CANBERRA has some of the highest oxycodone, cocaine and heroin consumption levels nationally according to the Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission, which released the fourth report of the “National Wastewater Drug Monitoring Program” today, April 5.
Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission CEO Michael Phelan says it’s concerning to see that the ACT is reporting some of the highest consumption levels in the country for several drugs.
In the single capital city site monitored in December 2017, findings show that Canberra has one of the highest average capital city heroin and oxycodone consumption levels nationally, and the second highest capital city consumption level for cocaine.
Mr Phelan says the National Wastewater Drug Monitoring Program is based on the number of substances tested, the frequency of testing, its breadth, depth and geographic scope and the longitudinal data it’s generating.
The National Wastewater Drug Monitoring Program found that of the substances tested in December 2017 in Canberra:
• Nicotine and alcohol remain the highest consumed substances.
• Average methylamphetamine consumption decreased in the capital city site.
• Average cocaine consumption increased in the capital city site and is the second highest in the country.
• Average MDMA consumption increased in the capital city site.
• Average heroin consumption increased in the capital city site.
• The Australian Capital Territory and Victoria had the highest average capital city heroin consumption in the country.
For this report, samples were collected during October and December 2017, covering 12 substances. 45 wastewater sites were monitored nationally in December 2017, covering 54.3 per cent of Australia’s population—around 12.7 million people.
“The National Wastewater Drug Monitoring Program provides a clear picture of changing trends in the consumption of methylamphetamine and 11 other drugs across Australia,” Mr Phelan says.
“Armed with this information, government, health and law enforcement agencies can better target policy and operational responses and reduce the impact of drugs in our society.”
The Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission received $3.6 million over three years from Proceeds of Crime funding for the National Wastewater Drug Monitoring Program and has commissioned the University of Queensland and the University of South Australia to undertake the program and prepare the research report findings.
The full report is available on the Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission website.