Ecosystem Services at U.S. EPA Contaminated Site Cleanups
Short Course to be presented by Michael Kravitz, EPA/ORD/NCEA
to HDC-SETAC at 2018 Spring Meeting, April 25, 2018
Ecosystem Services (ES) are receiving increased attention as we strive to understand how the health of ecological systems, and changes to them wrought by man, contribute to human well-being. This short course provides an overview of how ES are being considered in the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for use at contaminated sites, and how it can be integrated into the ecological risk assessment process. Ideally, ES evaluation tools should assist in 1) identification of site-specific ES, 2) quantification of ES endpoints, 3) assessment and prediction of ES pre- and post- remedy operations, and 4) identification and implementation of greener cleanup best practices that minimize impact to or improve ES. These practices can “prime” the site for revitalization on completion of remedial activities. We will summarize the use of several ES evaluation tools at two pilot Superfund sites representing different ecosystems and scales, and provide the “lessons learned”. We will also summarize ongoing work related to ecosystem services at one or more sites.