Yves here. I’m old enough to have heard of the regulatory fights over DDT in real time, although not old enough to have grasped the details. But in 1963, CBS broadcast a documentary on Silent Spring which even I recall as having galvanized discussion. Plus recognition of the controversy by one of the three networks was tantamount to an authoritative endorsement of Rachel Carson’s concerns.
By Andru Okun, a writer living in New Orleans. Originally published at Undark
In 1945, Rachel Carson, then a marine biologist for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, developed an interest in DDT, a powerful pesticide used to eliminate insects that destroy crops and carry disease. A decade and a half later, “Silent Spring” was released, a book in which she argued that synthetic chemicals like DDT were also killing birds and fish, entering into the food chain, and contaminating the natural world. Her work,