Indur Goklany, DDT and Malaria

Ed Darrell points to a WUWT post by Indur Goklany which promotes the use of DDT to fight malaria instead of more effective measures. As with most of the DDT promoters, Goklany carefully avoids mentioning the way mosquitoes evolve resistance to insecticides. For example, here’s what he has on Sri Lanka:

For instance, malaria incidences in Sri Lanka (Ceylon) dropped from 2.8 million in the 1940s to less than 20 in 1963 (WHO 1999a, Whelan 1992). DDT spraying was stopped in 1964, and by 1969 the number of cases had grown to 2.5 million.

Now compare this with what really happened in Sri Lanka:

With widespread resistance of A. culicifacies to DDT, malathion spraying was introduced in 1975 in areas of P.falciparum transmission affording protection to nearly one million people. Towards the end of 1976 DDT spraying was completely discontinued and during 1977 exclusively malathion was used as an adulticide.

i-888470655207729222fb0f61fe5fa18a-oth_mal_cases_srl60-08.png

Note that the scale for malaria cases is logarithmic, so there was a factor of ten reduction in the number of cases in a few years after DDT spraying was discontinued.

The misinformation about DDT and malaria that Goklany spreads is harmful and could kill people. DDT still has a place in the fight against malaria (because of insecticide resistance we need as many different insecticides as possible), but there are more effective means available, and by trying to undercut the use of the best methods for fighting malaria, Goklany will be responsible for people dying from malaria.

Comments

  1. #1 tbell
    September 15, 2010

    care to speculate why he is spreading this misinformation?
    does he stand to profit directly or indirectly?

  2. #2 FJM
    September 15, 2010

    @1 tbell

    The misinformation about DDT use and malaria is almost always purely political. It’s simply trying to discredit “greenies” and paint blood on their hands.

  3. #3 pough
    September 15, 2010

    Why is he saying that the spraying stopped in 1964? Where did that bit of information come from?

  4. #4 Jeremy C
    September 15, 2010

    Why is DDT such a touchstone for these people? Why not other things e.g. bicycle helmets, passve smoking, McDonald’s hambugers, bus fares in Atlanta? I just don’t get it.

  5. #5 Brian Angliss
    September 15, 2010

    JeremyC: Oreskes and Conway’s book “Merchants of Doubt” places the reason for always using DDT on a political desire to convert an victory for the environmental movement into a defeat and to discredit Rachel Carson.

  6. #6 Former Skeptic
    September 15, 2010

    Ah, it’s the same individual who openly supports paranoid Andrew’s puerile list of “skeptical” papers. I see a pattern here…

    BTW Tim, methinks you’ve mis-spelt Goklany’s name in the header.

  7. #7 TrueSceptic
    September 15, 2010

    4 Jeremy,

    As Brian says in 5, it’s all down to ‘Silent Spring’, the book by Rachel Carson that is generally credited with starting the enviro/green movement. One particular thing it brought to light was the danger of overuse of pesticides and herbicides, of which DDT was perhaps the best known example. As DDT had been (over)used for decades in combating malaria, those who hate any controls on “environmental” grounds know that if they can discredit Carson by “proving” that the reduction in DDT use directly caused additional deaths from malaria, they can discredit the whole enviro movement as being people-haters.

    So what? Well, these same people tend to see all “earth sciences”, including Climatology, as being nothing more than part of that same enviro movement and not “real” science.

  8. #8 Ed Darrell
    September 15, 2010

    Thanks for the correction. Watts apoplectic, and my guess is that none of my posts will see light of day over there ever again.

    There is so much wrong with Goklany’s claims, starting with his reliance on Lyndon Larouche and Gordon Edwards . . .

    But I had to laugh. What got them going was my noting that the malaria death toll is the lowest it’s been in human history. Goklany said I was in error, and he spend a thousand words fussing, but he did not deny my statement nor offer any alternative numbers.

