Urban Metabolism Metrology: a powerful approach for tracking narcotic use and emerging pathogens in populations around the world


Presented October 26, 2018.

Urban Metabolism Metrology (UMM) is a new scientific discipline that can inform on the health, sustainability and resilience of urban human populations. By way of case studies on opioids and antimicrobials, this presentation will highlight the use of UMM, the Arizona State University’s Human Health Observatory (HHO) and the National Sewage Sludge Repository (NSSR) to characterize consumption of narcotics, antimicrobials and other contaminants of emerging concern disposed of into wastewater, and the use of wastewater as a diagnostic matrix to protect public health. A case study with data from the HHO and NSSR will provide a retrospective and prospective analysis of how FDA regulations impact human health and environmental safety, with particular emphasis on the recently implemented U.S. FDA final rule on the safety and effectiveness of antibacterial soaps containing triclosan, triclocarban and other antimicrobials. Collected data cover some 200 U.S. cities representing over 32 million Americans and their consumptive behavior over the past 17 years, and projections for the future.


Rolf Halden, PhD, PE, Professor, Sustainable Engineering and the Built Environment, Arizona State University

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October, 2018

November 01, 2018

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