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Naphthalene
Last updated: 23/02/2021
(Also known as: tar camphor; naphthaline; moth balls)

SUMMARY
Naphthalene is only used for non-food applications. Slightly toxic if ingested but more serious effects may be seen if inhaled. It is considered a skin and eye irritant. It is also thought to be carcinogenic. Little is known about its environmental fate mainly because its usage patterns would minimise its release. Data suggests that it would be rapidly lost from the soil by evaporation, volatilization, and biodegradation. Non-toxic to birds and earthworms. It is moderately toxic to aquatic species but exposure is unlikely. No data for the risk posed to honeybees has been identified.
GENERAL INFORMATION
Description
A largely obsolete insecticide once used as a moth repellant for the protection of textiles and as an animal repellant against nuisance vertebrate pests. It is also a constituent of some inert product additives.
Example pests controlled
Moths
Example applications
Non-cropped situations; Wool clothing and textiles
Efficacy & activity
-
Availability status
Obsolete
Introduction & key dates
1948, first registered as a pestcide USA
UK regulatory status
UK COPR regulatory status
Not approved
Date COPR inclusion expires
Not applicable
UK LERAP status
No UK approval for use
EC Regulation 1107/2009 (repealing 91/414)
EC Regulation 1107/2009 status
Not approved
Dossier rapporteur/co-rapporteur
Not applicable
Date EC 1107/2009 inclusion expires
Not applicable
EU Candidate for substitution (CfS)
Not applicable
Listed in EU database
No
Approved for use (✓) under EC 1107/2009 in the following EU Member States
ATAustria
BEBelgium
BGBulgaria
CYCyprus
CZCzech Republic
DEGermany
DKDenmark
EEEstonia
ELGreece
                 
ESSpain
FIFinland
FRFrance
HRCroatia
HUHungary
IEIreland
ITItaly
LTLithuania
LULuxembourg
                 
LVLatvia
MTMalta
NLNetherlands
PLPoland
PTPortugal
RORomania
SESweden
SISlovenia
SKSlovakia
                 
Also used in
Also used in
USA
Chemical structure
Isomerism
-
Chemical formula
C₁₀H₈
Canonical SMILES
C1=CC=C2C=CC=CC2=C1
Isomeric SMILES
No data
International Chemical Identifier key (InChIKey)
UFWIBTONFRDIAS-UHFFFAOYSA-N
International Chemical Identifier (InChI)
InChI=1S/C10H8/c1-2-6-10-8-4-3-7-9(10)5-1/h1-8H
2D structure diagram/image available?
Yes
Cambridge Crystallographic Data Centre diagrams
Common Name Relationship Link
naphthalene -
General status
Pesticide type
Repellent, Other substance, Fumigant
Other constituent type
Constituent of some solvents
Substance group
Aromatic hydrocarbon
Minimum active substance purity
-
Known relevant impurities
-
Substance origin
Synthetic
Mode of action
Repellent action caused by strong odour
CAS RN
91-20-3
EC number
202-049-5
CIPAC number
8222
US EPA chemical code
055801
PubChem CID
931
Molecular mass
128.17
PIN (Preferred Identification Name)
naphthalene
IUPAC name
naphthalene
CAS name
naphthalene
Other status information
Prohibited in Europe since 2008; WFD priority substance
Relevant Environmental Water Quality Standards
EU Directive 2008/105/EC EQS Inland surface waters: 2.4 µg l⁻¹; other surface waters 1.2 µg l⁻¹ as annual average
Herbicide Resistance Classification (HRAC)
Not applicable
Herbicide Resistance Classification (WSSA)
Not applicable
Insecticide Resistance Classification (IRAC)
Not applicable
Fungicide Resistance Classification (FRAC)
Not applicable
Examples of recorded resistance
-
Physical state
White crystalline flaky solid
Formulations
Property
Value
Example manufacturers & suppliers of products using this active now or historically
-
Example products using this active
  • Reochem Inc., USA
Formulation and application details
