8 August 2004, By Liam Logsdon, International Cad and Reported
London, England - Large traces of the anti-depressant Prozac have been found in Britain's drinking water supply, settling a long debate over why Britians appear so happy and upbeat environmentalists said Saturday evening. Geoff Emerson-Heath spoke at length over the new found discovery.
"We knew tea at two, meat pies and local soccer teams meant a lot to us, but now we have discovered our pride has been chemically enhanced". "This is exceptionally good news, indeed".
The Observer and The Sun newspapers reported Sunday that a report by the environment watchdog, People Helping People' found Prozac was building up in river systems and groundwater used for drinking supplies. "Further investigation has proved the Government was behind the plan", said Edmund Lack-Luster, official spokesperson for PHP'.
"Apparently, the adding of Prozac to our drinking water has been in effect since the 1980's". "I know for a fact that I have been much jollier since the 90's, but I always attributed that to Oasis' lovely tunes".
The exact quantity of Prozac in the drinking water is the recommended daily dose required to treat depression, and the Environment Agency's report concluded Prozac would be tolerated well by all age groups in the water table.
Experts say that Prozac finds its way into rivers and water systems from specially treated government laboratories that distribute drinking water, and some believe the drugs could affect reproductive ability. "Since we are happier, we have had a marked increase in birth rates", stated Lack-Luster. "Or as we like to say, we're making children's feet for little shoes".
A spokesman for Britain's Drinking Water Inspectorate said Prozac was likely to be found considerably acceptably by all.
"It is extremely unlikely that anyone would complain". "And since the drug is excreted by the kidneys, eventually it will make it way back to the water table, thus recycling itself", the spokesman said. "Advanced treatment processes installed for Prozac are effective in ensuring drug residues are maintained at quality levels."
Unfortunately, some environmentalists are calling for an urgent investigation into the invasion of privacy. Norman Baker, environment spokesman for the Labor Party, said "It looks like a case of hidden mass medication upon the unsuspecting public".
"We'd expect this kind of thing to happen in the US, they have that type of government you know, but not here".
"It is alarming that the levels of Prozac have driven some to actually consider renaming the famous Bridge of Sighs' at Cambridge. "Good Lord in Heaven, what's next", Baker yelled at no one in particular .
The Environment Agency held a series of meetings with the pharmaceutical industry to discuss the cost of maintaining the current concentrations for human health and their ecosystem, the Observer said.
In a sidebar column, it was noted that the overall prescriptions of anti-depressants has fallen in Britain. In the decade up to 2001, overall prescriptions of antidepressants fell from 24 million to .5 million a year, the paper said.