The fate of nine trace organic compounds was evaluated during a 12 month large-scale laboratory column experiment. The columns were packed with aquifer sediment and evaluated under natural aerobic and artificial anaerobic geochemical conditions, to assess the potential for natural attenuation of these compounds during aquifer passage associated with managed aquifer recharge (MAR). The nine trace organic compounds were bisphenol A (BPA), 17 beta-estradiol (E2), 17 alpha-ethynylestradiol (EE2), N-nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA), N-nitrosomorpholine (NMOR), carbamazepine, oxazepam, iohexol and iodipamide. In the low organic carbon content Spearwood sediment, all trace organics were non-retarded with retardation coefficients between 1.0 and 1.2, indicating that these compounds would travel at near groundwater velocities within the aquifer. The natural aerobic geochemical conditions provided a suitable environment for the rapid degradation for BPA, E2. iohexol (half life 50 days). Field-based validation experiments with carbamazepine and oxazepam also showed no degradation. If persistent trace organics are present in recycled waters at concentrations in excess of their intended use, natural attenuation during aquifer passage alone may not result in extracted water meeting regulatory requirements. Additional pre treatment of the recycled water would therefore be required. Crown Copyright (C) 2010 Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.