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Environmental Health - Toxic Substances

Investigations - Contaminants of Emerging Concern in the Environment

Select Surface Water and Wastewater Sites, Iowa

Sampling sites in Iowa

This pilot study was designed to identify and measure a limited set of emerging contaminants in aqueous environmental samples to determine possible relationships between these compounds and animal and human land-use activities. Field samples were collected quarterly for one year from three stream basins – a control stream, a stream potentially impacted by concentrated swine production, and a stream potentially impacted by concentrated cattle production. In addition, samples were collected from two wastewater treatment plant discharges in an urban area. Samples were analyzed for 34 emerging contaminants (including 5 non-prescription drugs, 7 antibiotics, 7 sterols, and 15 other compounds) by the University of Iowa Hygienic Laboratory. This study was a collaborative effort between the University of Iowa Hygienic Laboratory and the USGS.

Available Publications

Cain, T.G., Kolpin, D.W., Vargo, J.D., and Wichman, M.D., 2004, Occurrence of antibiotics, pharmaceuticals and sterols at select surface and wastewater sites in Iowa: in Proceedings of the 4nd International conference on pharmaceuticals and endocrine disrupting chemicals in water, Minneapolis, Minn., National Ground Water Association, October 13-15, 2004, CD-ROM, p. 151-157.

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