2008 Remediation Guidelines for Monoethanolamine and Diethanolamine

The alkanolamine product family consists of ethanol-, isopropanol-, and butanol-substituted amines and includes monoethanolamine (MEA), diethanolamine (DEA), triethanolamine (TEA), and diisopropanolamine (DIPA). The alkanolamines considered in this report include MEA and DEA, and are herein referred to as the “Amines”.

Alkanolamines are bifunctional molecules with both amine and alcohol functional groups. MEA is an aliphatic compound with the formula NH2CH2CH2OH that is produced by reacting one mole of ethylene oxide with one mole of ammonia. DEA is an aliphatic compound with the formula OHCH2CH2NHCH2CH2OH that is produced by reacting two moles of ethylene oxide with one mole of ammonia. Since their introduction in the late 1920s, the Amines have received widespread use in industrial processes and consumer products. As a result of the widespread application of the Amines, and MEA and DEA in particular, the published literature on the Amines is relatively extensive.

No soil or groundwater remediation guidelines have been published to date for any of the Amines by either Alberta Environment (AENV) or the Canadian Council of Ministers of the Environment (CCME). This document develops proposed soil and groundwater remediation guidelines for MEA and DEA consistent with the Alberta Environment (AENV, 2008a) framework.