Less than 50 tonnes of 2,4,6-tri-tert-butylphenol is used in the EU each year. It can be used as an intermediate in the production of antioxidants which are used in rubber or plastic and as an lubricating agent in the transport sector. As an intermediate it shouldn't enter the environment unless by discharged.
It is a chemical with a low volatility, making it unlike to enter the atmosphere, where it would be rapidly degraded. It has a low water solubility (0,521 mg/l) and a strong tendency to adsorb to soils and sediments, in both mediums it isn't readily (bio)degraded and considered persistent. It has a high tendency to bioaccumulate and is likely to biomagnify In fresh water is has been shown to be toxic for fish and for algae at concentrations above 0,061 mg/l and 0,033 mg/l respectively. There is currently no information available the levels of 2,4,6-tri-tert-butylphenol in the marine environment. It is however estimated (based on modeling the emissions) that concentrations might be as high as 0,32 µg/l.
Environmental standards and legislation