Heavy metals from different sources accumulate in the environment. From a policy point of view, it has-been difficult to tackle the environmental problems due to heavy metals partly because the problem has been viewed from different policy domains (air, water, soils etc.). Thus, it is not guaranteed that the policy mix applied under environmental regulation is optimal. A systems analysis would be required to define the sources of heavy metals, how they are dispersed in the environment and which adverse effects they might cause on human and ecosystems health. From a policy point of view, it is also important to identify what kinds of policy responses would be most cost-effective to reduce the impacts of heavy metals. Such information is required for carrying out cost-benefit analyses of reducing the occurrence of heavy metals in our society. Identifying the benefits would include a monetary valuation of the impacts with contingent valuation (CV) approaches (e.g. assessing the willingness-to-pay,WTP). The focus of the work described will be on priority metals, which are mercury, cadmium, chrome, nickel, arsenic and lead. Core aim of the research is to to carry out cost-effectiveness (CEA)and cost-benefit analyses (CBA) for reducing the heavy metals occurrence, in the EU Member States and candidate countries, including damage assessment to the environment and human health in the long term following the impact pathway analysis which assesses the impacts and damages of pollutants from their emissions over their dispersion to exposure and impacts. Finally, feasibility study will be conducted to identify the potentials, strengths and weaknesses and uncertainties of currently available macro-economic models to identify further research needs in this field.
Fields of science
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Funding SchemeSTREP - Specific Targeted Research Project
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