Environmental toxicology - Essay Example

Comments (0) Cite this document
Environmental Toxicology: Chernobyl Your Name Due Date Throughout history there have been many instances where manmade structures and processes lead to accidents or, in some way, cause toxicants to be released into the air in amounts that can be truly dangerous to human beings, animals, and entire ecosystems…
Download full paperFile format: .doc, available for editing
GRAB THE BEST PAPER94.5% of users find it useful
Environmental toxicology
Read TextPreview

Extract of sample "Environmental toxicology"

Environmental Toxicology: Chernobyl Due Throughout history there have been many instances where manmadestructures and processes lead to accidents or, in some way, cause toxicants to be released into the air in amounts that can be truly dangerous to human beings, animals, and entire ecosystems. There is probably no other singular event that represents how awful these sorts of accidents can be is the story of Chernobyl. Most people have heard references to the Chernobyl and Nuclear plant accident that made it famous. However, most people today probably do not know the magnitude of the effects of these accidents and the horrifying side-effects that it has had and continues to cause. Understanding the side-effects of exposures, the lingering effects of this radiation exposure, and the relationships of the exposure to diseases that are prevalent in the areas studied, environmental toxicologists can better assess risk, nature and protocol needed. Using research tools like biomonitoring and the finding of biomarkers toxicologists and environmental scientists make it possible to understand how exposures to dangerous toxicants, and in the case of Chernobyl, high doses of radiation, effects individuals and populations as whole. On April 26, 1986 an accident occurred, at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant in the Ukraine, during an experimental test of the electrical control system while shutting down one of the reactors. However, despite regulations prohibiting the shutdown of certain control systems that should never be shut down, they were allowed to completely shutdown. For this reason, one of the reactors, already flawed, reached unstable conditions. A power surge into the system caused a “steam explosion,” rupturing reactor containment, and damaged the reactor core. This caused a graphite fire that burned for, approximately, 10 days. Because of wind and rain patterns radioactive particles and gases into the atmosphere sending toxicants, as far as, parts of Europe. (UNSCEAR, 2012) In fact, it has been reported that the fallout from the Chernobyl accident was greater than both Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The damaged reactor, Number 4, has been sealed off and encased in concrete; which is deteriorating. To this day, a 20 mile “off limits” radius is maintained, however, 1000s of workers still are employed to care-take portions of the facility, which has been officially closed since 2000 (Cruz, 2010). The dangerous toxicants released in the accident included iodine-131, caesium-134 and caesium-137,.and Iodine-13, the latter of which has a half life of 8 days, but are very common to pick up. It has a tendency not to be eliminated by the body easily and can accumulate in the thyroid. Caesium 134 has a half life of 2 years and, the much more disturbing, caesium 137 has a half life of 30 years. These radionuclides can cause longer term damage.(UNSCEAR, 2012) Toxicologists have been using biomonitoring, which is the process of measuring people’s exposure to the toxic substances within their environment. The researchers do this by sampling population’s blood and urine. In the case of radiation the effects can be seen in hematological tests. They can, also, study the thyroids of exposed individuals to seek out the accumulation of iodine there. Biomarkers can be used to determine if the cause of an illness can be attributed to certain exposure events, like Chernobyl. Again the thyroid is an organ of interest in the case of stored and dangerous iodine (World Health Organization, 2011).Although 115,000 to 220,000 people were evacuated and relocated from Chernobyl’s surrounding areas the accident, ultimately, caused the deaths 30 workers within the first few weeks and contributed to significant radiation injury to hundreds of others. (UNSCEAR, 2012)It is believed that the damage of Chernobyl has led to crippling birth defects, like enlarged limbs, absence or excessive growth, malformed or undersized limbs, along with cancer, are all side effects of the accident at Chernobyl. Many of these side-effects seem, sadly, to affect children more so than any other. These are truly disturbing photographs. As can be seen, in the images above, how very real and tangible consequences of the accident of Chernobyl really was. This is the effect that radiation can have on human growth, development, and quality of life. It is physical defects like these, along with, as of 2005, six thousand cases of diagnosed thyroid cancer. Human beings are directly responsible for the majority of environmental issues and negative environmental occurrences that are a result from the processes involved in human manufacturing or a result of human negligence or error. We as a species do not work with nature we force it to conform to our needs ; then, yet, seemed shocked when our actions interfere, damage, or, completely, destroy ecosystems. We are probably lucky that we haven’t done far worse damage overall, but all the same, we need to be more responsible with the world that we abuse and accountable for repairing the damage that we have done. We need to spend more time determining how to find new means and resources that can be produced and acquired without so many negative repercussions to the environment and to the people of the world. In the end, we a human be beings are very responsible for many of the environmental issues because our society is directly linked to them. Chernobyl was clearly a matter of human error. Had the operators followed procedure and not allow the computer to deactivate all the control systems then it never would have occurred; unfortunately the result of that negligence has and continues to cause illness and deformity even today. I am a supporter of finding alternative energies, alternative mean, and more environmentally, and therefore, health friendly solutions to maintaining and improving society. References Cruz, G. (2010, May 3). Top 10 environmental disasters: Chernobyl. Time Magazine, 1. Retrieved from,28804,1986457_1986501_1986443,00.html UNSCEAR. (2012). The chernobyl accident. United Nations Scientific Committee on the Effects of Atomic Radiation, 1. Retrieved from World Health Organization. (2011). Biomarkers & human biomonitoring. Childrens Health and the Environment, 1-35. Retrieved from Read More
Cite this document
  • APA
  • MLA
(“Environmental toxicology Essay Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 750 words”, n.d.)
Environmental toxicology Essay Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 750 words. Retrieved from
(Environmental Toxicology Essay Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 750 Words)
Environmental Toxicology Essay Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 750 Words.
“Environmental Toxicology Essay Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 750 Words”, n.d.
  • Cited: 0 times
Comments (0)
Click to create a comment or rate a document

