Published on the Web 8/14/2009.
Hydrophilic anthropogenic markers for quantification of wastewater contamination in ground-and surface WATERS†
Article first published online: 6 JAN 2010
Copyright © 2009 SETAC
Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry
Volume 28, Issue 12, pages 2528–2536, December 2009
How to Cite
Kahle, M., Buerge, I. J., Müller, M. D. and Poiger, T. (2009), Hydrophilic anthropogenic markers for quantification of wastewater contamination in ground-and surface WATERS. Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry, 28: 2528–2536. doi: 10.1897/08-606.1
- Issue published online: 6 JAN 2010
- Article first published online: 6 JAN 2010
- Manuscript Accepted: 19 MAY 2009
- Manuscript Received: 25 NOV 2008
- Chemical marker;
Hydrophilic, persistent markers are useful to detect, locate, and quantify contamination of natural waters with domestic wastewater. The present study focused on occurrence and fate of seven marker candidates including carbamazepine (CBZ), 10,11-dihydro-10,11-dihydroxycarbamazepine (DiOH-CBZ), primidone (PMD), crotamiton (CTMT), N-acetyl-4-aminoantipyrine (AAA), N-formyl-4-aminoantipyrine (FAA), and benzotriazole (BTri) in wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs), lakes, and groundwater. In WWTPs, concentrations from 0.14 μg/L to several micrograms per liter were observed for all substances, except CTMT, which was detected at lower concentrations. Loads determined in untreated and treated wastewater indicated that removal of the potential markers in WWTPs is negligible; only BTri was partly eliminated (average 33%). In lakes, five compounds, CBZ, DiOH-CBZ, FAA, AAA, and BTri, were consistently detected in concentrations of 2 to 70 ng/L, 3 to 150 ng/L, less than the limit of quantification to 30 ng/L, 2 to 80 ng/L, and 11 to 920 ng/L, respectively. Mean per capita loads in the outflows of the lakes suggested possible dissipation in surface waters, especially of AAA and FAA. Nevertheless, concentrations of CBZ, DiOH-CBZ, and BTri correlated with the actual anthropogenic burden of the lakes by domestic wastewater, indicating that these compounds are suitable for quantification of wastewater contamination in lakes. Marker candidates were also detected in a number of groundwater samples. Carbamazepine concentrations up to 42 ng/L were observed in aquifers with significant infiltration of river water, receiving considerable wastewater discharges from WWTPs. Concentration ratios between compounds indicated some elimination of BTri and DiOH-CBZ during subsurface passage or in groundwater, while CBZ and PMD appeared to be more stable and thus are promising wastewater markers for groundwater. The wastewater burden in groundwater, estimated with the markers CBZ and PMD, reached up to 6%.