Drug Sludge Solution

Types of Carbon Nanotubes

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A new technology based around using carbon nanotubes for water filtration apparently shows some real promise at solving the problem of hormones and pharmaceutical drugs contaminating water supplies. Both of these kinds of drugs are getting into water supplies all over the world and they are not easily removed by traditional filtration methods. I wrote about the dangers of pharmaceuticals getting into the water supply previously. At the time I suggested that we should maybe be holding pharmaceutical companies responsible for cleaning up after themselves. So is it the pharmaceutical companies looking into this treatment? No. Instead it is an environmental sciences team at the University of Vienna.

That probably explains why the group is also aware that their proposed solution comes with some new risks of its own – specifically that carbon nanotubes can mimic the problems caused by asbestos and also get into the lungs and potentially cause cancer. Since they would be used in a liquid environment, rather than the air where both of these known problems are an issue, there is still some hope for this solution and the fact that the issues are being considered is a good sign. So maybe we will be able to remove drugs and hormones from our water supply in the future. Of course it would be better if we hadn’t put them there in the first place…

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