Deja Vu all over again: The Preview to Anti-GMO activism, DDT

Science / Swaziland / World Mission

Here’s an interesting post about the decision to return to DDT usage in the developing world as a way of combating malaria.

“Among the most effective ways to control malaria is indoor spraying with DDT. It can reduce malaria transmission by up to 90 per cent and, when used properly, is safe for both humans and the environment. Yet, for many years, DDT has been taboo. African nations dismantled their spraying programs because donors wouldn’t fund them, even though spraying indoors never was dangerous.

Last week, all this began to change, when the World Health Organization announced a major policy reversal. From now on, it will aggressively promote the use of DDT to fight malaria. ‘Extensive research and testing has demonstrated that well-managed, indoor, residual house-spraying programs using DDT pose no harm to wildlife or to humans,’ said Dr. Arata Kochi, director of the WHO’s Global Malaria Department. He challenged environmental groups: ‘Help save African babies as you are saving the environment.’

The story of DDT in Africa is a monumental tragedy. It is the story of how the misguided environmental fears of well-meaning Westerners denied the world’s poorest people access to one of the most effective disease-prevention tools.”

While my own attention has been given to HIV and AIDS orphan relief, while I was in Swaziland it was made clear to me that the second most pressing concern in that country is managing and preventing malaria outbreaks. In other countries where the HIV rate is less than that of Swaziland (which is pretty much everywhere else) Malaria is probably the number one public health concern.

Read the rest here: Deja Vu all over again: The Preview to Anti-GMO activism, DDT

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