Thursday, August 23, 2007

This neighborhood has failed a drug test

From Reason.com:

Forget about lying on annual federal drug use surveys. Researchers at the Oregon State University and the University Washington have figured out a better way to track a community's use of illicit recreational drugs--check their sewage for drug residues. The press release describing the work says:

Public health officials may soon be able to flush out more accurate estimates on illegal drug use in communities across the country thanks to screening test described here today at the 234th national meeting of the American Chemical Society, the world’s largest scientific society. The test doesn’t screen people, it seeks out evidence of illicit drug abuse in drug residues and metabolites excreted in urine and flushed toward municipal sewage treatment plants. ...

Via Sullivan. How long will it be before food manufacturers put "tracer" chemicals in their products so they can do "market research" by examining the sewage coming from various neighborhoods in which they are interested?

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