The Removal of Illicit Drugs and Metabolites During Wastewater and Drinking Water Treatment
In recent years, the presence of illicit drugs and metabolites in the aquatic environment (wastewater, surface water, and drinking water) in relatively high concentrations (ng/L to μg/L range) was extensively investigated and described. However, only few papers gave attention to the behavior of these compounds during water treatment processes. This is an important aspect, since an inefficient removal of illicit drugs and metabolites could lead to their presence in surface water and drinking water. This eventually could lead to negative effects on different aspects of the aquatic environment. In this chapter, an overview of the current knowledge of the removal of illicit drugs and their metabolites during wastewater and drinking water treatment is given together with a critical discussion regarding future research needs in this field.
KeywordsWastewater Treatment Removal Rate Illicit Drug Reverse Osmosis Drinking Water Treatment
Alexander van Nuijs and Dr. Adrian Covaci are grateful to the Flanders Scientific Funds for Research (FWO) for financial support. We also acknowledge the funding of a FWO project on pharmaceuticals and illicit drugs in wastewater (G. 0177.09 N).
- 10.van Nuijs ALN, Pecceu B, Theunis L, Dubois N, Charlier C, Jorens PG, Bervoets L, Blust R, Neels H, Covaci A (2009) Spatial and temporal variations in the occurrence of cocaine and benzoylecgonine in waste- and surface water from Belgium and removal during wastewater treatment. Water Res 43:1341–1349CrossRefGoogle Scholar