Society For Risk Analysis Annual Meeting 2013

Session Schedule & Abstracts

* Disclaimer: All presentations represent the views of the authors, and not the organizations that support their research. Please apply the standard disclaimer that any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations in abstracts, posters, and presentations at the meeting are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of any other organization or agency. Meeting attendees and authors should be aware that this disclaimer is intended to apply to all abstracts contained in this document. Authors who wish to emphasize this disclaimer should do so in their presentation or poster. In an effort to make the abstracts as concise as possible and easy for meeting participants to read, the abstracts have been formatted such that they exclude references to papers, affiliations, and/or funding sources. Authors who wish to provide attendees with this information should do so in their presentation or poster.

Common abbreviations

EPA'S IRIS: It's A New Program Part I

Room: Key Ballroom 2   8:30 AM - 10:00 AM

Chair(s): Kenneth Olden , Richard Becker

Sponsored by DRSG

T1-B.1  08:30  Advancing Human Health Risk Assessment at the United States Environmental Protection Agency. Olden K*, Vandenberg J, Kadry A, Deener K; US Government

Abstract: There are currently more than 80,000 chemicals in commerce, and an additional 1,000 new chemicals are introduced each year. Only a small fraction of these chemicals have been adequately assessed for potential risk. Human health risk assessment (HHRA) is a critical tool for characterizing the potential risk to human health of exposure to environmental contaminants. To produce defensible, scientific assessments of risk and therefore make defensible decisions to manage or mitigate risk, risk assessors and managers need scientifically rigorous information about hazard, dose-response and exposure. EPA’s HHRA research program develops health assessments that include hazard identification and dose-response information; exposure and risk assessment tools; and methods to advance the science of human health risk assessment. This information is used by EPA and others to make decisions, develop regulatory standards for environmental contaminants, and manage cleanups. The HHRA program is committed to generating timely, credible human health assessments of individual chemicals and chemical mixtures to support priority EPA risk management decisions, thereby enabling EPA to better predict and prevent risk. The program is compromised of four research themes: 1) Integrated Risk Information System (IRIS) health hazard and dose-response assessments; (2) Integrated Science Assessments (ISAs) of criteria air pollutants; (3) Community Risk and Technical Support for exposure and health assessments; and (4) Methods, models, and approaches to modernize risk assessment for the 21st century. The HHRA research program collaborates with Agency, federal, state, regional, national, and international partners in the scientific and risk assessment communities to ensure that assessment products are scientifically rigorous, developed in a transparent manner, and relevant to stakeholder needs. The views expressed in this abstract do not necessarily represent the views or policies of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

T1-B.2  08:50  Enhancing IRIS: Progress to Date and Future Actions. Cogliano V*; US Government

Abstract: EPA has made numerous enhancements to its Integrated Risk Information System (IRIS) program, which evaluates scientific information on health effects that may result from exposure to environmental contaminants. These enhancements are intended (1) to improve the fundamental science of IRIS assessments, (2) to improve the productivity of the program, and (3) to increase transparency so issues are identified and debated early. The IRIS program has also enacted measures to ensure that the assessments it undertakes will be important to public health and to EPA’s priorities. As part of improving the fundamental science of IRIS assessments, the IRIS program is adopting principles of systematic review in all its new assessments. An expanded section on hazard identification will identify all health hazards where there is credible evidence of an effect. Assessments will include toxicity values for multiple health effects, increasing their utility in subsequent risk analyses and decisions. Before work on an assessment begins, conversations with EPA’s program and regional offices will ensure that IRIS assessments meet their varied needs, and input from external stakeholders will help in formulating the problems to be addressed in the assessment. Improved science, improved productivity, and improved transparency – these will be evident in the new, enhanced IRIS program. The views expressed in this abstract do not necessarily represent the views or policies of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

T1-B.3  09:10  IRIS Improvements: Getting the Balance Right in Scientific Quality, Timeliness, Stakeholder Engagement and Peer Review. Denison R*; Environmental Defense Fund

Abstract: Over the past several years, EPA’s IRIS program has been plagued with controversy, whipsawed by the differing demands and priorities of various stakeholders. As it struggles to regain its footing, IRIS must undertake the difficult task of striking the right balance between three sets of competing objectives: achieving acceptable scientific quality versus ensuring timeliness of its assessments; providing sufficient transparency and “due process” versus ensuring its process delivers balanced stakeholder input; and tapping necessary expertise versus avoiding conflicts of interest in peer review of its assessments. In this presentation I will first describe how the problems IRIS has faced in recent years can be traced to a lack of balance across these three sets of competing objectives. I will then examine recent enhancements in the IRIS program through the lens of how well they achieve the needed balance.

T1-B.4  09:30  IRIS Improvements: Meeting the Needs of California. Marty MA*, Zeise L, Salmon AG; Cal/EPA, Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment

Abstract: The National Research Council’s recommendations to U.S.EPA to improve the IRIS process included measures to take to increase clarity of the steps in the risk assessment process used by EPA for chemical specific quantitative risk assessments. The states, including California, rely on the IRIS assessments for making decisions as to the need for controls of pollution sources for various media (air, water, soil, food, wildlife). While California is somewhat unique in having resources and mandates to conduct quantitative risk assessments for many chemicals, we do not have the extent of resources and expertise as U.S. EPA. Thus, we utilize EPA assessments and look to IRIS as an important resource. This presentation will focus on the utility of and potential improvements in changes EPA is making in establishing guidelines and templates for literature search and screening, evaluation and display of study data, including evidence tables, integration of the database, and presentation of dose-response modeling. We will also provide input on areas where additional discussion of potentially sensitive subpopulations, human heterogeneity and cumulative impacts could be improved.

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