Annals of DDT: 880,000 died from malaria in 2008


Once upon a time I easily found a chart from the World Health Organization (WHO) which provided a year-by-year tally of malaria deaths, worldwide, from the 1940s to the present.

Of course, now that I need that chart to note that malaria deaths are much lower today than they were when DDT was overused generally and sometimes misused in the fight against malaria, I can’t find it.  So, we’ll take the figures where we can find them.

In 2008, worldwide there were over 880,000 deaths from malaria.  This is significantly lower than the usual claim of “millions of deaths each year.”  We can find this figure in a document from the Global Environmental Facility (GEF), the organization that organizes the work of 182 nations to work for solutions to environmental problems, including fighting malaria, in a report on the 2009 meeting of the Stockholm Convention focused on fighting malaria,  “Countries move toward more sustainable ways to roll back malaria.”

However concern over DDT is matched by concern over the global malaria burden in which close to 250 million cases a year result in over 880 000 deaths. Thus any reduction in the use of DDT or other residual pesticides must ensure the level of transmission interruption is, at least, maintained.

Numbers here may be estimates not updated from current-year records.  The figure “over 880,000 deaths” looks and sounds awfully close to numbers reported in 2006, as you can see in this report from the Kaiser Family Foundation on U.S. global health policies:

Number of Annual Malaria Cases Worldwide Decreases, Disease Still Remains a Challenge, WHO’s World Malaria Report 2008 Says

Thursday, September 18, 2008

There were about 247 million malaria cases worldwide in 2006, according to the World Malaria Report 2008, which was released by the World Health Organization on Thursday, Reuters reports (MacInnis, Reuters, 9/18). According to the report, 3.3 billion people worldwide were at risk for malaria in 2006, and the disease remains a major burden among children younger than age five and in many African countries (AFP/Google.com, 9/18).

The report included reduced estimates of the global malaria burden that were calculated with new surveillance measures for non-African countries. The estimate of 247 million malaria cases is lower than the estimated 350 million to 500 million annual malaria cases reported in WHO’s World Malaria Report 2005. The new report estimated there were 881,000 malaria deaths in 2006, down from the previous estimate of one million deaths. The reduced figures are the result of new calculation methods, and it is unknown whether malaria cases and deaths actually declined from 2004 to 2006, WHO said (Reuters, 9/18). Although malaria control efforts have helped reduce the global malaria burden, most malaria-endemic countries are not meeting WHO targets for malaria control, the report said, noting that there is “no evidence yet to show that malaria elimination can be achieved and maintained in areas that currently have high transmission” (Bennett/Doherty, Bloomberg, 9/18).

WHO attributed the revised malaria estimates to new assessment measures in Asia, where data used for the 2005 report had not been updated for 40 years. According to Mac Otten — coordinator of surveillance, monitoring and evaluation at WHO’s Global Malaria Program — factors such as deforestation, urbanization and malaria control efforts have affected malaria estimates in Asia (Blue, Time, 9/17). Cambodia, Laos, the Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam all reported a decline in malaria deaths in 2006 (Bloomberg, 9/18).

WHO’s surveillance methods in Africa, which estimate malaria prevalence by using climate data and sample surveys, have remained the same since the 2005 report, the report said (Reuters, 9/18). According to the report, 45 of the 109 malaria-endemic countries worldwide are in Africa, and more than half of the continent’s malaria cases in 2006 occurred in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, Kenya, Nigeria and Tanzania (AFP/Google.com, 9/18). The report noted that malaria interventions have helped reduce malaria cases and deaths by more than 50% in Eritrea, Rwanda, Sao Tome and Principe, and the Tanzanian island of Zanzibar (Time, 9/17).The report found that about 40% of people at risk for malaria in Africa had access to insecticide-treated nets last year, compared with 3% in 2001 (Bloomberg, 9/18). The report also found that the number of ITNs distributed to national malaria control programs was enough to cover 26% of people in 37 African countries but that most African countries did not meet WHO’s target of 80% coverage for the four main malaria treatments: ITNs, artemisinin-based combination therapies, indoor-insecticide spraying programs and treatment for pregnant women (AFP/Google.com, 9/18).

Note also that this total of 880,000 is more than the previously reported 863,000.  Hmmm.

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35 Responses to Annals of DDT: 880,000 died from malaria in 2008

  1. [...] has doubled in the same time. Deaths dropped from 4 million annually in those peak-DDT-use years to fewer than 800,000 per year today — a decrease of more than 75%. Progress continues, with IPM; bednets now do better, and more cheaply, what DDT used to do but [...]

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  2. [...] Fourth, and probably most critically, it is simply false that malaria resurged when DDT was banned.  By 1972, malaria infections were about 500 million annually, worldwide.  Malaria deaths were about 2 million.  Even without U.S. spraying DDT on cotton crops in Texas and Arkansas, and to be honest, without a lot of DDT use except in indoor residual spraying as promoted by the World Health Organization (WHO), malaria infections have been reduced by 50%, to about 250 million annually — and malaria deaths were reduced by more than 50%, to fewer than 900,000 annually, worldwide. [...]

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  3. [...] it’s also good to understand that, largely without DDT, malaria deaths are, today, at the lowest point in human history.  Fewer than 900,000 people a year die from malaria today.  That’s 25% of the death toll in [...]

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  4. [...] worldwide, at the height of DDT use in 1959 through 1961.  Today that death toll has been cut to under 900,000, through wise use of curative pharmaceuticals, careful use of prophylactic nets and home [...]

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  5. Ed Darrell says:

    You “infer” that Ruck was not interviewed.

    So, you’re “inferring” that Mr. Ruckelshaus was interviewed? Then Taylor is even more scurrilous than I thought possible, to conceal the truth like that. Why wouldn’t Taylor let Ruckelshaus explain the facts?

    Even WHO does not agree with your posted BS.

    One more completely unsubtantiated allegation. I’d like to see some evidence, not just vitriolic talk.

    you “infer” that Carson was a scientist,(Go see the film)

    Yes, she was a scientist. She had two degrees in biology, and was one of the first women ever employed as a scientist by the federal government. She did outstanding science work for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, one of our best science agencies. You could read her State Department bio (at America.gov), or at the USFWS site, or pick up a copy of Linda Lear’s excellent biography, Rachel Carson: Witness for Nature. There is no question that Carson was a scientist. Rachel Carson was a very good scientist, touched by a profound gift for telling the stories of science.

    Taylor lied to you about that? Taylor tells that same lie in his film?

    You can get the facts. You don’t have to be shackled by untruths told in a film.

    you “infer” DDT is not banned in Africa, but fail to say it is UNOFFICIALLY BANNED, effectively banned.

    Follow my links. I offer examples of use of DDT in Africa today. DDT is not banned in Africa — I don’t accept your mere inferences against the wealth of information to the contrary. Taylor lied to you about that in his film?

