Special Issue "Environmental Risk Assessment of Chemical Products"

A special issue of Environments (ISSN 2076-3298).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 December 2019).

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Johannes Ranke
Guest Editor
Scientific Consultant, Grenzach-Wyhlen, Germany
Interests: environmental risk assessment of chemical products; modelling the behaviour of chemicals in laboratory systems and the environment

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

In general, environmental risk assessments of chemical products serve the purpose of an acceptability analysis. They are guided by the question of whether the anticipated environmental exposure pattern associated with a particular use is expected to have unacceptable effects.

In addition, chemicals are being classified based on their potential to cause damage in the environment, using the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling (GHS), the Stockholm convention, and various other schemes for evaluating their persistence, bioaccumulation, and toxicity, as well as their long range transport potential.

These approaches, however, do not allow us to quantify the environmental damage that is expected in the course of the regular, authorized use of a product, as it is considered negligible. Such a measure would be necessary in order to accomplish comparative risk assessments of the competing chemical products. While comparative product assessments are routinely conducted in the context of life cycle assessments (LCA), recent attempts to provide methods to fulfil the legal requirements regarding the comparative risk assessments of pesticides and biocides in the European Union have had only limited success.

Another problem brought about by the current environmental risk assessment scheme is the definition of the boundary between the TechnoSphere, where the presence of hazardous chemicals does not pose an environmental risk, and the environment. In practice, this definition is not always clear, and in some cases, intermediate areas have been defined with a higher level of acceptable effects, as, for example, in the in-field area of agricultural production systems.

This Special Issue welcomes case studies and conceptional papers from all areas of the environmental risk assessment of chemical products, including contributions that focus on one of the disciplines involved, for example, on the environmental chemistry, ecotoxicology, policy analysis, or mathematical aspects of risk assessment. It has been conceived in the hope that open access publishing will facilitate the discussion of and will foster the development of assessment schemes that help us to make sustainable use of chemical substances today and in the future.

Dr. Johannes Ranke
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Environments is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1000 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • environmental risk assessment
  • chemical products
  • comparative risk assessment
  • TechnoSphere
  • ecotoxicological risk assessment
  • pesticides
  • biocides

Published Papers (1 paper)

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Open AccessArticle
Error Models for the Kinetic Evaluation of Chemical Degradation Data
Environments 2019, 6(12), 124; https://doi.org/10.3390/environments6120124 - 10 Dec 2019
In the kinetic evaluation of chemical degradation data, degradation models are fitted to the data by varying degradation model parameters to obtain the best possible fit. Today, constant variance of the deviations of the observed data from the model is frequently assumed (error [...] Read more.
In the kinetic evaluation of chemical degradation data, degradation models are fitted to the data by varying degradation model parameters to obtain the best possible fit. Today, constant variance of the deviations of the observed data from the model is frequently assumed (error model “constant variance”). Allowing for a different variance for each observed variable (“variance by variable”) has been shown to be a useful refinement. On the other hand, experience gained in analytical chemistry shows that the absolute magnitude of the analytical error often increases with the magnitude of the observed value, which can be explained by an error component which is proportional to the true value. Therefore, kinetic evaluations of chemical degradation data using a two-component error model with a constant component (absolute error) and a component increasing with the observed values (relative error) are newly proposed here as a third possibility. In order to check which of the three error models is most adequate, they have been used in the evaluation of datasets obtained from pesticide evaluation dossiers published by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA). For quantitative comparisons of the fits, the Akaike information criterion (AIC) was used, as the commonly used error level defined by the FOrum for the Coordination of pesticide fate models and their USe(FOCUS) is based on the assumption of constant variance. A set of fitting routines was developed within the mkin software package that allow for robust fitting of all three error models. Comparisons using parent only degradation datasets, as well as datasets with the formation and decline of transformation products showed that in many cases, the two-component error model proposed here provides the most adequate description of the error structure. While it was confirmed that the variance by variable error model often provides an improved representation of the error structure in kinetic fits with metabolites, it could be shown that in many cases, the two-component error model leads to a further improvement. In addition, it can be applied to parent only fits, potentially improving the accuracy of the fit towards the end of the decline curve, where concentration levels are lower. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Environmental Risk Assessment of Chemical Products)
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