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Swedish Environmental Protection Agency
Virkesvägen 2, Stockholm
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September 19, 2019
10:00 - 16:30
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EUSBSR Policy Area Hazards
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PHARMACEUTICALS IN THE ENVIRONMENT (PIE) – Monitoring, consumption, technologies and policies

Pharmaceutical residues in the Baltic Sea are causing concern as the full impact for the marine environment is still unknown. The Baltic Sea ecosystem is particularly sensitive to pharmaceutical pollution because of its low biodiversity, with low functional redundancy and many species experiencing an increased physiological stress due to the brackish water environment.

Human and livestock excretion of drugs and metabolites following consumption, as well as disposal of unused pharmaceuticals, are pathways to the environment. Many pharmaceutical substances cannot be effectively removed by conventional waste water treatment. To reduce emissions, measures are needed on both national and regional level.

The main pathway of human consumed pharmaceuticals to the marine environment is via direct discharges of effluents from municipal wastewater treatment plants (MWWTPs) in coastal areas as well as via rivers carrying effluents from inland MWWTPs. Other sources include land application of sewage sludge, whereby pharmaceuticals may leach into surface and ground waters. Pharmaceuticals also enter the environment via agriculture, aquaculture and veterinary practices.

We invite relevant stakeholders from the Baltic Sea Region to a workshop on wastewater treatment and pharmaceuticals in the environment. 

The objective of this workshop is to jointly identify common challenges and solutions for pharmaceuticals and the environment in the Baltic Sea region, with a focus on pharmaceuticals in Waste Water Treatment Plants (WWTP) systems.

This includes
  • Need and availability of analysis and monitoring methods
  • Advanced WWTP technologies
  • Economic and policy considerations for technology choices

The workshop programme features are based on most recent transnational cooperation in a number transnational projects under the umbrella of the BSR- Pharma platform, a flagship in the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region, EUSBSR.