International pharmaceuticals conference held

Posted on 23rd November 2012

International interdisciplinary specialists in pharmaceuticals met in Cornwall last week as part of a joint conference held by the Centre and the European Environment Agency.

Held on the 19th and 20th November, the meeting provided an opportunity for experts in pharmaceuticals, sewage treatment, policy, law, and sustainability to discuss the growing problem of pharmaceutical contamination of the environment. High on the agenda were discussions of what can be done to prevent pharmaceutical contamination of the environment, and how pharmaceutical contamination be reduced.

The development of pharmaceuticals is one of the cornerstones of modern health care, and they are saving millions of lives worldwide every year – in addition to providing a better quality of life to many others. However, humans are now excreting significant amounts of pharmaceuticals which end up in waste water and eventually the environment.

The conference featured a number of presentations from experts in the field, which are available below. Discussions focused on what to do about the issue of pharmaceuticals in the environment, particularly prevention. Examples of new approaches in water treatment both at treatment plants and in the environment were debated, as well as the development of less environmentally persistent pharmaceuticals and more environmentally aware production procedures.

The meeting also explored issues around environmental monitoring and the applicable legal and regulatory framework to approach these issues, and considered the importance of communication and stakeholder engagement in addressing these issues in the future.

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