Climate change: Implications for ecotoxicological environmental impact assessment

Shea P. Connell, Teresa F. Fernandes, Mark G.J. Hartl

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


As a consequence of increasing atmospheric CO2 and its subsequent sequestration, the oceans are undergoing changes that have not been seen for millennia, including temperature increases, ocean acidification, and localized alterations in salinity. Current methodologies for undertaking environmental-impact assessments may not be suitable for use under near-future (2100) conditions. This paper reviews and analyses what research has presently been undertaken to address these concerns. The authors find that little attention has previously been paid to chronic-exposure conditions that accurately reflect the near future, but the few available studies show that the consequences of oceanic climate change will not only be significant for marine life, but also impact humans who depend on it. The authors suggest that future research should target understanding how climate change will impact the physiological health of a wide array of species, important both economically and ecologically, going beyond the often-chosen model species and standardized testing. This information is necessary to accurately estimate the environmental risk of proposed engineering projects in changing environmental conditions.

Original languageEnglish
Article number04017078
JournalJournal of Environmental Engineering
Issue number12
Early online date28 Sep 2017
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2017

Cite this