    (And I only name a FEW of your inferences here) I could list them all. But for brevity, I will not.

    I can be even briefer in listing what you got right against Ms. Carson, or in favor of DDT, or in listing the evidence you’ve presented on any point: ZERO.

    Like

  6. Ed Darrell says:

    Kay said:

    Go to executive orders issued by J. carter. If you are such a legal beagle you should KNOW this. Then if you are at all interested study regulations on american reprocessing facilities. Politiclans prevent nuclear fuel recycling. I am not going to do your homework for you! YOU do it!

    You’re not doing your homework, either. You started out talking about “recycling.” Do you mean reprocessing of spent fuels in breeder reactors? That’s a horse of a different color. What are you talking about?

    Here’s the list of Carters EOs. Which one does what you claim it does?

    http://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Author:Jimmy_Carter/Executive_orders

    you are have presented ONE REPLICATED—remember that word—-study on ANYTHING you say. You just talk loud, write long, and KNOW “short”. What you are dealing with
    is the TRUTH and THAT is where you are extremely lacking.

    You’ve presented zero replicated studies supporting any of the claims made by Dr. Taylor. There are more than a thousand studies supporting Ms. Carson’s claims that DDT harms birds. Don’t lose sight of the bigger picture.

    Discover magazine carried an article about DDT and Carson’s book in November 2007. Discover said that, since 1962, more than 1,000 peer-reviewed publications support Carson’s conclusions, a record remarkable in any branch of science. Quoting that article:

    In fact, Carson may have underestimated the impact of DDT on birds, says Michael Fry, an avian toxicologist and director of the American Bird Conservancy’s pesticides and birds program. She was not aware that DDT—or rather its metabolite, DDE—causes eggshell thinning because the data were not published until the late 1960s and early 1970s. It was eggshell thinning that devastated fish-eating birds and birds of prey, says Fry, and this effect is well documented in a report (pdf) on DDT published in 2002 by the Department of Health and Human Services’ Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR). The report, which cites over 1,000 references, also describes how DDT and its breakdown products accumulate in the tissues of animals high up on terrestrial and aquatic food chains—a process that induced reproductive and neurological defects in birds and fish.

    A thousand for Ms. Carson, zero for Taylor. Next you’ll complain that she’s running up the score.

    Kay said:

    I have no inclination to further attempt to educate literal close minded people who are eventually left in the dustbin of yesterday’s decay and rot.

    Don’t be so hard on yourself. Just click to the links in the paragraphs above . . . presto! Instant education.

    Like most, not all, but MOST lawyers, you take peoples money and expect THEM to do ALL the work.

    You don’t have clue one what you’re talking about. You have no idea what I do for a living, what sort of law I have practiced, nor anything else about me — not that the information isn’t available, but simply that you have failed to look.

    Find another nut who FALLS for your innuendo, your crafty ways of attempted extrication of FREE information. DO YOUR HOMEWORK. Do your due diligence.
    lawyer. At least, let’s just chalk it up to mutual time ill spent. Everything you push on this website
    is ill concieved, death oriented towards black, brown and yellow faces on this planet. WHY? BECAUSE you have NO ANSWERS and have not had for MANY years now.
    You just continue to rehash stuff that has been proven ineffective. Even the Africans laugh at your pushing bednets. They know the score. They have to sleep under those heat inducing contraptions.

    Can you explain that? Exactly how do bednets “induce heat?” Can you explain why bednets were found to be so effective in Kenya, and in other places in Africa?

    Can you explain, please, why it is you believe Africans, Asians, and other “black, brown and yellow faces on this planet” (as you call them) are so stupid that they don’t use DDT, though it is freely available to them, banned only in the U.S. and Sweden, and only for agricultural use do the bans apply? Why do you think Africans are too stupid to use a life-saving substance, were it true that it works that way? And then you have the gall to dance around a racism charge against me?

    Got a mirror?

    What do you want? That they should WEAR the bednet??

    Malaria-carrying mosquitoes bite at night. One key to preventing bites is to put a physical barrier between the mosquito and the human — it worked in the U.S. when we upgraded housing, and bednets do the job ably in some places in Africa.

    Bednets reduce malaria infections by 50% to 85% in test runs and actual prevention campaigns. At best, DDT spraying gets up to 50% prevention, with 80% of all houses being sprayed.

    Nets are cheaper and more effective.

    Why not use them?

    Join the 21st century! I will not be posting here again. And I know I have given you a reason to go to your computer for the first time in a LONG time. Weep! I have much better things to do with my time.

    Such anger! Take a deep breath. Get a glass of water. Now think: You could do something to stop malaria in Africa. Go give $10 to Nothing But Nets, and save a life.

    Or you can turn your back on Africa and the victims of malaria, again, and keep spreading the falsehoods of Dr. Taylor instead.

    Like

  7. Kay says:

    You have NO idea of my “qualifications” and I am not about to sate you qusst for unearned information.
    As John F. Kennedy once said, “The greatest enemy of the truth is not the lie – deliberate, contrived, and dishonest – but the myth – persistent, pervasive, and unrealistic.”
    You are immersed in the “persistence of perception”
    and you are truly to be pitied in the way you attempt to extricate information you WISH to know, but do not.
    You try, by bullying, by intemidation,using WORDS to earn more words which you hope to use to shore up
    the vacuousness of your empty, useless vitriol. Again, I must tell you that film, 3billion and counting, is a shock of truth, instantly known as truth, by the knower inside everyone. You “parse” your posts. What pray tell, in this day and age is the difference between 860,000 million dead or one million? Are not those numbers vile, when many, in this film, say this is untenable? A million or almost a million, does that make you feel really better? Really great? You “infer” that Ruck was not interviewed. Even WHO does not agree with your posted BS. you “infer” that Carson was a scientist,(Go see the film) you “infer” DDT is not banned in Africa, but fail to say it is UNOFFICIALLY BANNED, effectively banned. (And I only name a FEW of your inferences here) I could list them all. But for brevity, I will not.
    You tell half-truths. you are very careful to include SOME truth, to dignify old, musty accusations and beliefs that no longer are valid. The gig is up, my dear and this film shockingly shows it. Sorry,
    your myths are not palatable anymore. The public is
    catching on to you and it is way past time for this to be so. And, this IS my last post. Sayonara

    Like

  8. Kay says:

    Go to executive orders issued by J. carter. If you are such a legal beagle you should KNOW this. Then if you are at all interested study regulations on american reprocessing facilities. Politiclans prevent nuclear fuel recycling. I am not going to do your homework for you! YOU do it! you are have presented ONE REPLICATED—remember that word—-study on ANYTHING you say. You just talk loud, write long, and KNOW “short”. What you are dealing with
    is the TRUTH and THAT is where you are extremely lacking. I have no inclination to further attempt to educate literal close minded people who are eventually left in the dustbin of yesterday’s decay and rot. Like most, not all, but MOST lawyers, you take peoples money and expect THEM to do ALL the work. Find another nut who FALLS for your innuendo, your crafty ways of attempted extrication of FREE information. DO YOUR HOMEWORK. Do your due diligence.
    lawyer. At least, let’s just chalk it up to mutual time ill spent. Everything you push on this website
    is ill concieved, death oriented towards black, brown and yellow faces on this planet. WHY? BECAUSE you have NO ANSWERS and have not had for MANY years now.
    You just continue to rehash stuff that has been proven ineffective. Even the Africans laugh at your pushing bednets. They know the score. They have to sleep under those heat inducing contraptions. What do you want? That they should WEAR the bednet?? Join the 21st century! I will not be posting here again. And I know I have given you a reason to go to your computer for the first time in a LONG time. Weep! I have much better things to do with my time.