Usually supplied as pellets, granules or flakes and applied by hand
ENVIRONMENTAL FATE
Property
Value
Source; quality score; and other information
Interpretation
Solubility - In water at 20 °C (mg l⁻¹)
31.0
F4 F = U.S. EPA ECOTOX database / U.S. EPA pesticide fate database / Miscellaneous WHO documents (US EPA Databases Related to Pesticide Risk Assessment )
4 = Verified data
at 25 °C
Low
Solubility - In organic solvents at 20 °C (mg l⁻¹)
285000
L3 L = Pesticide manuals and hard copy reference books / other sources
3 = Unverified data of known source
Benzene
-
77000
L3 L = Pesticide manuals and hard copy reference books / other sources
3 = Unverified data of known source
Methanol
-
500000
L3 L = Pesticide manuals and hard copy reference books / other sources
3 = Unverified data of known source
Chloroform
-
Melting point (°C)
81.2
Q3 Q = Miscellaneous internet resources
3 = Unverified data of known source
-
Boiling point (°C)
218
L3 L = Pesticide manuals and hard copy reference books / other sources
3 = Unverified data of known source
-
Degradation point (°C)
- - -
Flashpoint (°C)
88
L3 L = Pesticide manuals and hard copy reference books / other sources
3 = Unverified data of known source
(closed cup)
-
Octanol-water partition coefficient at pH 7, 20 °C
P
1.95 X 1003 Calculated -
Log P
3.29
F4 F = U.S. EPA ECOTOX database / U.S. EPA pesticide fate database / Miscellaneous WHO documents (US EPA Databases Related to Pesticide Risk Assessment )
4 = Verified data
High
Bulk density (g ml⁻¹)
1.14
Q3 Q = Miscellaneous internet resources
3 = Unverified data of known source
-
Dissociation constant pKa) at 25 °C
- - -
-
Vapour pressure at 20 °C (mPa)
6500
L3 L = Pesticide manuals and hard copy reference books / other sources
3 = Unverified data of known source
Highly volatile
Henry's law constant at 25 °C (Pa m³ mol⁻¹)
2.78 X 1001
L3 L = Pesticide manuals and hard copy reference books / other sources
3 = Unverified data of known source
Moderately volatile
Maximum UV-vis absorption L mol⁻¹ cm⁻¹
- - -
Surface tension (mN m⁻¹)
- - -
Degradation
Property
Value
Source; quality score; and other information
Interpretation
General biodegradability
-
Soil degradation (days) (aerobic)
DT₅₀ (typical)
80
F3 F = U.S. EPA ECOTOX database / U.S. EPA pesticide fate database / Miscellaneous WHO documents (US EPA Databases Related to Pesticide Risk Assessment )
3 = Unverified data of known source
Moderately persistent
DT₅₀ (lab at 20 °C)
- - -
DT₅₀ (field)
- - -
DT₉₀ (lab at 20 °C)
- - -
DT₉₀ (field)
- - -
DT₅₀ modelling endpoint
- - -
Note
Literature data reports DT₅₀'s of around 80 days unless the soil is contaminated with polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons which will facilitate much quicker degradation rates.
Dissipation rate RL₅₀ on plant matrix
Value
- - -
Note
-
Dissipation rate RL₅₀ on and in plant matrix
Value
- - -
Note
-
Aqueous photolysis DT₅₀ (days) at pH 7
Value
Stable
Q3 Q = Miscellaneous internet resources
3 = Unverified data of known source
Stable
Note
-
Aqueous hydrolysis DT₅₀ (days) at 20 °C and pH 7
Value
Stable
Q3 Q = Miscellaneous internet resources
3 = Unverified data of known source
Stable
Note
-
Water-sediment DT₅₀ (days)
Stable
Q3 Q = Miscellaneous internet resources
3 = Unverified data of known source
Stable
Water phase only DT₅₀ (days)
Stable
Q3 Q = Miscellaneous internet resources
3 = Unverified data of known source
Stable
Soil adsorption and mobility
Property
Value
Source; quality score; and other information
Interpretation
Linear
Kd
-
F3 F = U.S. EPA ECOTOX database / U.S. EPA pesticide fate database / Miscellaneous WHO documents (US EPA Databases Related to Pesticide Risk Assessment )
3 = Unverified data of known source
Slightly mobile
Koc
750
