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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: ASSESSING NUTRIENT LOSSES, EMISSIONS, AND PATHOGEN TRANSPORT FROM MANURE APPLICATION AND ANIMAL PRODUCTION SITES IN THE WESTERN U.S.

Location: Northwest Irrigation and Soils Research

Title: Concentrations of PCDD/PCDFs and PCBs in spent foundry sands

Authors
item Dungan, Robert
item Huwe, Janice
item Chaney, Rufus

Submitted to: Chemosphere
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: January 24, 2009
Publication Date: May 1, 2009
Citation: Dungan, R.S., Huwe, J.K., Chaney, R.L. 2009. Concentrations of PCDD/PCDFs and PCBs in spent foundry sands. Chemosphere. 75:1232-1235.

Interpretive Summary: Approximately 10 million tons of spent foundry sand (SFS), used to make metalcasting molds and cores, are generated in the U.S. each year. Currently, their beneficial use in agricultural and horticultural applications is being considered. Other studies have demonstrated that trace metal concentrations are low enough in sands from iron, steel, and aluminum foundries to allow their beneficial use in soil-related applications. Dioxins are non-polar, lipophilic (fat loving), persistent in the environment, and bioaccumulate in the food chain. Because data were not available on dioxins and dioxin-like compounds in SFSs, we analyzed representative spent sands from 10 foundries to assess the potential for dioxins to limit their use. The dioxin concentrations ranged from 0.01 to 3.13 ng TEQ/ kg (TEQ, toxicity equivalents), with an average concentration of 0.58 ng TEQ/kg. These concentrations are within the range of natural background in soils, and no pathway for transfer of dioxin and dioxin-like compounds is considered to pose a risk to receptor organisms.

Technical Abstract: Approximately 10 million tons of spent foundry sand (SFS) are generated in the U.S. each year, and their beneficial use in agricultural and horticultural applications is being considered. Other studies have demonstrated that trace elements are low enough in sands from iron, steel, and aluminum foundries to allow their beneficial use. Because data were not available on dioxins and dioxin-like compounds in SFSs, we analyzed representative spent sands from 10 foundries to assess the potential for dioxins to limit their use. The dioxin concentrations ranged from 0.01 to 3.13 ng TEQ/kg (TEQ, toxicity equivalents), with an average concentration of 0.58 ng TEQ/kg. These concentrations are within the range of natural background in soils, and no pathway for transfer of dioxin and dioxin-like compounds is considered to pose risk to receptor organisms.

Last Modified: 10/1/2014