    Like

  9. Ed Darrell says:

    Glad to FINNALLY have you admit to being an ENVIROMENTAL “lawyer”. Did it ever occur to you and I am sure it has, that without “discension” amongst people (which you as a lawyer, rally every moment) YOU would be minus your job. You might have to pursue actually
    producting something besides contention! And I am sure Hemminway would ABSOLUTELY agree, considering his Comments on BS and all(Before he committed suicide, that is) An old lawyer told me once that if you put one lawyer in a town, the town is at peace. But put two, and everybody is at each others throats! Think about it.

    Not only do you know very little about health care, malaria, Africa, India, the history of EPA, regulation, U.S. law, science and research, you miss the chance to read about me so you don’t come off as a complete burro.

    Has it ever occurred to you that Wikipedia is there for a reason? Has it ever occurred to you to check what you think to be fact in science or history before spouting off about it?

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  10. Ed Darrell says:

    You are a LAWYER!!! Ruck too was a lawyer and made conflicting statements in a “filibuster” way as do you. You talk and talk and it means NOTHING. you just “hope” to make people tired by your outdated, unsubstantiated RANT that they GO AWAY!

    I’m a lawyer, among other things, and you’re a bigot who refuses to hear the truth because of its source.

    Now that we see how you are, we know what we’re dealing with.

    I notice that you go off like a bottle rocket at lawyers, those who defend the rights of people and keep things on the up and up. I notice, too, that you don’t have any substantive rebuttal to anything I posted.

    Bigotry with a lack of reason. Oy.

    I’ve stated the facts. That I am sworn to uphold the laws and have sworn to uphold the Constitution of the U.S. should play no bearing on the veracity of what I say. And it doesn’t.

    But neither does my legal training and experience in environmental law make accurate the untruths about DDT, malaria and Rachel Carson posited in Taylor’s movie…

    What in the world “qualifies” you to make FALSE STATEMENTS about a film you have NOT EVEN SEEN?

    I beg your pardon, but you have not suggested any error in anything I’ve said about the movie.

    I know the subject well. What qualifies you to pass judgment on the movie? You have no experience with DDT, no experience with the law, and no experience in public health or science research.

    Plus, you appear gullible, swallowing that shtick as if it were gospel.

    Again, WHY are you SO upset about a film you have not even seen? Lots of sacred cows are coming down? Is that the “seat” of your ire? ps. J. Carter DID, by presidential executive order, STOP recycling nuclear plant development as they DO HAVE in France, and his “order” has “enjoyed regulatory suppression” EVER since. HENCE, we have the hue and cry about “nuclear waste” and it is SENSELESS propaganda much the same as you put out concerning DDT use. Dr. Rutledge brings out points in that film that you will just have to find out for yourself. Much of what you are saying is so OUTDATED, it is boring. And borring here Means to try and press through a very closed, unopen
    thought process. Maybe, JUST, maybe you don’t know what you are talking about.

    Twice now you’ve had the opportunity to back up your claims about Carter and nuclear waste, and you’ve failed to provide a lick of evidence both times.

    It’s becoming clear who doesn’t know what they’re talking about.

    Like

  11. Ellie says:

    Ed, Dr. Rutledge (Is that like Doctor Bob, or Doctor Joe? His name appears to be Dr. D. Rutledge Taylor.) does give the astounding advice that diet and exercise will help one to lose weight. Bet you never saw that coming, did you?

    Like

  12. Kay says:

    Glad to FINNALLY have you admit to being an ENVIROMENTAL “lawyer”. Did it ever occur to you and I am sure it has, that without “discension” amongst people (which you as a lawyer, rally every moment) YOU would be minus your job. You might have to pursue actually
    producting something besides contention! And I am sure Hemminway would ABSOLUTELY agree, considering his Comments on BS and all(Before he committed suicide, that is) An old lawyer told me once that if you put one lawyer in a town, the town is at peace. But put two, and everybody is at each others throats! Think about it.

    Like

  13. Ed Darrell says:

    I checked your hyperlink about Dr. Rutledge being a plastic surgeon, and it says he STUDIED it, not that he was one.

    Not my hyperlink — his. It says he’s into woo-ey preparations designed to prevent aging. In short, he’s selling snake oil. You’re right, on third reading, it suggests he dropped out of plastic surgery school.

    In any case, nothing there suggests he is in the least way qualified to speak about malaria or DDT. Then, in his press releases, he admits he’s only got one side of the story.

    Remember Ernest Hemingway? Somebody asked him what it takes to right good, believable fiction. He said, essentially, a writer needs a good excrement detector, in order to tell what smells of untruth.

    Got one? Your Hemingway S— Detector should be clanging away when you read Dr. Taylor’s bio and website, and the press release on his movie.

    I note that, so far, no reputable film reviewer, malaria researcher, malaria fighter, entomologist, public health official, nor even DDT manufacturer, has bothered to review the thing.

    Pay attention to your Hemingway on these matters — it will keep your shoes neat and clean.

    And what are you? A LAWYER?????? Does that make you an expert on DDT, or an expert on reading into things and making a lot of ridiculous assumptions.

    Anyone can determine the facts of a matter, if they are curious and have not misplaced their wits.

    But, yes, I am an environmental lawyer with a few decades’ experience in public health matters, pollution, wildlife management and affiliated territories.

    How about you?

    Neither you OR Rachel Carson were scientists. Doesn’t give you or her a lot of street cred on this topic.

    Carson was a distinguished biologist, a top researcher for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service — she had to be outstanding to be the first woman hired for such a job. She wrote beautifully, translating scientific jargon into near poetry, using simple language.

    I think this charge against Rachel Carson is typical of her critics. She was very much a working scientist whose gift for writing took her far. But in the rush to try to impugn here unjustly, few of the critics hesitate to use JMSU* methodologies against her. (* JMSU = “just make s— up”)

    Have you read Linda Lear’s book on Carson? It’s the best biography out there. Surely Dr. Taylor relied heavily on Lear’s book. Didn’t he? (Why do you insist on using his first name? Are you good buds?)

    What area of Science are you qualified in?

