CVEN1701 Environmental Principles and Systems – Pre-Lecture Video: Env’tal Health Risk Assessment


We’ve looked at some very
general and generalizable concepts of risk analysis. Those concepts are applied
in many areas of research and practise, including the
analysis of financial risks, construction risks,
water quality risks, and business venture risks. In addition to those
fundamental concepts, and sometimes
building upon them, some fields have found
the need to develop more specific applications
of risk assessment and risk management. One such field is
environmental risk assessment associated with hazardous
chemical contaminants. For environmental
risk assessment for chemical
contaminants, we need to consider what levels
of exposure to chemical contaminants may be associated
with particular health consequences and
with what likelihood. A common objective is to
determine safe or unsafe levels of contamination in
substances that people might come into contact with,
such as air, soil, or water. In this class, I’ll
explain the approaches that have been adopted and
some of the reasons why. You’ll learn the basic
concepts and skills that underpin how many guideline
documents, such as air quality guidelines and water quality
guidelines, are derived. Before this class, I’d like
you to look up the World Health Organisation guidelines
for drinking water quality. You can find them
by a Google search, and I’ll also provide a link
in the class online module. Take a look at chapter
12, Chemical Fact Sheets. Scroll through the chapter and
select one chemical contaminant and then jot down a few notes to
record some of the key points. They should include
what is the guideline value for that chemical? What considerations was
this guideline based on? Can you tell how
it was calculated? Don’t worry if you can’t
work out the calculation. We’ll cover it in
the class, but be prepared to share the
name of your chemical and a few basic facts about
the guideline with the class.

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