John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Derivation of a water quality guideline for aluminium in marine waters


Metal risk assessment of industrialised harbours and coastal marine waters requires the application of robust water quality guidelines to determine the likelihood of biological impacts. Currently there is no such guideline available for aluminium in marine waters. A water quality guideline of 24 μg total Al/L has been developed for aluminium in marine waters based on chronic 10 % inhibition or effect concentrations (IC10 or EC10) and no observed effect concentrations (NOEC) from 11 species (2 literature values and 9 species tested including temperate and tropical species) representing 6 taxonomic groups. The three most sensitive species tested were a diatom Ceratoneis closterium (formerly Nitzschia closterium) (IC10=18 μg Al/L, 72‐h growth rate inhibition) < mussel Mytilus edulis plannulatus (EC10=250 μg Al/L, 72‐h embryo development) < oyster Saccostrea echinata (EC10=410 μg Al/L, 48‐h embryo development). Toxicity to these species was caused by the dissolved aluminium forms of aluminate (Al(OH4‐) and aluminium hydroxide (Al(OH)30) while both dissolved and particulate aluminium contributed to toxicity in the diatom Minutocellus polymorphus and green alga Dunaliella tertiolecta. In contrast, aluminium toxicity to the green flagellate alga Tetraselmis sp. was due to particulate aluminium only. Four species, a brown macroalga (Hormosira banksii), sea urchin embryo (Heliocidaris tuberculata) and two juvenile fish species (Lates calcarifer and Acanthochromis polyacanthus), were not adversely affected at the highest test concentration used. Environ Toxicol Chem © 2014 SETAC

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