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Perchlorate

Overview
 
CAS Number:
Synonyms: Ammonium perchlorate
Contaminant Type: Chemical

Perchlorate (ClO4-) is a naturally occurring and man made chemical and a strong oxidizing anion. It is most commonly associated with the salts of ammonium, potassium and sodium, with ammonium the most common. [571] The most common use in the US is as a primary ingredient in solid rocket propellants. [572] Other related uses are explosives, military munitions, mortars, grenades and flairs. [571] 90 percent of production is for military and aerospace use. [573] It is also used in fireworks, matches, batteries and automobile air bags. [571, 573, 574] It is manufactured or used in 44 of 50 states. [571, 574] Wastes from the manufacture and improper disposal are increasingly being discovered in soil and water. [572] It occurs naturally in highly arid environments, [573] and has been found in nitrate fertilizer deposits in Chile and fertilizers derived from those deposits. [571, 574]

The Food and Drug Administration has detected in perchlorate in 27 foods and beverages with milk, tomatoes, spinach and fruit juices having the highest relevance. [575]

Perchlorate has properties that make it likely to be found in waters near its points of manufacture, use and disposal. It is highly soluble in water, is relatively inert, and adheres poorly to particle surfaces and to organics. Thus, it is mobile in both surface and ground waters and can persist for very long periods of time. [571, 573, 574]

Perchlorate competes with iodide in the thyroid, reduces iodine uptake into the thyroid and reduces hormone production. [574] In adults it interferes with metabolism, and in children it interferes with proper development. [573]

Perchlorate is not regulated by USEPA in drinking water, but is an unregulated chemical drinking water contaminant listed on the USEPA's Contaminant Candidate Lists 1, 2 and 3. [564,620] The National Academy of Sciences recommended a reference dose of 0.7ug/kg/day. [572] Based on this, USEPA established a drinking water equivalent level (DWEL) of 24.5 ug/L which accounts for both food and water intake. [573] A DWEL is an exposure level not expected to cause adverse health effects in humans. The California Department of Health Services's action level is 18 ug/L. [571, 574]

Logan [571] and Gullick et al [574] cite a survey of California ground waters finding perchlorate in 27 percent of 428 wells with concentrations at 33 sites exceeding the California 18 ug/L action level. Gullick et al [574] cite a survey of Colorado River water and the Colorado River aqueduct system with detects in the 5 to 9 ug/L range. The American Water System [571] surveyed 40 surface waters and 367 ground water wells across the US. They found no detects in the surface waters and detects in nine wells ranging less than the 4 ug/L detection level to 7 ug/L. USEPA monitored 3066 public water systems. [577] They found 152 detects above the 4 ug/L detection level with a mean of 10 ug/L and a maximum of 420 ug/L.

Date of Literature Search: April 2007



564 USEPA; 2006; Regulatory Determinations Support Document for Selected Contaminants from the Second Drinking Water Contaminant Candidate List (CCL2); Regulatory Determinations Support Document for Selected Contaminants from the Second Drinking Water Contaminant Candidate List (CCL2); EPA Report 815-D-06-007. Chapter 15 pp. 14-15. Office of Ground Water and Drinking Water, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Washington, DC.
571 Gullick, R., LeChevallier, M. and Barhorst, T.; 2001; Occurrence of perchlorate in drinking water sources; J. AWWA; 93:1:66
572 USEPA; 2007; Perchlorate; http://www.epa.gov/safewater/ccl/perchlorate/perchlorate.html; As posted on August 26, 2007. USEPA Office of Ground Water and Drinking Water, Washington, DC.
573 USEPA; 2007; Federal facilities restoration and reuse- perchlorate; http://www.epa.gov/fedfac/documents/perchlorate.htm; As posted on August 26, 2007. Office of Solid Waste and Emergency Response, Washington, DC.
574 Logan, B.; 2001; Outlook for for perchlorate remediation; Env. Sci. & Tech.; 35:23:482A
575 U.S. Food and Drug Administration; 2007; Perchlorate questions and answers; http://www.cfsan.fda.gov/~dms/clo4qa.html; As posted on August 26, 2007. Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition, U.S. Food and Drug Administration, Washington, DC.
577 USEPA; 2007; Occurrence data- accessing unregulated contaminant monitoring data, large public water systems, list 1; http://www.epa.gov/safewater/ucmr/data.html; As posted on August 26, 2007. USEPA Office of Ground Water and Drinking Water, Washington, DC.
620 USEPA Office of Ground Water and Drinking Water; 2008; Contaminant Candidate List 3 (CCL3); USEPA Office of Ground Water and Drinking Water; http://www/epa.gov/OGWDW/ccl/ccl3.html



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