Nature itself presents hazards to human health, including disease, natural poisons, and radiation. Regulators use a process called environmental risk assessment to decide whether they need to take risk management steps in relation to a risk. In this activity, you will carry out three steps of an environmental risk assessment called release analysis, exposure analysis, and health effects analysis. This activity will require outside research in addition to the textbook and will set the stage for a larger assignment in Week 4.
Write a 1-2 page paper using the following instructions.
Select an environmental risk that occurs in nature, and research information about its release, exposure scenarios, and health effects. The specific data in each area of the analysis will depend on the environmental risk you choose. Write at least one paragraph for each analysis:
Release Analysis: Identify the contaminant, and how it is released, measured, or detected. Include units of measurement, setting for the release, and scientific fields related to the contamination or measurement.
Exposure Analysis: Analyze the risk of exposure such as settings in which people encounter the risk or plausible scenarios in which exposure occurs.
- Health Effects Analysis: Estimate the risks to human health, including short and long-term effects, demographic groups at risk, and health effects on individuals and populations.
How to solve
HSA 551 Strayer University Analysis of a Natural Environmental Risk Essay
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Environmental risk assessment is a crucial process that helps regulators determine the need for risk management steps in relation to various environmental risks. In this particular activity, the focus is on carrying out three essential steps of an environmental risk assessment: release analysis, exposure analysis, and health effects analysis. By researching and analyzing an environmental risk that occurs in nature, students will gain a deeper understanding of the contaminant’s release, exposure scenarios, and health effects. This assignment aims to enhance students’ knowledge and set the stage for a larger assignment in Week 4.
Answer to Content:
For the purpose of this analysis, I have selected the environmental risk of lead contamination from natural sources. Lead is released into the environment through various means such as volcanic activity, erosion of natural rocks and soils, and weathering of lead-containing minerals. Lead is primarily measured or detected using atomic absorption spectrometry, where the concentration of lead is quantified in parts per million (ppm) or micrograms per liter (µg/L). Furthermore, the scientific fields related to the contamination or measurement of lead include environmental chemistry, toxicology, and geology.
The risk of lead exposure is prevalent in multiple settings where individuals may come into contact with lead-contaminated sources. One such common setting is residential areas with old houses built prior to 1978 when lead-based paint was used extensively. Additionally, occupational settings like battery manufacturing plants and shooting ranges can also pose a significant risk of lead exposure. Moreover, dietary exposure to lead can occur through the consumption of contaminated water or certain food items, particularly those grown in soil containing high lead levels.
Health Effects Analysis:
Lead exposure can result in a range of short and long-term health effects. In the short term, high levels of lead exposure can cause symptoms such as abdominal pain, headaches, and confusion. Prolonged exposure to lead can lead to more severe health issues, including damage to the nervous system, increased blood pressure, and impaired cognitive function. Demographic groups at higher risk for lead-related health effects include young children and pregnant women, as lead can negatively impact neurodevelopment in children and cause developmental issues in fetuses. It is crucial to address lead contamination promptly to mitigate the adverse health effects it imposes on individuals and populations.
In conclusion, this assignment provides an opportunity for students to explore the intricacies of environmental risk assessment by selecting an environmental risk that occurs naturally. By conducting release analysis, exposure analysis, and health effects analysis, students will gain insights into the nature of the contaminant, its pathways of exposure, and the potential health implications for different demographic groups. Understanding these aspects is essential for effective risk management and the safeguarding of human health.