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Forskningsartikel - Refereegranskat, 2018

Pharmaceuticals and illicit drugs - A new threat to the application of sewage sludge in agriculture

Ivanova, Lucia; Mackulak, Tomas; Grabic, Roman; Golovko, Oksana; Koba, Olga; Stanova, Andrea Vojs; Szabova, Petra; Grencikova, Anna; Bodik, Igor


The occurrence of 93 pharmaceuticals, illicit drugs and their metabolites has been investigated in stabilized sewage sludge from five municipal wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) in the Slovak Republic. The total population connected to the tested WWTPs was approximately 600,000 p.e. which represents >20% of the Slovak population connected to public sewer systems. The sludge production from the five tested plants was >8100 tons in 2016, which is approximately 15% of the total Slovak sewage sludge production in 2016.The highest total concentration of all pharmaceuticals was found in WWTP Bratislava Devinska NovasVes (DNV) and Senec - 11,800 and 11,300 ng/g dry matter (DM), respectively. Among individual pharmaceuticals, the highest concentrations were recorded for fexofenadine (mean 2340 ng/g DM, maximum 5600 ng/g DM in Bratislava DNV) and telmisartan (mean 1170 ng/g DM, with a maximum of 3370 ng/g DM in Senec). A principal component analysis revealed differences between pharmaceutical patterns in aerobically and anaerobically stabilized sludge.The worst-case scenario based on no further degradation of pharmaceuticals between sludge production and field application was used to predict pharmaceutical mass loads in agriculture. For the result, we estimated an annual load to soil in the Slovak Republic of up to several hundred kilograms of pharmaceuticals and drugs, with the maximum for fexofenadine (120 kg/year) and verapamil (29 kg/year). (C) 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.


Aerobic and anaerobic stabilization; Fexofenadine; Pharmaceuticals; Sewage sludge; Soil

Publicerad i

Science of the Total Environment
2018, Volym: 634, sidor: 606-615

    UKÄ forskningsämne

    Environmental Sciences related to Agriculture and Land-use

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