CHECK THESE SAMPLES OF Environmental toxicology


...?Methylation is the addition of a methyl group to a substrate or the substitution of an atom or a group of atoms by a methyl group. A methyl group, CH3, is an alkyl group derived from methane, CH4, by lost of one hydrogen. The methylation process converts inorganic (metal) mercury, Hg, to methyl mercury, CH3Hg+. As a positively charged ion, methyl mercury combines with anions, such as chloride (Cl-), nitrate (NO3-), hydroxide (OH-), and sulphur containing anions, such as thio groups (SH). Indeed, the thio group on the amino acid cysteine and hence in proteins containing cysteine has high affinity for methyl mercury forming a strong covalent bond. Methyl mercury can coordinate (bond) to more than one cysteine amino acid. Unlike... is the...
1 Pages(250 words)Research Paper

In the context of environmental toxicology, what does 'heavy metal' actually mean

...?HEAVY METAL IN THE CONTEXT OF ENVIRONMENTAL TOXICOLOGY Introduction Over years, the word “heavy metals” has been utilized in a variety of legislations and publications linked to the safe utilization of chemicals and chemical hazards. The name often refers to a category name of metalloids (semimetals) and metals associated with eco-toxicity or toxicity potential and contamination (Daffus, 2002). There is an assumption that all heavy-metals and their compounds have properties that are eco-toxic or highly toxic. However, this assumption has no fundamental basis on the available toxicological or chemical data. Legal regulations have specified an inventory of heavy metals applied in various situations. There is no definition... metal as...
6 Pages(1500 words)Essay


...Toxicology Answer Organic phosphate or OP compounds are a of chemicals used in both domestic and industrial sectors. They are commonly used in agriculture, chemical warfare and public health eradication programs. Some of the commonly used OP compounds are insecticides like parathion, malathion, dichlorvos, ethion, chlorpyrivos, diazinon and fenthion; antihelminthic agents like trichlorfon, herbicides like tricresyl phosphate and nerve gases like sarin, soman and tabun (Katz and Brooks, 2010). Most of these compounds are either amides, esters or thiol derivatives of phosphonic acid (Kamanyire and Karalliedde, 2004). These compounds are notorious for their health hazards. Most of the health effects are due to inhibition... of...
8 Pages(2000 words)Essay


...Toxicology Unless otherwise d, multiple choice questions may have more than one correct answer. Indicate all that apply. Some of these questions came from student papers. 1. Which of the following would you be least worried about in terms of carcinogenicity? (one answer only) a) Rn b) CrO3 c) Mustard gas d) Cl2 2. Which of the following is the least toxic? (one answer only) a) Methylene chloride b) methyl alcohol c) ethylene d) ethane 3. Which of the following is the least toxic? (one answer only) a) styrene b) CH2=CH-CHO c) Butyl alcohol d) Pentachlorophenol 4. Skin exposure to which of the following would be of the least concern? (one answer only) a) CHCl3 b) CH3COOH c) CH3NH2 d) (CH3)2CHOH 5. Which of the...
4 Pages(1000 words)Coursework