    In the discussions we discovered that Anthony Watts was unaware his sources rather regularly accuse Rachel Carson of being a mass murderer — just one more area of history and science where Watts would do well not to pose as a person with any great knowledge, I suppose.

    If Watts hasn’t banned you yet, Tim, perhaps you could sneak some accurate numbers in from time to time.

    I do not know what shook the nut tree recently, but all the DDT fanatics appear to be out in force, all of them making bizarre claims. There’s a film out, too, “3 Billion and Counting,” by Debbie Gibson’s boyfriend, Rutledge Taylor. From the advance press material, it’s a complete crock (I gather no scientist would consent to an interview). It’s just nutty enough that it will be quoted for years at WUWT.

  9. #9 J Bowers
    September 15, 2010

    Natural selection – Some mozzies are resistant to DDT from the start. Kill the ones that weren’t, those with the resistance just take over, and DDT would eventually have zero effect on all mozzies with no effective vector control.

    Tim, Bug Girl has a good post:
    http://membracid.wordpress.com/2007/06/13/ddt-malaria-insecticide-resistance/

  10. #10 capedonut
    September 15, 2010

    Btw, there was quite an interesting diavlog on bloggingheads.tv a couple of days ago about malaria, in which Sonia Shah was presenting here new book “The Fever”.

  11. #11 jakerman
    September 15, 2010

    So the revised control strategy from year 2000 had a 1000 effectiveness improvement. Someone needs to be held aloft and celebrated for that strategy.

    Anyone know what the revised strategy is?

  12. #12 adelady
    September 15, 2010

    All the stuff I’ve seen on recent strategies has focused on mosquito nets for beds. This can’t possibly be the only tactic, but it has the great advantage of using the least possible insecticide for the greatest possible effect on human transmission. Thereby hopefully extending the useful life of the poison while minimising human exposure to it.

  13. #13 PS
    September 15, 2010

    Does anyone else see a certain irony in WUWT uncritically accepting government statistics on malaria?

  14. #14 Jadehawk, OM
    September 15, 2010

    the obsession with DDT and other “green” politics affecting the developing world is part of “anti-eco-imperialism”. Because caring about environmental destruction = hating black people, doncha know.

  15. #15 tioedong
    September 15, 2010

    using ONLY DDT won’t stop Malaria, but forbidding the use of this inexpensive and mildly toxic insecticide was insane.

    Newer insecticides are more toxic if not correctly used, and from a practical standpoint, mosquito nets and rubbing a toxic insect repellant all over is a pain.

    Getting rid of habitat is also needed…
    Right now, we have a Dengue outbreak in the Philippines.

    I’d just be happy if the city decided to get rid of our open sewers, but on TV, they are starting to instruct folks to inspect and get rid of cans, tires and other waste that lets mosquitos breed. So that will help a bit.

  16. #16 jakerman
    September 15, 2010

    >*forbidding the use of this inexpensive and mildly toxic insecticide was insane*

    a) Fistly, regulation did not mean forbidding the use.

    b) Secondly, look at the results, the regualtion reduced incidence, and revised strategy has reduced incidences 1000 fold.

  17. #17 Indur M. Goklany
    September 15, 2010

    Cross-posted from WUWT (with typos corrected). Note times and dates associated with comments are based on WUWT postings.

    ——————————————-

    DDT and Malaria in Ceylon

    There is apparently a lot of confusion about malaria and DDT use in Ceylon. In fact, Tim Lambert on September 15, 2010 at 11:24 am claims I’m spreading misinformation. He bases this claim on a diagram he found on a WHO website that provides a graph of malaria cases from 1960 to 2008 but is very economical with the history of DDT usage, as noted by Spence_UK on September 15, 2010 at 12:25 pm. Spence_UK has also linked to a most interesting curve, which indicates, in the words of the underlying paper at http://www.biomedcentral.com/content/pdf/1475-2875-7-140.pdf, that “relaxation of controls” (which included DDT use) after 1963 “led to rapid and dramatic resurgence” of malaria.