    Botany. I did research in botany and air pollution effects to pay my way through undergraduate studies, at the University of Utah. Summers in the field on the then-hot topic of coal-fired power generation in the Southwest, in Utah, Arizona and New Mexico. I spent about a decade in Washington, inter alia, working health issues with the Senate Labor Committee — toxic torts, organ transplants, health care funding, health professional training, epidemiology, especially the issue of compensation for victims of fallout downwind of the Nevada nuclear testing site.

    Besides Political?

    Oddly enough, I never have taken any poli sci, except experiential. I did internships with the state legislature and the U.S. Senate through the Hinckley Institute of Politics.

    . . . but At the very least, Dr. Rutledge has JUST as much right to speak on DDT as you do, and let us not forget his bio-chemistry degree.

    I haven’t questioned his right to speak at all. I would point out that he has the same duty any citizen has to be accurate about what he speaks, and he has fallen down there. If he is an active physician, he has a legal duty not to spread quack medicine, but it appears to me he’s failed in that professional duty, too.

    And let’s not forget his celebrity experience. I mean, being the boyfriend of Debbie Gibson must count for something, right?

    Truth is, we ALL can know just as much about DDT, and hell, ANYTHING, should we chose to take the time and effort to research, dig, and find out the TRUTH.

    Dr. Taylor has avoided looking at the hard research, from everything I can tell. He’s interviewed the wackos, the quacks, and the paid gunslingers. He cites no interviews with the world experts in malaria fighting, at WHO, nor at the Wellcome Trust. He appears not to have interviewed Socrates Litsios, nor any other veteran of the gallant, failed attempt to eradicate malaria in the 1950s and 1960s. He didn’t bother to cite the accurate history of EPA’s involvement, and he failed completely to look at the environmental law proceedings which govern both the activities of the EPA and judgments about the wisdom of EPA’s policies on DDT.

    We all CAN know about DDT. Taylor appears not to have availed himself of the experts nor deep research available.

    And if Dr. Rutledge is presenting scientific data that you “disagree” with, well, doesn’t TRUE science always win the war? Let him present what he has discovered, and if it is incorrect, then so be it.

    He’s not presenting scientific data. He’s presenting biased political polemic. Truth wins in a fair fight, Ben Franklin said. That’s why we have evidence rules in federal courts. Dr. Taylor abides by no rules of evidence, nor general rules of rational debate, that I can see. As a reporter, he’s failed to get the whole story, even the greater part of the story. As a historian, he’s miscited history. As a research scientist, he failed to pay attention to the published research over the past 60 years. As a medical officer, he failed to consult with the working epidemiologists and other health care workers in the field.

    He hasn’t presented any scientific data that I can see.

    You are quite worked up over this, which is oft the tell-tale sign of someone scared of being found out.

    Yeah, I get pissed off when people like this clown use dying babies as emo-fodder, and then leave the kids to die. Fighting malaria requires accurate information in science and medicine. Dr. Taylor has sided with malaria in this fight. He’s a traitor to his species, one could say.

    I’m not half so worked up as you appear to be, however. I have spent much time over the past several years quietly gathering the facts. You saw one movie, and you consider yourself an expert over all other scientists in the world.

    People thought Galileo was not competent and crazy.

    There you go eviscerating history. The Pope thought Galileo extremely competent, and therefore a threat to the church who had decided to come down against science, much as Dr. Taylor has. Therefore, the Pope required that Galileo be kept from publishing his work. Truth wins in a fair fight, remember, and the Pope couldn’t risk a fair fight.

    Much as Dr. Taylor can’t risk a fair fight. Even at Debbie Gibson’s blog, dissents with facts are not allowed.

    Sounds like Dr. Rutledge might be in good company.

    Opposed to Galileo with the Pope is not good company. It’s the dustbin of truth, the dustbin of history, embarrassing, and wrong.

    Like

  14. Kay says:

    Darrell,
    You are a LAWYER!!! Ruck too was a lawyer and made conflicting statements in a “filibuster” way as do you. You talk and talk and it means NOTHING. you just “hope” to make people tired by your outdated, unsubstantiated RANT that they GO AWAY! What in the world “qualifies” you to make FALSE STATEMENTS about a film you have NOT EVEN SEEN? Again, WHY are you SO upset about a film you have not even seen? Lots of sacred cows are coming down? Is that the “seat” of your ire? ps. J. Carter DID, by presidential executive order, STOP recycling nuclear plant development as they DO HAVE in France, and his “order” has “enjoyed regulatory suppression” EVER since. HENCE, we have the hue and cry about “nuclear waste” and it is SENSELESS propaganda much the same as you put out concerning DDT use. Dr. Rutledge brings out points in that film that you will just have to find out for yourself. Much of what you are saying is so OUTDATED, it is boring. And borring here Means to try and press through a very closed, unopen
    thought process. Maybe, JUST, maybe you don’t know what you are talking about.

    Like

  15. Marguerite says:

    Ed,

    I checked your hyperlink about Dr. Rutledge being a plastic surgeon, and it says he STUDIED it, not that he was one.

    And what are you? A LAWYER?????? Does that make you an expert on DDT, or an expert on reading into things and making a lot of ridiculous assumptions.

    Neither you OR Rachel Carson were scientists. Doesn’t give you or her a lot of street cred on this topic.

    What area of Science are you qualified in? Besides Political? At the very least, Dr. Rutledge has JUST as much right to speak on DDT as you do, and let us not forget his bio-chemistry degree.

    Truth is, we ALL can know just as much about DDT, and hell, ANYTHING, should we chose to take the time and effort to research, dig, and find out the TRUTH.

    And if Dr. Rutledge is presenting scientific data that you “disagree” with, well, doesn’t TRUE science always win the war? Let him present what he has discovered, and if it is incorrect, then so be it.

    You are quite worked up over this, which is oft the tell-tale sign of someone scared of being found out.

    People thought Galileo was not competent and crazy.

    Sounds like Dr. Rutledge might be in good company.

    Like

  16. Ed Darrell says:

    Resistance to ddt has been debunked. In the film, Rutledge films the Senate hearing on USAID in 2007 during which the foremost authority on ‘resistance” Dr. Roberts says and I quote. “now we know that what was thought to be resistance to DDT (kill effect on mosquitos)did in no wise affect DDT’s REPELLANCY effect. Mosquitoes will not bite when DDT is used, even if they do not die.”

    That study doesn’t “debunk” resistance and immunity to DDT. Its only significant claim is that insects are also repelled by DDT, and there are wild suggestions in that 2007 hearing, not based on research, that DDT use should be continued because of the repellent effect.

    That’s complete bunk. DEET is more effective as a repellent, and less deadly in the wild (but still poisonous enough that people should be careful with it).

    Bednets are cheaper ane more effective. Draining rain gutters, tires and potholes is even more effective.

    Resistance is real, as Bug Girl explains in detail you really should read.

