Call for papers- Special Issue: Environmental Fate and Effects of Road Run-off

Urban pollution is a growing area of ecotoxicological study. With increasing populations worldwide, and increasing urbanization, urban pollution sources are expected to become even more important in the future.  One of these specific urban pollution sources, road run-off, presents a complex problem to ecotoxicologists, environmental chemists, and resource managers.

Road run-off contains a complex mixture of pollutants including tire and pavement wear particles, metals, PAHs from car/diesel exhaust, as well as chemical additives and modifiers. In addition, in temperate regions, salts and/or brines are applied directly to road surfaces for winter road maintenance (i.e. de-icing). Depending on weather conditions, road pollutants can be a source to air via direct volatilization or re-suspension of fine particles containing sorbed pollutants leading to localized exposures to wildlife and humans. During rain or snow events, road run-off-associated chemicals and particles can be washed directly into ditches and urban wetlands and waterways or transported through sewer systems to larger waterbodies. Climate change is expected to increase the duration of dry events and the intensity of wet events, making road run-off pulses more episodic and potentially more harmful to aquatic environments.

The fate of road-associated contaminants in re-distributing through the air to terrestrial environments and washed off into aquatic systems is important for assessing exposures for both terrestrial and aquatic organisms.  Road contaminants can deposit to surfaces and be ingested directly, or may partition to sediments or dissolve in water in  local waterbodies. The properties of chemicals and their reactivity in the urban and aquatic environment will influence the exposure of organisms to road contaminants, whether direct effects can occur, and accumulation tissues and in the food-chain is possible.

These pathways present many fascinating and complex questions for scientists assessing road run-off. We want to know what the chemicals are, where they come from, their fate, and effects. Ultimately we are concerned with what risk road run-off and run-off-associated pollutants pose to the terrestrial and aquatic environment and seek guidance for mitigating such impacts.

Therefore, we kindly invite you to contribute a manuscript to a special issue of the Archives of Environmental Contamination and Toxicology entitled “Environmental Fate and Effects of Road Run-off”.

We welcome manuscripts describing original research from various disciplines, as topics of interest could be:

Chemical assessment and characterization of road run-offSource attribution, loadings, and extent of contamination
Fate of road run-off chemicals or mixtures in water, air, and sediments
Bioaccumulation and trophodynamics
Ecotoxicity and Ecological risk assessment of road run-off / specific road run-off contaminants

Full Manuscript Submission deadline: Sept 1st, 2020.

Authors are encouraged to send a short abstract or tentative title to the Guest Editors in advance (by May 31st) (,,

To submit your manuscript please go to the Archives of Environmental Contamination and Toxicology website ( and follow the procedures for manuscript submission.  When queried about whether your submission is targeted for a special issue, identify that you want to submit for the special issue on “Environmental Fate and Effects of Road Run-off”.

Author Guidelines and Manuscript Submission can be found at

We look forward to receiving your manuscripts and thank you in advance for considering a contribution to the special issue on “Environmental Fate and Effects of Road Run-off”.

Best wishes,

Guest Editors:

Joanne Parrott, Environment and Climate Change Canada

Paul Helm, Ontario Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks

Patricia Gillis, Environment and Climate Change Canada