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Posted Fri Feb 26 2010: from Barnstable Patriot:
Cape faces 'daunting challenges' on household chemicals in groundwater
The problem of pharmaceutical and personal care product (PPCP) pollution is an issue that is especially dangerous to Cape Cod's water supply, said Dr. Laurel Schaider, staff scientist at the Silent Spring Institute. The Cape's unique combination of reliance on septic systems and almost exclusive use of groundwater, she said, makes it easier for contaminants of concern (COCs) to infiltrate wastewater. Silent Spring Institute maintains a list of potentially hazardous chemicals that includes human and pet prescriptions, cosmetics, caffeine and "endocrine disruptors" such as hormones. In 2005, said Schaider, a U.S. Geological Survey study found 13 such chemicals in Cape groundwater supplies, including antibiotics, a dry-cleaning solvent, an anti-convulsant prescription and acetaminophen, the active ingredient in Tylenol. "Everything that goes down your drains and your toilets, that's in the wastewater," she explained.
[Read more stories about: endocrine disruptor, toxic water, antibiotic resistance]

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