    Like

  17. Ed Darrell says:

    Kay responded:

    About bednets!!! The manager of the bednet distrubution says ON CAMERA and I quote “The truth is anyone who uses bednets ALONE with ALWAYS get malaria.

    But that’s also true of DDT, especially since DDT is less effective than bednets in preventing bites from the mosquitoes.

    Malaria is a tough disease to beat. It’s tragic that abuse of DDT helped contribute to the failure of the World Health Organization’s campaign to eradicate the disease, but those are the facts.

    No poison can beat malaria, and DDT exacerbates malaria in the absence of a coordinated and ambitious, methodical program to diagnose and cure the disease, in conjunction with multiple prevention strategies.

    In the case of DDT, since every mosquito on Earth now carries the alleles that make them resistant and immune to the stuff, it is doubly true that DDT alone can’t do the job.

    On the whole, then, you’re confirming that Rutledge Taylor’s film promoting DDT is one long, error-filled diatribe against environmentalists, repeating the score of hoary old falsehoods told about environmentalists and DDT, and malaria. Shame on him. Sonia Shah has a book out this year, Fever, in which she tells a much more accurate story, a story that has very little resemblance to the crap Taylor fed you (shame on him). You can read a shorthand version of Shah’s story in this 2006 story from The Nation.

    About DDT not being banned in Africa. Oh, no, it was not “banned in africa” just they are told that if they use DDT, EU nor US will buy their fruits and veg.
    They ban by insinuation!!!! American BANNED this product and it MUST be bad!!!! And if they “qualify” for government monies (IMF) they MUST NOT use DDT.
    WHAT would you call that?? you cannot hide behind
    such ridiculoous statements as what you have and are promulgating.

    I despise that argument for its incipient racism. What Taylor argues is that Africans, watching their own children die from malaria, refuse to use the stuff though it is freely available and cheap, because they have been hornswoggled by some always-unnamed and unfindable “them” from EU that their products won’t be saleable if they use DDT.

    Does that strike you a bit odd? People sacrifice their children for a few pennies more sales? I don’t think Africans are that stupid, and I think it’s a repugnant argument.

    Not to mention there’s no substance to it. DDT use in Africa against malaria (in Indoor Residual Spraying) is promoted by the Environmental Defense Fund, the same group that sued to stop it in the U.S. In fact DDT has been in use in Africa constantly since 1946.

    Isn’t it odd that, though DDT has been in use, Taylor cannot point to a single example of a lost sale due to DDT contamination?

    His claim is racist and absurd. I’m surprised anyone could be taken in by it.

    And as you ask about Mexico. The answer is that Carol Browner had bill clinton on the eve of signing NAfTA make it a condition that the last remaining DDT plant in Mexico be closed. They agreed.

    Bullfeathers. DDT hadn’t eradicated malaria from Mexico by 2009, and if they closed that plant, it won’t hurt their fight against the disease. But that version is not supported by respected, old-line malaria fighters like the Wellcome Trust.

    Plus, closing one DDT plant only helps Mexico protect its environment — it doesn’t mean that DDT use against malaria was stopped there.

    You need to press Taylor on the lack of links in his claims. DDT is readily available today, to any nation, with just a phone call to the WHO to warn them.

    As to Carson’s book? Been there, done that.

    I find that difficult to believe. Carson provided an airtight case for restricting the use of DDT, to preserve its efficacy against malaria, among other reasons. Her research and conclusions were endorsed by the President’s Science Advisory Council in 1963, and has withstood scrutiny since. She relied on hard scientific evidence, none of which has ever been contradicted by peer-review research published in a science journal.

    If you had “been there,” why do you take on false claims so gullibly?

    As to how government works: The government, j. carter by edict, stopped the building of nuclear re cycling plants.

    No he didn’t. The president doesn’t have such powers.

    But even were that true, that doesn’t change the fact that no regulatory agency may issue a regulation based on a whim, or based on bad science that is later refuted. Had the science of the DDT ban been bad, anyone with standing (any chemical manufacturer, any farmer with bugs) could have sued to overturn it.

    Instead we were saddled with dozens of DDT manufacturing plant sites to clean up under the SuperFund. DDT manufacturers, given a chance to make the stuff for export for more than a decade to make money, took their profits and ran instead of sticking around to clean up the mess. DDT is deadly stuff, and the cleanup is expensive.

    Your claims on nuclear power reinforce my understanding that there is no legitimate case to be made for DDT, and certainly no legitimate case against environmentalists.

    France laughs at us becuase we talk of the “scary wastes and how to disponse of it” THEY do so. It is NOT a “technology problem” that–disposal is so easy you would laugh too. It is a POLITICAL problem. So no I DON”T know how government works and I humbly suggest that you do not either!

    France made a political decision to keep the wastes on-site, at their nuclear plants. They also have no solution to the long-term waste problem.

    That doesn’t mean government doesn’t work. It only means France is willing to accept risks that Americans have not been willing to accept.

    This guy has brought to light so MANY of the studies
    so much of how GOV. works, so much of hard science, that if you go see it, you will know too.

    But he’s ignoring the real studies. He interviewed darn few scientists, but a lot of political lobbyists now or formerly in the employ of DDT manufacturers and tobacco companies.

    Can you give me a single study he cites, with reference to a research journal citation? I don’t think he’s bringing research to light, but is instead trying to snuff out the good work of good scientists.

    UNTIL you do, you can’t REALLY say a word now can you???

    I’ve already read the work he cites in his press release, and it’s all crank stuff, not good science.

    I can plead with you to check his sources. Truth is always the word I can say — and it should make you stop to question and think.

    Should. Will it?

    Argue with me on the points THAT ARE IN THE FILM, not your pronostications of what MIGHT or NOT be there. At LEAST, as the late Dr. Carl Sagan so eloquently said,
    “Remarkable claims require remarkable EVIDENCE. So, why do you ATTACK before you have even SEEN the film?

    Because this is a sad remake of last year’s anti-Rachel Carson film, which was a sad remake of the previous year’s campaign against Rachel Carson, which was a sad and cynical attempt to hornswoggle good people like you by tobacco interests and chemical companies, who want you to think DDT is good and scientists are bad, so you won’t listen to scientists.

    There are more than a few posts on DDT and malaria here at this site — you would do well to read them, and don’t take my word for it, but check out the references offered.

    Sadly, you’ve already dismissed one of the best collections of hard science on DDT, Rachel Carson’s book. Is there any science you accept?

    That is patently SAD. I do not mean this ugly, but is what you “believe”, that DDT is poison, etc, is that based on what the media told you, what Ruck. told you, what Carson told you, OR, is it based on your OWN investigation and KNOWLEDGE?

    I researched this area thoroughly as a professional botanist. I’ve worked on DDT damage in several states, and I’ve worked on the cleanups and health effects issues professionally.

    I have first hand knowledge that Taylor’s claims are craptacular.

