• Trace amounts of fenofibrate acid sensitize the photodegradation of bezafibrate in effluents: Mechanisms, degradation pathways, and toxicity evaluation.

      Zhou, Yangjian; Zhao, Jianchen; Zhang, Ya-Nan; Qu, Jiao; Li, Chao; Qin, Weichao; Zhao, Yahui; Chen, Jingwen; Peijnenburg, Willie J G M (2019-11-01)
      Effluent organic matter (EfOM), which is composed of background natural organic matter (NOM), soluble microbial degradation products, and trace amounts of organic pollutants, can play an important role in the photodegradation of emerging pollutants in the effluent. In this study, the impact of organic pollutants, using fenofibrate acid (FNFA) as a representative, on the photodegradation of emerging contaminants, using bezafibrate (BZF) as a representative, in effluents was investigated. It is found that BZF undergo fast degradation in the presence of FNFA although BZF is recalcitrant to degradation under simulated sunlight irradiation. The promotional effect of FNFA is due to the generation of singlet oxygen (1O2) and hydrated electrons (e-aq). Based on the structures of the identified intermediates, 1O2 initiated oxidation and e-aq initiated reduction reactions were the main photodegradation pathways of BZF in the effluents. The toxicity of the main photodegradation intermediates for BZF and FNFA was higher than that of the parent compounds, and the acute toxicity increased during simulated sunlight irradiation. The results demonstrated that trace amounts of organic compounds in EfOM can play an important role in sensitizing the photodegradation of some emerging pollutants in the effluent.