A study by the University of Minnesota says that even top-notch wastewater treatment technology can lead to superbacteria in surface water.
Superbacteria are antibiotic-resistant bacteria, and the presence of these bacteria raises concerns about the effectiveness of antibiotics in the future. Antibiotic-resistant bacteria develop in people who take antibiotics, and these bacteria are then passed through wastewater treatment facilities.
In the study near a wastewater treatment plant in Duluth, the levels of overall bacteria were relatively low, but researchers found that the number of antibiotic-resistant genes were about 20-fold higher at the treatment site compared to other nearby surface water samples.
The study was led by Civic Engineering Associate Professor Timothy LaPara and is published in Environmental Science and Technology.
Primary source: Environmental Science and Technology
((I couldn’t find an appropriate image, so decided to go with this ^_^))