Steve Tvedten's "The
Bug Stops Here"
by Stephen L. Tvedten
On September 11, 2001, terrorists attacked the World Trade Center in New York City, NY and the Pentagon in Washington, DC; that forever left an indelible mark in the minds of many as to the carnage and damage that occurred in terms of lives lost and injuries sustained (immediate and long-term) to people and to the environment, especially to those people living in and around Manhattan. Initially, representatives from the U. S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) led the public to believe that the air was "safe" to breathe in New York City near Ground Zero and, more than four months later, reports of the damage caused to the respiratory systems of people by the contaminants are referred to as the WTC Cough. On Saturday, February 23, 2002, a front page story and headline in the New York Newsday, one of the four major dailies of New York City, stated:
"EPA WATCHDOG: DON'T LEAVE HOME WITHOUT IT - Advises Respirators Be Worn Around Ground Zero"
Approximately one month after 911, government officials, who are elected and appointed to help defend and protect us, began to (all of a sudden) be concerned about the terrorists using their "registered" pesticide poisons in a follow-up attack on the American people. Some of the measures taken were that information regarding pesticides were removed from web sites and the aerial spraying of the deadly poisons was temporarily halted.
If our government officials were so concerned about these deadly poisonous pesticides being used against us by terrorists, then why in the world are they being allowed to be used at all as "registered" by them to be used in our homes, gardens, schools, buildings and elsewhere on this planet? Read on and come to your own conclusions about the uses/misuses of "registered" pesticide poisons and the damages they can bring. Read on and discover for yourself what can be done to reduce and or totally eliminate the uses of any "registered" pesticide poisons in the environment surrounding you, your family and your friends.
A Brief History Lesson...
Volatile, synthetic pesticide poisons by their very nature and design are not natural or normally occurring materials; they are man-made poisons specifically designed to kill and to contaminate, destroy, injure and/or negatively affect life.
Organophosphates were originally designed to kill or incapacitate people; these poisons are designed to be broad spectrum killers and are not species specific and have always attacked and negatively affected non-target species, including man and his animals. The Toxic Times, "Is School Air Making Children Sick?" noted: The U. S. Environmental Agency states that "indoor air is found to be up 70 times more polluted than outdoor air" and "because most people spend more than 90 percent of their time indoors, the quality of the indoor environment and how it affects health should be a top priority for everybody who has an impact on this environment." The American College of Allergists has said that 50% of all illnesses are either caused by or aggravated by polluted air.
As you begin this ever-evolving study of true IPM or Intelligent Pest Management, always remember
the purpose of this study is to help save the earth and you from unnecessary pollution and give you better
and safer pest control. There obviously will arise traditional pest control "experts" who will critique this and all
of my other work. Pierre Pachet (Professor of Psychology at Toulouse in 1872) once wrote "Louis
Pasture's theory of germs is ridiculous fiction!" These same "nit pickers" will be the same people who have
contaminated the entire world with their "registered" poisons. To all those "experts" I simply remind them that
some other "experts" assured us that asbestos, tobacco, DDT, chlordane, PCBs,
kepone, silicone breast
implants, lead plumbing and leaded gasoline were all once proclaimed "safe" by government "regulators" and industry.
Later they were all banned or severely restricted due to adverse health effects they continually
caused including cancer, nerve damage, and birth
defects...Just another example of yesterday's
"solutions" becoming today's problems.
Examples of the How Typical Pest Control Measures Can Hurt Children
A June l998 study by Philip Landrigan, M.D., Professor of Pediatrics at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in the Environmental Health Perspectives compared two culturally and genetically similar groups of Mexicans/Indians. The amount of pesticide contact was comparable to what is typically used in the USA for crops. One-half the children who were exposed to a total of 80 pesticide crop applications twice a year. This group was drastically different than the similar control group which had virtually no pesticide exposure.
Four to five year olds that were exposed to "registered" pesticide poisons:
This study raises very important concerns about the toxic effects of pesticides on children's brains and nervous systems. Bernard Weiss of the Department of Environmental Medicine at the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry stated that the study highlights the need for more research, "It doesn't seem a surprise that you would see an effect, knowing what we know about pesticides and the elevated vulnerability of the developing brain."
The main problem with pesticide poison contamination is that you cannot see it, or at times even smell it. You cannot always determine that you are being exposed to is a dangerous pollutant and, therefore, many people still do not believe these pesticide poisons can adversely affect their health.
