Learning from examples

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The text on this page is taken from an equivalent page of the IEHIAS-project.

Planning and designing an assessment can be a daunting task. It is essential that it is done well, for otherwise costly surprises and mistakes may arise in the execution phase. It is therefore crucial to learn as much as we can from studies that have gone before - and from the mistakes that other people have made!

The first step should therefore be to review what previous assessments have been done, and to draw relevant lessons. Because the concept of integrated environmental health impact assessment is relatively new, the number of previous studies is limited. A series of case studies was, however, completed as part of the research leading to the development of this Toolbox, and these provide a valuable body of experience, not only about the broad process of designing an assessment, but also about the difficulties that may be encountered in actually executing the assessment, and how these might be overcome. These are available in the Toolkit section of the Toolbox. A report summarising the lessons learned can also be downloaded via the link below.

In addition, much is likely to be learned from other assessments, using other approaches or in other fields, including traditional risk assessments (especially those targetted at larger and more complex issues), health impact assessments, and integrated environmental assessments. Links to some examples are given in the References below.

In the long-term, the body of useful material will clearly grow as new assessments are done. Getting access to these is not always easy, however, for assessment reports are not always published or widely disseminated. In order to make assessments much more accessible, the Toolkit section includes an open library, into which new assessments can be uploaded. Assessors are encouraged to use this facility, and upload their own studies so that others can share them.


  • Alcamo, J., Mayerhofer, P., Guardans, R., van Harmelen, T., van Minnen, J., Onigkeit, J., Posch, M. and de Vries, B. 2002 An integrated assessment of regional air pollution and climate change in Europe: findings of the AIR-CLIM Project. Environmental Science and Policy 5, 257-272.
  • Holman, I.P., Rounsevell, M.D.A., Shackley, S., Harrison, P.A. Nicholls, R.J., Berry, P.M., and Audsley, E., 2005 A regional, multi-sectoral and integrated assessment of the impacts of climate and socio-economic change in the UK. Part I. Methodology. Climate Change 71, 9-41.
  • Levy, J.I., Carrothers, T.J., Tuomisto, J.T., Hammitt, J.K. and Evans, J.S. Assessing the public health benefits of reduced ozone concentrations. Environmental Health Perspectives 109, 1215-1226.
  • Lock,K., Gabrijelcic-Blenkus, M., Martuzzi, M., Otorepec, P., Wallace, P., Dora, C., Robertson, A., and Zakotnic, J.M 2003 Health impact assessment of agriculture and food policies: lessons learnt from the Republic of Slovenia. Bulletin of the World Health Organization 81, 391-398.
  • Mestl, H.E.I., Aunan, K. and Seip, H.M. 2006 Potential health benefit of reducing household solid fuel use in Shanxi province, China. Science of the Total Environment 372, 120-132.
  • Mestl, H.E.I., Aunan, K. and Seip, H.M. 2007 Health benefits from reducing indoor air pollution from household solid fuel use in China — Three abatement scenarios.Science of the Total Environment 373, 831-840.
  • Muller, N.Z. and Mendelsohn, R. 2007 Measuring the damages of air pollution in the United States. Journal of Environmental Economics and Management. 54, 1-14.
  • Wang, X. and Mauzarall, D.L. 2006 Evaluating impacts of air pollution in China on public health: Implications for future air pollution and energy policies. Atmospheric Environment 40, 1706-1721.

See also

Integrated Environmental Health Impact Assessment System
IEHIAS is a website developed by two large EU-funded projects Intarese and Heimtsa. The content from the original website was moved to Opasnet.
Topic Pages

Boundaries · Population: age+sex 100m LAU2 Totals Age and gender · ExpoPlatform · Agriculture emissions · Climate · Soil: Degredation · Atlases: Geochemical Urban · SoDa · PVGIS · CORINE 2000 · Biomarkers: AP As BPA BFRs Cd Dioxins DBPs Fluorinated surfactants Pb Organochlorine insecticides OPs Parabens Phthalates PAHs PCBs · Health: Effects Statistics · CARE · IRTAD · Functions: Impact Exposure-response · Monetary values · Morbidity · Mortality: Database

Examples and case studies Defining question: Agriculture Waste Water · Defining stakeholders: Agriculture Waste Water · Engaging stakeholders: Water · Scenarios: Agriculture Crop CAP Crop allocation Energy crop · Scenario examples: Transport Waste SRES-population UVR and Cancer
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Execution Causal chain · Contaminant sources · Disaggregation · Contaminant release · Transport and fate · Source attribution · Multimedia models · Exposure · Exposure modelling · Intake fraction · Exposure-to-intake · Internal dose · Exposure-response · Impact analysis · Monetisation · Monetary values · Uncertainty