Course Description

With an increasing number of sites going to risk assessment, it is important that site investigators understand how a risk assessor will bridge off their data to understand and describe risks. Most regulatory standards assume that the total amount (i.e., 100%) of a contaminant measurable in environmental media is “bioavailable”. Broadly speaking, the term “bioavailability” is used to describe the fraction or percentage of a contaminant that is taken up by an organism that is actually absorbed and in systemic circulation. The extent to which a contaminant can be taken up by an organism is related to the adverse response, or risk.

This talk will discuss how people and critters “see” those concentrations that you measure in various environmental media. For both humans and ecological receptors, the common measures of bioavailability will be reviewed for various environmental media. Some measures that contribute to understanding bioavailability are simple (e.g., measuring pH and alkalinity) whereas others are contaminant- and situation-specific (e.g., physiologically based extraction technique, biotic ligand model). Participants will be encouraged to talk to risk assessors early in the process, so that measures of bioavailability can be selected and made at the appropriate time to streamline the risk management process.

MSc, RPBio, Approved Professional (Risk)

Beth Power

Beth Power, a Partner in Azimuth, has been an environmental  consultant for over 27 years – her practice falls into three main areas:  ecological risk assessment, contaminated sediments and science  policy/risk communication. Beth tends to work at the interface between  owners, developers, the regulatory community, engineers, lawyers and  other professions. She is trained in design and facilitation of group  processes (e.g., meetings, workshops). Beth has developed and applied  ecological risk assessment frameworks in a variety of settings, such as  watersheds, mines, oil and gas, ports and harbours, brownfields, and for  risk ranking. Beth thrives on supporting clients to address complex,  multi-party problems.Beth is appointed to the “Roster of Approved Professionals” (Contaminated Sites Approved Professional, as a Risk-based Standards Approved Professional).  She is currently on the CSAP Board of Directors and Chair of the  Technical Review Committee. Beth has led risk assessment work that has  resulted in a number of Certificates of Compliance under BC’s  Contaminated Sites Regulation, as well as making successful submissions  as an Approved Professional. She is a member of the Science Advisory Board for Contaminated Sites in BC. A highlight of Beth’s career is being a guest at a mine closure  ceremony and Potlatch that honoured completion of remediation for an  abandoned mine on First Nations traditional lands.

Course curriculum

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    Bioavailability 101 for Site Investigators

    • Bioavailability 101 for Site Investigators

    • Discussion

    • Bioavailability 101 Nov 2018