Triclosan—the forgotten priority substance?
Triclosan (TCS) is a multi-purpose biocide. Its wide use in personal care products (PCPs) fosters its dispersal in the aquatic environment. Despite enhanced awareness of both scientists and the public in the last decade with regard to fate and effects, TCS received little attention regarding its prioritisation as a candidate river basin-specific pollutant or even priority substance, due to scarce monitoring data.
Applying a new prioritisation methodology, the potential risk of TCS was assessed based on a refined hazard assessment and occurrences at 802 monitoring sites in the Elbe River basin.
The suggested acute-based predicted no-effect concentration (PNEC) of 4.7 ng/l for the standard test species Selenastrum capricornutum was in good agreement with effect concentrations in algal communities and was exceeded in the Elbe River basin at 75% of the sites (limit of quantification of 5 ng/l). The 95th percentile of the maximum environmental concentrations at each site exceeded the PNEC by a factor of 12, indicating potential hazards for algal communities. Among 500 potential river basin-specific pollutants which were recently prioritised, triclosan ranks on position 6 of the most problematic substances, based on the Elbe River data alone.
Considering the worldwide application of PCPs containing triclosan, we expect that the TCS problem is not restricted to the Elbe River basin, even if monitoring data from other river basins are scarce. Thus, we suggest to include TCS into routine monitoring programmes and to consider it as an important candidate for prioritisation at the European scale.
KeywordsTriclosan Prioritisation Priority substance River basin-specific pollutant Biocide
- BfR (2009) BfR unterstützt Verwendungsverbot von triclosan in Lebensmittelbedarfsgenständen Bundesinstitut für Risikobewertung Berlin, pp Stellungname 031/2009Google Scholar
- Bock M, Lyndall J, Barber T, Fuchsman P, Perruchon E, Capdevielle M (2010) Probabilistic application of a fugacity model to predict triclosan fate during wastewater treatment. Integr Environ Assess Manag 6:393–404Google Scholar
- Ciba SC (2001) General information on chemical, physical and microbial properties of Irgasan DP300, Irgacare MP and Irgacide LP10, BaselGoogle Scholar
- Commission E (2000) Directive 2000/60/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 23 October 2000 establishing a framework for community action in the field of water policy. Commission of the European Communities. Official Journal of the European Communities L327Google Scholar
- Commission E (2003) Technical guidance document (TGD) in support of Commission Directive 93/67/EEC on risk assessment for new notified substances, Commission Regulation (EC) No. 1488/94 on risk assessment for existing substances and Directive 98/8/EC of the 44 European Parliament and the Council concerning the placing of biocidal products on the market, Joint Research Centre, Ispra, ItalyGoogle Scholar
- Commission E (2008) Directive 2008/105/EC of the European Parliament and of the council of 16 December 2008 on environmental quality standards in the field of water policy, amending and subsequently repealing Council Directives 82/176/EEC, 83/513/EEC, 84/156/EEC, 84/491/EEC, 86/280/EEC and amending Directive 2000/60/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council. L 348/84Google Scholar
- James A, Bonnomet V, Morin A, Fribourg-Blanc B (2009) Implementation of requirements on priority substances within the context of the Water Framework Directive. Prioritization process: monitoring-based ranking, Verneuil-en-Halatte, France, pp. 58Google Scholar
- Klein W, Denzer S, Herrchen M, Lepper P, Müller M, Sehrt R, Storm A, Volmer J (1999) Revised proposal for a list of priority substances in the context of the water framework directive (COMMPS Procedure). Frauenhofer-Institut, Umweltchemie und Ökotoxikologie, SchmallenbergGoogle Scholar
- Krautter M (2004) Triclosan—gefährlicher Bakterienkiller in Gebrauchsartikeln. Greenpeace e. V, HamburgGoogle Scholar
- OECD (2004) The 2004 OECD list of high production volume chemicals. Organisation for Economic Co-Operation and Development, ParisGoogle Scholar
- Ricart M, Guasch H, Alberch M, Barcelo D, Bonnineau C, Geiszinger A, Farre M, Ferrer J, Ricciardi F, Romani AM, Morin S, Proia L, Sala L, Sureda D, Sabater S (2010) Triclosan persistence through wastewater treatment plants and its potential toxic effects on river biofilms. Aquat Toxicol 100:346–353CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Tatarazako N, Ishibashi H, Teshima K, Kishi K, Arizono K (2004) Effects of triclosan on various aquatic organisms. Environ Sci 11:133–140Google Scholar
- USEPA (2003) Toxic control act chemical substance inventory: factsheet triclosan. USEPA, Boston. http://www.epa.gov/oppsrrd1/REDs/factsheets/triclosan_fs.htm. Accessed date 12/05/2008Google Scholar
- von der Ohe PC, Dulio V, Slobodnik J, De Deckere E, Kühne R, Ebert R-U, Ginebreda A, De Cooman W, Schüürmann G, Brack W (2011) A new risk assessment approach for the prioritization of 500 classical and emerging organic microcontaminants as potential river basin specific pollutants under the European Water Framework Directive. Sci Total Environ 409:2064–2077CrossRefGoogle Scholar