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Short-term toxicity to fish

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The acute toxicities of calcium myristate and calcium 12-hydroxystearate to fish showed no effects at a water accommodated fraction loading rate of 100 mg/L. Therefore, the 96 hour LL50 is determined to be > 100 mg/L WAF for all of the substances in the calcium salts of monocarboxylic acids C14-C22 category.

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Additional information

The acute toxicities of calcium myristate and calcium 12-hydroxystearate to fish were determined in GLP-compliant, limit tests (Harlan 2013) following OECD guideline 203. As no effects were observed in the Daphnia and algae toxicity tests or the preliminary range finding tests for acute toxicity to fish, the definitive toxicity to fish tests were all conducted as limit tests at 100 mg/L alongside a blank control. Seven fish were exposed to water accommodated fractions for 96 hours in standard ecotoxicity media adjusted to a hardness of approximately 150 mg/L CaCO3. Observations of mortalities and abnormalities of behaviour or appearance of the fish were made at 3, 6, 24, 48, 72 and 96 hours and the test solutions analysed for total organic carbon at test initiation and termination. None of the acute toxicity to fish studies showed any effects at water accommodated fraction loading rates of 100 mg/L, giving 96 hour LL50 of > 100 mg/L WAF.

The 96 hour NOEC for calcium stearate to fish showed no toxicity at 2.2 mg/L, as determined in an unpublished proprietary study (TUV Bayern 1992) following OECD guideline 203. The study was conducted as a limit test at 2.2 mg/L nominal concentration, the limit of solubility, using aerated water at 20°C. Only a summary of the study is available and there is very limited information on the test methods and conditions used.


The toxicity of grease containing calcium 12-hydroxystearate thickener at 4 -6.5% to freshwater fish gives an LD50 of > 12.5 g/L as determined following a non-standard guideline EPS 1/RM/13 in Environment Canada protocols (Hydroqual 2003a, b). 250 g of undiluted grease was applied to a glass sheet and placed at the bottom of a test vessel containing 20 L dilution water and fish, with observations made for the following seven days.

Calcium myristate, the shortest carbon chain length substance in the category, and calcium 12-hydroxysterate, with intermediate carbon chain length, both have 96 hour LL50s of >100 mg/L WAF to fish. These results are supported by proprietary studies on calcium stearate and greases containing calcium 12-hydroxystearate as a thickener. All of these results indicate that calcium salts of monocarboxylic acids C14-C22 are not acutely toxic to fish.

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