Notes and range
Literature states Koc values range 200-1470 ml/g
Freundlich
Kf
- - -
Kfoc
-
1/n
-
Notes and range
-
pH sensitivity
-
Fate indices
Property
Value
Source; quality score; and other information
Interpretation
GUS leaching potential index
2.14 Calculated Transition state
SCI-GROW groundwater index (μg l⁻¹) for a 1 kg ha⁻¹ or 1 l ha⁻¹ application rate
Value
9.84 X 10-02 Calculated -
Note
-
Potential for particle bound transport index
Medium Calculated -
Potential for loss via drain flow
Slightly mobile Calculated -
Other known metabolites
Metabolite name and reference
Aliases
Formation medium / Rate
Estimated maximum occurrence fraction
Metabolising enzymes
cis-1,2-dihydroxy-1,2-dihydronaphthalene - - - -
1,2-dihydroxy-naphthalene - - - -
2-hydroxchromene-2-carboxylate HCCA - - -
trans-o-hydroxy-benzylidenpyruvate tHBPA - - -
salicyladehyde - - - -
ECOTOXICOLOGY
Property
Value
Source; quality score; and other information
Interpretation
Bio-concentration factor
BCF (l kg⁻¹)
714
F3 F = U.S. EPA ECOTOX database / U.S. EPA pesticide fate database / Miscellaneous WHO documents (US EPA Databases Related to Pesticide Risk Assessment )
3 = Unverified data of known source
Cyprinodon variegatus (whole body)
Threshold for concern
CT₅₀ (days)
Not available -
Mammals - Acute oral LD₅₀ (mg kg⁻¹)
> 2200
L3 L = Pesticide manuals and hard copy reference books / other sources
3 = Unverified data of known source
Rat
Low
Mammals - Short term dietary NOEL
(mg kg⁻¹)
- - -
(ppm diet)
- -
Mammals - Chronic 21d NOAEL (mg kg⁻¹ bw d⁻¹)
- - -
Birds - Acute LD₅₀ (mg kg⁻¹)
> 5620
F4 F = U.S. EPA ECOTOX database / U.S. EPA pesticide fate database / Miscellaneous WHO documents (US EPA Databases Related to Pesticide Risk Assessment )
4 = Verified data
Colinus virginianus
Low
Birds - Short term dietary (LC₅₀/LD₅₀)
- - -
Birds - Chronic 21d NOEL (mg kg⁻¹ bw d⁻¹)
- - -
Fish - Acute 96 hour LC₅₀ (mg l⁻¹)
> 0.11
F4 F = U.S. EPA ECOTOX database / U.S. EPA pesticide fate database / Miscellaneous WHO documents (US EPA Databases Related to Pesticide Risk Assessment )
4 = Verified data
Oncorhynchus mykiss
Moderate
Fish - Chronic 21 day NOEC (mg l⁻¹)
> 0.67
P3 P = Other governments and regulators
3 = Unverified data of known source
Oncorhynchus kisutch 40 day
Moderate
Aquatic invertebrates - Acute 48 hour EC₅₀ (mg l⁻¹)
> 15.0
F4 F = U.S. EPA ECOTOX database / U.S. EPA pesticide fate database / Miscellaneous WHO documents (US EPA Databases Related to Pesticide Risk Assessment )
4 = Verified data
Daphnia magna
Moderate
Aquatic invertebrates - Chronic 21 day NOEC (mg l⁻¹)
- - -
Aquatic crustaceans - Acute 96 hour LC₅₀ (mg l⁻¹)
- - -
Sediment dwelling organisms - Acute 96 hour LC₅₀ (mg l⁻¹)
- - -
Sediment dwelling organisms - Chronic 28 day NOEC, static, water (mg l⁻¹)
- - -
Sediment dwelling organisms - Chronic 28 day NOEC, sediment (mg kg⁻¹)
- - -
Aquatic plants - Acute 7 day EC₅₀, biomass (mg l⁻¹)
- - -
Non-target plants
- - -
- - -
Algae - Acute 72 hour EC₅₀, growth (mg l⁻¹)
> 25.0
F4 F = U.S. EPA ECOTOX database / U.S. EPA pesticide fate database / Miscellaneous WHO documents (US EPA Databases Related to Pesticide Risk Assessment )
4 = Verified data
Pseudokirchneriella subcapitata
Low
Algae - Chronic 96 hour NOEC, growth (mg l⁻¹)
- - -
Honeybees (Apis spp.)
Contact acute LD₅₀ (worst case from 24, 48 and 72 hour values - μg bee⁻¹)
- - -
Oral acute LD₅₀ (worst case from 24, 48 and 72 hour values - μg bee⁻¹)
- - -
Unknown mode acute LD₅₀ (worst case from 24, 48 and 72 hour values - μg bee⁻¹)
- - -
Bumblebees (Bombus spp.)
Contact acute LD₅₀ (worst case from 24, 48 and 72 hour values - μg bee⁻¹)
- - -
-
Oral acute LD₅₀ (worst case from 24, 48 and 72 hour values - μg bee⁻¹)
- - -
-
Mason bees (Osmia spp.)