Environmental Toxicology Assgn. 2

...Environmental Toxicology Assignment 2 Question Answer is 29 Question 2 The ment is true Question 3 Plants can absorb toxicants either through the leaves, from the atmosphere or water through the roots. The most important pathway is through the leaves, as with gaseous chemicals consisting principally the nitrogen oxides and sulphur, chlorine, fluoride, photochemical pollutants, and ammonia (Kungolos 111). Question 4 Answer True Question 5 Principal pathway of chemical uptake terrestrial animals are related with those of humans the epithelial liner of the lungs, the skin and the digestive tract. The dermal and inhalation routes are mostly the first pathways of exposure to toxicants. Question 6 A thin...
1 Pages(250 words)Essay

Environmental Toxicology. Homework

...Environmental Toxicology. Homework Question Expression of Efflux pumps, heat shock proteins, antibiotic resistant genes, metallothioneins , antioxidant enzymes and membrane modifying proteins Activation of general stress response genes, formation of vesicles loaded with toxic compounds or Spore formation Alteration of metabolic pathway or target site or production of antioxidants like glutathione Drug inactivation or modification and reduced drug accumulation Question 2 D. all of the above Question 3 Chronic toxicity is the deferred poisonous impact from exposure to a matter. Availability of Sulphates in the river and the availability of CaCO 3 salts with a concentration of 38.52 mg/l to 192.52 mg/l...
3 Pages(750 words)Essay

Environmental Toxicology. Oil Spills

...Long-Term Ecological Effects of Oil Spills Following the American Psychological Association Guidelines One of the largest witnessed oil spills in history happened in the Bay of Campeche of the Gulf of Mexico as a result of explosion on at the Ixtoc I platform in 1979. The disaster was caused by failure of blowout preventer functioning and subsequent fire, which resulted in crash of Sedco 135F drilling tower releasing gigantic quantities of oil into the water. The government-owned oil company Permex was trying to stop the leak for more than nine months using several methods and finally drilling two relief wells. Until that moment around140 million gallons of oil had gushed from the well into the water causing substantial changes... Ecological...
1 Pages(250 words)Essay

Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs). Environmental Toxicology

...Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs) Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs) Persistent Organic Pollutants are a type of environmental contaminants and are present in our environment vastly exerting toxic affects not only on the environment but also on the human life. Persistent organic pollutants have the ability to remain intact in the environment for a long period of time. According to the article “The toxicogenomic study on Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs) in human hepatoma cell line”, POPs have the ability to accumulate in the fat cells of living organisms. It has been difficult to assess the toxic effects of POPs and the mechanism by which they exert their toxicology. According to studies it has been found that certain POPs... such as...
2 Pages(500 words)Essay

Environmental Toxicology. Homework 6

...Environment and Toxicology Which contaminant played a role in the origin of the "Madhatter" character in "Alice in Wonderland"? C. Mercury* 2. In terms of dose-response behaviour, selenium is an example of B. Macronutrient* 3. The increased concentration of an element in an aquatic organism relative to water it lives in, acquired over its life is called A. Bio concentration* 4. List six uses of lead that make cause exposure to humans. Used in paint and other protective coating Lead acid batteries industries Use of lead in cosmetics Lead used in hobbies and arts such as firing guns and making ammunition Lead in imported candies from Asia and Mexico Lead used in water pipes contaminates drinking water 5. Tetraethyl...
1 Pages(250 words)Essay


...(Miller 2013; Brody 2012). This exploration is being undertaken too in relation to the general toxicology of antibiotics and the dynamics of antibiotic resistance leading to human and environmental harms. Antibiotics in general have been in wide use to treat many infections, but of late have been the subject of a growing body of literature on the toxicological aspects of antibiotics, not only with regard to the toxic side effects of certain antibiotics on humans, but with regard to the growing proliferation of antibiotic waste in the environment, leading to increased levels of antibiotics in water bodies and soils. These in turn lead to adverse effects on the ecological balance of the...
8 Pages(2000 words)Essay
sponsored ads
We use cookies to create the best experience for you. Keep on browsing if you are OK with that, or find out how to manage cookies.

Let us find you another Essay on topic Environmental toxicology for FREE!

Contact Us