Jump to main content
Jump to site search
PLANNED MAINTENANCE Close the message box

There will be scheduled maintenance work beginning on Saturday 15th June 2019 at 8:30 am through to Sunday 16th June 2019 at 11:30 pm (BST).

During this time our website may be temporarily affected. We apologise for any inconvenience this might cause and thank you for your patience.


Issue 2, 2012
Previous Article Next Article

Estimating the aquatic emissions and fate of perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) into the river Rhine

Author affiliations

Abstract

The sources, distribution, levels and sinks of perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) estimated to be released from areas of high population density, have been explored using the river Rhine as a case study. A comparison between modelled and measured data is presented, along with analysis of the importance of PFOS sorption in riverine systems. PFOS releases into the Rhine were estimated to be 325–690 kg/yr based on per capita emission rates of 27–57 μg day−1 from a population of 33 million living within a 50 km zone either side of the river. Sorption of PFOS to suspended particles and sediments may alter its fate in the aquatic environment. Therefore available measured and modelled partitioning data was assessed, and Kd values (sorption coefficient) of 7.5 and 20 were selected. This resulted in sediment-water ratios of 23–76 : 1, which are similar to ratios reported in the literature, and resulted in modelled estimates that <20% of the total PFOS entering the Rhine binds to sediments or suspended particles. The calculated discharge from the Rhine to the North Sea based on measured data was 420–2200 kg/yr; our model predictions are in good agreement with these estimates. Emission trends were accurately predicted, suggesting population density can be effectively used as a surrogate for diffuse PFOS emissions from product use, while predicted concentrations were a factor of 2–4 below measured data showing the importance of other sources. Transfer of PFOS to sediment is estimated to be minimal, and consequently discharges to the North Sea are roughly equal to PFOS releases to river water.

Graphical abstract: Estimating the aquatic emissions and fate of perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) into the river Rhine

Back to tab navigation

Supplementary files

Publication details

The article was received on 27 May 2011, accepted on 07 Nov 2011 and first published on 01 Dec 2011


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C1EM10432B
J. Environ. Monit., 2012,14, 524-530

  •   Request permissions

    Estimating the aquatic emissions and fate of perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) into the river Rhine

    A. G. Paul, M. Scheringer, K. Hungerbühler, R. Loos, K. C. Jones and A. J. Sweetman, J. Environ. Monit., 2012, 14, 524
    DOI: 10.1039/C1EM10432B

Search articles by author

Spotlight

Advertisements