EPA Science Inventory

Why I like benthic biomonitoring data and what you can make with them.

Citation:

Cormier, S. Why I like benthic biomonitoring data and what you can make with them. Presented at SETAC, Nashville, TN, November 17 - 21, 2013.

Description:

With the maturation of large, geographically explicit, biomonitoring data comes great opportunities to ask and directly answer environmental questions. Under what conditions do species thrive? What is the threshold for extirpation of species? What caused a change in the community? Species sensitivity distributions (SSD), which model a causal relationship between a stressor and an effect, are a convenient way to examine these questions and to graphically depict the answers. For example, extirpation and optimum values can be calculated from these large datasets. These extirpation or optimum values can be used to make regional SSD. Water quality criterion can be derived from that SSD by estimating the 5th centile of extirpated genera. This is a type of criterion assessment. Using the calculated XC95, one can construct a composite SSD for a watershed and individual SSDs for its contiguous streams to assess condition and site specific causation. Evidence of causation is shown by the relative position of absent genera in the SSD. Condition is shown by the relative diversity of species represented in the SSD. When there is enough information to construct an SSD for many stressors, the condition and cause are revealed by the SSD. An SSD is a strong type of evidence, because it clearly shows the relevant effect. Biomonitoring benthic invertebrates provides information for many genera; thus, enabling us to discover solutions from the biosphere itself.

Purpose/Objective:

The presentation illustrates one way to integrate asessments by using similar effects endpoints. In this way, problems identified in conditions assessments can be solved using causal, predictive and outcome assessments. Aquatic benthic invertebrates are used as an example and nutrients and sality as example pollutants.

URLs/Downloads:

SETAC 2013 CORMIER.PPTX

Record Details:

Record Type: DOCUMENT (PRESENTATION/SLIDE)
Completion Date: 02/07/2014
Record Last Revised: 02/07/2014
Record Created: 02/07/2014
Record Released: 02/07/2014
OMB Category: Other
Record ID: 268376

Organization:

U.S. ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY

OFFICE OF RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT

NATIONAL CENTER FOR ENVIRONMENTAL ASSESSMENT