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Urban Waters Partnership

Occurrence of contaminants of emerging concern (CECs) in the South Platte

The widespread occurrence of natural and synthetic organic chemicals in surface waters can cause ecological risks and human health concerns. This study measured a suite of contaminants of emerging concern (CECs) in water samples collected by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Region 8 around the Denver, Colorado, metropolitan area. The primary source of CECs was speculated to be wastewater effluent. The CEC concentrations were correlated to streamflow volume and showed significant seasonal effects. The CECs were less persistent during spring runoff season compared with baseflow season at most sampling sites. These results are useful for providing baseline data for surface CEC monitoring and assessing the environmental risks and potential human exposure to CECs.

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