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Endocrine-Disrupting Compounds in Reclaimed Water and Residential Ponds and Exposure Potential for Dislodgeable Residues in Turf Irrigated With Reclaimed Water


Endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs) occur in reclaimed water (RW), which may serve as an exposure source for humans. The presence of EDCs in RW used to irrigate turf and in nearby water-retention ponds was determined. In addition, the total dislodgeable mass of each EDC was determined after irrigation (using RW) to simulate exposure of a 3-year-child playing in turf grass recently irrigated with RW. Five EDCs (estrone, 17β-estradiol, 17α-ethynylestradiol, bisphenol A, and 4-n-nonylphenol) were quantified in 28 samples of RWs (wastewater-treatment plant effluents) and 88 samples from residential surface water-retention ponds. St. Augustine variety of turf grass was irrigated with spiked RW to study dislodgement of the five EDCs overtime using a drag-sled method. Grass clippings were analyzed to relate masses of EDC on grass with masses dislodged. EDCs were detected in both RW and ponds at ng/L concentrations. Maximum EDC masses were dislodged immediately after irrigation. Dislodged masses of estrone and 17β-estradiol are two separate EDCs, 17β-estradiol and 17α-ethynylestradiol decreased rapidly and were lower than detection limits 4 h after application. Dislodged bisphenol-A and nonylphenol decreased more slowly but were not detected 6 h after application. Avoiding contact with recently irrigated turf grass should decrease the risks of exposure to these EDCs.

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Thanks to Youjian Lin and Jian Lu for help during sampling and technical support.

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Correspondence to Harmanpreet S. Sidhu.

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Sidhu, H.S., Wilson, P.C. & O’Connor, G.A. Endocrine-Disrupting Compounds in Reclaimed Water and Residential Ponds and Exposure Potential for Dislodgeable Residues in Turf Irrigated With Reclaimed Water. Arch Environ Contam Toxicol 69, 81–88 (2015).

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  • Chlorpyrifos
  • Septic System
  • Turf Grass
  • Coprostanol
  • Retention Pond