Non-target, suspect and target screening of chemicals of emerging concern in landfill leachates and groundwater in Guangzhou, South China


Landfill sites have been regarded as a significant source of chemicals of emerging concern (CECs) in groundwater. However, our understanding about the compositions of CECs in landfill leachate and adjacent groundwater is still very limited. Here we investigated the CECs in landfill leachates and groundwater of Guangzhou in South China by target, suspect and non-target analysis using high-resolution mass spectrometry (HRMS). A variety of CECs (n = 242), including pharmaceuticals (n = 64), pharmaceutical intermediates (n = 18), personal care products (n = 9), food additives (n = 18), industrial chemicals (n = 82, e.g., flame retardants, plasticizers, antioxidants and catalysts), pesticides (n = 26), transformation products (n = 8) and other organic compounds (n = 17) were (tentatively) identified by non-target and suspect screening. 142 CECs were quantitated with target analysis, and among them 37, 24 and 27 CECs were detected respectively in the raw leachate (272-1780 μg/L), treated leachate (0.25-0.81 μg/L) and groundwater (0.10-53.7 μg/L). The CECs in the raw leachates were efficiently removed with the removal efficiencies greater than 88.7%. Acesulfame, bisphenol F and ketoprofen were the most abundant compounds in both treated leachate and groundwater. The CECs in groundwater was found most likely to be originated from the landfill sites. Our results highlight the importance of non-target screening in identifying CECs, and reveal the contamination risk of groundwater by landfill leachate.

Authors: Yu Han, Li-Xin Hu, Ting Liu, Jing Liu, Yu-Qing Wang, Jia-Hui Zhao, You-Sheng Liu, Jian-Liang Zhao, Guang-Guo Ying
; Full Source: The Science of the total environment 2022 May 3;155705. doi: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2022.155705.