The Norwegian Scientific Committee for food and environment (VKM) will assess whether the potential presence of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) in wastewater and sewage sludge used as fertilizer pose a risk for the environment.
Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is present in most environments, and the development and the spread is a worldwide concern, and is an issue that should be considered in a multidisciplinary health perspective. The study of the occurrence of AMR is sporadic in many environments, but increased levels of AMR is found in environments such as soil, wastewater, sewage treatment plants, water and sediments.
The prevalence of AMR is expected to be higher in environments such as wastewater treatment plants, because they serve as important reservoirs since they receive wastewater from households, industry and hospitals where antibiotics are used. Wastewater from the treatment plant can be a source for the spread of AMR in the environment.
The Norwegian Environment Agency requests that VKM:
The Panel on Microbial Ecology is responsible for the evaluation and approval of the final report drafted by the project group. The report is expected to be published in December 2019.