Portfolio Ecotox Studies
To understand the influence of chemicals in the environment is a complex topic. It becomes more and more important to provide a refined and detailed risk assessment to predict potential risk for ecosystems. Hence, early eco-toxicological screening is essential to minimize environmental risk and we provide the following services to address these challenges:
- Screening studies (be prepared at an early stage of development and/or avoid performing expensive tasks that are not needed)
- Special Studies (with a focus on species sensitive distribution (SSD) studies, pulse-dose scenarios, combined terrestrial and aquatic studies related to exposure scenarios (run off, drift) and microcosm studies including SSD approaches (e.g. addition of specific indicator species without the presence of predators)
- Monitoring studies (audit of laboratories and project management); We know most systems because they were established by us. Hence, we are able to evaluate these studies and we have developed advanced skills that allow us to find the right questions and answers.
Portfolio Marine Science
Risk assessment was focused in the past on freshwater bodies. But all freshwater eventually reaches the ocean and there the question is: Are marine and fresh water systems comparable in terms of risk assessment?
In the last years a lot of studies and peer-reviewed publications showed that marine ecosystems react more sensitive to environmental change when compared to freshwater bodies that have been already adapted to more severe environmental and anthropogenic influence. There is some evidence now that we do not have realistic scenarios for marine systems based solely on freshwater studies. Therefore the focus of risk assessment is to expand to marine systems. We started to gain expertise in this area and to create and expand a network based on sound marine science collaborations. To realize this goal, we already designed test systems to better understand and protect marine environment and to guide marine science-based risk assessments.
Portfolio Aqua Culture
Our world population continues to increase and we will add 2-3 billion people by 2050. To have food is the right of everybody and resources have to be shared and protected.
Aquaculture is one component to achieve this goal. We are currently working on resource protection technology, where we bring aquatic, marine, and ecotoxicological sciences together. The basic idea behind this approach is that standardised systems that we know e.g. from the ecotox science allows us to calculate environmental risk and predict responses of animals and plants to environmental change. It is now very apparent that climate change significantly affects most ecosystems resulting in potentially dramatic changes of food webs. Our focus is to effectively use aquaculture and at the same time protect natural resources. This might be realised by high circulation systems with minimum input of natural resources and avoidance of waste products that have toxic effects on the environment. With our partners we are able to provide large freshwater and seawater tanks for aquaculture testing.