Developing a novel methodology for ecological risk assessment of thiosalts

Faisal Fahd, Faisal Khan , Kelly Hawboldt, Rouzbeh Abbassi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


A new methodology is developed to estimate an aquatic community toxicity threshold concentration based on the limited toxicity data that are available for thiosalts. To analyze the indirect effect of thiosalts on decreasing pH, an exposure model is developed that estimates the residual concentration of thiosalts and pH in the water body. The results from this model are incorporated in thiosalts risk assessment and a case study is used to illustrate the applicability of the proposed model. In this study, the exposure model predicts that, trithionate and tetrathionate degraded to SO42− ions, HSO3 ions, SO32− ions and elemental sulfur. The concentration of thiosulfate, trithionate and tetrathionate, initially at 25, 40 and 6 mg/L, respectively are expected to decrease. Over the duration of 77 h, thiosulfate degrades completely, while the estimated residual trithionate and tetrathionate concentrations are 13 and 5.77 mg/L, respectively. pH of the undiluted effluent is estimated to decrease from 9.2 to 5.6 within an hour of the effluent discharge and decreases further to 4 over a period of next 3 days. A framework and methodology developed in this paper can be utilized to estimate the potential direct and indirect risk of thiosalts exposure to ecological entities.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)383-391
Number of pages9
JournalStochastic Environmental Research and Risk Assessment
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • ecological
  • risk assessment
  • natural degradation model
  • thiosalts
  • bootstrap
  • aquatic quality criteria

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