November 23, 2006

U.S.G.S. Studies Pharmaceuticals in Ground and Surface Water

Dr. J. Kent Crawford, Water Quality Specialist for the Pennsylvania Water Science Center of the U.S. Geological Survey, was the guest presenter recently at an Environmental Forum hosted by the Joint Air & Water Pollution Control and Conservation Committee.

He spoke about a water quality study the U.S.G.S. is conducting to determine if there are pharmaceutical compounds and physician-prescribed antibiotics in Pennsylvania’s waterways.

The first phase of the project, which was funded by the Department of Environmental Protection, looked for these compounds in groundwater in predominantly agricultural areas and downstream from wastewater treatment plants. A second phase of the project will look at these compounds in drinking water supplies.

David Hess, editor of PA Environmental Digest, caught up with Dr. Crawford after the presentation and talked to him about the results of this study and the results of other work U.S.G.S. is doing on the impact of pharmaceuticals on aquatic life, including the impacts they have on gender changes in fish.

Dr. Crawford, who has over 30 years of experience in a variety of water quality projects, can be contacted at 717-730-6909 or send email to: .

The Joint Conservation Committee is chaired by Rep. Scott Hutchinson (R-Venango) and Sen. Ray Musto (D-Luzerne) serves as vice-chairman.

November 20, 2006