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Environmental fate & pathways

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The substance is not considered to bioaccumulate. The substance has very low water solubility and, in the environment, the substance will dissociate and degrade into inorganic aluminium species and fatty acids then carbon dioxide and water. The fatty acids are natural substances with a long history of safe use in foods, while aluminium is expected to have a low potential for bioaccumulation, with BCF of around 36 at pH 7.2 in freshwater fish (Cleveland et al 1991).

Furthermore, the availability of aluminium in the aqueous environment is very dependent on pH. Soluble aluminium species are only readily available to aquatic species at pH < 4. At neutral pH, aluminium will be in the form of essentially insoluble hydrated oxide species, which reduces their bioavailability by direct uptake from water. Also, in realistic use scenarios, the aluminium thickener will be contained in base oil, with the formulated greases specifically designed to minimise the leaching of the thickener. Therefore, during use, the concentrations of the substance which would be bioavailable are further limited.