Occurrence and risk assessment of parabens and triclosan in surface waters of southern Brazil: a problem of emerging compounds in an emerging country

ABSTRACT Parabens and triclosan compounds are widely used in pharmaceutical products, personal care, food and various products of daily use. After use, the final destinations of these contaminants are domestic effluents and the environment if not collected or treated. The objective of this study was to evaluate the presence of parabens and triclosan in environments in a subtropical region, more specifically in the metropolitan region of Curitiba (southern Brazil) and possible effects of these compounds in aquatic environments through risk assessment through the use of risk quotient (RQ). Samples were collected in 20 points for 4 campaigns. For the extraction of the compounds we used the extraction technique of solid phase extraction (SPE). The determination of the compounds was using gas chromatography coupled to mass spectrometry (GC-MS). It was observed high concentrations of parabens, especially MeP (up to 2875 ng L–1). Despite high concentrations of parabens, their presence has a low risk to aquatic organisms. Triclosan has been observed at higher concentrations (415 ng L–1), suggesting once again that these environments are impacted by human action. The RQ assessed that triclosan has a high risk for certain groups of organisms.