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Please be aware that this old REACH registration data factsheet is no longer maintained; it remains frozen as of 19th May 2023.

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Diss Factsheets

Environmental fate & pathways

Endpoint summary

Administrative data

Description of key information

A number of resources are available to evaluate the ready biodegradability of pentaerythritol. Several tests employing different test methodologies are presented.  The two factors that influenced the rate of degradation were inoculum concentration and pre-adaptation of inoculum. 

Inthe majority of testspentaerythritol was observed to degrade by at least 60% over 28 days under all conditions. The biodegradation usually occurred after a brief lag time and achieved 60% within 10 days (Malta and Blom, 1990; Birch and Fletcher, 1991). When tested against activated sludge that was pre-adapted to industrial chemicals (Zahn-Wellens), the rate of biodegradation increased and no lag time was observed. After 28 days, nearly 100% biodegradation was observed (ANOX, 1994). 

Based on the results of Birch and Fletcher, the test substance is readily biodegradable when the inoculum concentration is at least 0.05% vol/vol of secondary effluent or ~ 3 x 105viable cells/litre. This concentration is well within the recommended concentration provided in the relevant guideline and is far below that usually encountered in a standard STP.

Based on several studies, pentaerythritol is considered to be readily biodegradable. As such removal in the STP is expected to be efficient with the major fraction of any emissions being removed at this point. Any emissions to soil, surface water and sediment would be expected to degrade rapidly by microbial action.

In accordance with REACH Annex IX column 2, the degradation simulation testing in water and/or sediment or in soil does not need to be conducted as the substance is readily biodegradable.

Additional information