Chemicals of emerging concern in the urban environment - a catchment perspective

Kathryn Proctor, Bruce Petrie, Luigi Lopardo, Maria Camacho-Munoz, Jack Rice, Ruth Barden, Tom Arnot, Barbara Kasprzyk-Hordern

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstractpeer-review


Micropollutants are known to be present in the environment. One of the primary
sources of entry are through wastewater treatments works (WwTW). Although
there is legislation to protect the environment from priority micropollutants, this
list is minimal compared to the thousands in use. This work looks at 142
micropollutants in wastewater in influent, effluent and receiving waters at 5
locations across the catchment, proving a more extensive list of chemicals of
emerging concerning (CECs), covering 75% of the population of the studied area.
Robust sampling and analytical methods were employed, including solid phase
extraction of samples followed by ultra-performance liquid chromatography
coupled with triple quadrupole mass spectrometry for the accurate analysis of
these CECs throughout multiple matrices across the catchment. The results
showed clear trends between population and urbanisation as well as increasing
CEC loads downstream despite high removal efficiencies at the WwTWs. This
study confirms the necessity of considering the overall contributions of WwTWs
within a catchment as a whole rather than the individual performance of a WwTW
and the risk it may pose.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 7 May 2020
EventSETAC Europe 30th Annual Meeting - Dublin, Ireland
Duration: 3 May 20207 May 2020


ConferenceSETAC Europe 30th Annual Meeting


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