Ben Ross, co-author of THE POLLUTERS, on the chemical industry's impacts on health and environment

program date: 
Mon, 09/19/2011

Roberta Hall of Health and Health Care Forum hosts a conversation with Ben Ross, co-author of "The Polluters: The Making of Our Chemically Altered Environment", which examines the history of the chemical industry's impacts on health and the environment.

Benjamin Ross and Steven Amter tell the story of how the chemical industry, abetted by a compliant government, set loose a plague of pollution that began in the years before and directly following World War II, a plague that still lingers today. The advent of new synthetic chemical products such as Nylon and DDT created new hazards just as the expansion and mechanization of industry exacerbated old ones. Environmental dangers well known today — smog, pesticides, lead, chlorinated solvents, asbestos, and even global warming — were already recognized in that era by chemists, engineers, doctors, and business managers. A few of them spoke out about these dangers, others overlooked scientific truth in pursuit of wealth and prestige, and many struggled to find a balance between the interests of industry and the needs of the wider world.




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