SETAC Globe - Environmental Quality Through Science
18 December 2014
Volume 15 Issue 12

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Report on a Special Session at the XIII Brazilian Congress of Ecotoxicology

Cintia Niva, Embrapa Cerrados, Maria Edna Tenorio Nunes, University of São Paulo, Vanessa B. de Menezes Oliveira , São Carlos School of Engineering, University of São Paulo, and Jörg Römbke, ECT Oekotoxikologie GmbH

Brazilian Congress
Jose Paulo Sousa gives the first presentation in the special session “Terrestrial Ecotoxicology in Brazil: State-of-the Art and Establishment of Strategic Lines.”

The XIII Brazilian Congress of Ecotoxicology (ECOTOX 2014) was held at the SESC Center of Guarapari, Espirito Santo, from 23–26 September 2014. This was a very successful conference with approximately 750 participants. While representation from Brazil and other Latin American countries was heaviest, there were individuals from seven other countries in attendance as well. In the last four years, the number of posters and talks on terrestrial ecotoxicology has grown. During the 2010 congress, only 22 posters or oral presentations (3%) addressed terrestrial ecotoxicology, while in 2012, the number increased to 48 (5%) plus a talk and a technical course on the theme during the same event. This time, 86 presentations (12%; both platform and posters) were counted, with two talks in the general program and 11 platform talks in a special session entitled “Terrestrial Ecotoxicology in Brazil: State-of-the Art and Establishment of Strategic Lines,” organized by Maria Edna Tenorio Nunes, Cintia Niva, and Vanessa B. de Menezes Oliveira. The special session was divided into two blocks, each covering the whole morning on two days of the conference. In addition, a seminar held on the last day offered the opportunity to discuss in detail important issues raised in the session. Throughout the conference, time was reserved for individual discussions between speakers and conference attendants, in particular students.

Brazilian Congress
Attendees at the XIII Brazilian Congress of Ecotoxicology.

This special session featured the largets number of presentation addressing soil ecotoxicology in Latin America. Approximately 70 colleagues attended both morning sessions and the seminar. The following topics were covered during this event:

General soil ecotoxicology and legal situation:

  • Basic concepts and strategies of soil ecotoxicology | J.P. Sousa, University of Coimbra, Portugal
  • Soil ecotoxicology worldwide: A comparative analysis | J. Römbke, ECT Oekotoxikologie GmbH, Germany
  • Overview on Brazilian soil ecotoxicology | C.C. Niva, Embrapa Cerrados, Brazil
  • Legal instruments and norms | D.L. Lourenco de Sousa, Ibama, Brazil
  • Strategic advances of tropical ecotoxicology | J. Römbke, ECT Oekotoxikologie GmbH, Germany

Case studies from Brazil:

  • Retrospective ecotoxicology: Contaminated mining soil | J.C. Niemeyer, UFSC, Brazil
  • Prospective ecotoxicology: Effects of mining activities | M. Bianchi, NEEA/EESC/USP, Brazil
  • Testing experiences with isopods, microbes and rodents | F. M.R. da Silva Junior, FURG, Brazil
  • Usage of natural soils in ecotoxicology | P. Roger, ESALQ/USP, Brazil
  • Effects of veterinary drugs on soil organisms | V.B. Menezes-Oliveira, NEEA/EESC/USP, Brazil
  • Effects of chemicals on soil microbes | C.M.R. Coneglian, FT - Unicamp, Brazil
Brazilian Congress organizers and presenters
Organizers and presenters of the Special Session: “Terrestrial Ecotoxicology in Brazil: State-of-the Art and Establishment of Strategic Lines”.

This session gave a very broad and in-depth overview on the state-of-the-art of soil ecotoxicology in Brazil but also in tropical regions in general. The number of attendants as well as the lively discussions, both during the sessions and in particular in the seminar, proved that this area of ecotoxicology has taken firm ground in Brazil. This is further supported by the fact that this is the first tropical country preparing its own test guidelines, which are based on existing OECD and ISO guidelines but modified in a way to account for tropical environmental conditions. Last but not least, these sessions allowed both presenters and attendants (in particular students) to build up personal connections. It is expected that these connections and, hopefully, co-operations will be deepened in the next Brazilian Ecotox congress in Curitiba in 2016 and at other SETAC conferences. We are delighted to note that colleagues involved in the organization of this session will also co-chair the soil session at SETAC Barcelona. Finally, we would like to thank the organizers of the XIII Brazilian Ecotox Congress as well as presenters and session attendants for the great success and good time in Guarapari!

The authors would like to thank the Brazilian Society of Ecotoxicology (SBE) for supporting the special session on soil at the conference and for helping improve soil ecotoxicology research in Brazil.

Authors’ contact information:,,,

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