To ask Her Majesty's Government what research they have conducted into the pollution of watercourses by antibiotics for both humans and livestock in the last five years; and what were the findings of any such research.
The Environment Agency (EA) monitors several antibiotics in watercourses as part of a surveillance network of substances on an EU Watch List. This dataset as a whole is collated across Europe to assess the level of exposure and prioritise substances for future inclusion under the Water Framework Directive. If selected, Europe wide environmental quality standards will be developed and implemented through this process.
The EA has over the last five years continued working with the water industry via United Kingdom Water Industry Research to understand better and quantify levels of antibiotics in pre- and post-treatment effluents from sewage treatment works. This will continue in the next phase of work due to start in 2020.
Together these have demonstrated that:
A study report, reference number 18/EQ/01/13, is available from United Kingdom Water Industry Research https://www.ukwir.org/eng/search-uk-water-industry-research-reports.