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U.S. Department of the Interior
U.S. Geological Survey
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Although studied extensively in recent years in Europe, the occurrence of endocrine disrupters and other organic wastewater compounds in the environment in the United States is not well documented. To better understand the efficiency of riverbank filtration with respect to endocrine disrupting compounds and to evaluate the use of riverbank filtration as an effective means of drinking-water treatment, a study was conducted during 2001-2003 by the U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the City of Lincoln, at an established riverbank-filtration well field with horizontal collector wells and vertical wells. This study provides information that will be useful for (1) increased understanding of the processes and factors important in controlling the transport of endocrine disrupters, such as pesticides and pharmaceuticals during riverbank filtration, (2) better understanding of the physical and chemical processes that affect riverbank-filtration efficiency, and (3) managing the water resources of the eastern Platte River Basin. This report presents analytical methods and data collected during the study. Data are presented as generalized statistics and in figures showing temporal variations.
Sites from which water-quality samples were collected for this study included wastewater sites (a cattle feedlot lagoon, a hog confinement lagoon, and wastewater-treatment plant effluent), surface-water sites (Platte River, Salt Creek, and Loup Power Canal), ground-water sites (one collector well and three vertical wells), and drinking-water sites (raw and finished). Field water-quality properties were measured in samples from these sites.
Pharmaceutical compounds were detected often in the wastewater-treatment plant effluent. Surface and ground water showed low-level concentrations of pharmaceuticals. Finished drinking-water samples did not contain detectable concentrations of pharmaceuticals except for low levels of cotinine and caffeine. Antibiotics were found in some of the wastewater samples and twice in Salt Creek. Antibiotics were not detected in any samples from the Platte River or the well field.
Surface-water samples were analyzed for total organic carbon and ground-water samples were analyzed for dissolved organic carbon. Samples from all sites were analyzed for major ions. Herbicides commonly detected in surface, ground, and drinking water included acetachlor, alachlor, atrazine, and metolachlor as well as degradates of these compounds. Most of the samples from wastewater sites were found to contain predominantly acetamide degradates. High concentrations of several organic wastewater indicator compounds were detected at the wastewater sites and in Salt Creek. Several organic wastewater indicator compounds were detected multiple times in samples from the Platte River. Bromoform, a by-product of disinfection in the treatment plant, was found in samples from the finished drinking water.
Stable hydrogen isotope ratios show a range in seasonal variation of -73.6 per mill to -38.1 per mill relative to Vienna Standard Mean Ocean Water (VSMOW) reference water and -69.2 per mill to -46.5 per mill for surface water and ground water, respectively. Oxygen isotope ratios for surface-water samples varied between -9.86 per mill and -5.05 per mill. Stable oxygen isotope ratios of ground waters varied between -9.62 per mill and -5.81 per mill.
Stable Hydrogen and Oxygen Isotope Ratios
Quality Assurance/Quality Control
Streamflow and Well Field Pumpage
Field Water-Quality Properties
Total and Dissolved Organic Carbon
Organic Wastewater Compounds
Stable Hydrogen and Oxygen Isotope Ratios
1. Map showing location of the riverbank filtration study at a municipal well field along the Platte River in eastern Nebraska.
2.–9. Graphs showing:
2. Comparison of average daily streamflow and historical mean daily streamflow
at the Platte River near Ashland gage.
3. Comparison of average daily streamflow and historical mean daily streamflow
at the Salt Creek near Greenwood gage.
4. Flow conditions during sampling in the Platte River near Ashland between
December 2001 and May 2003.
5. Flow conditions during sampling at Salt Creek near Greenwood, February 2002
to April 2003.
6. Comparison of pumpage in collector wells W90-1H and W90-2H, total flow
through City of Lincoln east treatment plant (ETP), and total pumpage from
the well field during the period of the study.
7. Field properties at selected sites.
8. Total organic carbon (TOC) in surface-water samples and dissolved organic
carbon (DOC) in the ground water and drinking-water samples at the well field.
9. Stable hydrogen and oxygen ratios at water-quality sampling sites at the
1. Sites at which samples were collected for analysis.
2. Pharmaceuticals, common names, and general use.
3. Antibiotics analyzed for in water-quality samples and their uses.
4. Herbicide parent compounds, acetimide degradates, and organophosphate insecticides analyzed for in water-quality samples.
5. Organic wastewater compounds analyzed for in water-quality samples, endocrine-disrupting potential, registry numbers, and common uses, applications, or occurrences.
6. Monthly pumpage from vertical wells W49-9 and W54-10 during the riverbank filtation study.
7. Field properties measured for all samples collected.
8. Summary statistics of pharmaceuticals in samples collected during riverbank filtration study, Platte River, Nebraska.
9. Pharmaceutical data for all samples collected.
10. Laboratory quality assurance/quality control data for pharmaceuticals.
11. Summary statistics of antibiotics in samples collected during riverbank filtration study, Platte River, Nebraska.
12. Antibiotic compound data for all samples collected.
13. Organic carbon data for all samples collected.
14. Summary of percent recovery of total and dissolved organic carbon blind samples analyzed as part of the Organic Blind Sample Project by the National Water Quality Laboratory from February 23, 1999 to September 25, 2003.
15. Summary statistics of major ions in samples collected during riverbank filtration study, Platte River, Nebraska.
16. Major ion data for all samples collected.
17. Summary statistics of pesticides in samples collected during riverbank filtration study, Platte River, Nebraska.
18. Herbicide parent compound data for all samples collected.
19. Acetamide degradate data for all samples collected.
20. Orthophosphate insecticide data for all samples collected.
21. Summary statistics of organic wastewater indicator compounds in samples collected during riverbank filtration study, Platte River, Nebraska.
22. Organic wastewater indicator compound data for all samples collected.
23. Stable hydrogen and oxygen isotopic composition for samples collected.
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