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Removal of Triclocarban and Triclosan during Municipal Biosolid Production

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The antimicrobial compounds triclosan (TCS) and triclocarban (TCC) accumulate in sludges produced during municipal wastewater treatment and persist through sludge treatment processes into finished biosolids. The objective of this research was to determine the extent to which conventional sludge processing systems such as aerobic digestion, anaerobic digestion, and lime stabilization were able to remove TCC and TCS. The concentrations of TCC and TCS in sludge and biosolid samples were determined via heated solvent extraction and analysis with liquid chromatography electrospray ionization mass spectrometry. The removal of TCC and TCS in municipal biosolid processing systems was determined from the measured concentration change after correcting for reductions in solid mass during sludge treatment. Removal in the digester systems ranged from 15 to 68% for TCC and 20 to 75% for TCS. Increased solid retention times during sludge treatment operations were correlated with higher removals of TCC and TCS.

Keywords: antimicrobial; emerging contaminants; land application; municipal wastewater treatment; sludge

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of California, Davis, One Shields Avenue, Davis California 95616, USA

Publication date: March 1, 2014

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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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