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Human health risk assessment of naturally occurring radioactive materials in produced water - a case study


Chowdhury, S and Husain, T and Veitch, B and Bose, N and Sadiq, R, Human health risk assessment of naturally occurring radioactive materials in produced water - a case study, Human and Ecological Risk Assessment, 10, (6) pp. 1155-1171. ISSN 1080-7039 (2004) [Refereed Article]

DOI: doi:10.1080/10807030490887203


Human health effects from naturally occurring radioactive materials (NORM) in produced water are of concern due to their bioavailability and bioaccumulation characteristics in finfish and shellfish species used for human consumption. Being chemically similar to calcium, radium concentrates mostly in bones, shells, and exoskeletons. Previous studies have been based on the whole-body bioaccumulation of radium in fish where the distribution of radium in bone/exoskeleton and the edible parts of fish were not considered separately and thus the predicted risks were relatively high. In this article, the distribution of radium in the non-edible and edible parts of fish and the probability of exposure to a produced water plume have been studied in order to characterize human health risks. A probabilistic hydrodynamic model has been incorporated in this study. Using the concentration distribution approach, the mean cancer risks to humans were predicted in the range of 8.6 × 10 -7 to 9.5 × 10 -7, which were 2.6 to 2.7 times less than the risks predicted by using the whole body concentrations. The exceedence probability of maximum permissible human health cancer risk of 1 × 10 -4 is close to zero. At a risk level of 1 × 10 -6, the exceedence probability is 21% whereas in the whole body concentration approach it is between 45 to 49%. In this study, no effect on fish from exposure to NORM components in produced water was found.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Research Division:Biological Sciences
Research Group:Ecology
Research Field:Marine and estuarine ecology (incl. marine ichthyology)
Objective Division:Environmental Management
Objective Group:Marine systems and management
Objective Field:Oceanic processes (excl. in the Antarctic and Southern Ocean)
UTAS Author:Bose, N (Professor Neil Bose)
ID Code:47270
Year Published:2004
Web of Science® Times Cited:13
Deposited By:Australian Maritime College
Deposited On:2007-10-21
Last Modified:2007-10-21

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