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Short-term toxicity to fish

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Description of key information

With high probability acutely not harmful to fish.

Key value for chemical safety assessment

Additional information

Reaction mass of bis(2-hydroxyethanaminium) sulfite and 2-(methylamino)ethanol - oxosulfane oxide (1:1)is soluble in water and dissociates to 2 -(methylamino)ethanol, (2- hydroxyethyl)ammonium and sulphite ions.

Since no studies on the aquatic toxicity of the substance are available, study reports and published literature about the toxic effects of 2-aminoethanol, 2 -(methylamino)ethanol and substances of the sulphite category have been consulted alternatively.

The effect of monoethanolamine (CAS 141-43-5) on several fish species including fathead minnow (Pimephales promelas), goldfish (Carassius auratus), common carp (Cyprinus carpio) and golden orfe (Leuciscus idus) has been investigated by several scientists [

Huels AG 1997, Geiger et al. 1990, Bridie et al. 1973, Juhnke and Luedemann 1978 and NITE 1996].

The LC50 values for 96-hour exposure range from 170 mg/l for goldfish to 2070 mg/L for fathead minnow. Studies in which the pH was measured indicate that the test material increased pH to approximately 10.1 – 10.2 in some of the studies. Studies performed with goldfish show that the LC50 value of monoethanolamine increases dramatically if the pH is neutralized, suggesting that the studies with lower LC50 values may have been influenced by high pH.

Regarding 2 -(methylamino)ethanol an acute fish toxicity test was performed according to the National procedure recommendation F.1.1., Federal Environmental Agency (Bayer AG, 1984). Brachydanio rerio was used as test species and the exposure time was 96 hours, giving a value LC50 > 100 mg/L. This result is confirmed by an experimental result performed by ICI Brixham Laboratory (1986) using Salmo gairdneri.In this case a LC50 (96h) of 100 mg/L is reported.

There are four reliable guideline studies available on the toxic effects of different sulphite compounds on fish. Tested compounds were potassium sulphite (CAS 10117-38-1), dipotassium disulphite (CAS 16731-55-8), disodium disulphite (CAS 7681-57-4) and sodium sulphite (CAS 7757-83-7). Fish species used for toxicity testing were Brachydanio rerio, Oncorhynchus mykiss and Leuciscus idus. The lowest effect value was obtained in a test on Oncorhynchus mykiss with disodium disulphite as test substance. The LC50 (relating to SO3, nominal concentration) was determined to be 149.8 mg/L.

It should be noted that in most tests the mortality was related to the sulphite-induced oxygen depletion of the test medium: concentration levels that previously resulted in 100% mortality showed no effect at all when the test media was aerated during the test period. For the test with the trout Oncorhynchus mykiss, however, observed mortality was related to very low pH-levels in the test medium upon addition of the test substance.

Thus, neither 2 -aminoethanol, 2 -(methylamino)ethanol nor sulphite are considered as harmful to fish.

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