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Short-term toxicity to aquatic invertebrates

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Description of key information

Parent compound: no data available

Hydrolysis product methanol: with high probability acutely not harmful to aquatic invertebrates

Hydrolysis product: HCl: Acutely very toxic for aquatic invertebrates (pH dependent).

Key value for chemical safety assessment

Additional information

No data for the parent methyl chloroformate (CAS 79-22-1) are available. However, the parent compound rapidly hydrolyses in contact with water and forms methanol (CAS 67-56-1), HCl (CAS 7647-01-0) and CO2 (CAS 124 -38 -9). Therefore, the acute toxicity to aquatic invertebrates will be assessed based on the information available for the hydrolysis products methanol and HCl.

 

Parent compound methyl chloroformate:

No data available.

Hydrolysis product methanol:

The acute toxicity of the hydrolysis product methanol to aquatic invertebrates was tested according to German Industrial Standards DIN 38412-11 using Daphnia magna as test organism (Kuehn, 1989). The exposure was static. Analytical monitoring was not performed. The 48-h EC50 was determined to be > 10000 mg/L (nom.).

This result is supported by a test according to OECD 202 published by Dom et al. (2012). The acute toxicity of the hydrolysis product methanol to aquatic invertebrates was tested using D. magna as test organism under semi-static exposure. The 96-h EC50 was found to be 18260 mg/L, based on nominal test concentrations.

Toxicity values well above 10000 mg/L reported also for Daphnia magna in another study supports this finding: 48-h EC50 = 22200 mg/L (nom.; Rossini and Ronco 1996).

Aditionally short-term toxicity data are available from tests conducted with a marine organism: Mytilus edulis, 96 -h LC50 = 15900 mg/L (Helmstetter et al. 1996).

In conclusion, it can be considered, that methanol is with high probability acutely not harmful to aquatic invertebrates.

Hydrolysis product HCl:

HCl was tested in an acute toxicity test according to OECD 202 with D. magna. The 48-h EC50 was 0.492 mg/L (acid equivalent to pH 5.3; MITI, 1999; peer reviewed data: OECD SIDS, 2002). Therefore, based on the available experimental data the hydrolysis product HCl is considered to be acutely very toxic for aquatic invertebrates (pH dependent). These data have not been taken into consideration to evaluate aquatic toxicity as observed effects are caused by a pH-shift in the test medium.