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Ecotoxicological information

Short-term toxicity to aquatic invertebrates

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Description of key information

The highest short-term toxicity to aquatic invertebrates for surrogate fossil diesel fuel. The EL50 from 48-hour Daphnia magna: 68 mg/L with 95% CI 49 - 94 mg/L (OECD 202; GLP). 

Key value for chemical safety assessment

Fresh water invertebrates

Fresh water invertebrates
Effect concentration:
68 mg/L

Additional information

A short-term Daphnia magna toxicity test using the test substance was conducted fulfilling guideline requirements of OECD 202 and complying with GLP, but the results were lower than limit of quantification (Goodband T.J. 2012). Because other studies have shown that fossil fuels are toxic to aquatic organisms in short term, the read-across data on fossil fuels together with the study results conducted for substance was used as a weight of evidence. Because fossil diesel fuels have similar composition and physical-chemical properties compared to test substance, the read-across approach was justified. The read-across justifications are presented in the annex 1 of the CSR.

In the study of Goodband T. J. (2012), the short term (48 hour) acute toxicity of renewable hydrocarbons of wood origin to Daphnia sp was determined. Because the test substance is poorly soluble to water, test was performed in Water Accommodated Fractions (WAF's). Because no immobilization was observed in the range-finding study even with the highest WAF concentration of 1000 mg/L, the definitive test was conducted as limit test at WAF concentration of 1000 mg/L. Results were based on nominal values, because the toxicity of the substance is based on toxicity of the test item as a whole, and because in TOC analysis test item was shown to be dissolved below the quantifiable limits. The 48 -hour EL50 value was determined as > 1000 mg/L.

Girling, A and Cann, B (1996) determined acute toxicity of the diesel fuel (CAS no. 68334-30-5, sample 1) with a 48 hour Daphnia magna test. The WAFs were not renewed during the test. The 24-hour and 48 -hour EL50 values were > 1000 mg/L and 210 mg/L, respectively.

Girling, A and Cann, B (1996) also conducted the same 48-hour Daphnia magna test using another sample of the same diesel fuel ( CAS no. 68334-30-5, sample 2). The 24 -hour and 48 -hour EL50 values for sample B were 180 mg/L and 68 mg/L, respectively.

Khan et al. (2007) evaluated the 24-hour sublethal and lethal toxicity of diesel, neat biodiesel and different biodiesel blends on Daphnia magna. Tests were conducted according to EPA OTS 797.1300 guidelines outlined in Methods for Measuring the Acute Toxicity of Effluents and Receiving Waters to Freshwater and Marine Organisms.

Results for 24 -hour LC50 for diesel, biodiesel, biodiesel and fossil diesel blends (B50, B20 and B5) were 1.78, 4.65, 3.29, 4.54 and 1.98 mg/L, respectively. Results showed that diesel was the most toxic test substance during the 24-h exposure to D. magna, followed by blends (B5, B50, and B20) whereas 100-% biodiesel (B100) was found to be the least toxic.

Reish T.J. (1993) examined ecotoxicity of water-soluble fraction of diesel in 96-hour sublethal and lethal toxicity tests to amphibods (Corophium insidiosum and Elasmopus bampo). The 96-h LC50 value for Corophium insidiosum was 0.9 mg/L (95% confidence interval 0.5-1.5 mg/l) and for Elasmopus bampo 2.6 mg/L (95% confidence interval 1.7-3.0 mg/l). The water-soluble fraction of diesel fuel was more toxic to C. insidiosum than to E. bampo. One reason for the higher toxic response of C. insidiosum could have been the test conditions, because test species were collected from sediments but the toxicity study was not conducted in sediment containing environment.

In conclusion, the key value for CSA was 48-h EL50 of 68 mg/L (Girling, A and Cann, B 1996). This study was selected as a key study because it was done according to the OECD standards and complied with GLP and gave the highest toxicity response for invertebrate acute toxicity.