The availability of safe and clean drinking water is a key public health issue, which concerns the competent European authorities. Water is a limited natural resource –drinking water is just a small fraction of the total- and, moreover, is under great pressure, due to both growing demand and climate change, which doesn’t improve availability, particularly in countries in southern Europe and the Mediterranean.
Through drinking water, the population is exposed to a wide variety of chemical substances, and current analysis methods to assess toxicity and potential impact on human health are neither sufficiently developed nor precise. To date, the toxicity and carcinogenic qualities in humans of only a small number of compounds have been studied. Most toxicity studies analyze the effects individually and don’t look at the combined effects upon interaction. We must also consider that the effects of many contaminants have been studied in animals, and not humans, meaning that only a small number of drinking-water contaminants are included in regulatory laws.
These debate sessions will identify the challenges and needs of analysis methodology, lines of research, and the epidemiology strategies and policies of the future in the field of water contamination and health. The debates will feature multidisciplinary professionals and researchers from a variety of specializations, including analytical chemistry, environmental science, toxicology, molecular biology, and epidemiology, as well as representatives from industry and regulatory bodies.
Date: May, 21st and 22nd, 2012
Place: PRBB Auditorium. c/ Dr. Aiguader, 88. Barcelona, Spain