Anabela Cachada
Carla Patinha; Ruth Pereira
@10 years - Ten years of OHM: data compilation for a holistic environmental and human health risk assessment
Estarreja is known for its chemical complex, and several studies were performed in the region to evaluate the presence of contaminants in environmental matrices. Some hotspots of contamination were identified, nevertheless, the real dimension of the problem, i.e. the spatial distribution of organic and inorganic contaminants and the potential risks to the environment and human health, is not well understood. Indeed, despite decades of research and almost ten years after the OHM-Estarreja creation, it is still not clear if we are dealing with a contamination or with a real pollution problem. The reason why this issue was not yet clarified is related with the complexity of the problem (several matrices, types of contaminants and land uses; legacy of the past vs recent contamination) and because most of the studies are focused on a specific question and the data are scattered. In this context, a risk assessment analysis, is the best available tool to clearly understand the problem and to identify knowledge gaps. Thus, this study aims at collect and integrate existing data to understand the spatial distribution of contaminants, identify areas and contaminants of concern, the receptors and the ecosystem services at risk. As a final output it is intended to obtain a conceptual model that will support decisions regarding the management of this area as well as implementation of an analysis, monitoring or a remediation program. This will contribute for focusing the management of future OHM funds for achieving the ambitious goal of mitigating Estarreja environmental legacy.
Projet OHMs
OHM(s) concerné(s)
  • Estarreja
Biologie, Chimie, Écologie, Géospatialisation


Anabela Cachada PhD is a researcher in the area of Risk Assessment and Soil Pollution at CIIMAR & University of Porto (Portugal). She has a PhD in Chemistry (University of Aveiro, Portugal), a Master in Geochemistry (University of Aveiro, Portugal), and a degree in Environmental Engineering and of the Natural Resources (University of Trás-os-Montes e Alto Douro, Portugal). She has been working during several years on soil pollution, particularly with organic contaminants. Nowadays she is particularly interested in the risk assessment of contaminated soils and in the understanding about how soil pollution affect ecosystem services. She participated in 23 multidisciplinary research projects (including two European funded projects), related to soil pollution monitoring and with the behavior of contaminants in the environment. She is the author/co-author of 31 papers published in international journals indexed in Science Citation Index (h-index 15), two book chapters, and she has 25 oral communications and 56 poster presentations in international conferences. Anabela Cachada is member of the national committee at ISO/TC 190. She is also an editorial Board Member of the journal Data in Brief (Elsevier) and of the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health (MDPI).


Carla Alexandra de Figueiredo Patinha have a Degree in Geological Engineering by the University of Aveiro, M.Sc. degree in Geochemistry and a PhD in Earth Sciences by the same institution. In June of 2005 began her activities at Geosciences Department of the University of Aveiro as Superior technician, assuming the management of geochemistry and hydrochemistry laboratories at the University of Aveiro. Since October 2018, she is Assistant Professor at Geosciences Department of the University of Aveiro.
Her main areas of scientific activity have been the development on new analytical methodologies, environmental geochemistry and health and urban geochemistry. Present research interests include research on human bioaccessibility, solid-phase distribution of potentially harmful elements to human health, and health risk assessment studies on ground-level /household dusts and water. She is member of the International Association of Medical Geology, member of the Bioaccessibility Research Group of Europe (BARGE) and member of the OHM-Estarreja. She has been participating and coordinating several national R & D Projects. She has published about 60 papers in peer-reviewed Scientific Journals.
Ruth Pereira, PhD and Habilitation in Biology, is since 2011 Assistant Professor at the Department of Biology of the Faculty of Sciences, University of Porto, and director of GreenUPorto – Sustainable Agrifood Research Centre. Her main research interests are related with risk assessment of contaminated sites, and of new chemical substances and terrestrial ecotoxicology. As a result of her research activity she is the author/co-author of about 120 research papers published in international journals indexed in Science Citation Index (h-index 27). She is/was the supervisor of 5 post-doctoral students, 14 doctoral students, (10 concluded) and several MSc students and Biology internship students. Thirteen PhD students and all the Post-doctoral students awarded grants from FCT and one from UNESCO. Ruth Pereira was Principal investigator and member of the Research Team of several national and international funded projects. She was an adviser on Risk Assessment, at the European Commission (SANCO) and more recently she is member of the national committee at ISO WG SC4 – Ecotoxicological Assays and SC7 – Impact Assessment. Further, she integrated European panels for the evaluation of project proposals, as well as scientific panels at FCT for the evaluation of grants and final project reports.