Pharmaceuticals and personal care products (PPCPs) encompass a large class of chemical contaminants that can originate from human usage and excretions and veterinary applications. These pollutants have captured the attention of scientists, governments, and the public as several studies across the globe reveal their widespread occurrence in low-level concentrations in wastewater and the aquatic environment. Most of the research on PPCPs has been generated from efforts in highly developed countries, primarily North America and Europe, although investigations and reports are emerging from Southeast Asia and China. With the increased concern of potential threats triggered by the occurrence of these chemicals in the environment, environmental risk assessment (ERA) strategies for such compounds have considerably evolved over the past decade. Regulations are in effect or planned in several western nations, however, there is no global standard for conducting ERAs. As the scope of the problem evolves, substantial research will be imperative to address these contaminants and their occurrence in the environment. This chapter will discuss the evolution of the risk associated with the occurrence of PPCPs in the environment, the challenges faced by their existence here, and the colloquy about solutions to address this escalating issue.
Part of the book: Risk Assessment