    I would like to add to what Spence has unearthed. But, before that let me note that the information I provided in my post was identified as coming from Whelan (1992). To check that I hadn’t gotten something wrong – what the heck, I am insecure — I tried to locate the original book. I didn’t find it, but did find a book with the same name but with a publication date of 1985. No matter, in that version the data can be found on page 69. Tim, go check it out. It ought to be in your University’s library.

    Now I must say that I was surprised that the WHO website was silent on the DDT cessation after 1963. So I thought I should verify that this actually occurred. Perhaps I had been mistaken. However, I found a number of references to this episode. These include a report in the New York Times from February 13, 1971, headlined, “U.N. Agency Backs Indoor Use of DDT to Combat Mosquitoes”. It’s worth reading in its entirety. It’s at http://goklany.org/Misc/DDT%20and%20Ceylon%20Feb%2013%201971.pdf. It notes that WHO “defended…the use of DDT to kill mosquitoes indoors” in a special report. [Wonder who it was being defended to, or why it needed to be defended, if no one was against its use?]

    It further notes:

    “’Ceylon is a case in point,’ the report declared “Malaria was almost eradicated, the number of cases having dropped from 2.8 million in 1946 to 110 in 1961 and the number of deaths reduced from 12,587 to zero. But Ceylon, following premature cessation of spraying, is again facing an epidemic of malaria, with a total of 2.5 million cases already reported in 1968-1969.’”

    Note that the WHO numbers quoted in the NY Times report are consistent with Whelan (1985).

    The NY Times also adds:

    “The report also emphasized that, while developed countries had the money to combat communicable diseases by providing good sanitation, this method… ‘is out of the financial reach of developing countries.’…”

    The NY Times article goes on to report that, according to the WHO, substituting for DDT would raise costs of the program from $60 million a year to between $184 million – $510 million, depending on which substitute were used. [I interpret this to be the cost of a global program, rather than a Ceylon-only program — I wonder what WHO’s budget for these activities was in 1971?]

    As an aside, clearly the WHO website that Tim Lambert linked to has amnesia about the 1971 report, but that could be a genuine loss of institutional memory.

    Also, I came across an abstract of an article in the Indian Journal of Malariology, from June 1993, 30(2):51-5.

    Trends in malaria morbidity and mortality in Sri Lanka.

    By Pinikahana J, Dixon RA.

    Department of History and Sociology, University of Ruhuna, Matara, Sri Lanka.

    Abstract

    Trends since 1930 in malaria morbidity and mortality in Sri Lanka were analysed. The Malaria Control Programme, which began in 1945 with DDT spraying, was associated with a 100-fold reduction in morbidity and mortality over the following ten years, and gave way to the Malaria Eradication Programme in 1958. DDT spraying ceased in 1964 and a vivax malaria epidemic in 1968 returned to the island to 1952 morbidity levels, though with little mortality. After the discovery of DDT resistance in 1969, malathion spraying took over in 1973, and USAID-assisted control programme, involving case-detection and treatment, started in 1977. However, morbidity levels comparable to 1952 levels were observed in 1975 and 1986 when falciparum malaria morbidity levels were especially high. Mortality rates since 1960 have however remained lower than at any other previous time.

    Unfortunately, I don’t have access to this, but its story seems consistent with the Whelan (1985), and the NY Times story.

    Finally, I should note that if you read my paper, it fully acknowledges the issue of DDT resistance, which is why it conditions the use of DDT to situations where it is effective. For example, in the summary of my study posted at WUWT, I note that “In fact, indoor spraying of DDT ought to be encouraged in countries where such spraying would diminish malaria incidence.” [Emphasis added.]

    No one is advocating DDT use where, or if, it’s ineffective. But there are situations where it is not only effective, it is also the cheapest intervention available. Regardless, we should never foreclose the option that it be available for use.

