Undoing the damage

A man—made human catastrophe in Africa is finally being remedied. You might expect to read about some environmental disaster carried out by rapacious developers. A dam perhaps? Or logging? How about pollution from a mine or smelter? Credit the vigilant environmentalists for correcting this outrage?

Nope. This time the black hats belong to the envionmentalists themselves. The banning of DDT has led to needless mass death from Malaria in Africa. The National Geographic News reports:

The disease, which kills mostly children and pregnant women, is largely spread by mosquitoes.

The overwhelming majority—90 percent—of malaria victims live in Africa, where the disease plagues both human and economic health (Africa facts, maps, more).

In May the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) endorsed the use of DDT for indoor antimalarial treatment in the developing world.

The World Health Organization (WHO) is expected to do the same in short order, according to a comprehensive report published in the current issue of the journal Nature Medicine.

The chemical's return is sure to raise some eyebrows, but people on the front lines of the malaria fight generally support the decision.

"It's about 20 years too late, but it's a good thing," said Don Roberts, a professor of tropical public heath at Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences in Bethesda, Maryland.

A human catastrophe caused by Rachel Carson, the New Yorker and some environmentalists looking for a cause——At last it's over but not before impoverishing the Third World, killing millions of people , and creating an epidemic which is now far harder to deal with.

Clarice Feldman   8 01 06

A man—made human catastrophe in Africa is finally being remedied. You might expect to read about some environmental disaster carried out by rapacious developers. A dam perhaps? Or logging? How about pollution from a mine or smelter? Credit the vigilant environmentalists for correcting this outrage?

Nope. This time the black hats belong to the envionmentalists themselves. The banning of DDT has led to needless mass death from Malaria in Africa. The National Geographic News reports:

The disease, which kills mostly children and pregnant women, is largely spread by mosquitoes.

The overwhelming majority—90 percent—of malaria victims live in Africa, where the disease plagues both human and economic health (Africa facts, maps, more).

In May the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) endorsed the use of DDT for indoor antimalarial treatment in the developing world.

The World Health Organization (WHO) is expected to do the same in short order, according to a comprehensive report published in the current issue of the journal Nature Medicine.

The chemical's return is sure to raise some eyebrows, but people on the front lines of the malaria fight generally support the decision.

"It's about 20 years too late, but it's a good thing," said Don Roberts, a professor of tropical public heath at Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences in Bethesda, Maryland.

A human catastrophe caused by Rachel Carson, the New Yorker and some environmentalists looking for a cause——At last it's over but not before impoverishing the Third World, killing millions of people , and creating an epidemic which is now far harder to deal with.

Clarice Feldman   8 01 06