    This is a deep question. One that ,it seemed, Dr. Rutledge in 3billion and counting came to grips with.

    For example, that figure, 3 billion. 3 billion what?

    Malaria deaths? No, not at less than a million a year. Malaria cases? There are probably 500 million cases of malaria annually, so 3 billion would be six years’ of the disease.

    Can you answer that question? What does he count to 3 billion?

    You have to do so too. The very karma of this nation is on the line here.

    So, then, you’re wholly into woo, and science doesn’t sway you no matter how good and conclusive it is?

    “Karma?” Karma won’t fight malaria. Karma lets a kid die every minute from malaria. Don’t insult those dead kids, please.

    Could it just be, that the very first
    “decision” the EPA made, could have been wrong and they just can’t ,as a government agency, admit that?

    That was far from the first decision EPA made (there you go with voodoo history again), and the decision was forced by two trials before the decision, and the science and law were reaffirmed in two appeals after the decision. EPA has backtracked on bad decisions before — like its decision to leave DDT on the market (oh, you didn’t know there was a history there?). EPA is happy to get things right, if it means changing a past decision.

    DDT is a killer of ecosystems, and a wild card killer, uncontrollable in the wild. EPA ruled correctly on DDT in 1972, with the exception that they probably should have just shut down the entire DDT manufacturing establishment immediately. Since 1972, more than 1,000 peer-reviewed science studies have been published confirming that DDT killed birds by ruining their reproduction. Not a single study has found to the contrary.

    We now know much about DDT we did not know in 1972. We know it’s a carcinogen for mammals for certain; it is listed as a “probable carcinogen” in humans by every cancer-fighting agency on Earth (I’ll take the word of the American Cancer society over a Hollywood society osteopath all day every day). We know that DDT is an endocrine disruptor, and that it causes cancer in the children of women exposed to it.

    And we know it breeds super mosquitoes, immune to it, very quickly when overused.

    All that is science, and it appears all science was left out of Taylor’s film.

    Could it just be that DDT was too good, too effective?

    Sort of. It’s an incredibly efficient killer, and long-lived in the wild. So doses multiply up trophic levels, as it travels up the food chain. Earthworms aren’t particularly susceptible to DDT, but they will absorb several times the fatal dose for a beetle. A dozen worms with that amount of DDT will kill a robin, and robins eat a dozen earthworms a day, easily. Fish eat the larva of insects exposed to near-fatal doses, and multiply the dose because DDT stays in the fat of the fish. Eagles, osprey and brown pelicans eat the fish, and after a few days, have a near-fatal dose of DDT — and enough DDT to stop the proper formation of healthy eggs in females.

    As a killer, DDT is indeed “too good.”

    And if you want to talk about minicing something, check out in the film his beautiful explanation about PCSs and how they were confused with DDT, and at the time, that was all they knew. PCBs and DDT are NOT the same in PRACTICE.

    You mean PCBs, I’m sure. Alas for that claim, we know better. PCBs can show up in the same class with DDT in some tests, but they are easily separated out with gas chromatography, which offers a clear distinction in the molecular signature of each substance. I’ll wager that Taylor failed to mention that dosing animals with DDT plus PCBs multiplies the harms, so that failure to distinguish between the chemicals means we underestimate the damage to wildlife, and we underestimate the damage to health of humans.

    Once the confusion between PCBs and DDT is sorted out, DDT is still deadly, and so are PCBs.

    But you should heed the history of PCBs. The problem with PCBs became clear because of research into DDT. This didn’t excuse DDT, contrary to what it appears Taylor claimed — but it did highlight the general problem Rachel Carson wrote about, the mass use of substances which are untested for their effects on health of living things.

    If you read that history, you’ll note that the health effects of PCBs differ from the health effects of DDT. If Taylor alleged there is a study that claims PCBs caused damage, and DDT was off the hook, I’d like to see it. Most of the studies suggest that there is synergistic action, which means PCBs multiply the damage of DDT, and vice versa — but there is no study I’ve ever seen suggesting DDT is not the neurotoxin it must be to kill insects.

    Well, I have said enough. Go see the film, THEN critize to your heart’s content.

    You’ve said a lot that I don’t think is based on hard research. I hope you’ll reread Carson’s book, and get a copy of Shah’s Fever, and you should read the chapter on DDT in Merchants of Doubt by Naomi Oreskes and Erik M. Conway, showing how companies making poisons hope for films like Rutledge Taylor’s to come along and spread disinformation.

    Like

  18. Ed Darrell says:

    I noted one area where the press release for the film advertises that Dr. Taylor got the facts and story wrong:

    Kay, does he say, as the promos claim, that William Ruckelshaus ‘banned DDT without having spent any time at all in the hearings on DDT?”

    That’s a misleading claim, a lie.

    Kay responded:

    No, actually, he shows Ruck.’s assistant’s answer to this qustion from the LA times. The assistant says” no, Mr. Ruck did not. He would have sunk out of sight.” This is a DIRECT quote. NOT a LIE.

    Here’s why that claim is misleading, and false:

    Ruckelshaus was the Director of EPA. In that position, he is the appellate authority from decisions of administrative law judges. As the appeals judge, he would have been bound by administrative law and the legal ethical canons not to attend the hearings.

    So a claim that he “failed to attend the hearings” may sound bad, but it is an acknowledgement that Ruckelshaus followed the law to the letter. Obviously Rutledge Taylor has no knowledge of administrative law, nor did he bother to ask anyone with any knowledge.

    (Did he say why he didn’t interview Ruckelshaus for the film? It’s odd that he didn’t go to the horse’s mouth to get the facts, and odder that he didn’t bother to check the law on the issue.)

    What does it mean, “He would have sunk out of sight?” The statement from Ruckelshaus’s assistant (was s/he identified?) makes no sense at all.

    As the appeals officer, Ruckelshaus’s duty was to review the decision and the transcripts of the hearings. Clearly he did that.

    As I noted, two separate federal courts reviewed Ruckelshaus’s order, and both of those courts ruled, in summary judgment, that Ruckelshaus’s decision was square on the law and the facts. In short, two courts have found Taylor Rutledge’s claim to be false and misleading.

    I’ll wager he didn’t bother to mention that in the movie, did he. Don’t confuse people with the facts.

    Here’s the official, EPA version:

    On December 2, 1970, major responsibility for Federal regulation of pesticides was transferred to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    1.In January 1971, under a court order following a suit by the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF), EPA issued notices of intent to cancel all remaining Federal registrations of products containing DDT. The principal crops affected by this action were cotton, citrus, and certain vegetables.

