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April 23, 2015

CCME Posts Draft Documents to Gather Feedback on Carbamazepine in Drinking Water

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The Canadian Council of Ministers of the Environment posted online, March 30, 2015,  a document Scientific Criteria Document for Public Review: Canadian Water Quality Guidelines for the Protection of Aquatic Life - Carbamazepine. Carbamazepine is a drug commonly prescribed as an antiepileptic, but is also used for the treatment of pain associated with trigeminal neuralgia.

The document outlines the research to date on carbamazepine in various water bodies across the country. The primary pathway of entry to the environment is through sewage effluent – since many conventional treatment processes do not remove it. It makes recommendations for the substance in freshwater, but concludes there is not adequate data to make recommendations for marine environments. 

CWWA supports the continued research and development of benchmarks for this and other pharmaceuticals and personal care products. Our Board of Directors is currently developing a position statement on PCPP’s, that will stress the importance of product stewardship for the manufacturers, while considering the availability and affordability of removal technologies at the treatment level.


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