Characterizing the Passage of Personal Care Products Through Wastewater Treatment Processes

Montgomery Watson Harza, Arcadia, California, USA.
Water Environment Research (Impact Factor: 0.87). 01/2008; 79(13):2564-77. DOI: 10.2175/106143007X184573
Source: PubMed


Wastewater treatment facilities use secondary treatment to stabilize the effect of discharged effluent on receiving waters by oxidizing biodegradable organic matter and reducing suspended solids and nutrients. The process was never specifically intended to remove trace quantities of xenobiotics, such as endocrine-disrupting compounds (EDCs) and pharmaceuticals and personal care products (PPCPs). Nevertheless, European studies performed at bench-scale or at small facilities have demonstrated that a critical minimum solids retention time (SRT) can achieve good reduction of many EDCs and pharmaceuticals. The objective of this study was to expand these findings to the removal performance for 20 PPCPs commonly found in the influent to full-scale facilities operating in the United States. The participating plants use SRT conditions ranging from 0.5 to 30 days and include facility capacities ranging from 19 000 m3/d (5 mgd) to greater than 1 136 000 m3/d (300 mgd). Two pilot membrane bioreactors were also included in the study. The 20 PPCPs were categorized into nine bin combinations of occurrence frequency and treatment reduction performance. While most compounds were well removed, galaxolide (a musk fragrance) occurred frequently and was resistant to removal. A minimum critical SRT, defined as the minimum SRT, needed to consistently demonstrate greater than 80% removal (SRT80), was compound-dependent, with most compounds removed at 5 to 15 days and a small group requiring longer SRTs. From limited data, no additional removal could be attributed to the use of membrane bioreactors, media filters, or longer hydraulic retention times. Reverse osmosis was effective in removing any remaining compounds.

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Available from: Arturo A Burbano, Jan 02, 2014
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    • "The main sources of these emerging pollutants and pesticides are from industrial, municipal and agricultural applications [1] [2] [3] [6]. Municipal wastewaters and hospital effluents may contain pharmaceuticals, personal care products (PPCPs), industrial additives and pesticides, etc. which cannot be eliminated by the conventional wastewater treatment technologies [7] [8] [9] [10] [11] [12] [13]. "
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    ABSTRACT: The present study examined the chlorophyll content in a 7-day contact time experiment series. Lemna minor was exposed to caffeine, benzophenone, bisphenol A, 3,4-dichlorophenol, metamizole-Na, Na-diclofenac, acetochlor, atrazine, diuron, metazachlor and metolachlor to find a convenient sensitive response to the tested chemicals including some emerging micropollutants. The results demonstrated the differences in sensitivity to the tested micropollutants. As anticipated the industrial chemicals and the pesticides were the most toxic. The lowest observed effect concentration (LOEC) values determined for 3,4-dichlorophenol, acetochlor, diuron, metazachlor and metolachlor were 2.5 μg/L, 0.05 μg/L, 0.5 μg/L, 5 μg/L and 0.5 μg/L, respectively. These values were comparable with the environmental concentrations reported in literature. Our study provides valuable information on the feasibility of Lemna minor total chlorophyll method as a sensitive and reliable bioassay for testing toxicity at μg/L range and it may support risk assessment of organic micropollutants in freshwater ecosystems.
    Periodica Polytechnica Civil Engineering 01/2015; 59(4). DOI:10.3311/PPch.8077 · 0.26 Impact Factor
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    • "Such evaluations span the continua of physicochemical treatment (e.g., media or membrane filtration), conventional oxidation (e.g., chlorine and ozone), and advanced oxidation processes (e.g., UV/hydrogen peroxide [H 2 O 2 ] and ozone/H 2 O 2 ) in drinking water and wastewater (Huber et al., 2003; Kim et al., 2007; Snyder et al., 2006, 2007; Ternes et al., 2002; Westerhoff et al., of 10 days, whereas Oppenheimer et al. (2007) concluded that the minimum SRT was compoundspecific but typically ranged from 5 to 15 days. Oppenheimer and colleagues further concluded that hydraulic retention time (HRT) had no significant effect on TOrC removal. "
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    ABSTRACT: Although pharmaceuticals and personal care products (PPCPs) and endocrine disrupting compounds (EDCs) are largely unregulated, water resource recovery facilities are increasingly using advanced chemical/physical treatment technologies (e.g., advanced oxidation and reverse osmosis) to remove or destroy these trace organic contaminants (TOrCs). This can both reduce potential adverse human health effects in reuse applications and mitigate environmental effects on aquatic ecosystems. Unfortunately, advanced treatment technologies are typically energy intensive and costly to implement, operate, and maintain. The goal of this study was to determine whether optimization of solids retention time (SRT) provided sufficient benefits to warrant such operational strategies for TOrC mitigation. Specifically, SRTs of 5.5, 6, and 15 days were evaluated to determine the effects on several standard wastewater parameters (e.g., nitrite, nitrate, and ammonia concentrations) and the degradation of TOrCs. The experimental SRTs were operated simultaneously in parallel, full-scale activated sludge basins. The results indicate that it can be beneficial to implement biological process optimization strategies using existing infrastructure while reducing reliance on advanced treatment technologies. This study also identified potential operational issues that might arise in activated sludge systems operating at extended SRTs.
    Water Environment Research 08/2013; 85(8):715-24. DOI:10.2175/106143012X13560205144533 · 0.87 Impact Factor
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    • "Previous studies found that autotrophic ammonia oxidizers (AOB and/or AOA) could cometabolize a vast variety of EOCs. Interestingly, several previous studies demonstrated that heterotrophs are more favorable in biotransformation of biodegradable EOCs, such as ibuprofen, acetaminophen, methyl paraben, galaxolide, and caffeine than autotrophic nitifiers (Oppenheimer et al., 2007; Cajthaml et al., 2009; Tran et al., 2009; Larcher and Yargeau, 2013). The question is then arisen: which microbial group (heterotrophs or autotrophs) is mainly involved in the biodegradation of EOCs. "
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    ABSTRACT: Many efforts have been made to understand the biodegradation of emerging trace organic contaminants (EOCs) in the natural and engineered systems. This review summarizes the current knowledge on the biodegradation of EOCs while having in-depth discussion on metabolism and cometabolism of EOCs. Biodegradation of EOCs is mainly attributed to cometabolic activities of both heterotrophic and autotrophic microorganisms. Metabolism of EOCs can only be observed by heterotrophic microbes. Autotrophic ammonia oxidizing bacteria (AOB) and ammonia oxidizing archaeal (AOA) cometabolize a variety of EOCs via the non-specific enzymes, such as ammonia monooxygenase (AMO). Higher biodegradation of EOCs is often noted under nitrification at high ammonia loading rate. The presence of a growth substrate promotes cometabolic biodegradation of EOCs. Potential strategies for enhancing the biodegradation of EOCs were also proposed in this review.
    Bioresource Technology 07/2013; 146. DOI:10.1016/j.biortech.2013.07.083 · 4.49 Impact Factor
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