  18. #18 Art
    September 16, 2010

    Irony is that many who are anti vaccine and anti-fluoride, all those scary chemicals, are also all for bringing back DDT, one of the most persistent pesticides around. Go figure.

    I’m not entirely sure but the common thread seems to be their perception that it is all about government “forcing people” to be vaccinated and fluoridated, but preventing them from protecting themselves with DDT.

  19. #19 Jeremy C
    September 16, 2010

    That was a useful post by Indur M.Goklany. It sounds like he is cherrypicking to support his argument.

  20. #20 Eli Rabett
    September 16, 2010

    Among the things that happened was artemisinin combination therapies (ACT). This prevents the spread of maleria by wiping it out efficiently in one of the hosts (us).

    Goklany is scum

  21. #21 Tim Lambert
    September 16, 2010

    Indur Goklany, The New York Times story you linked is wrong about the number of cases.

    [From Malaria: Principles and Paractice of Malariology edited by Wernsdorfer and McGregor (1988) Chapter 45 “The recent history of malaria control and eradication. by Gramiccia and Beales pages 1366-1367](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2005/02/malaria.php):

    >In Sri Lanka, after the minimum of 17 cases in 1963, the incidence increased markedly and practically unimpeded, reaching 537 700 registered cases in 1969. There were still 400 700 cases in 1975. Malaria in Sri Lanka was known to produce epidemics at three to five year intervals on account of low rainfall and high temperature, which favour the propagation of the vector A. culicifacies. The development of epidemic foci was facilitated by an increased population movement for chena cultivation, often deep in poorly accessible forested areas, and for gem mining which created ideal mosquito breeding grounds in abandoned pits in the proximity to the shelters built by the workers. These conditions occurred again in late 1967 and in 1968. During the successful eradication period P. falciparum had been eliminated, but in 1975, after the resurgence of malaria, this species constituted 16% of all infections.

    >The reasons for the upsurge were many. It was certainly facilitated by the backlog of slides accumulated in the laboratories and the comparatively low numbers of blood smears taken by health institutions that permitted a gradual build up of undetected, untreated cases. Intradomiciliary residual spraying with DDT had been withdrawn in the early 1960s because of the low number of cases (in accordance with the criteria for passing from attack to consolidation). After the resurgence was recognized, administrative and financial difficulties prevented the purchase of insecticides of which there was no residual stock, and the employment of temporary squads for spraying them when insecticides were donated. In 1968, the programme reverted from consolidation to attack phase, but by that time malaria had already taken root again in all previously endemic areas. DDT residual spraying was again applied on a total coverage basis, accompanied in some areas by mass radical treatment. These measures met with limited success, but the malaria situation deteriorated once more between 1972 and 1975. Apart from operational and administrative shortcomings, the main reason for this second increase was the development of vector resistance to DDT, to such an extent that it was necessary to change to the more expensive malathion in 1977.

    DDT spraying was suspended in 1964 not because of environmental concerns but because there were too few cases to justify its use. They felt that they are succeeded in eradicating malaria and the few remaining cases could be treated with drugs. This wasn’t unreasonable — that’s what had worked in temperate climates.

    >No one is advocating DDT use where, or if, it’s ineffective.

    Actually, they are. I give you [Michael Fumento](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2005/01/ddt.php):

    >The best answer would be spraying with DDT. Unfortunately, environmentalists have demonized DDT based essentially on unfounded accusations in a 1962 book, Silent Spring. … DDT should be sprayed on water pools, tents, and on people themselves—as indeed was once common in Sri Lanka and throughout most of the world.

