Journal of Soils and Sediments

, Volume 1, Issue 2, pp 105–110 | Cite as

The newly proposed EU risk assessment concept for the sediment compartment

Enforcement of environmental legislation


Within the frame of the EU Existing Chemicals Regulation (793/93/EEC), a new concept for the assessment of the sediment compartment has been developed. During the assessment process it has become clear that for substances that strongly adsorb or bind to sediment the equilibrium partitioning method (EPM) presently employed is not sufficient. The new approach is therefore based on long-term sediment tests with benthic organisms. A testing strategy has been developed which considers species which represent different habitats and feeding strategies in order to adequately address all possible routes of exposure. The new concept has proven to be valuable in risk assessments, two examples (3,4-DCA, DODMAC) of which are shown in more detail.


3,4-DCA, DODMAC bioavailability Chironomus sp. equilibrium partitioning method Lumbriculus variegatus risk assessment sediment tests 



octanol-water partitioning coefficient


partition coefficent organic carbon-water


no observed effect concentration


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Copyright information

© ecomed Verlagsgesellschaft AG & Co. KG 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Federal Environmental Agency (UBA)BerlinGermany

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