The UKWIR Chemicals Investigation Programme (CIP) is a large-scale UK wastewater monitoring programme which aims to;

  • measure the concentrations of EU WFD Priority Substances, UK Specific Pollutants and some ‘emerging’ contaminants in UK wastewater effluents;
  • assess the efficiency of wastewater treatment options in removing these substances, and;
  • determine the source of such substances entering UK sewerage systems.

Full details of the CIP and a progress report can be found at the UKWIR website. I have been involved in the CIP since its inception, primarily in a role which supports the technical aspects of the programme (sampling and analysis).

From the onset of the programme it was clear that it would be necessary to determine the stability of some of the substances in wastewater effluents, in order that clear guidance could be provided to samplers and analytical laboratories regarding sample preservation procedures and maximum storage times, and so that the measured concentrations of substances reflected those actually present in effluents as discharged. A sample stability assessment project was therefore undertaken by a small group of technical experts prior to the commencement of the main sampling phase of the CIP. This work has now been published for use by others wishing to undertake similar analyses on wastewater effluents.

The paper “Sample Stability of Trace Priority Substances in Wastewater” has been published in Analytical Letters.