Substance flow analyses of phthalates and nonylphenols in stormwater

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Courtesy of IWA Publishing

The occurrence of nonylphenol and several phthalates in water environments is highly undesired because of their negative effects on aquatic organisms. The objectives of this study were to identify emission sources of phthalates, nonylphenol and its ethoxylates (NP/EOs) in urban stormwater, and to quantify the substance fluxes from the source to the stormwater system, using the methodology of substance flow analysis (SFA). The SFA, applied on an urban motorway area, showed that phthalates are mainly emitted from vehicles and coated roofing material, whereas the major NP/EOs sources are vehicles and concrete. It was estimated that approximately 4.1 kg of four selected phthalates and more than 400 g of NP/EOs are emitted annually to stormwater in the studied area. The SFA approach presented in this study, using factors that express the emission rate of a specific substance from a specific source, could be applied in urban catchments of various character to estimate fluxes of water contaminants.

Keywords: diffuse sources, emission factors, organic substances, pollutant loads, SFA, urban runoff

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