Contact acute LD₅₀ (worst case from 24, 48 and 72 hour values - μg bee⁻¹)
- - -
Oral acute LD₅₀ (worst case from 24, 48 and 72 hour values - μg bee⁻¹)
- - -
Other pollinators (1)
Acute LD₅₀ (worst case from 24, 48 and 72 hour values - μg insect⁻¹)
- - -
Mode of exposure
-
Other pollinators (2)
Acute LD₅₀ (worst case from 24, 48 and 72 hour values - μg insect⁻¹)
- - -
Mode of exposure
-
Earthworms - Acute 14 day LC₅₀ (mg kg⁻¹)
> 2730
F4 F = U.S. EPA ECOTOX database / U.S. EPA pesticide fate database / Miscellaneous WHO documents (US EPA Databases Related to Pesticide Risk Assessment )
4 = Verified data
Eisenia foetida
Low
Earthworms - Chronic NOEC, reproduction (mg kg⁻¹)
- - -
Other soil macro-organisms
Acute LC₅₀ (mg kg⁻¹)
- - -
Chronic NOEC (mg kg⁻¹)
- - -
Other arthropod (1)
LR₅₀ g ha⁻¹
- - -
% Effect
- - -
Other arthropod (2)
LR₅₀ g ha⁻¹
- - -
% Effect
- - -
Soil micro-organisms
- - -
Mesocosm study data
NOEAEC mg l⁻¹
- - -
NOEAEC mg l⁻¹
- - -
HUMAN HEALTH AND PROTECTION
General
Property
Value
Source; quality score; and other information
Interpretation
Threshold of Toxicological Concern (Cramer Class)
High (class III) - -
Mammals - Acute oral LD₅₀ (mg kg⁻¹)
> 2200
L3 L = Pesticide manuals and hard copy reference books / other sources
3 = Unverified data of known source
Rat
Low
Mammals - Dermal LD₅₀ (mg kg⁻¹ body weight)
2500
V3 V = ChemID online databases / IPCS INCHEM (ChemID; IPCS INCHEM )
3 = Unverified data of known source
Rat
-
Mammals - Inhalation LC₅₀ (mg l⁻¹)
> 0.34
V3 V = ChemID online databases / IPCS INCHEM (ChemID; IPCS INCHEM )
3 = Unverified data of known source
Rat 1 hr
-
Other Mammal toxicity endpoints
- - -
ADI - Acceptable Daily Intake (mg kg⁻¹ bw day⁻¹)
- - -
ARfD - Acute Reference Dose (mg kg⁻¹ bw day⁻¹)
- - -
AAOEL - Acute Acceptable Operator Exposure Level (mg kg⁻¹ bw day⁻¹)
- - -
AOEL - Acceptable Operator Exposure Level - Systemic (mg kg⁻¹ bw day⁻¹)
- - -
Dermal penetration studies (%)
- - -
Dangerous Substances Directive 76/464
- - -
Exposure Routes
Public
-
Occupational
Exposure may occur via inhalation, skin absorption, ingestion, skin and/or eye contact
MRLs
European
EU MRL pesticide database 
Notes
-
Drinking Water Standards
- - -
Drinking Water MAC (μg l⁻¹)
- - -
Health issues
Specific human health issues
Carcinogen
Genotoxic
Endocrine disruptor
Yes, known to cause a problem
A0 A = Chromosome aberration (EFSA database)
0 = No data
;
B0 B = DNA damage/repair (EFSA database)
0 = No data
;
C0 C = Gene mutation (EFSA database)
0 = No data
;
D0 D = Genome mutation (EFSA database)
0 = No data
;
E0 E = Unspecified genotoxicity type (miscellaneous data source)
0 = No data
No data found
Reproduction / development effects Acetyl cholinesterase inhibitor Neurotoxicant
?Possibly, status not identified
No data found
Yes, known to cause a problem
Respiratory tract irritant Skin irritant Skin sensitiser
Yes, known to cause a problem
No data found No data found
Eye irritant Phototoxicant  
Yes, known to cause a problem
No data found  
General human health issues
Blood toxicant at high doses
Liver toxicant
May cause hemolytic anemia
IARC Group 2B carcinogen
Handling issues
Property
Value and interpretation
General
Flammable
CLP classification 2013
Health: H302, H351
Environment: H400, H410
EC Risk Classification
Carcinogen category 3: R40
Xn - Harmful: R22
N - Dangerous for the environment: R50/53
EC Safety Classification
S2, S36/37, S46, S60, S61
WHO Classification
O (Obsolete substance)
UN Number
-
Waste disposal & packaging
-
TRANSLATIONS
Language
Name
English
naphthalene
French
naphtalene
German
-
Danish
-
Italian
-
Spanish
-
Greek
-
Polish
naftalen
Swedish
-
Hungarian
-
Dutch
-

Record last updated: 23/02/2021
Contact: aeru@herts.ac.uk
Please cite as: Lewis, K.A., Tzilivakis, J., Warner, D. and Green, A. (2016) An international database for pesticide risk assessments and management. Human and Ecological Risk Assessment: An International Journal, 22(4), 1050-1064. DOI: 10.1080/10807039.2015.1133242