Triclosan (TCS) is widely used as antiseptic or preservative in many personal care products (PCPs), such as cosmetics, hand wash, toothpaste and deodorant soaps, among others. It is characterized by acute toxicity, resistance to biodegradation, environmental persistence and relatively high lipophilicity. In order to protect the environment and natural resources from the negative effects of the discharge of polluted wastewater with TCS, the application of efficient remediation technologies able to degrade the pollutant to harmless levels becomes crucial. Electrochemical oxidation, among all advanced oxidation processes (AOPs), has been reported as very effective in the complete degradation of a number of persistent pollutants; therefore, its performance using boron-doped diamond (BDD) anodes, and response to operation variables, has been studied in this work. As expected, complete degradation of TCS was achieved in all the studied conditions; however, going a step further and knowing that TCS is a precursor of polychlorinated dibenzo‑p‑dioxins and dibenzofurans (PCDD/Fs), their quantitative presence in the oxidation media has been assessed. Results showed the dominance of dichlorinated (DCDD) and trichlorinated (TrCDD/Fs) in the homologue profile of total PCDD/Fs, reaching values up to 1.48 × 105 pg L−1 in samples with initial concentration of TCS of 100 mg L−1 and NaCl as electrolyte. Under these conditions, the International Toxicity Equivalency Factor (I-TEF) achieved values up to 2.76 × 102 pg L−1. Nevertheless, the presence of copper in the oxidation medium tends to reduce I-TEF values. Finally, considering the information reported in literature, a mechanism describing the formation of low chlorinated PCDD/Fs from TCS oxidation reactions is proposed.
Science of the Total Environment – Elsevier
Published: Jun 1, 2018
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