September 22, 2006 9:51 AM
We were all happy to see the World Health Organization
finally take steps to embrace wider anti-malarial
deployment of DDT, but our friend Steve Milloy reminds us it's hardly a moment to
break out the champagne:
Overlooked in all the hoopla over the announcement,
however, is the terrible toll in human lives (tens of millions dead — mostly
pregnant women and children under the age of 5), illness (billions sickened)
and poverty (more than $1 trillion dollars in lost GDP in sub-Saharan Africa alone) caused by the tragic, decades-long ban.
Much of this human catastrophe was preventable, so why
did it happen? Who is responsible? Should the individuals and activist groups
who caused the DDT ban be held accountable in some way?
Yes, Steve, they
September 21, 2006 10:37 AM
general has sued carmakers DaimlerChrysler, General Motors, Ford and
subsidiaries of Honda, Nissan and Toyota for global
warming impacts on the state. Interesting that the state isn't trying to
hold individual car owners — the ones who actually drive and produce the
emissions at issue — liable for the alleged damage.
This suit seems rather reminiscent of the lawsuits first filed
by U.S. cities against gun
manufacturers in the late 1990s. Critics at the time pointed out, of
course, that it's the people who actually shoot the guns who should be held
liable for any damage caused by them. Congress was sufficiently alarmed by the
prospects, however, to pass the Protection
of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act, shielding firearms manufacturers from such
extended liability claims. Perhaps the House and Senate should put their heads together
on a Freedom to Traffic in Automobiles Act.
September 18, 2006 10:27 AM
In an extraordinarily good development, the World Health Organization has officially called for greater use of DDT around the world in order to combat malaria, potentially saving hundreds of thousands of lives. CEI people and our friends have written widely on the issue of DDT and malaria over the past several years, and it's a relief to finally see some movement in the right direction. It's never too late to exorcise the ghost of Rachel Carson from international health policy.
September 14, 2006 10:03 AM
may help to explain why the term “risk” shouldn't automatically be applied to
new technologies, such as biotechnology. According to a University of Sussex research study, new technologies
should be evaluated on a continuum of categories — including risk, uncertainty,
ambiguity, and ignorance.
The article in Food Navigator about the new study also
quotes extensively from a
speech I gave this summer to the Institute of Food Technologists attacking
the use of the precautionary principle applied to biotechnology.