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FATE OF PHARMACEUTICALS IN SOIL FOLLOWING IRRIGATION WITH RECYCLED WATER

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Pharmaceuticals and personal care products (PPCPs) are emerging trace contaminants of concern for potable water supplies nationwide and internationally. Due to an increasing national emphasis on wastewater reclamation for purposes such as aquifer augmentation and agricultural irrigation over potable aquifers and as opposed to disposal, there is potentially considerable potential for transport of pharmaceuticals from treated wastewater through the environment and into many drinking water supplies. A study is currently underway to screen Oahu groundwaters, wastewaters, and reclaimed waters for PPCPs, to determine soil sorption characteristics of selected PPCPs, and to determine the fate and transport of PPCPs in recycled water during percolation through soil in field test plots. Very low concentrations of many PPCPs are likely to be present in all recycled waters. Some PPCPs are likely to be transported to underlying groundwater (i.e. antpyrine) while others are likely to be sorbed and/or biodegraded in the vadose zone (i.e. caffeine).
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 01 January 2002

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