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Biodegradation in water:

Weight of evidence: read-across from trichloroacetic acid, experimental and calculated results from different independent sources such as (Q)SAR calculations and experimental data on inherent biodegradability (OECD Guideline 301F). It is concluded that sodium trichloroacetate is not readily biodegradable in water.


Free trichloroacetic acid is a strong organic acid, which forms water-soluble salts with bases. In any medium at or near neutral pH the predominant form present is the trichloroacetate anion. The salts are therefore expected to be toxicologically equivalent to the free acid, except for the acute corrosive properties, which are at least partly determined by the very low pH of strong solutions of the acid.

Sodium trichloroacetate shares the same functional group with trichloroacetic acid and also has comparable values for the relevant molecular properties. These properties are:

- a low log Pow value which is -2.67 for sodium trichloroacetate and 1.33-1.44 for trichloroacetic acid,

- a high water solubility which is between 1000-1200 g/l at approximately 25 ºC for sodium trichloroacetate and 1300 g/l for trichloroacetic acid at temperatures between 20 and 25 ºC and

- similar molecular weights which are 185.4 for sodium trichloroacetate and 163.39 for trichloroacetic acid.

Based on all the reported results, it is concluded that trichloroacetic acid is not readily biodegradable in water.

Based on the read-across approach (category), the substance sodium trichloroacetate is also considered as not readily biodegradable.

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