This is a link to a Position Paper of the American Council on Science and Health — Professor Allan S. Felsot, Washington State University. Controversy surrounding pesticide use at first glance would seem to date back to the 1962 publication of Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring. However, her superficial analysis ignores the long history of pesticide control statutes such as the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FFDCA 1938) and the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, Rodenticide Act (FIFRA 1947). Despite the headlines of hazard, modern chemical technology provides hope for continued improement of human health, whether helping to make vegetables and fruits of high quality more abundant and cheaper, or to preserve (or indeed, enhance) the health of individuals and society at large.
Are you looking for a source of objective, science-based information about pesticides - written for the non-expert? The EXTOXNET InfoBase may be for you! The EXTOXNET InfoBase provides a variety of information about pesticides. Access the Pesticide Information Profiles (PIPs) for specific information on pesticides. Toxicology Information Briefs (TIBs) contain a discussion of certain concepts in toxicology and environmental chemistry. Other topic areas include: Toxicology Issues of Concern (TICs), Factsheets, News about Toxicology Issues, Newsletters, Resources forToxicology Information, and Technical Information.
Mercury is a highly toxic element that is found both naturally and as an introduced contaminant in the environment. Although its potential for toxicity in highly contaminated areas such as Minamata Bay, Japan, in the 1950's and 1960's, is well documented, research has shown that mercury can be a threat to the health of people and wildlife in many environments that are not obviously polluted. The risk is determined by the likelihood of exposure, the form of mercury present (some forms are more toxic than others), and the geochemical and ecological factors that influence how mercury oves and changes form in the environment.
There you will find short essays with substantiating links to scientific sources and additional commentary. Subscribers to the SGFM newsletter are notified about additional postings to the "Columns" section as they occur.