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Presentations and summary report from the joint VKM and EFSA symposium

Thank you for attending the joint VKM and EFSA symposium on risk assessment and risk management cooperation on environmental protection goals. Here you can find all the presentations and Summary Report from the symposium.
 

The presentations
Summary Report

Abstract

The Norwegian Scientific Committee for Food and Environment in collaboration with the European Food Safety Authority organised a symposium on risk assessment and risk management cooperation on environmental protection goals in Oslo in October 2017.

The Symposium gather together more than 155 academics, risk assessors, risk managers, representatives from governmental agencies, industry, and NGOs from all over Europe.

Maintaining biodiversity is one of the key protection goals referred to in different legislative frameworks. Biodiversity is, however, a very broad term when considered in a risk assessment and subsequent risk management context. Specifying particular components of biodiversity that need protection, for example specific species or ecological processes, will define the framework in which risk assessors operate when performing Environmental Risk Assessments (ERAs), and provide more practical, specific protection goals (SPGs) for risk managers.

In 2016, EFSA issued guidance on how to derive SPGs for use in ERAs. The aim of the guidance is to provide a harmonised methodological framework using the ecosystem services (ES) concept to derive practical, specific environmental protection goals, regardless of the regulated product or organism that is being assessed. It is imperative that risk assessors and risk managers are encouraged to be in close dialogue when defining SPGs, because setting the level of protection involves normative considerations that cannot be accounted for by risk assessors alone.

The symposium aimed to facilitate and encourage dialogue and cooperation on protection goals between risk assessors and risk managers, and to present the EFSA guidance to develop protection goals options for use in ERA.

This publication reports on the presentations, discussions and recommendations made during the symposium.

Download the Summary Report.external link, opens in new window

Background for the Symposium

In June 2016, EFSA issued guidance on how to derive specific protection goals (SPGs) for use in environmental risk assessments. The aim of the guidance is to provide a harmonised methodological framework using the ecosystem services concept to derive practical, specific environmental protection goals, regardless of the regulated product or organism that is being assessed. It is imperative that risk assessors and risk managers are encouraged to be in close dialogue when defining SPGs, because setting the level of protection involves normative considerations that cannot be accounted for by risk assessors alone.

To highlight potential impacts in advance of allowing the commercial use of regulated products, or the spread of alien organisms, an Environmental Risk Assessment (ERA) is generally conducted to assist decision-making. ERA is an important analytical scientific tool that helps regulatory decision-making. Robust ERAs begin with an explicit problem formulation where plausible and relevant exposure scenarios and the potential adverse effects from those exposures are identified. Risk is then characterised by testing specific hypotheses about the likelihood and severity of adverse effects.

Biodiversity is one of the key protection goal often referred to in different legislative frameworks. It is, however, a very broad term when considered in a risk assessment and subsequent risk-management context. Specifying particular components of biodiversity that need protection, for example specific species or ecological processes, will define the framework in which risk assessors operate when performing ERAs, and provide more practical, specific protection goals for risk managers.

The objectives of this Symposium are to facilitate and encourage dialogue and cooperation on protection goals between risk assessors and risk managers, and to present EFSA’s latest guidance on making protection goals operational for use in ERAs.

The Symposium will include presentations from international speakers, as well as a panel discussion with representatives from environmental and food safety Agencies in the Nordic Zone.

Questions?

Please contact us by e-mail EFSAFocalPoint-norway@vkm.no

The Norwegian Scientific Committee for Food and Environment

T: 21 62 28 00
@: vkm@vkm.no

 

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