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Ethylbenzene is a volatile substance which is difficult to test for biodegradation in the experimental systems. The estimated QSARs data on environmental degradation of ethylbenzene are summarized in table below. Overall, the QSAR estimated data suggest that this substance will degrade fast in the environment.

 

Table. Degradation rates of ethylbenzene

Degradation rate in water:

Abiotic transformation:

Hydrolysis is not a relevant degradation route for the substance.

 

Biotic transformation:

DT50= 15 days (360 hours)

 

Degradation rate in sediment:

DT50= 135 days (3240 hours)

 

Degradation rate in soil:

DT50=30 days (720 hours)

 

Degradation rate in air:

DT50=36.14 hours

DT50 (for reaction with hydroxyl radicals)= 1.8 days

 

Based on the data summarized here, ethylbenzene is considered to degrade rapidly via abiotic or biotic degradation paths.