America’s Drugged Wastewater

Wastewater treatment plants that take runoff from drug manufacturing sites are laced with anti-fungals, anti-histamines, anti-inflammatories and other drugs.

A nationwide study by US Geological Survey scientists found that 33 drugs have "substantially higher" concentrations in waterways near drug plants compared to those without intake from drug makers; one anti-fungal topped 3,000 times the concentration.

Wastewater treatment plants are designed to root out solids and bacteria, not complex compounds, but the toll that drug-tainted waterways take on aquatic and human health is poorly understood. While treating drugged water for longer may decontaminate it, the quick turnaround in cities’ plants make that a tall order.

Environmental Health News

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