Risk Assessment at Fisheries and Oceans Canada Major Facilities

Client: Fisheries and Oceans Canada (F&OC)

Azimuth is involved in a five-year program to evaluate contaminated sites issues at F&OC’s major facilities in BC. Prior to initiating risk assessment, Azimuth was a key member of F&OC’s team tasked with developing an overall risk assessment and risk management strategy for these sites. This tiered strategy was specifically designed to integrate risk-based information for prioritization of management actions, while considering available budget and F&OC capacity at each tier.

Azimuth is currently technical lead responsible for designing and implementing the aquatic ERAs, including oversight and participation in field studies (e.g., sediment and tissue sampling, intertidal and subtidal habitat studies), quantitative data analysis (e.g., triad analysis including integration of chemistry, toxicity, and benthic community data), and quantitative food chain modeling. The goal of these studies is to address contaminant-related risks to biota below the high water mark (i.e., intertidal and subtidal zones), including potential inputs of contaminated groundwater from upland sources as well as potential contaminant uptake via the food chain by marine birds and mammals. To achieve this with an acceptable level of certainty at each facility (i.e., to support making sound risk management decisions), different levels of investigation and analysis are implemented depending on a number of factors (e.g., commonalities among sites, magnitude and extent of exposure, sensitivity of receptors, and site management goals).