    Once upon a time DDT was the insecticide of choice for fighting malaria. But DDT resistance and new technologies like long lasting insecticide treated nets mean that these days it is not generally the cheapest or most effective means. See [here](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2009/05/ceri_dingles_campaign_to_kill.php)

  22. #22 Chris S.
    September 16, 2010

    You can get the mosquitoes to target their breeding sites themselves: http://www.rothamsted.ac.uk/Research/Centres/PressReleases.php?PRID=64

  23. #23 Ken Fabos
    September 16, 2010

    Can I mention the July 2010 Scientific American’s article by Jeremy Sachs on Millennium Development Goals? According to Sachs the leadership of Ban Ki-Moon has played an important part in UN member states coalescing around a specific strategy on malaria; ie insecticide treated bed nets coupled with community based drug treatments when episodes of malaria occur, with nearly 200 million already distributed and malaria deaths plummeting through Africa.

    Whilst Sachs didn’t provide references I think it’s safe to assume he is factually correct. At a time when there is great success on malaria, attacks such as Goklany’s seem a bit odd. Like others have said this is primarily aimed at discrediting the environmental movement. My own view is that environmental concerns should be mainstream political concerns and the rise of Green politics is primarily a response to the failures of the mainstream to incorporate scientific reality – wherever it clashes with powerful economic interests – into their thinking.

  24. #24 Ken Fabos
    September 16, 2010

    Correction to my comment 23 – it was the June issue, not July.

  25. #25 Lars Karlsson
    September 16, 2010

    TrueSceptic: “As DDT had been (over)used for decades in combating malaria…”

    Not to mention how it was overused in agriculture (around 40,000 tonnes a year worldwide).

  26. #26 Wow
    September 16, 2010

    > forbidding the use of this inexpensive and mildly toxic insecticide was insane

    Since it isn’t inexpensive nor is it mildly toxic, that statement is insane…

  27. #27 Dave H
    September 16, 2010

    > Since it isn’t inexpensive nor is it mildly toxic

    Its not even mildly toxic, its perfectly safe – why, Christopher Monckton says you can eat it by the spoonful! And any day now he’s going to demonstrate that claim publicly…

  28. #28 Jeff Harvey
    September 16, 2010

    In addition to discrediting the environmental movement, the whole issue over the issue of pesitcide safety, especially tyhat revolving around DDT, in my view clearly has much to do with the profit margins of the pesticide manufacturers. R & D into pesticides amounts to billions of dollars, and, given that many pesticides never get formal approval for application from government agencies, then to the manufacturers this must appear like money down the drain. Of course they want to relax or even eviscerate many government regulations in pursuit of private profit, and what better way to achieve thius than to hammer away on a single example of what they claim is ‘enviro scaremongering’? The big corporate players can afford the best PR firms to argue on their behalf, and of course they will always focus on the human-interest angle to argue their corner. But of course they studiously avoid the real reasons for their ire that IMHO have nix to do with ‘saving lives’, and that is to increase profits and returns to investors. We are dealing with ‘amoral tyrannies’ here, to coin a phrase from Noam Chomsky, and it fits.

  29. #29 Jeremy C
    September 16, 2010

    Gee…. not only does Indur M. Goklany cherrypick he cherrypicks the wrong stuff. Wot, is he a first year undergrad in media studies?

  30. #30 pough
    September 16, 2010

    Christopher Monckton says you can eat it by the spoonful!

    I think there is a fellow in Australia who does eat it, but what I never hear about is whether or not he’s passed any viable eggs since he started.

  31. #31 Steve Reuland
    September 16, 2010

    Christopher Monckton says you can eat it by the spoonful!

    I once heard of a guy who smoked a whole pack of cigarettes in one day. And he did it every day. The fact that he hasn’t keeled over dead yet proves that cigarettes are safe.

  32. #32 Ed Darrell
    September 16, 2010

    No one is advocating DDT use where, or if, it’s ineffective. But there are situations where it is not only effective, it is also the cheapest intervention available. Regardless, we should never foreclose the option that it be available for use.

