“Concerning” amount of party drugs found in state’s wastewater sites

Drug monitoring data from across the country has been released. Picture: ON FILE

Victoria has ranked high among the states for the use of drugs like MDMA, ketamine and heroin, according to rhe latest report from the National Wastewater Drug Monitoring Program commissioned by the Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission (ACIC).

Data was sampled in August and October 2022, monitoring 58 wastewater sites across the country which services about 57 per cent of the Australian population and found more than 14 tonnes of methylamphetamine, cocaine, MDMA and heroin were consumed in the year leading up to the collection, worth about $10 billion in street value.

Acting ACIC CEO Matt Rippon said that much of the harm Australians suffer at the hands of organised crime is due to illicit drugs.

“This is a concerning amount, both in terms of economic cost – the actual expenditure ongs – dru and the cost to the community – through violence, road trauma, property crime, illness, injury and deaths associated with illicit drug use. The findings show methylamphetamine continues to be the most consumed illicit stimulant by some margin. We also saw record low national consumption of cocaine,” he said.

“Illicit drugs and licit drugs with abuse potential are inherently harmful. Reliable drug consumption data are a key indicator of the level of harm experienced by the community. This is because the level of community harm is directly related to the quantity of substances consumed.”

The ACIC judges that the low level of cocaine consumption is primarily due to law enforcement seizures and detections which limited supply, as there is no tangible evidence of a reduction in demand.

The data collected represented a reduction in total consumption from Year 5 (2020–21), but there were increases in national methylamphetamine and heroin consumption.

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