Received September 09, 1999,Revised May 08, 2000, Accepted , Available online

Volume 12,2000,Pages 482-485

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The oil spill impact analysis (OSIA) software system has been developed to supply a tool for comprehensive, quantitative environmental impact assessments resulting from oil spills. In the system, a biological component evaluates potential effects on exposed organisms based on results from a physico-chemieal fates component, including the extent and characteristics of the surface slick, and dissolved and total concentrations of hydrocarbons in the water column. The component includes a particle-based exposure model for migratory adult fish populations, a particle-based exposure model for spawning planktonic organisms (eggs and larvae), and an exposure model for wildlife species (sea birds or marine mammals). The exposure model for migratory adult fish populations simulates the migration behaviors of fish populations migrating to or staying in their feeding areas, over-wintering areas or spawning areas, and determines the acute effects (mortality) and chronic accumulation (body burdens) from the dissolved contaminant. The exposure model for spawning planktonic organisms simulates the release of eggs and larvae, also as particles, from specific spawning areas during the spawning period, and determines their potential exposure to contaminants in the water or sediment. The exposure model for wild species calculates the exposure to surrace oil of wildlife (bird and marine mammal ) categories inhabiting the contaminated area. Compared with the earlier models in which all kinds of organisms are assumed evenly and randomly distributed, the updated biological exposure models can more realistically estimate potential effects on marine ecological system from oil spill pollution events.

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