    Paul Driessen and the African-American Environmentalists Association (hope I got the group’s name right) are advocating more use of DDT — as Mr. Goklany appears to be doing.

    If he’s not advocating more DDT, there’s no reason to complain about barriers to DDT use — which barriers are chiefly non-existent.

    DDT itself is cheap. Using it well is expensive because it requires professional application after testing of the vectors in the area to be sure they are not immune to the stuff, and it must be repeated twice a year, and it’s not very effective by itself. It costs about $12 to treat one hut once, or $24/year.

    Bednets, in contrast, cost about $10, and last 5 years in usual use.

    DDT spraying tends to cut malaria by 35% to 50%; bednets cut malaria incidence by 50% to 85%.

    AT that level, costs are almost incidental. The question is, what is the best way to beat malaria? “More DDT” is almost never the correct answer to that question.

  33. #33 Marion Delgado
    September 16, 2010

    The same people who broadly sprayed DDT for agricultural use, and thereby increased resistance, killing extra people from malaria, paid people to advocate the use of malaria even when ineffective (in fact unrelated) w/r/t fighting malaria.

    This is evolution denial, paid for by the people who actually caused extra needless malaria deaths.

    They’re causing untold deaths via the profligate use of antibiotics in the meat industry, as well.

  34. #34 Marion Delgado
    September 16, 2010

    above should be “paid people to advocate the use of DDT”

  35. #35 Turboblocke
    September 16, 2010

    AFAIAA there was never a ban on DDT for vector control, only agricultural use.

  36. #36 Paul UK
    September 16, 2010

    It is likely that rocketing honey prices is partly caused by neonicotinoid insecticides. And rising honey prices may be the least serious of the bee problems.
    Hives are lost because bees become disoriented. This isn’t a DDT issue, but it shows the unintended consequences of meddling with insecticides.

  37. #37 bug_girl
    September 16, 2010

    Tim, I would really like to see you re-do that graph so ALL the axes are arithmetic, rather than a mix of log and arithmetic. I didn’t even notice the log scale until someone pointed it out!

    I bet it looks quite different ;p

  38. #38 Steve Bloom
    September 17, 2010

    Yep, Goklany continues the fine tradition of scholarship he learned working at wingnut think tanks. The important thing is the larger truth, not the lies that have to be used to validate what is already known to be true.

    Anyway, folks will no doubt be pleased to know that these days Goklany is producing doubtless that same quality of scholarship for Obama in his day job as an Assistant Director in the Office of Policy Analysis of the U.S. Department of the Interior. I wish I were kidding.

  39. #39 stogy
    September 17, 2010

    Not sure if anyone is interested, but a couple of months ago, I had a major battle over DDT use against Malaria at right-thinking.com (a website which is now a shadow of its former self).

    Many of the arguments are referenced, including tons of stuff on Sri Lanka, and quite a bit on Africa. Oh and the horrendous Robert Gwadz, who claimed the DDT ‘ban’ had killed 20 million people. Overall we went quite a bit further than many of the Rachel Carson=Hitler arguments that usually come up.

    Sadly, I quit posting there not long after this. After five years I wasn’t learning anything new and it stopped being fun.

  40. #40 TrueSceptic
    September 17, 2010

    Some of the most egregious lying on any subject is to be found at Milloy’s Junk Science site. [This Malaria Clock](http://www.junkscience.com/malaria_clock.html) claims that over 15 billion (yes, billion) cases of malaria have occurred since the DDT “ban” in 1972 and, of these, over 103 million have died.

  41. #41 TrueSceptic
    September 17, 2010

    49 stogy,

    Just been reading some of that thread at right-thinking. It’s almost funny how dishonest and/or deluded some of those people are. Milloy would be proud.

  42. #42 Marco
    September 17, 2010

    TS, you should read the notes also. That distorting bastard Milloy KNOWS his numbers are not right, but in the fight against perceived injustice, he believes exaggeration is very much allowed. Of course, when something he does not like can be constructed as exaggerated, he goes all bananas. Err…scratch that, he’s always bananas.

