Exploring Environmental Frontiers: Highlights from the 12th SETAC YES Meeting 2023 (Part 1)

The 12th YES Meeting, organized by SETAC Europe’s Student Advisory Council, brought together emerging environmental scientists at RPTU (Campus Landau), Germany, to delve into the theme “Science Through Crises.” The first installment of this multipart blog series centers on the pivotal informative sessions conducted throughout the week-long YES Meeting 2023.

The 12th SETAC Young Environmental Scientists Meeting (YES Meeting) was hosted by the Student Advisory Council (SAC) of SETAC Europe at RPTU (Campus Landau), Germany from 28th August – 1st September 2023. This international forum brought together students and early career environmental scientists to exchange research and ideas in a welcoming and professional setting. With the theme “Science Through Crises,” the conference addressed the challenges and opportunities posed by global crises. The event, aligned with SETAC’s goal of Environmental Quality Through Science, fostered networking, education and empowerment for young researchers and experts from around the world.

Over the course of the first three days of the YES Meeting, various events and sessions unfolded, addressing critical environmental concerns. The event commenced with a Welcome address by former and outgoing SETAC President Mirco Bundschuh and the SAC. The keynote talk by Henner Hollert emphasized the urgent need to address the impact of chemicals on planetary boundaries and biodiversity. The discussion highlighted the formation of the “World Chemicals Council” as a response to chemical pollution challenges. The introduction of the RobustNature initiative, led by Goethe University Frankfurt in collaboration with international partners, showcased efforts to investigate the relationship between chemical pollution and biodiversity decline. Multiple thematic sessions, including Aquatic and Terrestrial Ecotoxicology, One Health, Environmental Analytical Chemistry and Microplastics delved into specific environmental aspects. Additionally, poster sessions and coffee breaks provided opportunities for networking and knowledge exchange.

An array of insightful expert talk sessions enriched the experience of the YES Meeting 2023. Distinguished professionals from diverse fields shared their expertise, shedding light on various subjects and fostering meaningful discussions. Here is a summary of the expert talk sessions held in the first three days of the YES Meeting 2023:-

  1. Aquatic Toxicity Testing of ‘Difficult Test Chemicals’ for Regulatory Purposes (August 29)

Dr. Patrick Baudy-Groh from BASF SE discussed the challenges of testing the aquatic toxicity of ‘difficult test chemicals’ for regulatory purposes. This included addressing issues such as low solubility, degradation and complex compositions.

2.         Reducing Vertebrate Testing in Pesticide Risk Assessment (August 30)

Dr. Elena Adams and Dr. Daniel Faber from Bayer AG presented case studies and insights into refining, reducing and replacing vertebrate testing methods for both aquatic and terrestrial vertebrate risk assessment.

Here are some glimpses of the informative sessions held during the YES Meeting 2023:-

Stay tuned for more intriguing insights in the upcoming parts!