"Today, human risk assessment and environmental risk assessment are typically separated. Existing risk assessment (RA) experience and regulations are challenged by future RA needs.
- There is a lack of mutual understanding between subject matter experts of individual disciplines.
- Data from toxicological and ecotoxicological studies is not readily accessible by risk assessors across disciplines.
- The need for RA will continue to increase (e.g. REACH or toxicity of mixtures) along with budget restrictions and political and public pressure to reduce the number of animal tests. Therefore, more cost effective, predictive and rapid tests for high quality sustainable RA are needed including a better exploitation of existing data.
- More transparency in RA is needed to allow better risk communication to regain consumer/public trust and to give unambiguous guidance for improved risk management.
- Scientific RA plays an increasing role internationally for global risk governance and as a tool to support sustainable trade practices. Divergence often arises on risk policies and measures, sometimes due to different RA approaches. Therefore, stronger international co-operation in this area is needed.
Against this background, the overall objective of the proposed coordination action HEROIC is to establish and co-ordinate a global network of European and international experts and stakeholders from different disciplines to establish stronger interfaces between human and environmental RA, between RA and risk management, between the various agencies and countries within the EU and between agencies and industry.
To this end, the HEROIC consortium members will make full use of their own extensive networks to involve stakeholders and experts in workshops, roundtables and outreach activities. These coordinating activities will result in enhanced sharing of knowledge, building consensus and development of clear, easily understood, transparent and unambiguous integrated RA procedures."
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