Ecotoxicology and risk assessment of trace contaminants

Towards in situ and real-time detection

In situ and real-time technologies for field measurements of trace chemicals have seen accelerating developments in the recent years. Our interests included the validation and the development of such tools in aquatic environments, in order to identify the presence/sources of trace contaminants (both conventional and emerging), to understand their dynamics, and to assess their ecological significance.

Understanding Bioavailability

The bioavailability of trace contaminants, i.e. the fraction of the pollutants which is available to organisms, is controlled by the water/sediment physico-chemistry, but also by hydrodynamics and biological processes. This fraction is now recognized as a critical parameter in understanding ecological processes, aquatic toxicity to pollutants, but also the effectiveness of various water pollution control technologies. We worked at measuring this fraction, using both real organisms (e.g. bivalves), and also innovative biomimetic techniques (e.g. passive samplers).


Modelling Fate and Transport of Trace Chemicals in Tropical Systems

Our ultimate goal is to aggregate into models both the robust sets of field data, and a comprehensive physico-chemistry of trace contaminants. This approach is necessary to better predict their fate and transport in the environment. A particular interest is to develop a better understanding of the specificities of tropical environments. We are currently setting up such approach for mangroves, seawater column and tropical freshwater lakes. The resulting tools should prove to be useful to environmental managers and policy makers in tropical countries.



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