An overview of pharmaceuticals and personal care products contamination along the river Somes watershed, Romania†
The mass flows of selected pharmaceuticals and personal care products (PPCPs) were studied in the aqueous compartment of the river Somes in Romania. PPCPs were measured in wastewater treatment effluents and in the receiving river water. The analytical method for the determination of PPCPs in river water was based on solid phase extraction and GC-ITMS. Carbamazepine, pentoxyfylline, ibuprofen, diazepam, galaxolide, tonalide and triclosan were determined in wastewater effluents with individual concentrations ranging from 15 to 774 ng L−1. Caffeine was measured at concentrations up to 42 560 ng L−1. Due to the high contamination of WWTP effluents, the receiving river was also polluted. The most abundant PPCPs measured in the Somes were caffeine, galaxolide, carbamazepine and triclosan. They were present at all the 15 sampling sites along the Somes, the concentrations ranging from 10 to 400 ng L−1. The concentrations in the effluents of the different wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) varied considerably and the differences are due to different elimination efficiencies of the studied PPCPs during sewage treatment. Only one of 5 WWTPs studied, the WWTP in Cluj-Napoca, was working properly, and therefore technical measures have to be taken for upgrading the WWTPs and reducing the environmental load of micropollutants. This study is the first overview of PPCPs along on Romanian part of river Somes.