Course code FMI309

FMI309 Environmental Pollutants and Ecotoxicology

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Showing course contents for the educational year 2017 - 2018 .

Course responsible: Hans-Christian Teien
Teachers: Dag Anders Brede, Lindis Skipperud, Bjørn Olav Rosseland, John William Einset, Ole Martin Eklo, Deborah Helen Oughton, Brit Salbu, Knut Erik Tollefsen, Per Strand, Roland Peter Kallenborn
ECTS credits: 10
Faculty: Faculty of Environmental Sciences and Natural Resource Management
Teaching language: EN
(NO=norsk, EN=Engelsk)
Teaching exam periods:
This course starts in January block. This course has teaching/evaluation in January block and Spring parallel.
Course frequency: Annually
First time: Study year 2012-2013
Preferential right:
Course contents:
Lectures: Focus on natural and man made sources that contribute to the contamination of trace metals, radionuclides and organic pollutants in air, water, sediments, soil and vegetation and how the contaminants forms and mobility effect organisms up to and including man. Focus on standard (ISO) ecotoxtesting, terminology in toxicology and how early effects can be traced back to biomarker responses.  Laboratory course: The students practice water sampling and analysing of waterquality, and taking tissue samples for determination of contaminants in fish organs according to an international ptotocol. A certificate is issued for the sampling (voluntarily).
Learning outcome:
The students will have knowledge of different sources of contamination and be able to evaluate the long-term effects of contamination of different ecosystems. The students will understand the links between concentration levels including the speciation of contaminants, and mobility and ecosystem transfer, biological uptake and bio-accumulation and bio-magnification of environmental contaminants in living organisms, and the ecotoxicological effects on cell, organ, organism and population. Students will be able to assess the short and long-term impact on man and the environment from contamination, and for some pollutants evaluate alternative countermeasures to reduce the impact in different ecosystems. Students will also be introduced to modern analytical techniques applied within the field. The students will understand that nature is fragile and that we need to consider the long term effects of pollutants to prevent negative ecotoxicological effects.
Learning activities:

Environmental chemistry and ecotoxicology are experimental disciplines, lectures, colloquia and demonstrations are closely integrated. The lectures give a theoretical background for the practical training.


Lectures: focus on naturally occurring and anthropogenic sources contributing to contamination of different ecosystems, soil, water, vegetation, animals etc.


The speciation of contaminants influences the mobility and ecosystem transfer as well as biological uptake, and may change over time.


In colloquia selected topics will be discussed and presented by the students.


Practical exercises  include demonstrations of different sampling and fractionation techniques for contaminants in water, and sampling of fish.


The lectures, colloquia and practical training will be in January block.

Teaching support:
Environmental Chemistry, a global perspective. Second edition. Gary W. vanLoonand Stephen J. Duffy. Oxford University Press, 3rd 2011. Chapters 1, 6, 8, 9, 10, 12, 13, 14, 18 , 19 and 20. Principles of Ecotoxicology, C.H. Walker, S.P. Hopkin, R.M. Sibly, and D.B. Peakall. Taylor and Francis. 4th edition, 2012.350 p. Handouts from lectures. Supporting literature: Selected articles, published in international journals.
Recommended prerequisites:
Mandatory activity:
Compulsory participation at first lecture and in certain activities specified at the start of the semester.
3,5 hours exam counts 100% of total grade. Exame will take place in April.
Nominal workload:
300 hours
Entrance requirements:
Special requirements in Science
Reduction of credits:
10 credits overlap to FMI310
Type of course:
An external examiner will evaluate the examinations.
Allowed examination aids: A1 No calculator, no other aids
Examination details: One written exam: A - E / Ikke bestått