    Anyway, the WHO not only has recently downgraded its estimates of new malaria cases to about 250 million a year, it’s absolute highest estimate was at 2.7 million deaths a year (current estimate: 800,000). So, not only does Milloy know he exaggerates, he even exaggerates the exaggerated numbers.

    The guy is absolute filth.

  43. #43 TrueSceptic
    September 17, 2010

    42 Marco,

    Just occasionally I almost wish we were back in medieval times. People like Milloy would’ve had his tongue cut out by now.

  44. #44 Steve Bloom
    September 17, 2010

    Nope, TS, more likely he’d be employed cutting out the tongues of those with an excessive devotion to facts.

  45. #45 TrueSceptic
    September 17, 2010

    44 Steve,

    Sadly, you are probably right: he would have squirmed his way into the Inquisition. Burning witches and torturing heretics would be something he’d be well suited to.

  46. #46 Hank Roberts
    September 17, 2010

    Can anyone confirm or refudiate that the above post is correct saying this is the same guy?
    “Indur M. Goklany
    Asst Dir of Programs & Science & Tech Policy”

  47. #47 Harold Brooks
    September 17, 2010

    Re: 46. I can confirm it’s the same guy.

  48. #48 Ed Darrell
    September 17, 2010
  49. #49 Hank Roberts
    September 18, 2010

    So, global warming will increase the spread of malaria.

    How’s the market for DDT stakeholders looking as that starts to happen?

    Not so good:
    http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=ddt-use-to-combat-malaria

    “A panel of scientists recommended today that the spraying of DDT in malaria-plagued Africa and Asia should be greatly reduced because people are exposed in their homes to high levels that may cause serious health effects.

    The scientists from the United States and South Africa said the insecticide, banned decades ago in most of the world, should only be used as a last resort in combating malaria.

    The stance of the panel, led by a University of California epidemiologist, is likely to be controversial with public health officials. Use of DDT to fight malaria has been increasing since it was endorsed in 2006 by the World Health Organization and the President’s Malaria Initiative, a U.S. aid program launched by former President Bush…..”

    More here: http://www.scientificamerican.com/topic.cfm?id=malaria

  50. #50 Steve Bloom
    September 18, 2010

    Re #48: Thanks for the link, Ed. I resemble that rant very much. :)

  51. #51 Ed Darrell
    September 18, 2010

    Y’know, I thought there was a resemblance, Steve.

    It occurs to me that there is a fantastic irony in that Goklany could get an education by wandering down the hall to the Interior Department library and reading the work on DDT done by the Fish and Wildlife Service between 1944 and 1972.

    It also occurs to me that he seems the type who would check out those rare volumes and toss them off the Key Bridge into the Potomac on the way home.

    Interior wasn’t that biased in the Reagan years. Weirder than hell.

  52. #52 Andy
    September 18, 2010

    Why are sane people so disadvantaged?

    If a Goklany opposite had been found spouting “greeny” nonesense in Bush’s Interior then FOX would have had him out a long time ago.

    What the hell is going on?

  53. #53 Steve Bloom
    September 19, 2010

    Ed, Bush II’s program of embedding his political appointees into permanent positions was unprecedented.

  54. #54 H
    September 19, 2010

    I posted what follows at WTF following someone’s pointer to a really, really awful thread over at Volokh; hat tip to those actually participating in those threads. Shudder. The Internet needs a reference librarian.

    http://scholar.google.com/scholar?hl=en&q=DDT+cancer&as_sdt=2001&as_ylo=2001&as_vis=1

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2022666/
    Environ Health Perspect. 2007 October; 115(10): 1406–1414.
    Published online 2007 July 24. doi: 10.1289/ehp.10260.

    PMCID: PMC2022666 Copyright This is an Open Access article: verbatim copying and redistribution of this article are permitted in all media for any purpose, provided this notice is preserved along with the article’s original DOI.