Studies now are proving that poor indoor air quality (lAQ) damages our health and our possessions; it lowers our productivity at work, and it diverts major resources that are needed to diagnose and solve health and emotional problems that result from this toxic contamination.
We have totally forgotten how to protect ourselves and how to successfully wage war on our pest enemy. There are about 10 million insects; we have named about 1 million and there are only about 1000 insects that are considered to be pests. Over half of the insect pest species are now pesticide resistant.
Many other well intentioned "protective" practices of the past have resurrected themselves today as threats. Arsenic was used from the Civil War to 1910 as a major part of embalming fluids; asbestos was installed to fireproof structures; landfills were intended to improve sanitary conditions and pesticide poisons were originally supposed to "protect" us against the damaging effects of insects, rodents and weeds. TRIS (was a fire retardant in children's night wear) that exposed 60 million children to a potent cancer-causing agent in order to keep them "safe;" these chemicals and many other toxins were once marketed as "safe" and "necessary". Potential adverse health and/or environmental problems were simply not a concern at that time. All or these previous "protective" practices started out being sold as "cures"!
Today we must be concerned not to allow any more "protective cures" come back to haunt us. Just a few of the problems with volatile, pesticide poisons are as follows:
Volatile, pesticide poisons do not stay where they are sprayed...they volatilize (are gaseous) so they can drift all over and contaminate all surfaces, people and pets.
Pesticide poisons do not discriminate what they kill. Any form of life is at risk.
Pests can quickly become immune or resistant to dangerous synthetic pesticide poisons. People do not seem to be capable of doing this.
Pesticide poisons are often stored in our fatty tissues, where they can become carcinogenic, or emerge later to harm us again.
Virtually all pesticide poisons are neurotoxins and this includes many of the misnamed "inert" substances such as xylene and toulene which are toxic solvents for many pesticides.
Many pesticide poisons contain contaminates or are changed into even more deadly poisons (metabolites) as they age or enter our bodies.
Most contain unregistered and untested "inerts" that often are more dangerous or contaminate longer than the active or major or "registered" poison ingredients in a pesticide formula.
The Tulane-Xavier Center for Bio-environmental Research in New Orleans said that combining two substances common to registered pesticide poisons can produce a synergistic impact on hormones 1,000 times stronger than either poison alone - but no one routinely tests for these synergistic effects.
The average home today contains more chemicals than were found in a typical chemistry lab at the turn of the century!
One day (hopefully in the near future) people will be astonished we actually paid someone to contaminate our homes, schools and work areas with volatile, synthetic pesticide poisons, just as we now wonder about the mental stability of people who actually paid someone to put dangerous asbestos in older buildings.
Black's Law Dictionary defines "intoxication" as a situation where, by reason of taking intoxicants, an individual does not have the normal use of his physical or mental faculties, thus rendering him incapable of acting in the manner in which an ordinary, prudent and cautious man, in full possession of his faculties, using reasonable care, would act under like conditions. Becoming intoxicated by chemical poisons can produce a behavior that is not very different from that of a person who is intoxicated with alcohol.
About 6,000 new synthetic chemicals are added to our environment in just the U. S. every year! Middle-aged human bodies now contain on average 177 organochlorine chemicals. Steinman, D. and Wisner, R., Living Healthy in a Toxic World. Today we have 500 to 1000 chemicals residing in us that were not there in 1920; we have become full of toxins - intoxicated - only apparently we can't sober up! To add even more toxic, volatile poisons to this cesspool we carry is truly absurd! Especially if these volatile poisons do not even control the target pests!
Obviously, we no longer have the normal use of our faculties. It is time to get clean and sober and use some Pestisafes® and common sense!
Like Lemmings to the Sea -
The American College of Allergists has said that 50% of all illnesses are either caused by or aggravated by polluted indoor air. As you begin this ever-evolving study of true IPM or Intelligent Pest Management®, always remember the purpose of this study is to save the earth and you from unnecessary pollution.
Dow Shalt Not Destroy Thy Indoor Air Quality (with Synthetic Pesticide Poisons)
Our Indoor Air Quality (lAQ) has too long been neglected even though it is as necessary to our survival as our next breath. With each breath we take in billions upon billions of air molecules. G-d help us if our ambient air is routinely polluted/contaminated with poison(s)...for unlike smoking, which we can choose to quit, we cannot choose to stop breathing! We can and must, however, now choose to stop spraying any volatile poisons in our buildings and vehicles where we spend 90% of our time.
