A critical analysis of vulnerable populations in the Durham-York energy-from-waste incinerator human health risk assessment
thesisposted on 24.05.2021, 18:25 authored by Nazira Panchbhaya
A health risk assessment is an essential tool to assess effects of polluting facilities on vulnerable populations. The Durham-York Energy Centre is the first incinerator built in Ontario in over 20 years and it has caused public controversy due to the health effects of such facilities. The proponents conducted a human health risk assessment (HHRA) according to best practices to effectively protect the public. The objective of this thesis is to establish a HHRA best practice framework for vulnerable populations, particularly pregnant women and fetuses, to confirm if best practices were achieved and determine whether this group was adequately considered in the HHRA. Analysis ultimately showed that the Durham-York HHRA complied with most best practices but the failure to identify pregnant women and fetuses as a vulnerable population lead to some important deficiencies and omissions in the assessment.