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Radiоecological monitoring and development of a mathematical model of transboundary transfer and early warning

#G-2291


Radiоecological monitoring on the territories of Armenia, Georgia and Tajikistan and development of a mathematical model of transboundary transfer and early warning to ensure regional security.

Tech Area / Field

  • ENV-APC/Air Pollution and Control/Environment
  • ENV-EHS/Environmental Health and Safety/Environment
  • ENV-MIN/Monitoring and Instrumentation/Environment
  • ENV-MRA/Modelling and Risk Assessment/Environment
  • ENV-SPC/Solid Waste Pollution and Control/Environment
  • ENV-WPC/Water Pollution and Control/Environment

Status
3 Approved without Funding

Registration date
08.07.2016

Leading Institute
Tbilisi State University, Georgia, Tbilisi

Supporting institutes

  • The Center for Ecological-Noosphere Studies, Armenia, Yerevan\nNuclear and Radiation Safety Agency (NRSA), Tajikistan, Dushanbe

Collaborators

  • Florida State University, USA, FL, Tallahassee\nJozef Stefan International Postgraduate School, Slovenia, Ljubljana\nNorwegian Institute for Nature Research, Norway, Tromso\nUniversity of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, USA, NC, Chapel Hill\nHokkaido University, Japan, Sapporo

Project summary

Early identification of risk associated with radioecological issues will help prevent or mitigate public and environmental risks, increase security and contribute to sustainable development of the study regions. Detection of regularities and pathways of radionuclide migration will allow to determine direction of processes of environmental pollution and identify sources of its origination. Hence, a need arises not only in radiation monitoring of the regions, but also in a system-based approach to the studying of transboundary pollution and radionuclides distribution in environmental compartments (ECs) aimed at prediction and early warning. The analysis of existing data on radiation situation in the Tajikistan, Armenia and Georgia proves a necessity of continuous radioecological monitoring. The obtained research outcomes indicate that the areas of the all Republics may be a transboundary pollution source or, on the contrary, be exposed to transboundary pollution with highest levels of risk determined by geographical position.
The project goal is to implement radiation monitoring, study levels of environmental pollution with radionuclides, characterize sources of such pollution, develop a mathematical model of transboundary transfer in order to predict radioecological situation in the areas of the Republics of Armenia, Georgia, and Tajikistan.
The project includes the following essential aspects:
1. Researchers from the project countries will make joint efforts to develop unified standards for collecting data, sampling of different ECs, and analytical methods. Standardizing sampling and measurement methods will help obtain unified data, which will then underpin implementation of an objective comparative analysis of information obtained by all the project partners throughout the entire monitored area.
2. Researchers from the project countries will collect data based on the same list of parameters. In each of the three partner countries stationary observation sites will be selected to do sampling and make in-situ measurements on a regular basis.
3. Then, based on available information and data obtained through the entire period of monitoring, a database will be compiled that will characterize radioecological situation within the observation zone. If necessary, measures may be suggested aimed at improvement of ecological status.
4. It is proposed that a dynamic model be constructed of radionuclides distribution among ECs and their transbounndary transfer. The model will help describe the dynamics of changes in radionuclide contents in separate ECs and predict sites of their accumulation. Such a model will allow to select areas to be used as indicators for detecting hazardous increase in radionuclides contents in the mentioned ECs.
As the project advances, available experimental data will be verified and complementary studies implemented on observation stations and test sites in order to ensure data compatibility.
A technical approach and methodology of the proposed research consist in combination of multiple experimental methods (spectrometric, radiometric, radiochemical etc.) with theoretical modeling (both analytical and numerical). In the study regions and mechanisms of radionuclides distribution and migration in the environment in the case of transboundary pollution as well. Effective solution of ecological problems is impossible inside a separate state, but must be achieved through consolidated and coordinated efforts of all the countries.
The project envisages implementation of the following major tasks.

A large-scale radioecological investigation of ECs: radionuclide content of soil, atmosphere (air in building, kindergarten, school), water, bottom sediments, vegetation, and so on. The obtained data-supported identification of most polluted runoffs, sites and facilities, a detailed study of situation (level and nature of pollution) in the surroundings of identified pollution sources on the territories of the three Republics.

· Construction of a model describing the dynamics of changes in radionuclide contents in separate ECs and predicting their accumulation sites. Studying mechanisms and migration properties of pollutants.


· Compiling a database on radiation situation and levels and nature of pollution of most hazardous sites and facilities located in the study regions;
· Development of scientifically grounded conclusions and recommendations for preventing or limiting the identified mechanisms of environmental pollution with radionuclides. The recommendations will promote solution of a problem of transboundary control and protection of water resources and improvement of ecological status of the regions.
· Besides, the project envisages implementation of monitoring on a regular basis and in compliance with the earlier developed scheme with further expansion of a system of monitoring stations, ECs and observation parameters, if required.
Expected results and application. As a result of the proposed project implementation new data will be obtained on levels of radionuclide pollution of ECs on the territories of the Republics of Armenia, Georgia, and Tajikistan. It is expected that
· Most polluted locations and pollution sources will be identified;
· Most polluted sites will be characterized in respect of further spread of pollutants. Sources of pollution of such sites will be identified.
· A dynamic model will be constructed to describe radionuclide distribution among ECs and their transboundary transfer in order to predict radiation situation in the study regions.
· Finally, scientifically sound measures for improving ecological status will be recommended where necessary.
In the result of the proposed project implementation, a team dealing with continuous radiation monitoring of environmental compartments will be built and four job vacancies for former “weapons” specialists provided at the Center for Ecological-Noopshere Studies NAS RA and at the Institute of Geophysics of Tbilisi State University.



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The International Science and Technology Center (ISTC) is an intergovernmental organization connecting scientists from Kazakhstan, Armenia, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, and Georgia with their peers and research organizations in the EU, Japan, Republic of Korea, Norway and the United States.

 

ISTC facilitates international science projects and assists the global scientific and business community to source and engage with CIS and Georgian institutes that develop or possess an excellence of scientific know-how.

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