NCAC SOT: Emerging Issues in Water ContaminationChemical Pollutants in Water: The Emerging Challenges Stakeholders FaceApril 15, 2010
Old Problems: New Twists • Water contamination is not new • Certain water contaminants are new, however, and others are new to detection • New class of contaminants called organic micropollutants • Concept is micro “dose”/low dose • Three large groupings • Endocrine Disruption Compounds (EDCs) • Pharmaceuticals/Personal Care Products (PCPs) • Engineered Nanomaterials
Endocrine Disruption Compounds • EDCs are not new, but emphasis on them is relatively recent, and now quite intense under FQPA and SDWA • 67 chemicals have been identified by EPA to be in the first group of chemicals to be screened • 756 test orders • Sent to 440 companies • Second list of 100 chemicals to be screened is expected to be available by October 2010
Pharmaceuticals/Personal Care Products (PCPs) • Contaminants include broad range of pharmaceuticals and PCPs, including veterinary medicines • Many typically contain a broad spectrum of substances that represent a range of physico-chemical properties • A recent article published by The Royal Society categorized common pharmaceuticals and PCPs by chemical compound classes as follows: acidic pharmaceuticals, including ibuprofen, naproxen, diclofenac, and benzafibrate; neutral pharmaceuticals, including antiepileptics, psychiatrics, and lipid regulators; betablockers such as metoprolol, atenolol, sotalol, and salbutamol; iodinated X-ray contrast media, including diatrizoate, iopamidol, and iopromide; and antibiotics such as triclosan, tetracyclines, and penicillins.  Comerton, A., et al. (2009). Practical Overview of Analytical Methods for Endocrine-Disrupting Compounds, Pharmaceutical and Personal Care Products in Water and Wastewater. Phil. Trans. R. Sor. A. 367:3923-3939.
Pharmaceuticals/Personal Care Products (PCPs) (cont’d) • Legislative response -- In 2009, the National Water Research and Development Initiatives Act was passed in the House. It would coordinate federal research and development efforts regarding trace levels of pharmaceuticals/PCPs in drinking water • A host of other measures have been introduced, along with state initiatives
Engineered Nanomaterials • Rapid commercialization -- Over 1,000 nano-enabled products in commerce according to Project on Emerging Nanotechnologies • Nanoparticles may be released in manufacturing operations, when products are used as intended (sun screen lotions), and upon end of life • Intentional application of certain nanomaterials as remedial measures (zero valent nanoscale iron)
Technical Challenges • Detection/Identification • Characterization • Number of contaminants • Treatment • Resources
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