In the 1970s, Dr Samuel Epstein wrote ‘The Politics of Cancer’ outlining the environmental health risks of chemicals contributing to cancer. The respective industries continue to minimize or deny those impacts.
You can listen to a series of interviews with Dr Epstein by Dr Mercola on chemicals in our environment and cancer prevention at this link.
Further you could also read our own Dr Meriel Watts’ excellent book called ‘The Poisoning of New Zealand’. She writes in Section One about pesticides and cancer citing the British Medical Assn’s report (p 41):
“While no causal link has been proven between pesticides and forms of cancer … there are serious doubts about the scientific validity of some of the studies which have been undertaken and there is no epidemiological evidence available for many pesticides. In other words we do not know whether or not many pesticides are harmful or not in day to day use.”
Taken from Culliney et al (1992) she cites a long list of links made between pesticides & cancer:
I highly recommend you read her book. Libraries may hold it I would imagine.
Recently, Carol Sawyer posted information on an Otago article that gives details of a study from the University of Otago on the legacy of pesticides found in our environment. They hail a move to organic farming as being preferable. Carol details the NZ health (& other) statistics which are very damning to us as a nation.
NEW ZEALAND’S HEALTH STATISTICS
1) “Close to half the men in New Zealand and Australia are at risk of getting cancer, giving Australasia the highest regional rate in the world, latest estimates from The World Health Organisation (WHO) show.
WHO’s International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) estimates the risk of New Zealand men developing cancer before the age of 75 years is 46.27 percent. The agency estimates the risk for women in New Zealand at a third.” RNZ , 16 September, 2018
2) We have five times the global average of motor neurone disease, and the highest mortality rate from MND in the world.
3) We have one of the lowest male fertility rates in the world.
4) We have one of the highest rates of asthma in the world.
5) NZ is “a high risk country for multiple sclerosis”. Southland has among the highest rates of multiple sclerosis in New Zealand. Southland is the second largest region in New Zealand and, in all, over half of Southland’s land area is public conservation land, while farms occupy 85% of the remaining land.
6) We have the second highest rate of teenage bullying out of 51 countries.
7) We have the highest youth suicide rate in the developed world.
8) We have the worst rate of domestic violence in the world.
9) We have the third highest rate of sexual assault in the world.
“British medical journal The Lancet has published a report indicating the sexual assault rate in New Zealand is far higher than the world average. It placed the country third highest, alongside Australia.” The report looked at data from 56 countries and “placed New Zealand at the third-highest rate alongside Australia.” RNZ, 14 February 2014
I don’t know about you, but I think our massive 1080 poison use, (at present, 90% of world usage, and ongoing for 64 years now, since 1954), and our enormous use of agri-chemicals on farms must have something to do with it.
Note : I haven’t put in all the references but these health/social statistics are easily found on the net.
Below is the University of Otago’s article:
Otago study shows legacy of pesticides difficult to avoid
Otago research shows banned pesticides (or their toxic degradation products) remain in the sediments of farm streams many years on.
An Otago study shows that the tell-tale legacy in rural South Island areas of pesticides banned many years ago remains, regardless of the type of sheep and beef farming now taking place on the land.
The research, led by Department of Chemistry recent PhD graduate Dr Pourya Shahpoury and just published in the international journal Environmental Pollution, nevertheless shows that average pesticide levels found in sediments of streams running through the 15 South Island farms assessed as part of the study were still within recommended thresholds.
The most frequently detected pesticide (chlorpyrifos) found in the stream beds is one that is approved in New Zealand for current use against pests. However, the study also found chemicals (or their toxic degradation products) present that had been widely used many years ago before they were banned.
The team of Otago Chemistry and Zoology Department researchers compared the presence of chlorinated pesticides at streams running through five sheep and beef farm clusters located near Amberley, Akaroa, Outram, Owaka and Gore.
In each of the five areas, one property was farmed organically, a second was farmed using the integrated pest management (reduced pesticide use) farming method, and a third was farmed conventionally. The farms were carefully selected with the help of a design formulated by Otago’s Agricultural Research Group on Sustainability (ARGOS), which studies farm management strategies in New Zealand.
Sediment samples were taken from the 15 different farmland streams during the spring/early summer, the period when pests and weeds are most active, resulting in more intense application of pesticides compared to winter or autumn.
Dr Shahpoury says chlorinated pesticides, within recommended thresholds, were found throughout the study areas regardless of the farming practices that took place on the farms eight to11 years preceding the study.
“Although the chemical chlorpyrifos was the most frequently detected in stream sediments, in contrast to our expectations, its concentrations were not highest in stream sediments from conventional farms and were found at similar levels across all three different farm types. This may have been due, at least in part, to its high potential to undergo vapour drift and re-distribution,” he says.
PHOTO: envirowatchrangitikei … spraying roundup onto fields adjacent to a school in Marton, NZ.