Retrospective Monitoring of Alkylphenols and Alkylphenol Monoethoxylates in Aquatic Biota from 1985 to 2001: Results from the German Environmental Specimen Bank
Wenzel, Andrea; Böhmer, Wolfgang; Müller, Josef; Rüdel, Heinz; Schröter-Kermani, Christa
Environmental Science & Technology 38 (2004), 6, 1654 - 1661
Breams (Abramis brama) and zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha) from freshwater, and common mussels (Mytilus edulis) from marine ecosystems, archived in the German Environmental Specimen Bank were analyzed for the presence of 4-nonylphenol (NP), 4-tert-octylphenol (OP), nonylphenol monoethoxylate (NP1EO), and octylphenol monoethoxylate (OP1EO). The samples were collected in the German rivers Elbe, Rhine, and Saar, and in Lake Belau between 1992 and 2001, as well as in the North Sea and Baltic Sea between 1985 and 2001. The main purpose of the study was to investigate the effectiveness of imposed reduction measures regarding the use of alkylphenol ethoxylates. NP1EO and OP were detected in all breams. NP was predominantly above the limit of quantification (LOQ, 2 ng/g; all data on a wet weight basis), and OP1EO was mostly below the LOQ (0.2 ng/g). Maximal concentrations of 112 ng/g NP, 259 ng/g NP1EO, 5.5 ng/g OP, and 2.6 ng/g OP1EO were found in Saar breams from 1994. NP was detected in all zebra mussels from the river Elbe (up to 41 ng/g), whereas in rather few samples OP and NP1EO were found at low levels. OP1EO was not detected in any sample. Concentrations in mussels and breams from the reference site Lake Belau were below the LOQ for all compounds. In marine biota NP was found until 1997 with maximum concentrations up to 9.7 ng/g, whereas NP1EO was detected at levels between 1.7and 12.9 ng/g in very few samples collected at the end of the 1980s. A tendency of the concentrations to decrease was obvious for all sampling sites; it was most pronounced for NP1EO and NP after 1996/1997. The effectiveness of the reduction measures is most evident at the Saar sampling site Güdingen and the North Sea sampling site Eckwarderhörne.