    Research

    DDT and Breast Cancer in Young Women: New Data on the Significance of Age at Exposure

    “Results
    High levels of serum p,p′-DDT predicted a statistically significant 5-fold increased risk of breast cancer among women who were born after 1931. These women were under 14 years of age in 1945, when DDT came into widespread use, and mostly under 20 years as DDT use peaked. Women who were not exposed to p,p′-DDT before 14 years of age showed no association between p,p′-DDT and breast cancer (p = 0.02 for difference by age).
    Conclusions
    Exposure to p,p′-DDT early in life may increase breast cancer risk. Many U.S. women heavily exposed to DDT in childhood have not yet reached 50 years of age. The public health significance of DDT exposure in early life may be large….”

  55. #55 Hank Roberts
    September 19, 2010

    argh, hoist on the underscores again.
    Make that
    http://scholar.google.com/scholar?hl=en&q=DDT+cancer&as\_sdt=2000&as\_ylo=2001&as\_vis=0

  56. #56 anon
    September 20, 2010

    Sri Lanka did OUTDOOR spraying. INDOOR RESIDUAL SPRAYING does not cause resistance.

    And as for cancer, no cancer trend of any kind was reported among US servicemen during WWII, each one of them was dusted head to toe with DDT.

    Of course you probably know this but you want to be a good little shill.

  57. #57 jakerman
    September 21, 2010

    >*And as for cancer, no cancer trend of any kind was reported among US servicemen during WWII, each one of them was dusted head to toe with DDT.*

    Did they conducted a controlled population study to look for a “trend”?

    And just imaging if a study were conducted, how would that contradict the findings of DDT and Breast Cancer in Young Women?

    Who is a shill for whom?

  58. #58 Eli Rabett
    September 21, 2010

    Hmm…servicemen WWII, combat, young fit men, a large percentage of whom died within a couple of years. More interesting would be a study of the cohort that survived twenty and more years later. Anyone try that?

  59. #59 Eli Rabett
    September 21, 2010

    FWIW, the DDT smokescreen thrown against the wall by the Goklany shills has distracted from the real and effective effort being mounted by the global fund programs such as Affordable Medicines for Malaria. You can start to read about these things at Eli’s Rabett Run. Come early, the carping from the shilleria has begun.

  60. #60 stogy
    September 21, 2010

    Sri Lanka did OUTDOOR spraying. INDOOR RESIDUAL SPRAYING does not cause resistance

    Not quite true. It may result in behavioural resistance – see my link earlier.

  61. #61 karl
    September 21, 2010

    @Eli #59: “the DDT smokescreen thrown against the wall by the Goklany shills has distracted from the real and effective effort being mounted.” This same point was made recently about Africa Fighting Malaria in [a letter published in Environmental Health Perspectives](http://ehp03.niehs.nih.gov/article/fetchArticle.action?articleURI=info%3Adoi%2F10.1289%2Fehp.1002279). (Herren HR, Mbogo C 2010. The Role of DDT in Malaria Control. Environ Health Perspect 118:a282-a282. doi:10.1289/ehp.1002279)

  62. #62 Rattus Norvegicus
    September 25, 2010

    Good god, the NYT connects the US ban on DDT (circa 1972) with the rise in bedbugs (circa 2010). WTF?

    But of course, Rachel Carson was one of the greatest mass murderers in history.

  63. #63 anon
    December 22, 2010

    In Sri Lanka they used it agricultural use. Once again, Sri Lanka, used it AGRICULTURALLY.

    What part of this do you not understand? Sri Lanka used it improperly, so, it did not work. It is utterly enraging that environmentlists let millions die just so they dont have to GASP ADMIT A MISTAKE

  64. #64 frank -- Decoding SwiftHack
    December 22, 2010

    anon:

    Begone, Gish Galloper.

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