N-Nitrosodimethylamine: A Disinfectant Byproduct and Its Occurrence in Wastewater

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This paper will provide wastewater treatment utility professionals with a comprehensive synthesis of information pertinent to N-nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA) so that plant operators can make informed and cost-effective decisions regarding appropriate management techniques. A suspect disinfection byproduct, NDMA is a potential carcinogen and is presently under scrutiny from the U. S. Environmental Protection Agency because it poses a threat to groundwaters from reclaimed wastewaters. Recognizing that the current state of knowledge pertaining to the occurrence and treatment of NDMA from wastewater treatment is in its infancy, the information presented in this paper is timely and will help utility professionals develop confidence toward controlling NDMA during wastewater treatment. Given the increased probability of the formation of NDMA using current wastewater treatment technologies and also in the complex matrices of the wastewaters subjected to UV treatment, the investigation of occurrence pathways and means of suppression of NDMA formation before and after treatment needs to be investigated. This paper also summarizes strategies to minimize exposure such as modifying treatment or instituting waste and agricultural management practices that minimize inorganic and organic nitrogen discharges to wastewaters.


Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.2175/106143004X141906

Publication date: July 1, 2004

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  • Water Environment Research® (WER®) publishes peer-reviewed research papers, research notes, state-of-the-art and critical reviews on original, fundamental and applied research in all scientific and technical areas related to water quality, pollution control, and management. An annual Literature Review provides a review of published books and articles on water quality topics from the previous year.

    Published as: Sewage Works Journal, 1928 - 1949; Sewage and Industrial Wastes, 1950 - 1959; Journal Water Pollution Control Federation, 1959 - Oct 1989; Research Journal Water Pollution Control Federation, Nov 1989 - 1991; Water Environment Research, 1992 - present.
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