    2.In March 1971, EPA issued cancellation notices for all registrations of products containing TDE, a DDT metabolite. The EPA Administrator further announced that no suspension of the registration of DDT products was warranted because evidence of imminent hazard to the public welfare was lacking. (Suspension, in contrast to cancellation, is the more severe action taken against pesticide products under the law.) Because of the decision not to suspend, companies were able to continue marketing their products in interstate commerce pending the final resolution of the administrative cancellation process. After reconsideration of the March order, in light of a scientific advisory committee report, the Administrator later reaffirmed his refusal to suspend the DDT registrations. The report was requested by Montrose Chemical Corporation, sole remaining manufacturer of the basic DDT chemical.

    3.In August 1971, upon the request of 31 DDT formulators, a hearing began on the cancellation of all remaining Federally registered uses of products containing DDT. When the hearing ended in March 1972, the transcripts of 9,312 pages contained testimony from 125 expert witnesses and over 300 documents. The principal parties to the hearings were various formulators of DDT products, USDA, the EDF, and EPA.

    4.On June 14, 1972, the EPA Administrator announced the final cancellation of all remaining crop uses of DDT in the U.S. effective December 31, 1972. The order did not affect public health and quarantine uses, or exports of DDT. The Administrator based his decision on findings of persistence, transport, biomagnification, toxicological effects and on the absence of benefits of DDT in relation to the availability of effective and less environmentally harmful substitutes. The effective date of the prohibition was delayed for six months in order to permit an orderly transition to substitute pesticides. In conjunction with this transition, EPA and USDA jointly developed “Project Safeguard,” a program of education in the use of highly toxic organophosphate substitutes for DDT.

    5.Immediately following the DDT prohibition by EPA, the pesticides industry and EDF filed appeals contesting the June order with several U.S. courts. Industry filed suit to nullify the EPA ruling while EDF sought to extend the prohibition to those few uses not covered by the order. The appeals were consolidated in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia.

    On December 13, 1973, the Court ruled that there was “substantial evidence” in the record to support the EPA Administrator’s ban on DDT.

    Like

  19. Ed Darrell says:

    Meanwhile, I checked and Dr. Rutledge is NOT a plastic surgeon as you posted.

    Why does he list that in his biography? What sort of practice do you claim he is in? (I suppose one could make a case for osteopathy, but that won’t help him in credentials, for a discussion of malaria and DDT.)

    In any case, he’s not an epidemiologist, nor is he an infectious disease expert. He’s not a research doc. He has no expertise in malaria (you don’t see a lot of malaria catering to the stars in Hollywood, nor anywhere else in the U.S. or Canada).

    He’s out of his league, and either he’s a complete medical incompetent, or he got bamboozled by the “poison Africa” crowd, the Chronically Obsessed
    With Rachel Carson (COWRC) group that keeps claiming the U.S. ban on DDT spraying on cotton somehow affects Africa.

    My chief complaint is that he does not practice in any of the areas he claims to criticize, nor does he consult with experts in the area. His interviews are almost exclusively with cranks and quacks — which suggests rational experts should stay away from such a biased filmmaker, and that may explain why organizations refused to cooperate with his film.

    Judging by his crank results, they were right, wouldn’t you say?

    Like

  20. Kay says:

    Resistance to ddt has been debunked. In the film, Rutledge films the Senate hearing on USAID in 2007 during which the foremost authority on ‘resistance” Dr. Roberts says and I quote. “now we know that what was thought to be resistance to DDT (kill effect on mosquitos)did in no wise affect DDT’s REPELLANCY effect. Mosquitoes will not bite when DDT is used, even if they do not die.” there is just so MUCH in this film. I plead with you to see it for yourself. I did. So I CAN speak about it with authority! Can you?

    Like

  21. Kay says:

    My entire ansswer to you was copied so that I have a record of the post— of your post and mine…….. and I am awaiting seeing it posted and your further comments on this very vital subject. Meanwhile, I checked and Dr. Rutledge is NOT a plastic surgeon as you posted. Where did you get such information? His office wanted to know. His whole quest and practice is to PREVENT
    not “cure”.

    Like

  22. Kay says:

    Does he say in the film that malaria deaths have dropped 67% since the U.S. stopped spraying DDT? If not, he’s lying by omission.

    Does he note that bed nets, without DDT, are more effective at preventing malaria than DDT? Then he’s lying by omission.

    Does he note that DDT has never been banned in Africa? Why is he hiding that from you?

    Does he talk about how Mexico used DDT constantly from 1946 to today, without being able to eradicate malaria, and is now experiencing an increase in malaria rates?

    I urge you to get a copy of Rachel Carson’s book, Silent Spring, and read it.

    I would also urge you to get informed about how government works. Were DDT not harmful, it would be illegal for a government agency like EPA to ban it claiming that it is harmful. Were it not harmful, the lawsuits to stop the ban would have been successful.

    Did he tell you in that film that DDT mimics the “female” hormone estrogen, when released in the wild? Did he talk about how DDT causes entire species to lose effective males in the wild, and how it swells the mammaries and shrinks the testes of human boys? Did he say anything about how DDT causes young girls to get premature menses? Did he talk about the research that shows that DDT causes cancer in the children of women exposed to it?

    How much else did he leave out in his screed?

    You say he died twice in making the film?

    I have difficulty with physicians who specialize in plastic surgery to the stars as this guy does — and his other work, in other quack-prone areas of health care, don’t encourage me that he’s got the facts.

    Also, see what Deltoid has on the matter, here and here; and see what Bug Girl has to say, here, and here.

    If you spend some time studying the issue, you can see the problems with the claims made in the movie (from the reviews I’ve seen). Especially if you try to track down the sources of the stories the DDT advocates tell, you will run into a brick wall — the science and scientists do not claim DDT is safe, nor that we need any more of it to fight malaria.

    Could you list for me some of the “bombs of truth” you claim he drops?

    About bednets!!! The manager of the bednet distrubution says ON CAMERA and I quote “The truth is anyone who uses bednets ALONE with ALWAYS get malaria.

    About DDT not being banned in Africa. Oh, no, it was not “banned in africa” just they are told that if they use DDT, EU nor US will buy their fruits and veg.
    They ban by insinuation!!!! American BANNED this product and it MUST be bad!!!! And if they “qualify” for government monies (IMF) they MUST NOT use DDT.
    WHAT would you call that?? you cannot hide behind
    such ridiculoous statements as what you have and are promulgating.

    And as you ask about Mexico. The answer is that Carol Browner had bill clinton on the eve of signing NAfTA make it a condition that the last remaining DDT plant in Mexico be closed. They agreed.

    As to Carson’s book? Been there, done that.

    As to how government works: The government, j. carter
    by edict, stopped the building of nuclear re cycling
    plants. France laughs at us becuase we talk of the “scary wastes and how to disponse of it” THEY do so. It is NOT a “technology problem” that–disposal is so easy you would laugh too. It is a POLITICAL problem. So no I DON”T know how government works and I humbly suggest that you do not either!

