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Emerging Pollutants And Antibiotics Removed By Conventional Activated Sludge Followed By Ultraviolet Radiation In A Municipal Wastewater Treatment Plant In Mexico

Ángeles Martínez-Orgániz, José Elías Becerril Bravo, María Llompart, Thierry Dagnac, J. Pablo Lamas, Lúa Vázquez, Laura Sampedro-Rosas

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Abstract Different groups of emerging pollutants (EPs) were identified (drugs, pesticides, hormones, illicit drugs, and fire retardant), and the removal of four antibiotics was determined (sulfamethoxazole 62.2–94.4%, ciprofloxacin 71–83.1%, norfloxacin 82–89%, and ofloxacin 78–97.9%) in a municipal wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) in Acapulco, Gro. Mexico. The compounds were extracted from influent and effluent samples by solid phase extraction (SPE). The identification of non-target EPs was performed by liquid chromatography coupled with high-resolution mass spectrometry (LC-HRMS). The antibiotic quantification was performed by liquid chromatography coupled with tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS). Most of the non-target compounds were detected only in the influent samples. Antibiotics levofloxacin and nalidixic acid, the anticonvulsants carbamazepine and oxycarbamazepine, the local anesthetic lidocaine, and the pesticide tridemorph were the main EPs not removed by the WWTP. In this study, it was shown that the Aguas Blancas WWTP does not manage to remove 100% of the various EPs identified in the effluent, although the elimination degree is high in most cases, despite being one of the model plants in Mexico.