Systematic modelling of the fate of benzene and the chlorobenzenes is presented which follows a four-stage process of chemical classification, quantifying discharge rates and environmental concentrations, evaluative assessment of fate and regional mass balance modelling has been carried out for the southern Ontario region. The EQC model was applied to determine the principal transport and transformation processes experienced by this group of chemicals, which vary considerably in volatility and hydrophobicity. Observed environmental concentrations are in satisfactory agreement with the predictions of the steady state Level III ChemCAN model of chemical fate. A multiple pathway human exposure model which estimates intake of contaminants by residents of southern Ontario has been developed and applied to these chemicals. A novel method of deducing maximum tolerable environmental concentrations is presented. Results suggest that benzene and 1,4-dichlorobenzene are present in the environment at levels sufficient to cause exposures near allowable daily intake (ADI) levels for the general population, but the other substances are present at levels which result in exposure ranging from 1/10 to 1/1000 of the ADI.