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Environmental fate & pathways

Biodegradation in water and sediment: simulation tests

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Description of key information

Amines, C36-alkylenedi- are for 99.27% removed in a sewage treatment plant simulation test according to OECD TG 303A. From this 99.27% removal 24.4% occured via sorption and 74.9% via biodegradation.

Key value for chemical safety assessment

Additional information

The continuous activated sludge (CAS) test was performed according to ISO Guidelines. Amines, C36-alkylenedi- were exposed to micro-organisms maintained by addition of domestic wastewater in the CAS test. Amines, C36-alkylenedi- were spiked at a nominal influent concentration of 5 mg/L (4.1 mg/L carbon; calculated) for a period of 63 days and included a control fed with domestic wastewater only.

The immediate organic carbon removal percentages can be attributed to adsorption. Organic carbon concentrations in the effluent of the CAS unit fed with amines, C36-alkylenedi- are during the whole test period somewhat lower than in effluent of the control CAS unit (except for day 32). The reason for this is unknown. The mean organic carbon removal percentage of amines, C36-alkylenedi- calculated over 13 measurements obtained from day 43 to 63 of the test was 163±13% (95% confidence interval). The difference in organic carbon concentrations of the control and test measured is statistically significant. This result indicate that the continuous activated sludge system treating domestic wastewater spiked with amines, C36-alkylenedi- removes 100% of the organic carbon of the test substance.

An accurate assessment of the removal of amines, C36-alkylenedi- was established with specific analyses. The mean removal percentage of amines, C36-alkylenedi- in the test unit as quantified with the specific analysis from day 59 to 63 was 99.27%. These analyses demonstrate that the removal of amines, C36-alkylenedi- from the wastewater is complete. Amines, C36-alkylenedi- concentrations in the sludge of the reactor sampled on days 62 and 63 were 49.4 and 48.1 mg/L. The mean removal percentage of amines, C36-alkylenedi- from the influent through adsorption onto sludge assessed is therefore 24.4%. The 74.9 % of the removal of amines, C36-alkylenedi- in the CAS test unit is achieved by biodegradation.

In conclusion, the CAS test demonstrates that amines, C36-alkylenedi-, are almost completely removed from the wastewater in conventional biological wastewater treatment plants. Amines, C36-alkylenedi- are primarily removed by biodegradation.