Well renowned science journal Science of the Total Enviroment, has published the findings of a recent research project that compared drug consumption in 19 European cities, including London, Barcelona and Croatia's capital Zagreb.
The study, initiated by the Norwegian Institute for Water Research (NIVA) in Oslo and the Mario Negri Institute in Milan, used an innovative approach based on analysing urban waste water in the cities. The study analysed a selection of urinary biomarkers of cocaine, amphetamines, ecstasy, methamphetamines and marijuana in untreated city wastewater.
According to the results of the research, the rate of drug consumption in Zagreb is relatively low compared with most western European cities, particularly in relation to Antwerp, Barcelona, Amsterdam, Eindhoven and Utrecht.
The total daily consumption of cocaine in Europe is estimated at 356 kilograms, which represents around 10-15 per cent of the total world consumption according to the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime. The rate of cocaine consumption is much higher in western Europe than it is in eastern and northern Europe. The consumption of cocaine in Zagreb is significantly lower than in most cities involved in the study.
The largest marijuana consuption is found in Dutch and Spanish cities, with Zagreb on a par with Milan. Methamphetamine use in Zagreb was also very low compared to other cities in the research.