Developing spatio-temporal models for landscape-scale pesticide environmental risk assessment


This report investigates various aspects of landscape-scale population-level environmental risk assessment for the purposes of regulatory risk assessment for pesticides at EU and member state level. We provide examples of landscape-scale population-level environmental risk assessment for birds and mammals, and terrestrial invertebrates using existing models for the European Brown Hare (Lepus europeaus), the Skylark (Alauda arvensis), and a carabid beetle (Bembidion lampros). We also develop a model for Great Crested Newt (Triturus cristatus). Amphibians are not currently addressed in regulatory environmental risk assessment but are assumed to be covered by bird and mammal risk assessment. This situation is now under review by EFSA, therefore the newt is a likely candidate for landscape-level risk assessment in the future. The main result of the simulations confirms that landscape context has a very large influence on the results of an environmental risk assessment. In addition, the results were not transferable between species, and species ecology interacted with landscape context to create reproducible but unpredictable variation in environmental risk assessment under different conditions. As a consequence, the concept typically used in environmental risk assessment of realistic worst-case scenario cannot be generally applied, but must be created for each specific set of contexts.

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