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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Is anyone familiar with the DDT pesticide problem in the Canaries? I've read that the population of Gran Canaria and Tenerife show very high levels of the pesticide DDT which causes cancer. The evidence actually points to continued use of the chemical even though it was outlawed in the 70s or 80s. Would it be possible to live on certain parts of these islands (away from banana agriculture?) to avoid the problem?
 

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Is anyone familiar with the DDT pesticide problem in the Canaries? I've read that the population of Gran Canaria and Tenerife show very high levels of the pesticide DDT which causes cancer. The evidence actually points to continued use of the chemical even though it was outlawed in the 70s or 80s. Would it be possible to live on certain parts of these islands (away from banana agriculture?) to avoid the problem?
The source of your information please?
 

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Woah, Nelly. Check yo' self. I think he's just stating that it might be a sketchy site if adobe blocked it....
 

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Personally I found the document very interesting. There is a very high incidence of breast cancer hereabouts in females 45-80. Now whether DDT was used in great quantities in the 50s-70s I don't know but we are surrounded by millions (probably billions or more) olive trees. They are sprayed a t least a couple of times each year. Whether the pesticides used were DDT and similar, IDK but it is food for thought.
 

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Hi ExpatRocks:

Thank you very much for that extremely informative site.

Wow! We have come a long way but have a much longer way to go. Maybe 1 million years from now, I can hardly wait to see all the wonderful healthy changes.

Thank you again, got any more interesting information to pass on about the beautiful Canary Islands?

Whisperer
 

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Hi Baldilocks: Like that name!

Is there any investigating you can do to check out what they are indeed using to spray those trees.

We love those Olives.

Whisperer
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Here's an interesting point. If you consider this quote from page 57:

"These results are consistent with the data published previously in the sense that p, pV -DDT breaks down at a relatively rapid pace in the environment...."

along with the p, pV -DDT levels in table 2 on page 55 broken down by island, it is glaringly obvious that DDT was still being used on Gran Canaria and Tenerife when this study was conducted which is almost 30 years after DDT was banned in Spain.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I don't understand why urban areas are so badly affected by this. Agriculture can't be taking place in urban areas, right? From page 56:

"...people from urban areas showed higher levels of the non-metabolized pesticides ( p, pV -DDT and o, pV -DDT) and the Total DDT body burden, and also o, pV -DDD (Table 2)."

My wife and I are headed to Las Palmas de Gran Canaria tomorrow and we were planning on having a baby there. Now I'm not so sure.
 

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expatrocks...do you use another forum... Lonely Planet?

The same original question, word for word, comes up in the Lonely Planet Forum and the information you supplied in the form of that report comes directly from someone elses response to that question.

The report is dated 2004 based on data collected in 1999, so one has to question the validity of the report some 14 years after the event.
The whole question of the banning of DDT is arguable; there is no wholesale worldwide ban in fact, in the USA its use in agriculture was banned in 1972 but thirty years elapsed before its use in agriculture was banned worldwide. It is still in use for disease control; It is still routinely used in some African countries, in India and in parts of Asia.
It has been firmly established that in the case of DDT vs Malaria, DDT is / was the lesser of two evils. Thousands upon thousands of people died from Malaria and, strangely enough, visceral leishmaniasis in regions were it was temporarily banned. Reports that DDT resistant mosquitos evolved have been proven to be untrue.
One has to wonder if the rise in cases of canine visceral leishmaniasis in the Mediterranean areas is due to the discontinued use of DDT... The timescales involved certainly fit... The sandfly, a misnomer if ever there was one, because it's not a fly at all but a mosquito, is thought to be the main carrier of Leishmaniasis, it is in fact a very close relative of the malaria carrying mosquito.

It has never been categorically proven that there is a link between DDT and cancer, the sample figures used in the trials were, by the admission of the W.H.O., too small to be conclusive.

For the tin foil hat conspiracy folks it was even rumoured that the Big Pharma used the ban on DDT as a form of population control in Africa; when it was was withdrawn, as stated earlier thousands of people in the 3rd world died from diseases carried by the mosquito.

When the US ban on DDT was introduced, one major US company, (M******o) producing DDT, switched from producing pesticides to manufacturing herbicides instead; having established itself as the worlds largest manufacturer of herbicides they then started producing genetically modified seeds that were resistant to their herbicidal product. They had to do this... their herbicide killed everything, weeds, grass, and crops and trees.
Guess what... they are now the worlds biggest producer of GM seeds...
The same company also did extremely well out of the Vietnam War as the manufacturer of 'Agent Orange', a radical variation of their leading herbicidal product which has had devastating results on humans.
You don't need to dig very far to find that overall, DDT was and continues to be, beneficial to mankind as a whole, especially in combating Malaria and Leish. DDT residues can be found all over the world, carried on the winds. Not really surprising then that there may be some residual levels in the Canary Islands but there is no current information available; my opinion is that the information carried in the report is long since invalid and does not reflect the current situation.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
It would be nice to see another study conducted today. In the absence of that, I appreciate the study that was conducted and the facts it provides. The "Results" section starts on page 54 of the report. It's not long and it's very informative.

Again, the p, pV -DDT levels broken down by island in table 2 on page 55 clearly indicate that DDT was being used on Gran Canaria and Tenerife when samples were gathered. DDT residue "carried on the winds" would not have singled out those two islands.

As for DDT's affect on human health, here's what Wikipedia has to say:

DDT - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
 

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