Tasmania continues to have Australia’s worst nicotine habit, licit opioid consumption

Tasmania’s nicotine usage remains the highest in the country, figures from the National Wastewater Drug Monitoring Program show.

The latest report revealed Tasmania still leads the nation in smoking, following nicotine usage rates that exceeded the national average in the previous two.

Also, Hobart topped the nation’s capital cities in pharmaceutical opioids consumption and in the use of recreational psychostimulant drug, MDA.

The report also revealed that, as of December 2017, while the use of MDMA and heroin decreased in Hobart it increased in regional areas.

Similar results were found for cocaine and methylamphetamine, or ice, with increases in consumption across the board.

Overall, nicotine and alcohol remain the highest consumed substances.

 

The annual survey uses wastewater samples from water treatment plants across Australia to measure national drug consumption.

This year, sampling was conducted at 45 plants in October and December 2017, which represents around 50 per cent of the population.

Nationally, ice remained the most consumed illicit drug and the average national consumption has increased.

Minister for Law Enforcement and Cyber Security Angus Taylor said ice consumption was a stand-out problem.

“We now know about 8.4 tonnes of ice, of methamphetamine, is consumed in Australia this year,” he said.

“This continues to be a significant problem, because it was minimal only a few short years ago.”

“Proportionally, methylamphetamine consumption is generally higher in regional areas than capital cities, and accurately identifying the worst affected areas ensures we can more effectively target our law enforcement and prevention strategies, and measure their impact.”

 This article was published to ABC News Online on Thursday 5th April 2018 as part of my employment with the ABC. The original article can be found here: http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-04-05/tasmania-tops-country-in-nicotine-use/9620996 

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