An official website of the United States government.

This is not the current EPA website. To navigate to the current EPA website, please go to This website is historical material reflecting the EPA website as it existed on January 19, 2021. This website is no longer updated and links to external websites and some internal pages may not work. More information »

Risk Assessment

Ecosystem Services Ecological Risk Assessment Endpoints Guidelines

The purpose of the Generic Ecological Assessment Endpoints (GEAE) for Ecological Risk Assessment (2nd Edition) is to assist EPA risk assessors conducting ecological risk assessments in considering ecosystem services when selecting assessment endpoints. Incorporating ecosystem services endpoints in ecological risk assessments can make the assessments relevant to decision makers and stakeholders whose concerns may be more oriented toward societal outcomes. Ecological risk assessments that include ecosystem service endpoints provide more useful information than conventional endpoints alone to economists who perform cost-benefit analyses. Assessing risks to ecosystem services can highlight potential assessment endpoints that are not considered in conventional risk assessments such as nutrient cycling, carbon sequestration, and soil formation. The accompanying Technical Background Paper on Ecosystem Services as Assessment Endpoints for Ecological Risk Assessment describes the science linking the use of ecosystem services to the structure and function of ecosystems and traditional ecological endpoints.

You may need a PDF reader to view some of the files on this page. See EPA’s About PDF page to learn more.