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Robu et al.

Robu et al. /Environmental Engineering and Management Journal 6 (2007), 6, 573-592 to quantify the risks that arise from the activities considered, in the view of the results for environmental impacts. The risks are calculated follows (Eq.21): RM j = IM j ⋅ Pj (21) ERj – environmental risk for environmental component j; EIj – environmental impact on environmental component j; Pj – probability of occurrence of impact on environmental component j. The probability of impact occurrence was calculated using the same matrix as described above (Table 1) to calculate the importance units. The normalized weights are presented in Table 4. The evaluator has to give values between 0 and 1 for probability (Table 3), which is detailed in Table 5 (Pearce, 1999). 7.3. Advantages and disadvantages The data automatically performed by the SAB soft are presented in Table 6, and Fig. 3 present environmental impacts and risks. It has to be emphasized that if the impact and risk have very high values, then the impact induced by the considered activities on the environment is great and the environmental risks are at an unacceptable level (major/catastrophic risks). High values for environmental impacts and risks underlay the presence of pollutants in environment in very high concentrations, because impact directly depends on the measured concentration of pollutants. Considering the impact classification from method of global pollution index, a classification of impacts and risks is proposed (Table 7). This new method has the advantages that it is very easy to be used by non environmental experts; it calculates the impacts and risks, correlated with measured concentrations of quality indicators for environmental component, considered representative in assessment process; it is not a subjective method because the subjectivity is removed applying mathematical steps (the developed soft - SAB). Also, the lack of experience of evaluator doesn’t influence the evaluation results that will reflect the real situation from the evaluated site, where the industrial activities are performed. Table 5. Description of probability Probability Description Probability units Almost certain Is expected to occur in most circumstances (99%) 0.91-1.0 Likely Will probably occur in most circumstances (90%) 0.61-0.9 Possible Might occur at some times (50%) 0.31-0.6 Unlikely Could occur at some times (10%) 0.05-0.3 Rare May occur only in exceptional circumstances (1%) 10 µm), mg/mc 0.05 0.28 0.18 1534.25 435.08 Soil Extractable compounds, mg/kg 2000 10480 0.19 1363.84 407.12 1 - maximal allowed concentration according to Romanian legislation; 2 – measured concentrations of quality indicators, 3 – environmental quality; 4 – environmental impact, 5 – environmental risk. 588

Methods and procedures for environmental risk assessment 1600.00 1400.00 1200.00 1000.00 800.00 600.00 400.00 200.00 0.00 430.84 128.61 177.63 34.47 1363.84 407.12 1491.68 Surface water Ground water Soil Air Environmental impact Environmental risk Fig.3. Environmental impacts and risks 423.01 Table 7. Classification of environmental impact and risk Impact Description Scale 1000 Degraded environment, not proper for life forms 8. Conclusions Risk Description Scale 1000 Catastrophic risks, all activities should be stopped The aim of this work was to present the main procedures, methods, models and approaches, generally used in environmental risk assessment. Thus, the common notion of risk is associated with actions or decisions that may have undesired to outcome. This implies that the risk-based approaches focus on the negative impacts and their prevention. Risk assessment places the emphasis on the potential negative environmental impacts of an organization’s activities and allows the identification of indicators that directly reflect its efforts, efficiency and effectiveness in reducing or even preventing them. The environmental risk is the result of the interactions between the human activities and the environment. The ecologic risk management that refers to the problematic of the risks generated by the past, present and future human activities on flora, fauna and ecosystems constitutes only a part of the environmental risk management. Risk assessment is one of the steps of the general risk management procedure. Risk management is a technique used to identify, characterize, quantify, evaluate and reduce losses from actions or decisions that may have undesired outcomes. The first step of the generic procedure involves the risk identification that is the systematic identification of all potential actions or decisions with undesired consequences that may result from the operation of an organization. The next step involves the risk assessment, while further steps address issues like the evaluation of risks in order to determine the organizations ability or willingness to tolerate their consequences in view of the associated benefits, and the selection and implementation of the most preferable approach for the reduction of unacceptable risks. The problems concerning the work safety and health as well as the risk management in emergency situation may be significant from the environmental risk point of view. The environmental risk management provides a formal set of processes that constitutes the fundament for environmental decision making and support the decision factor in the steps of incertitude level minimization. Qualitative risk analyses consist in: control lists, integral inspections of the industrial units, ranking, preliminary hazard analysis (PHA), what if method and HAZOP method (hazard operation), while quantitative risk analyses, usually are done using: hazard analysis (HAZAN), event tree analysis, fault tree analysis. In Romania the qualitative and quantitative environmental risk assessment is made concordant to Ministerial Order no. 184/1997, and examines the probability and the severity of the main components of an environmental impact. The necessity of additional information regarding the risks related to the identified pollution or to the pollutant activities developed on a site may determine the environmental competent authority to request a risk assessment with the aim of evaluating the probability of harm and of finding the possible prejudiced entities. Not every site affected by a certain pollutant will exhibit the same risk or will need the same level of remediation. 589

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