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OECD SIDS on Sulfuryl chloride (2002):

Sulfuryl chloride reacts with water completely, forming sulfuric and hydrochloric acid, thus sulfuryl chloride itself indicates no hazard for the aquatic environment.

The hydrolysis products sulfuric and hydrochloric acid have been tested with aquatic species. Sulfuric and hydrochloric acid cause a pH displacement in water. It was the resulting pH that determined the impact on aquatic life as shown with buffered test substance solution. Thus toxic effects are not due to substance inherent properties but a function of the pH [OECD-SIDS on Sulfuric Acid (2001) and Hydrochloric Acid, (2002)]. Regarding natural systems, the impact of dissociated acids depends on the buffer capacity of the system. Buffer function is attributed to humic substances, alkaline earth carbonates, clay minerals, silicates, as well as sesquioxides.

Theoretical pH-values of sulfuric acid or hydrochloric acid in neutral water (pH = 7) with no buffer (e.g. dechlorinated tap water):

 pH sulfuric acid  hydrochloric acid 
6 0.049 mg/l  0.036 mg/l 
5 0.49 mg/l  0.36 mg/l 
4  4.9 mg/l 3.6 mg/l 
 3 49 mg/l  36 mg/l 

Natural waters, as well as reconstituted waters for testing purposes, stipulated within the OECD test guidelines, are normally composed of substances serving as buffers. However natural waters in boreal areas with subsurfaces consisting of granite or gneiss have low buffer capacities and are therefore susceptible to acidification.

The tolerance of water organisms towards pH margin and variation is diverse.

Recommended pH-values at OECD guidelines for testing issues are:

fish: 6.0 to 8.5 is preferable

daphnia: within the range of 6 to 9

algae: appr. 8