, and nano-ZnO. For the three nanomaterials, in each of the different EIA scenarios, the EPI scores were lower than the HPI scores, consistent with the more abundant information available for hazard attributes. For nano-TiO2, the exposure potential information (EPI) scores were in the range of 0.33–0.72 and higher by 60–50% and 42–46% relative to nano-Cu-CuO and nano-ZnO, respectively, for all EIA scenarios. For the scenario of direct release of engineered nanomaterials to the aquatic environment, the HPI scores for nano-Cu-CuO and nano-ZnO were greater by factors of 2.6 and 1.3, respectively, relative to the EPI scores. Results of the present study suggest that information screening, as illustrated via IANano, can be valuable for ranking the adequacy of the available information for conducting specific EIAs and for identifying information needs.

Keywords

Engineered nanomaterials (ENMs) Environmental impact assessment (EIA) Exposure potential information Hazard potential information Evidential reasoning 

Notes

Acknowledgements

Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation or the Environmental Protection Agency. M.R.F. was supported by a UC-MEXUS-CONACYT doctoral fellowship. The authors wish to thank Professor Jian-Bo Yang for providing an academic version of the IDS software.

Funding information

This material is based upon work supported by the University of California Center for Environmental Implications of Nanotechnology (CEIN) in grants from the National Science Foundation and the Environmental Protection Agency under Cooperative Agreement DBI-0830117 and DBI-12266377.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Supplementary material

11051_2018_4402_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (1.4 mb)
Supplementary Material Word file: S1. EIA frameworks; S2. Dempster-Shaffer algorithm. S3. Scoring approach rules Fig. S1. Scoring scales used in IANano; Table S1. Scoring scales: Table S2. Detailed data collection process; Fig. S2. Data collection and curation process; Table S3. Weights assigned to categories, sub-categories and attributes for exposure potential in the general EIA (Scenario I); Fig. S3. Hazard potential information scores calculated using in silico and expert judgment information; Table S4. Weights assigned to categories, sub-categories and attributes for hazard potential in the general EIA (Scenario I); Table S4. Weights assigned to categories, sub-categories and attributes for exposure potential in Scenarios II and III ENM release into aquatic environments and the potential impacts on ecological receptors; Table S5. Weights assigned to categories, sub-categories and attributes for hazard potential in Scenarios II and III ENM release into aquatic environments and the potential impacts on ecological receptors; Table S6. Weights assigned to categories, sub-categories and attributes for exposure potential in Scenario IV ENM release into soil and water from waste water treatment plants (WWTP) and the potential impacts on ecological receptors; Table S7. Weights assigned to categories, sub-categories and attributes for hazard potential in Scenario IV ENM release into soil and water from waste water treatment plants (WWTP) and the potential impacts to ecological receptors; Table S8. Weights assigned to categories, sub-categories and attributes for exposure potential in Scenario V.A Nano-TiO2 release into air and the potential impact on human receptors; Table S9. Weights assigned to categories, sub-categories and attributes for hazard potential in Scenario V.A Nano-TiO2 release into air and the potential impact on human receptors; Table S11. Weights assigned to categories, sub-categories and attributes for exposure potential in Scenario V.B exposure to Nano-TiO2 via consumer product use and the potential impacts on human receptors; Table S12. Weights assigned to categories, sub-categories and attributes for hazard potential in Scenario V.B exposure to nano-TiO2 via consumer product use and the potential impacts on human receptors; Table S13. Number of publications available (as of 2016) per attribute of exposure in different EIA scenarios related to the release of ENMs into environmental media; Table S14. Number of publications available (as of 2016) per attribute of hazard in different EIA scenarios related to the release of ENMS into environmental media; Table S15. Scores assigned per attribute of exposure information based on a simple linear scoring scale for all EIA scenarios related to the release of ENMs into various environmental media; Table S16. Scores assigned per attribute of hazard information based on a simple linear scoring scale for all EIA scenarios related to the release of ENMs into various environmental media; Table S17. Scores assigned per attribute of exposure information based on a log scoring scale for all EIA scenarios related to the release of ENMs into various environmental media; Table S18. Scores assigned per attribute of hazard information based on a log scoring scale for all EIA scenarios related to the release of ENMs into various environmental media compartments; Table S19- S24 Summary of information available for nano-Cu-CuO, nano-TiO2 and nano-ZnO related to exposure potential (proposed template to include all the studies included in the analysis/aggregated score results). (PDF 1413 kb)

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature B.V. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Michelle Romero-Franco
    • 1
    • 2
  • Muhammad Bilal
    • 1
    • 3
  • Hilary A. Godwin
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
  • Yoram Cohen
    • 1
    • 3
    • 4
  1. 1.University of California Center for Environmental Implications of NanotechnologyUniversity of CaliforniaLos AngelesUSA
  2. 2.Department of Environmental Health Sciences, Fielding School of Public HealthUniversity of CaliforniaLos AngelesUSA
  3. 3.Institute of the Environment and SustainabilityUniversity of CaliforniaLos AngelesUSA
  4. 4.Department of Chemical and Biomolecular EngineeringUniversity of CaliforniaLos AngelesUSA

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