Change search
CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf
Why is high persistence alone a major cause of concern?
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Environmental Science and Analytical Chemistry.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-7035-8660
Number of Authors: 42019 (English)In: Environmental Science: Processes & Impacts, ISSN 2050-7887, E-ISSN 2050-7895, Vol. 21, no 5, p. 781-792Article, review/survey (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Persistence is a hazard criterion for chemicals enshrined in chemical regulation worldwide. In this paper, we argue that the higher the persistence of a chemical, the greater the emphasis that it should be given in chemicals assessment and decision making. We provide case studies for three classes of highly persistent chemicals (chlorofluorocarbons, polychlorinated biphenyls, and per-and polyfluoroalkyl substances) to exemplify problems unique to highly persistent chemicals, despite their otherwise diverse properties. Many well-known historical chemical pollution problems were the result of the release of highly persistent chemicals. Using evaluative modeling calculations, we demonstrate that if a chemical is highly persistent, its continuous release will lead to continuously increasing contamination irrespective of the chemical's physical-chemical properties. We argue that these increasing concentrations will result in increasing probabilities of the occurrence of known and unknown effects and that, once adverse effects are identified, it will take decades, centuries or even longer to reverse contamination and therefore effects. Based on our findings we propose that high persistence alone should be established as a sufficient basis for regulation of a chemical, which we term the P-sufficient approach. We argue that regulation on high persistence alone is not over-precautionary given the historical and ongoing problems that persistent chemicals have caused. Regulation of highly persistent chemicals, for example by restriction of emissions, would not only be precautionary, but would serve to prevent poorly reversible future impacts.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2019. Vol. 21, no 5, p. 781-792
National Category
Earth and Related Environmental Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-170211DOI: 10.1039/c8em00515jISI: 000468787800002PubMedID: 30973570OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-170211DiVA, id: diva2:1337623
Available from: 2019-07-16 Created: 2019-07-16 Last updated: 2019-07-16Bibliographically approved

Open Access in DiVA

No full text in DiVA

Other links

Publisher's full textPubMed

Search in DiVA

By author/editor
Cousins, Ian T.
By organisation
Department of Environmental Science and Analytical Chemistry
In the same journal
Environmental Science: Processes & Impacts
Earth and Related Environmental Sciences

Search outside of DiVA

GoogleGoogle Scholar

doi
pubmed
urn-nbn

Altmetric score

doi
pubmed
urn-nbn
Total: 12 hits
CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf