Fate and analysis of endocrine disrupting chemicals, pharmaceuticals and personal care products in a membrane bioreactor

H. M. Coleman, Martin Troester, Stuart Khan, James McDonald, Graham Watkins, Richard Stuetz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The removal efficiency of endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs), pharmaceuticals and personal care products (PPCPs) of
a package plant membrane bioreactor (MBR) treating raw municipal sewage was assessed using biological and chemical
analysis. Recombinant yeast oestrogen and androgen bioassays were employed to determine oestrogenic and androgenic
activities, and Gas Chromatography–Mass Spectrometry was used to determine the concentrations of ibuprofen, salicylic
acid, triclosan and 4-tert-octylphenol in samples before and after MBR treatment. The MBR was shown to have removed
over 78% of the oestrogenic activity and over 98% of androgenic activity from raw sewage samples. Removal rates for
ibuprofen, salicylic acid, triclosan and 4-tert-octylphenol were 99.9%, 99.8%, 93.1% and 98.1%, respectively. All removal
rates were comparable or better than those previously reported from conventional activated sludge processes and support
the application of this treatment for decentralised treatment of domestic wastewater from single households or clusters of
homes and the use of the treatment effluent for alternative water management practices such as water reuse and recycling.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)163-168
Number of pages6
JournalAustralasian Journal of Ecotoxicology
Volume16
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - 1 Sep 2019

Keywords

  • sewage treatment
  • yeast screen bioassay
  • GC-MS
  • oestrogens
  • androgens membrane bioreactors

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