    This guy has brought to light so MANY of the studies
    so much of how GOV. works, so much of hard science, that if you go see it, you will know too. UNTIL you do, you can’t REALLY say a word now can you??? Argue with me on the points THAT ARE IN THE FILM, not your pronostications of what MIGHT or NOT be there. At LEAST, as the late Dr. Carl Sagan so eloquently said,
    “Remarkable claims require remarkable EVIDENCE. So, why do you ATTACK before you have even SEEN the film?
    That is patently SAD. I do not mean this ugly, but is what you “believe”, that DDT is poison, etc, is that based on what the media told you, what Ruck. told you, what Carson told you, OR, is it based on your OWN investigation and KNOWLEDGE? This is a deep question. One that ,it seemed, Dr. Rutledge in 3billion and counting came to grips with. You have to do so too. The very karma of this nation is on the line here. Could it just be, that the very first
    “decision” the EPA made, could have been wrong and they just can’t ,as a government agency, admit that?
    Could it just be that DDT was too good, too effective?

    And if you want to talk about minicing something, check out in the film his beautiful explanation about PCSs and how they were confused with DDT, and at the time, that was all they knew. PCBs and DDT are NOT the same in PRACTICE. Well, I have said enough. Go see the film, THEN critize to your heart’s content.

    Like

  23. Kay says:

    Kay, does he say, as the promos claim, that William Ruckelshaus ‘banned DDT without having spent any time at all in the hearings on DDT?”

    That’s a misleading claim, a lie.

    No, actually, he shows Ruck.’s assistant’s answer to this qustion from the LA times. The assistant says” no, Mr. Ruck did not. He would have sunk out of sight.” This is a DIRECT quote. NOT a LIE.

    Like

  24. Ed Darrell says:

    Kay, does he say, as the promos claim, that William Ruckelshaus ‘banned DDT without having spent any time at all in the hearings on DDT?”

    That’s a misleading claim, a lie.

    Does he say in the film that malaria deaths have dropped 67% since the U.S. stopped spraying DDT? If not, he’s lying by omission.

    Does he note that bed nets, without DDT, are more effective at preventing malaria than DDT? Then he’s lying by omission.

    Does he note that DDT has never been banned in Africa? Why is he hiding that from you?

    Does he talk about how Mexico used DDT constantly from 1946 to today, without being able to eradicate malaria, and is now experiencing an increase in malaria rates?

    I urge you to get a copy of Rachel Carson’s book, Silent Spring, and read it.

    I would also urge you to get informed about how government works. Were DDT not harmful, it would be illegal for a government agency like EPA to ban it claiming that it is harmful. Were it not harmful, the lawsuits to stop the ban would have been successful.

    Did he tell you in that film that DDT mimics the “female” hormone estrogen, when released in the wild? Did he talk about how DDT causes entire species to lose effective males in the wild, and how it swells the mammaries and shrinks the testes of human boys? Did he say anything about how DDT causes young girls to get premature menses? Did he talk about the research that shows that DDT causes cancer in the children of women exposed to it?

    How much else did he leave out in his screed?

    You say he died twice in making the film?

    I have difficulty with physicians who specialize in plastic surgery to the stars as this guy does — and his other work, in other quack-prone areas of health care, don’t encourage me that he’s got the facts.

    Also, see what Deltoid has on the matter, here and here; and see what Bug Girl has to say, here, and here.

    If you spend some time studying the issue, you can see the problems with the claims made in the movie (from the reviews I’ve seen). Especially if you try to track down the sources of the stories the DDT advocates tell, you will run into a brick wall — the science and scientists do not claim DDT is safe, nor that we need any more of it to fight malaria.

    Could you list for me some of the “bombs of truth” you claim he drops?

    Like

  25. Kay says:

    I have just seen the private screening of 3billion and counting. This film will not leave my mind.
    We seem to have it wrong on DDT as you might see if you go to see it at the Quad theater opening Sept.
    17. I saw it in LA. there are “bombs” of truth dropped in this film and it is a mind blower. This young physician spent the last five years researchng DDT and he makes TWICE the ultimate sacrifice to prove his assertions. It is blockbuster and you get the real deal as he roams third world countries.

    Like

  26. Ed Darrell says:

    Didn’t know Ms. Shah was doing that — thanks for the heads up, Karl.

    As to her answer to the last question: How does sleeping under a gorilla prevent malaria?

    Just curious.

    Like

  27. DPirate says:

    Why don’t you contact them and ask them to email you something?

    Like

  28. Ed Darrell says:

    Dear Anon,

    Please square these facts with your claims.

    1. Centers for Disease Control notes in its official history that malaria was essentially eliminated from the U.S. by 1939, with only a few straggler cases after that.

    2. Mueller discovered DDT to be effective at killing insects in 1939; it was made available to the military for use after 1941. DDT was not used against mosquitoes in the U.S. until after 1947, 8 years after CDC’s history says malaria was beaten.

    3. At the peak of DDT use, in 1959 and 1960, more than 3 million people died from malaria each year.

    4. By 1965, mosquito resistance to DDT was so strong in those few African nations where anti-malaria programs could be set up, that malaria fighters from the World Health Organization couldn’t use it effectively to fight malaria.

    5. The U.S. ban on DDT, in 1972, left DDT available for use to fight malaria or other insect-borne diseases, and left DDT open to manufacture in the U.S. for export to Africa and Asia. DDT has never been banned for use against malaria in Africa.

    6. In 1972, about 2 million people a year died from malaria worldwide.

    7. Malaria deaths continued the downward trend; today fewer than 900,000 people a year die from malaria. DDT has been found useful in only a few places, in tightly controlled circumstances (to prevent those still-susceptive populations from breeding resistance).

    Like

  29. DDT & other insecticides may give temporary relief from mosquito bites. But at the cost of irreparable environmental damage. A holistic approach is necessary to fight this evil “Malaria”.

    Like

  30. anon says:

    The United States eradicated malaria with DDT and environmentalists are trying to obliterate the past and pretend it never happened. They would rather let millions die then own up to their mistake and stop opposing DDT. This is evil, not just wrong.

    Like

  31. Ed Darrell says:

    I’ve not had a chance to comb through the stuff. When I dived into this anti-Rachel Carson thing, I did a search and quickly came up with a table that showed WHO’s estimates for malaria deaths and malaria infections from 1940 through about 2005. I used that chart a couple of times, but foolishly didn’t copy it down.

    Thanks for the pointer.

    Like

  32. karl says:

    Ed, I’d love to see that graph too! Have you searched the WHO’s World Malaria Reports for numbers? The figure of 880,000 deaths in 2008 comes from the 2009 report. There are few reports here: http://www.who.int/malaria/publications/reports/en/index.html.

    Also, the WHO has a journal called something like the Bulletin of the WHO, or World Health Bulletin. It seems like that would be a good place to look.

    Like

  33. Science says:

    This could also be a serious risk when you are pregnant and you certainly can’t use DEET containing repellents (which are the most effective). Science

    Like

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