How do measured PBDE and HCBD levels in river fish compare to the European Environmental Quality Standards?
This study evaluates the current situation regarding PBDE and HBCD levels in different river fish species. We collected published data in the last five years in different countries around the world. These levels of pollution were compared with Environmental Quality Standards (EQS) for biota established by the European Directive in the field of water policy. Although HBCD situation is not critical, with only some values exceeding the limit about 5 times, the PBDE levels clearly exceeded the established EQS, with 25% of fish samples exceeding up to ten thousand times. Although it is expected that levels of pollution by PBDEs will decrease over the next years due to the ban in their use, it is not expected that this decrease will reach the EQS values by the end of 2021, as demanded by the European Directive. Hence, it is necessary to implement new strategies in order to minimize the impact of PBDEs on the environment.