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Keywords:

  • Selenium;
  • Management;
  • Toxicity;
  • Conceptual model;
  • Risk assessment

Abstract

We describe herein a conceptual selenium (Se) management model, directed toward coal mining in western Canada, but which can be applied to other coal mines and, with appropriate modification, to other industrial sources of Se to aquatic and terrestrial environments. This conceptual model provides a transparent means to integrate and synthesize existing information that can be used to provide an adaptive approach for managing ecological exposures and associated risk. It is particularly useful for visualizing and subsequently developing management interventions for Se control and risk reduction. The model provides a structured process by which critical information needs can be identified and addressed. It effectively provides the foundation for making management decisions related to Se discharges to aquatic and terrestrial environments by showing interrelationships of the various media and receptors as well as primary sources, release mechanisms, secondary sources, and exposure pathways.