“Managing Environmental Risks to Food and Health Security in Asian Watersheds” project seminar

Date: Tuesday, 12 June 2012
Time: 0:15 p.m. - 1:15 p.m.
Place: Seminar room 1 & 2, RIHN (arrow Access)
Speaker: Dr. MOLINA, Victorio Bolanos (Visiting Research Fellow, RIHN / Department Chair & Associate Professor, Department of Environmental and Occupational Health, College of Public Health, University of the Philippines Manila )
Dr. CONCEPCION, Rogelio Navea (Visiting Research Fellow, RIHN / Professional Lecturer, School of Environmental Science and Management, University of the Philippines Los Baños)
Organizer: RIHN “Managing Environmental Risks to Food and Health Security in Asian Watersheds” Project
Language: English

Dr. Victorio B. Molina
“Assessment of Health Risks from Impacts of Environmental Degradation: The Case of Fish Products in Laguna Lake”

Anthropogenic activities continuously increase the amount of heavy metals in the environment, especially in aquatic ecosystem. Major sources of contamination in surface waters can be traced to industrial discharges, domestic waste disposal and application of agrochemicals on farmlands. Laguna Lake Basin is a classic model of a multiple resource with multiple users and its capacity to provide various ecosystem services is continuously being challenged mainly by anthropogenic factors. This study provides an assessment of the risks to human health associated with the exposure to heavy metals bioaccumulation in fish products from Laguna Lake. Samples of edible fish species, namely; Bangus, Bighead Carp, Dalag, Kanduli, and Tilapia were collected in eight sampling stations during the dry and wet seasons. Heavy metals analyses for Cadmium, Lead, Mercury, Arsenic, and Chromium were conducted. Estimates of health risks associated with fish consumption were summarized according to non-carcinogenic and carcinogenic health effects. Non-carcinogenic Hazard Quotient values of five heavy metals showed that lead is the most urgent pollutant of concern in terms of risks associated with fish consumption. Elevated health risk for Mercury exposure was also evident in the west bay and central bay for dalag and kanduli species. Among the five heavy metals only Arsenic is a confirmed human carcinogen through the oral route of exposure. The highest life time cancer risk for arsenic was computed for tilapia from the west bay during the dry season with risk value of 8.5x10-4 or an excess of 85 cancer cases per 100,000 populations. From the point of view of human health protection, fish products from the lake are not fit for long-term human consumption primarily due to lead contamination.

Dr. Rogelio N. Concepcion
“Community Forum 2012”

The Community Forum 2012 is a mid-term review for identifying and addressing research gaps and priorities and to establishing, as well, the sustainable partnership between the researchers of the RIHN-funded LakeHEAD project with local community/stakeholders and other experts and academicians interested in the harmony of nature and men in the Laguna Lake Watershed. The LakeHEAD participatory community - based approach is an emerging “Model for Best Practice in Integrated Environmental Research” which illustrates the scientific soundness of participatory trans-sectoral approach to community-oriented research. The participatory approach identifies and prioritizes environmental determinants for integrating/harmonizing institutional research outcomes of the RIHN-funded “Ecological Risks on Food and Health Security Research Project.” The Forum strengthens the platform for standard data base development, access and exchange of information by potential data users of the project. The Forum will firmly establish the Framework, Principles and Tools for Participatory, Community-based Risk Communication and Early Warning Systems that make full use of traditional knowledge//risks indicators in the scientific formulation of measures for sustainable urban and resilient agricultural development. Significant considerations are dedicated to defining appropriate, complementary roles of researchers and community leaders, women and youth sectors in translating science - based risk communication into language and dialects fully understood by all individuals and communities, particularly messages that directly affect livelihood and safety of vulnerable individuals and communities. The Forum, will, likewise provide the opportunities for setting examples of establishing end-points/closure for research and development by defining science - based parameters for identifying community-oriented investments to establish resilient communities and prevent further expansion of environmental degradation and their resulting ecological risks and impacts on human health and food security.
Contacts: Noriko HASE (Clerical Assistant, RIHN)
Research Institute for Humanity and Nature
457-4 Motoyama, Kamigamo, Kita-ku,
Kyoto, 603-8047, Japan
Phone : +81-75-707-2286
Fax : +81-75-707-2506
E-mail: address

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