Follow ysgotlieb on Twitter
by RSS
Issues of the Day Polluting Ourselves: Discarded Meds and Water Contamination

In an article that I prepared on the recent 59th annual meeting of the Israel Geographical Association (Hebrew), I report on the findings of a team of Tel Aviv University geographers concerning a global problem from which Israel is not immune: Discarded antibiotics and other medications are indiscrimnantly discharged into the water cycle. The potential health implications are worrisome. 

The article, Israelis Are Drinking the Country’s Drugstores which appears in Green Prophet, the Middle East online environmental newsmagazine, describes this hazzard, which technology has difficulty in screening and neutralizing. The drugs involved are used for medical and vetinerary treatment in homes, hospitals and clinics; farms and manufacturing facilities also dump these substances. The residues include pain killers, hormones, psychotropic medicines and other drugs which have begun to affect human hormonal cycles and threaten the immune system; diseases are increasingly associated with them. The discharge affects both water and soil sources. 


Efforts to contain and neutralize the contaminants will require research, technologies and, of course, funding. Recognition of this environmental threat by government, industry and the public must be heightened and determined and immediate interventions undertaken. 


© Yosef Gotlieb, . All rights reserved