The impact of onsite wastewater disposal systems on groundwater in areas inundated by Hurricane Sandy in New York and New Jersey

Marine Pollution Bulletin
By: , and 

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Abstract

Coastal onsite wastewater disposal systems (OWDS) were inundated by Hurricane Sandy's storm tide. This study compares the shallow groundwater quality (nutrients, pharmaceuticals, and hormones) downgradient of OWDS before and after Hurricane Sandy, where available, and establishes a baseline for wastewater influence on groundwater in coastal communities inundated by Hurricane Sandy. Nutrients and contaminants of emerging concern (CECs) were detected in shallow groundwater downgradient of OWDS in two settings along the New Jersey and New York coastlines: 1) a single, centralized OWDS in a park; and 2) multiple OWDS (cesspools) in low-density residential and mixed-use/medium density residential areas. The most frequently detected pharmaceuticals were lidocaine (40%), carbamazepine (36%), and fexofenadine, bupropion, desvenlafaxine, meprobamate, and tramadol (24–32%). Increases in the number and total concentration of pharmaceuticals after Hurricane Sandy may reflect other factors (seasonality, usage) besides inundation, and demonstrate the importance of analyzing for a wide variety of CECs in regional studies.

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Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title The impact of onsite wastewater disposal systems on groundwater in areas inundated by Hurricane Sandy in New York and New Jersey
Series title Marine Pollution Bulletin
DOI 10.1016/j.marpolbul.2016.04.038
Volume 107
Issue 2
Year Published 2016
Language English
Publisher Elsevier
Contributing office(s) Toxic Substances Hydrology Program, New York Water Science Center
Description 9 p.
First page 509
Last page 517
Country United States
State New Jersey, New York
Online Only (Y/N) N
Additional Online Files (Y/N) N