Global environmental changes and the impact on ecosystems and human health

Global environmental changes caused by human activities can modify, sometimes permanently, the structure and the composition of ecosystems (aquatic, land, air). The socio-economic evolution of recent decades has caused the release and emissions into ecosystems of multiple contaminants (chemical and microbiological). Their diffusion, interaction and effects on human health can be sometimes ignored. These changes have caused the progressive loss of biodiversity, the accumulation of contaminants in biota and a deterioration of the chemical and microbiological quality status of environmental matrices. In order to prevent future damage to ecosystems it is urgent to apply innovative, rapid, sensitive monitoring tools that can allow to identify the hazards and prevent risks to human health via appropriate management measures. In this paper, we provide an overview of some European and international approaches to deal with the certain challenges raised by global environmental changes

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by Laura Mancini, Stefania Marcheggiani, Camilla Puccinelli, Ines Lacchetti and Mario Carere, Italian Institute of Health, Timothy Bouley, World Bank Group

DOI 10.12910/EAI2017-057



Environmental changes and human activities can affect the state of ecosystems and constitute a potential risk to human health and well-being. During recent decades, the increase of water supplies for industrial, irrigation and drinking uses, excessive land use and deforestation, hydro-morphological alterations, emissions of chemical contaminants in the environment (more than 100,000 registered by REACH in Europe) have changed, often permanently, the structure and the composition of ecosystems (aquatic, land, air) reducing biodiversity, accumulating contaminants in biota and resulting in a deterioration of chemical and microbiological quality of environmental matrices. …