Volatile, synthetic pesticide poisons are the only toxic contaminants the poison industry has been deliberately adding to our environment. There will be no indoor air pollution if we stop contaminating it with poison in the guise of protecting ourselves and our children! On particularly smoggy days, children, elderly people and people with respiratory problems are told to stay inside to avoid health risks from air pollution...yet monitoring studies have consistently found concentrations of many air pollutants are actually higher inside than outside our vehicles, homes, schools and offices!
According to the Congressional Research Service, "...Urban and suburban (synthetic pesticide poison) applications to lawns, golf courses, roadsides, public buildings, and to homes and apartment buildings can lead to even broader human exposure than agricultural applications of these toxins. These...applications can cause immediate toxic reactions (especially) to sensitive individuals...(There is (also) concern about less visible but longer-term health effects." Even with the "concern" not much has been studied about chronic pesticide exposure indoors where people spend more than 90% of their time.
In an effort to help stop the toxic contamination of our children, in 1993, EPA distributed to school districts across the nation brochures encouraging pesticide poison use reduction and alternative pest control methods through integrated pest management. Sadly, only pesticide poison applicators are mandated and/or are being hired to create the reduction! "Foxes guarding the chicken coop." EPA, FDA and USDA agreed in 1993 to find alternatives to their "registered" poisons. In 2001 Senator Leahy noted that there had been a 40% increase in annual pesticide usage since 1993. At the time of this writing, no government "regulator" was able to even define the word "alternative" when asked by the Author.
The premier total exposure assessment methodology TEAM study was the first and the largest governmental study that attempted to determine if persons living close to chemical plants and petroleum refineries had higher exposures to toxic volatile organic compounds than persons living a few miles away. No such effect was found at any of the study sites...but it did find the real danger - the median air concentrations of the 18 targeted chemicals ranged from 2 to 20 times higher inside participants' homes than in the outside!
The simple fact is our homes and/or buildings remain sealed and/or are now highly energy efficient and these inside environments are not subject to most degradative processes that exist (outside) in the sun, rain and wind - these interior conditions allow volatile, synthetic pesticide poisons to become far more concentrated and to remain active/dangerous for far longer periods than if they were applied outside. When they are applied outside in fields often migrants are not allowed to reenter outside fields for up to 4 days! Why then do you "think" it is safe for you and your family to reenter your "fumigation chamber" in a couple of hours?
In the March/April 1992 "Archives of Human Health" issue, Hebrew University School, Jerusalem and Tel Aviv Ministry of Health, et al published a study wherein they documented illness and excretion of organophosphate metabolites four months after a household pest extermination clearly indicating it is not safe to reenter a building treated for roaches after a few hours, but that toxic exposures from labeled usage may be prolonged, continuous and involve infants and children.
A few interesting facts on pesticide poisons were reported way back in a 1993 issue of USA Today Magazine:
One billion pounds of pesticide poisons were routinely added to the environment every year (back then). If put in 100-pound sacks and laid end to end, they would have completely circled the world! NCAMP wrote in 2001 we now use 4.5 billion pounds of "registered" poison...just in the USA! We truly are on a chemical treadmill that causes far more problems than it "solves".
In the 1990s EPA estimated that one out of every 10 public drinking water wells in the U. S. contained pesticides (poisons), as well as more than 440,000 rural private wells. At a minimum, over 1,300,000 people (routinely) drank water contaminated with one or more of these dangerous poisons back then! Pesticide poison contamination has been found in thousands of lakes, rivers, and waterways throughout the nation. Agriculture is the number-one source of surface water pollution in the U. S.
The rather startling figures coming in from testing homes throughout the U. S. show approximately 75% of all our homes built before April of 1988 are routinely being found to contain (significant) air levels of the previously "registered" pesticide (poison) chlordane. A study by Dr. Richard Fenske at Rutgers University in New Jersey found at least 34% of homes built before 1982 contained air chlordane levels over the (original) evacuation limit of 5 micrograms per cubic meter of air, an interim evacuation level set by the Air Force and the National Academy of Sciences.
