Ecological Risk Assessment of Contaminants in Soil

pp 85-123

Effects of toxicants on population and community parameters in field conditions, and their potential use in the validation of risk assessment methods

  • Leo Posthuma

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Ecotoxicological risk assessment methods need to be validated due to the high economic consequences of too strict and the high ecological consequences of too weak risk management (Slooff et al., 1986;Hopkin, 1993;Van Straalen, 1993a,Van Straalen, 19936;Van Straalen et al., 1994). In this chapter the term ‘validation’ is used in the sense of evaluation of differences between laboratory-based predictions and field effects. A validated method in this sense predicts field effects within specified adequacy limits. Until now, the results of single-species (SS) laboratory tests have only been compared with toxic effects in enclosures or in multi-species (MS) experiments (Heimbach, 1992;Okkerman et al., 1993). Comparisons of predicted effects with effects in natural systems have, however, not yet been made