Releases To The Environment

Borates are widespread, naturally-occurring substance found mainly as an inorganic compound in sediments and sedimentary rock. It is released to the environment slowly in low concentrations by weathering processes. Although few data are available quantifying boron releases from industrial sources, it is estimated that natural weathering releases more boron to the environment worldwide than do these industrial sources (Butterwick et al. 1989).

Releases of boron to the environment occur from the production and use of boron and boron-related compounds. However, neither boron nor boron-related compounds are listed on the Section 313 toxic chemical list and, therefore, are not included in the Toxics Release Inventory (TRI).

Borates are released to air from natural and industrial sources. Natural sources include oceans, volcanoes, and geothermal steam (Graedel 1978). Boron compounds are released from anthropogenic sources such as coal-fired and geothermal steam power plants, chemical plants, and rockets as well as manufacturing facilities producing fiberglass and other products (EPA 1987c; Graedel 1978; Hollis et al. 1988; Lang et al. 1986; Rope et al. 1988; Stokinger 1981). No quantitative data regarding boron releases to air were located.

FIGURE 5-1. FREQUENCY OF NPL SITES WITH BORON CONTAMINATION *

FIGURE 5-1. FREQUENCY OF NPL SITES WITH BORON CONTAMINATION *

FREQUENCY H-H I H 1 SITE H11111II 2 SITES Ml 3 SITES

* Derived from View 1989

FREQUENCY H-H I H 1 SITE H11111II 2 SITES Ml 3 SITES

* Derived from View 1989

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