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Environmental Fate

We investigate the fate and behaviour of your substance in soil, water, and sediment systems

Environmental fate testing services are performed at IES and are the core of our safety testing catalogue.  Our studies meet all main international criteria required for registration, with tests run according to OECD, EPA/OCSPP and JMAFF guidelines. We provide a full range of environmental fate studies using radiolabelled (recommended) or unlabelled substances.

Soil Mobility

Chemicals move short distances through air and water (including air and water in soil). Chemicals can move longer distances through mass transfer, usually in flowing water or moving air. Chemicals may attach (sorb) to soil, vegetation, or other surfaces. The strength of the sorption often determines a pesticide’s availability to mass transfer.

Water solubility and adsorption to soil are therefore important in determining a chemical’s tendency to move through the soil profile, the water column, or its distribution over soil as runoff.

  • Soil Adsorption/Desorption: OECD 106 and OECD 121
  • Soil Column Leaching: OECD 312

Bespoke Study

Taylor-made Efate program adapted to each substance.


Biodegradation evaluates the processes by which organic substances are broken down by living organisms such as bacteria and fungi. Biodegradation can happen in surface water, sediment, sludge and soil.

  • Aerobic and anaerobic transformation in soil: OECD 307
  • Aerobic and anaerobic transformations in water / sediment systems: OECD 308
  • Aerobic mineralization in surface water – simulation biodegradation test: OECD 309
  • Biodegradability of Chemicals Discharged in Wastewater: OECD 314
  • Simulation Test – Aerobic Sewage treatment: OECD 303

If a substance is not readily biodegradable, an inherent biodegradability test may be conducted to assess whether the chemical substance has any potential for biodegradation under aerobic conditions.

  • Ready biodegradability: OECD 301B, 301D, 301F, and 310

Bespoke Study

Taylor-made Efate program adapted to each substance.

Abiotic Degradation

Abiotic degradation evaluates the impact of sunlight and water on a chemical substance. It mainly includes the processes of hydrolysis and photolysis. Hydrolysis in water is often dependent on pH. A chemical’s half-life value will help to estimate how long it will persist in an aqueous environment.

  • Photolysis in Water – direct/indirect: OECD 316
  • Photolysis on Soil surface: Commission Regulation EU nº.283/2013
  • Hydrolysis and Processing Hydrolysis: OECD 111 and OECD 507

Bespoke Study

Taylor-made Efate program adapted to each substance.

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