Since their first detection in ground- and surface waters in the 1990’s pharmaceutical residues have been an issue for applied water sectors around the world and received regular attention in the daily press. In the meanwhile hundreds of scientific studies and extensive reviews have been published on the subject.
What is missing is a concise document, which gives the interested layman an overview of existing knowledge and aids decision makers from the water sector to assess their situation. The IC Pharma project will fill this gap by providing a graphical bench-marking, which allows the comparison of locally detected concentrations with a range of international measurements. Moreover IC Pharma will attempt to categorize pharmaceutical substances regarding the degradation potential on their pathway through the urban water cycle. Based on this categorization pharmaceutical residues can be used as indicators for the state of urban water management or as tracers for sewage influence.
The project will start with the well-examined Berlin situation (e.g., through the NASRI project of the KWB) and expand the local know-how to an international level. To support scientific advance on the subject, IC Pharma also aims at identifying existing gaps of knowledge and thus potential future research fields.