Although there is no definite data on the number of homes in the United States that have been treated with chlordane, in 1987 the National Pest Control Association estimated that 1.5 million homes per year were treated with these registered, volatile carcinogens for termite control. Taking the information from several studies regarding chlordane contamination being found in homes today, it could be estimated that a minimum of 100-185 million U. S. residents may be breathing significant levels of chlordane contamination in their homes daily and 10-20 million U. S. residents could be living in dangerous homes where the indoor air levels of chlordane are exceeding even the recommended interim evacuation level originally set by the National Academy of Sciences and the U. S. Air Force, but now greatly reduced.
Once the scale of this poison pollution problem is finally brought to the publics' attention, it should dwarf the concerns generated by indoor levels of formaldehyde and radon. In a review of the chlordane home contamination problem and its link to childhood cancers and blood disorders, Dr. David Ozonoff, of the Boston University School of Public Health stated, "a national program for monitoring all homes treated is urgently needed to detect persistent (termiticide poison) contamination." If this wasn't enough to be concerned about, Dr. Ozonoff s went on to say, "It should also be noted that (previously "registered") commercial chlordane formulations (also) contain carcinogenic (unregistered) "inert ingredients" and contaminants, such as propylene oxide, hexachlorobutadiene, and carbon tetrachloride, apart from some 40 other ingredients so far undisclosed by the manufacturer, formulators and applicators of C/H (chlordane/heptachlor)."
COMMON DANGERS FOUND IN PESTICIDE POISONS
Pesticides can enter your body through the air you breathe, the pores in your skin, the fluids and foods you ingest, the clothing and fabrics you wear, and the surfaces you touch. Many affect our liver, kidney, bladder, bowels, muscles, brain and especially our immune, reproductive and nervous systems. Those whose daily occupations involve pesticide exposure are certainly at a seriously increased risk.
Pesticide Poisons - If you are going to use any pesticide poison to "solve" a problem, look carefully at the label and ask for the Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS). You should be able to figure out at least part of the components and inherent dangers in the product you are questioning. First call the manufacturer's emergency number on the MSDS. The number should be on the label and/or the MSDS sheet or call 1-800-555-1212. If in doubt about a poison, you can simply use a safe and far more effective alternative.
Food Products - *All You Can Eat, Environmental Working Group (EWG) Web Site, January 1999* Interactive web site allows users to determine what pesticides they consume on a daily basis and their potential health effects. By selecting items from a list of foods, visitors to the site can access EWG's search engine that matches foods against more than 90,000 government lab test results for pesticide food residues. Provides suggestions for minimizing pesticide residue intake. Web site: www.foodnews.org.
Cancer-causing Products - *U. S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Pesticidal Chemicals Classified as Known, Probable or Possible Human Carcinogens, Web Site, 1999* Provides U. S. EPA Office of Pesticide Programs' most current list of pesticides categorized by carcinogenicity. Lists registration date, use patterns, and regulatory status. Web site: www.epa.gov/pesticides/carlist/.
You can call the National Pesticide Telecommunications Network @ 1-800-858-7378. They are open 7 days a week from 6:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Pacific Standard Time for any questions that you may have about the use of pesticides.
In 1992, Dr. Kenneth Rosenman, M. D. from MSU noted less than 1% of the doctors even report occupational contamination problems and most hospitals do not have a method to track pesticide poison related incidents; even so, there were 50 cases of accidental poisonings reported in Michigan. 50% of the cases requiring hospitalization from pesticide poisonings were children under the age of 12! Remember, Dr. Rosenman estimates less than 1% of all employers and doctors even bother to comply with the current pesticide poisoning reporting requirements.^
WHY 99.9 PERCENT IS NOT AND SHOULD NOT BE GOOD ENOUGH - If 99.9% reduction in poison use is compared to other "things" - We would have to accept:
"Never give in, Never give in, never, never, never, never - in nothing, great or small, large or petty, never give in, except to convictions of honor and good sense." - Winston Churchill
True IPM or Intelligent Pest Management® (IPM) means fighting or controlling pest infestations in ways that are least toxic to people, pets and the environment. True IPM, when properly practiced, removes the cause rather than continually and needlessly "treating" the symptom with volatile, synthetic pesticide poison! Knowledge of the species, local breeding areas, feeding and territorial habits of the pest is essential to controlling pest populations. In true IPM, often even the pests are not killed.
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