About Us | Help Videos | Contact Us | Subscriptions

Agronomy Journal Abstract - Agronomy, Soils & Environmental Quality

Fate and Transport of Thirteen Pharmaceutical and Personal Care Products in a Controlled Irrigated Turfgrass System


This article in AJ

  1. Vol. 104 No. 5, p. 1244-1254
    Received: Dec 5, 2011

    * Corresponding author(s): dale.devitt@unlv.edu
Request Permissions

  1. Lena Wrighta,
  2. Dale A. Devitt *a,
  3. Michael H. Youngb,
  4. Jay Ganc,
  5. Brett J. Vanderfordd,
  6. Shane A. Snydere,
  7. Michael McCulloughf and
  8. Laurel Dodgenc
  1. a School of Life Sciences, Univ. of Nevada–Las Vegas, 4505 Maryland Parkway, Las Vegas, NV 89154
    b Bureau of Economic Geology, Univ. of Texas at Austin , University Station, Box X, Austin, TX 78713
    c Dep. of Environmental Science, Univ. of California, Riverside, CA 92521
    d Southern Nevada Water Authority, P.O. Box 99956, Las Vegas, NV 89193
    e Dep. of Chemical Engineering, Univ. of Arizona, Tucson, AZ 85721
    f Northern California Golf Association, Pebble Beach, CA 93953


An environmentally acceptable alternative to discharging recycled water to rivers, lakes, and other bodies of water is to use the water for irrigation of large areas of turfgrass. Such waters contain pharmaceuticals and personal care products (PPCPs), of which, some may have high mobility in irrigated soil–plant systems, potentially impacting groundwater resources. To determine the movement of 13 PPCPs under irrigated turfgrass conditions, a field-based lysimeter study was conducted. After 745 d of monitoring, 9 of the 13 compounds were detected in drainage samples. The compounds with the highest detection rate in the drainage water were sulfamethoxazole and primidone in both soil types (100% in the loamy sand soil for both compounds and 50 and 65%, respectively, in the sandy loam soil) and carbamazepine in the loamy sand soil (50%). Factors influencing the movement of these compounds varied based on the compound and the imposed treatments. In the case of primidone, 94% of the variability in the mass discharge could be accounted for by taking into account the number of unsaturated pore volumes draining, the sand content, and the redox potential at 105 cm. The highest mass flux, scaled on a hectare basis, was recorded for sulfamethoxazole (0.25 g ha−1 yr−1). Based on our results, restricting the use of recycled water based solely on the presence of PPCPs should only be a consideration at sites where soils are extremely sandy and irrigation regimes are not based on an evapotranspiration feedback approach.

  Please view the pdf by using the Full Text (PDF) link under 'View' to the left.

Copyright © 2012. Copyright © 2012 by the American Society of Agronomy, Inc.