Pesticides: A Toxic Time Bomb in Our Midst

Overview

Pesticide exposure has long been a cause for concern, and with good reason. Studies have shown that all persons, but especially children, pregnant women, farmers, farmworkers, and the elderly, may experience negative health effects from pesticide exposure. These effects may include acute poisoning, cancer, neurological damage, birth defects, reduced sperm count, suppressed immune systems, and reproductive and developmental harm. This book is a comprehensive examination of pesticide use, pesticide harm, and ...

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Overview

Pesticide exposure has long been a cause for concern, and with good reason. Studies have shown that all persons, but especially children, pregnant women, farmers, farmworkers, and the elderly, may experience negative health effects from pesticide exposure. These effects may include acute poisoning, cancer, neurological damage, birth defects, reduced sperm count, suppressed immune systems, and reproductive and developmental harm. This book is a comprehensive examination of pesticide use, pesticide harm, and alternatives to harmful pesticides.

Levine highlights the role of farming, because a substantial majority—70 percent or more annually—of pesticides are applied in agricultural uses, thereby making their way into the food chain and into the water supply. More than 20 types of pesticides have been detected in U.S. groundwater, and it is believed that nearly 100 have the potential to invade our municipal water systems. Some level of pesticide contamination has been detected in every state, in both urban and agricultural areas.

Outside of agriculture, people are exposed to pesticides primarily in the home. Approximately 90 percent of all households in the nation use pesticides, and the number and concentration of these agents indoors has been shown to be greater than outdoors. Given that Americans now spend nearly 90 percent of each day indoors, this is an issue of real concern. In addition to homes, suburban and rural corporate parks are also affected. Schools are another worrisome venue. In too many of our 110,000 school districts, untrained persons are making critical decisions about the use of pesticides in school buildings and on school grounds. No other book currently examines this issue in such breadth and depth.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"[A] well-written and informative book about a relatively little known area of expertise for most physicians--chemicals in the environment and their impact on health….Levine has written a pragmatic book for physicians, health workers, and the general public….This book is an interesting and well-written volume that should be useful in providing an up-to-date introduction to pesticides from a variety of aspects, ranging from objective scientific principles to subjective policy directives."

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Journal of the American Medical Association

"Levine reviews the scope and nature of the pesticide dangers. Individual chapters explore pesticides in agriculture; pesticides in food; pesticides in homes, lawns, and gardens; pesticides in the air, water, and soil; and international trade in pesticides. In addition to describing pesticide use and their dangers to human and environmental health, he considers alternatives to pesticide use and strategies for mitigating pesticide harms."

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SciTech Book News

"The objective of this well-researched and well-documented book is to alarm readers and to move citizens and decision-makers to action. Green and organic advocates will love it. Levine describes practically everything negative that pesticides are capable of doing, whether on farms, at home, or in schools….This book will have served its purpose if it prompts readers to further examine pesticides closely, and to use them judiciously. Humankind has invented and embraced this type of technology and must use it wisely, in the same way it makes use of household tools, vehicles, and medications. Summing Up: Recommended. All levels."

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Choice

"Give your neighbor a book about the dangers of pesticides. One of the best new releases: Pesticides: A Toxic Time Bomb in Our Midst."

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Alternative Medicine

"Pesticide exposure has long been a danger and studies have documented dangers to all levels of society, but what makes Pesticides: A Toxic Time Bomb in Our Midst so important for any college-level collection strong in health, safety, and agriculture as well as social issues is its comprehensive examination of pesticide use, its effects, and alternatives to pesticides. Insights on applied agricultural uses of pesticides and how people are exposed primarily in the home accompany charts of statistics and heavily footnoted references in an invaluable guide highly recommended for any collection strong in environmental awareness, safety, and social issues."

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The Bookwatch

"Pesticide exposure has long been a danger and studies have documented dangers to all levels of society, but what makes Pesticides: A Toxic Time Bomb in Our Midst so important for any college-level collection strong in health, safety, and agriculture as well as social issues is its comprehensive examination of pesticide use, its effects, and alternatives to pesticides. Insights on applied agricultural uses of pesticides and how people are exposed - primarily in the home - accompany charts of statistics and heavily footnoted references in an invaluable guide highly recommended for any collection strong in environmental awareness, safety, and social issues."

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Science Digest

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780275991272
  • Publisher: ABC-CLIO, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 3/28/2007
  • Pages: 264
  • Product dimensions: 6.30 (w) x 9.30 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Meet the Author

MARVIN J. LEVINE is Professor of Industrial Relations (retired) at the Robert H. Smith School of Business, University of Maryland. He is the author of co-author of numerous books, including Children for Hire: The Perils of Child Labor in the United States (Praeger, 2003).

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Table of Contents


Preface     vii
The Pesticide Problem     1
Pesticides in Agriculture     25
Pesticides in Food     65
Pesticides in Schools     113
Pesticides in Homes, Lawns, and Gardens     157
Pesticides in the Air, Water, and Soil     187
International Trade in Pesticides     219
Remedies and Reflections     235
Selected Bibliography     245
Index     249
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